Pan-Arctic drainage basin observation networks: current status and potential significance for assessment of climate change effects and feedbacks
2007 (English)In: 1st IPY workshop on Sustaining Arctic Observing Networks, 2007Conference paper (Other academic)
Hydrological observation networks are integral for understanding and modeling present and future changes in and climate feedbacks to the Arctic environmental system. Recent studies have reported a widespread decline in these networks, but patterns of decline and location of critical data gaps are less certain. We present an updated and quantitative status of openly accessible observation network data for discharge and water chemistry in the pan-Arctic drainage area. We also compare relevant hydrological and socio-economic characteristics of monitored and unmonitored areas, and analyze the decline in network density in relation to recently observed and future modeled temperature trends. Results indicate that there are significant temporal and spatial variations in accessible data, and that there is a critical lack of accessible water chemistry data for large shares of the pan-Arctic. Furthermore, there are systematic differences in characteristics between monitored and unmonitored areas, within and between pan-Arctic regions. Discharge network density has declined the most in four Eurasian drainage basins, which show the smallest recently observed temperature trends but the greatest modeled future temperature changes. Differences in characteristics between monitored and unmonitored areas may limit the reliability of assessments of Arctic water and solute flux change under a warming climate. Improved understanding of the Arctic hydrological system requires less restricted access to monitoring data, extended network coverage of unmonitored areas, and a commitment to sustaining and improving existing networks.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
arctic, hydrology, monitoring, water chemistry
Oceanography, Hydrology, Water Resources
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-21136OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-21136DiVA: diva2:187662