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interact logoScreenshot 2020 09 22 at 09.56.28The International Network for Terrestrial Research and Monitoring in the Arctic (INTERACT) is an EU funded initiative working towards building capacity to help identify, understand, predict and respond to environmental changes across the Arctic. NTERACT is an infrastructure project under the auspices of SCANNET, a circumarctic network of currently 88 terrestrial field bases in northern Europe, Russia, US, Canada, Greenland, Iceland, the Faroe Islands and Scotland as well as stations in northern alpine areas. INTERACT specifically seeks to build capacity for research and monitoring all over the Arctic, making it an ideal partner for the CBMP and the monitoring plans it produces. 

 

 


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Led by CAFF, the biodiversity working group of the Arctic Council, the overall goal of INTERACT Work Package 7 "Improving and harmonizing biodiversity monitoring" is to impliment the circumpolar Freshwater and Terrestrial Arctic biodiversity monitoring plans of the CAFFs Circumpolar Biodiversity Monitoring Programme (CBMP) at INTERACT stations.  

The goal of the CBMP monitoring plans is to harmonize and integrate efforts to monitor the Arctic's living resources through a network of scientists, governments, Indigenous organizations and conservation groups. Through this harmonization and integration, the monitoring plans will facilitate more rapid detection, communication, and response to the significant pressures affecting the circumpolar world.

Three research stations were chosen for the implementation of the CBMP monitoring plans and they are the Rif Field Station (RFS) in Melrakkaslétta peninsula in the Northeast of Iceland, the Zackenberg research station East Greenland and the Canadian High Arctic Research Station (CHARS) in Cambridge bay Canada. With RFS being in its initial phases in an area with very little established monitoring, the station offers a unique opportunity to serve as a model for how to use the protocols of the CBMP program to set up successful biodiversity monitoring. In this way, monitoring at the station will provide a valuable contribution to ecological monitoring in Arctic regions. Zackenberg is a well-established monitoring station operating since 1995, and in recent years under the Greenland Ecosystem Monitoring programme (GEM). The station has since its start included aspects related to biodiversity monitoring. Construction of the CHARS research station started in 2014 and will be a state-of-the-art monitoring and research centre in the Canadian north.

This physical distribution and varying monitoring history made these stations ideal for implementing the CBMP monitoring plans and documenting the process in order to provide guidance on process required to implement the CBMP monitoring plans, which hopefully will be replicated at more INTERACT stations deepening our understanding of the rapid change occurring in the Arctic.

Four meetings have been held between the research stations, including one data workshop. A series of publications and products have been developed;

WP7 is now finalized, while the task of working towards the implementation of CBMP monitoring plans continues across the Arctic.


35776349831 e5e699eca0 wThe objective of this work package is to document and improve awareness of the many consequences of extreme weather events in the Arctic that are of importance to ecosystem services, local and global communities, so that appropriate timely responses can be made.
The specific aims are to:

  • Document the effects of extreme weather events on rapid changes in biodiversity.
  • Identify the societal impacts of extreme weather on local communities through community
    engagement.
  • Evaluate the ability of current state-of-the-art weather predictions to forecast such events

The WP will also provide guidance on how the INTERACT network can be used to improve weather
forecasts and the way they are used in the Arctic and beyond. WP Leads is the European Center for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF)

CAFF will address Task 4.1 within the workpackage which focuses on documenting the effects of extreme weather events on the seasonal timing of species migration, range changes and biodiversity. This task will underpin ongoing work that is informing research, monitoring and policy frameworks related
to extreme events and Arctic biodiversity. It will identify the types of extreme events that potentially can have a big influence on Arctic Biodiversity. For example, extreme weather (temperature extremes, wind, rain on snow etc.), flooding, landslides, slush flow avalanches, invasive species, fires etc. that can have potential implications on seasonal timing of migrations, distribution patterns, ecological shifts and invasive species pathways. The study will be used to design a monitoring system to detect impacts of extreme events on biodiversity and identify how this could be incorporated within existing CBMP monitoring plans. 

 

Interactive User Manual
BiodiversityCAFF has developed the Interactive User Manual for implimenting CBMP monitoring plans on research stations, which guides the user through the stages needed to implement the Circumpolar Biodiversity Monitoring Program (CBMP), Freshwater and Terrestrial monitoring plans at Arctic field stations. The tasks required and the tools that need to be developed during each stage are explained, with templates and examples provided. It is intended as a living online tool that will be updated as new directions, developments and opportunities arise; and lessons learned used to evaluate progress and reflect changing priorities on a regular basis.

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