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NNA Track 2: Collaborative Research: The impact of climate change on Greenland's glacial fjords, ecosystems, and local communities

General

Project start
01.01.2019
Project end
31.12.2020
Type of project
ARMAP/NSF
Project theme
Society, economy and culture
Project topic
Biology
Education & Outreach
Geology
Oceanography
Culture & history

Fieldwork / Study

Fieldwork country
Greenland (DK)
Fieldwork region
Greenland, Mid-West
Fieldwork location

Geolocation is 64.1833, -51.75

Fieldwork start
01.09.2020
Fieldwork end
07.09.2020

SAR information

Fieldwork / Study

Fieldwork country
Greenland (DK)
Fieldwork region
Greenland, North-West
Fieldwork location

Geolocation is 77.4836, -69.2593

Fieldwork start
01.01.2020
Fieldwork end
31.12.2020

SAR information

Fieldwork / Study

Fieldwork country
Greenland (DK)
Fieldwork region
Greenland, Mid-East
Fieldwork location

Geolocation is 65.6, -37.63333

Fieldwork start
01.01.2020
Fieldwork end
31.12.2020

SAR information

Project details

02.05.2020
Science / project summary

Navigating the New Arctic (NNA) is one of NSF's 10 Big Ideas. NNA projects address convergence scientific challenges in the rapidly changing Arctic. The Arctic research is needed to inform the economy, security and resilience of the Nation, the larger region and the globe. NNA empowers new research partnerships from local to international scales, diversifies the next generation of Arctic researchers, and integrates the co-production of knowledge. This award fulfills part of that aim. Hundreds of glaciers around the Arctic flow into ocean fjords that are several miles wide, tens of miles long, and thousands of feet deep. Glacial meltwater and sediments released into the fjords make their waters nutrient-rich to the extent that glacial fjords, all over the Arctic region, are characterized by prosperous marine ecosystems, featuring a high density of seabirds, marine mammals, and fishes. As a result, many Arctic settlements are located near glacial fjords that, through their ecosystems, support hunting and fishing and contribute to the regional economy. As the Arctic warms, however, glaciers are melting and retreating, and ocean waters are expected to warm, thus affecting these glacial fjord ecosystems and the human communities they support. Within this project, researchers will take advantage of new projections of how the glaciers and the ocean will change, combined with improved understanding of glacial fjords and their ecosystems, to investigate change at two distinct glacial fjords in Greenland. The long-term goal of this project is to provide relevant planning information to the two communities in Greenland and develop a method that can be applied to other communities around the Arctic. The international research team, composed of glaciologists, oceanographers, marine ecosystem scientists, and social scientists, will use available data and hold discussions with community members to identify the relevant socioecological system components and linkages for two glacial fjord systems, one in Northwest Greenland and one in Southeast Greenland. This systems understanding will be combined with glacier and local climate (ocean and atmosphere) projections to determine how climate projections can be optimally utilized for sustainable planning and adaptation. This research will involve synthesis of existing information and co-production of knowledge with the two communities. A final workshop involving Greenland Government officials and other Arctic organizations will be used to develop a framework that can be applied throughout the Arctic.

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