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Research Arctic Centre Collaboration Dutch collaboration Willem Barentsz Polar Institute SEES.nl/2020

General information

With this multidisciplinary expedition we aim to study the consequences of climate warming in and around the island of Edgeøya, Svalbard. This island is situated in the High Arctic region which experiences the fastest increase in temperature in the period 2000-2016. Most scientific studies on this Arctic amplification focus on the marginal ice zone of the Arctic Ocean. We focus on a terrestrial vegetated uninhabited wilderness, where temperature is increasing so rapidly, that the whole ecosystem is shifting towards an unknown future. In 1968-1987, there was a Netherlands Arctic Station on Edgeøya, which gathered ecological data. The SEES.nl/2015-expedition created a scientific snapshot of this change while comparing with older ecological data. During the new expedition in 2020, we will expand the time line of these ecological studies and introduce new methods and sampling techniques to quantify and understand changes in a framework of environmental and climate change.

The polar science community will also benefit from the expedition by including early career scientists and stimulate cooperation among participating scientists. The earlier expedition was an unprecedented success in raising public and political awareness for the need of polar science and the consequences of climate change.

Last modified:14 February 2020 4.24 p.m.