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GEOGRAPHY, ENVIRONMENT, SUSTAINABILITY

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Special Issue: Pan-Eurasian Experiment (PEEX)

Vol 11, No 1 (2018)
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GEOGRAPHY

6-19 774
Abstract

The Pan-Eurasian Experiment (PEEX) program was initiated as a bottom-up approach by the researchers coming fromFinlandandRussiain October 2012. The PEEX China kick off meeting was held in November 2013. During its five years in operation, the program has established a governance structure and delivered a science plan for the Northern Eurasian region. PEEX has also introduced a concept design for a modelling platform and ground-based in situ observation systems for detecting land-atmosphere and ocean-atmosphere interactions. Today, PEEX has an extensive researcher’s network representing research communities coming from the Nordic countries,RussiaandChina. PEEX is currently carrying out its research activities on a project basis, but is looking for more coordinated funding bases, especially inRussiaand inChina. The near-future challenge in implementing the PEEX research agenda is to achieve a successful integration and identification of the methodological approaches of the socio-economic research to environmental sciences. Here we give insight into these issues and provide an overview on the main tasks for the upcoming years.

20-37 292
Abstract

The study summarizes results on the cryogenic dynamics in the coastal zone. The paper shows that ongoing climate warming and shrinking of ice extent of the Arctic seas triggers both thermogenic and cryogenic processes at the same time. The first group includes thermal abrasion, thermal denudation, degradation of submarine permafrost, and the second one is the syncriogenesis of the new-formed coastal-marine sediments. The first group results in an increase of the retreat rate of coasts, the second results in the islands formation on banks and shallows where the domination of bottom thermal abrasion and deepening of the sea bottom has been taken place previously. Arguments for stamukhas and cryogenesis role in islands formation are presented.

38-50 317
Abstract

Terrestrial water storage has a significant impact on the water balance of river basins. The analysis of its changes in the European part of Russia (EPR) using the GRACE (Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment) data showed that its reduction was approximately150 mmfor 2002-2015 for the south of EPR, especially the Don basin, which is caused rather by a decline in the storages of surface and ground waters then to changes in soil waters. Quasilinear relation between the values of terrestrial water storages and a river runoff for the period of a summer low water level for a number of rivers has been revealed.

51-57 356
Abstract

The National Atlas of the Arctic is a set of spatio-temporal information about the geographic, ecological, economic, historical-ethnographic, cultural, and social features of theArcticcompiled as a cartographic model of the territory. The Atlas is intended for use in a wide range of scientific, management, economic, defense, educational, and public activities. The state policy of theRussian Federationin the Arctic for the period until 2020 and beyond, states that the Arctic is of strategic importance forRussiain the 21st century. A detailed description of all sections of the Atlas is given. The Atlas can be used as an information-reference and educational resource or as a gift edition.

ENVIRONMENT

58-73 287
Abstract

Lakes are an important natural source of methane – significant greenhouse gas of the modern atmosphere. Monitoring of methane emission from lakes ofnorthern territoriesis needed to update the available estimates of CH4 emission intensity into the atmosphere and to obtain multi-year series of observations. Field measurements of diffuse methane fluxes were carried out on lakes at different stages of thermokarst process located in Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous District (Western Siberia, Russia) during summer 2016 using static chamber method. Some statistical characteristics of measured fluxes were calculated (medians vary from 0.46 to 0.93 mgC-CH4∙m ∙h ), as well as annual diffuse emissions from studied lakes, which values are determined by the area of the lake’s water surface. Daily dynamics of methane fluxes were defined and approximation of fluxes with simple model was done, major factors are temperatures of lake bottom and of the surface air layer.

74-84 302
Abstract

We estimated the effects of the different aerosol climatologies in the COSMO mesoscale atmospheric model using long-term aerosol measurements and the accurate global solar irradiance observations at ground at the Moscow State University Meteorological Observatory (Russia) and Lindenberg Observatory (Germany) in clear sky conditions. The differences in aerosol properties have been detected especially during winter months. There is a better agreement of MACv2 aerosol climatology with measurements forMoscowconditions compared with Tegen aerosol climatology. However, we still have a systematical negative bias of about 2-3% in global solar irradiance at ground for both sites. A noticeable sensitivity of air temperature at2 metersto the net radiation changes of about1°Cper 100 Wm-2 due to aerosol has been evaluated, which approximately is around -0.2 – -0.3°C, when accounting for real aerosol properties.

85-92 603
Abstract

Average atmospheric methane concentration (CH4) in the Arctic is generally higher than in other regions of the globe. Due to the lack of observations in the Arctic there is a deficiency of robust information about sources of the methane emissions. Measured concentrations of methane and its isotopic composition in ambient air can be used to discriminate sources of CH4. Here we present the results of measurements of the atmospheric methane concentration and its isotope composition (δ13CCH4) in the East Siberian Arctic Seas during the cruise in the autumn 2016. Local sections where the concentration of methane in the near-water layer of the atmosphere reaches 3.6 ppm are identified. The measurements indicated possibility of formation of high methane peaks in atmospheric surface air above the East Siberian Arctic Shelf (ESAS) where methane release from the bottom sediments has been assumed.

93-112 300
Abstract

The numerical model simulations of storm activity in the White, Baltic andBarentsSeaswere analyzed for the period from 1979 to2015. Inthis paper the storm number of these seas was calculated. The connections of wind wave climate with indecies of large-scale atmospheric circulation such as NAO, AO and SCAND were estimated. Also, the future changes of wind wave climate were analysed.

 

113-129 285
Abstract

The Arctic coasts in permafrost regions are currently quickly retreating, being extremely vulnerable to the ongoing environmental changes. While the spatial variability of their retreat rates is determined by local geomorphological and cryolithological aspects, their temporal evolution is governed mainly by hydrometeorological factors, namely, wave action coupled to thermoabrasion (thermodenudation), are active during ice- free period. We define the combined wave and thermal action as “hydrometeorological stress”, and analyze its components and evolution, confirming it by known natural and remote sensing observations of coastal retreat rates. We estimated changes in the main hydrometeorological factors in the XX and XXI centuries for several sites on the coasts of the Kara andBarentsSeasbasing on observation and ERA reanalysis data. The term of hydrometeorological forcing is intended as an increment of the hydrometeorological stress, occurring because of changes of the hydrometeorological factors. Our results show that the current thermodenudation forcing amounts 15-50% of the 1979-1988 mean level and thermoabrasion forcing is equal to 35-130%. We detected 1989 (1993) – 1997 and 2005 – 2013 as periods of extreme hydrometeorological stress, as far as both thermodenudation and thermoabrasion were in a positive phase. It was also revealed that the hydrometeorological stress of the recent 10 years was apparently unprecedentedly high at the Barents-Kara region: the previous Arctic warming of the 1930-40s caused high thermoabrasion rates due to longer ice-free period despite cold summer temperatures, while, the latest ongoing warming shows previously unseen simultaneous increase in both thermodenudation and thermoabrasion.

130-144 252
Abstract

This study is devoted to investigation of total deposition and loading patterns for population of the North-West Russia and Scandinavian countries due to continuous emissions (following “mild emission scenario”) of sulphates from the Cu-Ni smelters (Severonikel enterprise, Murmansk region, Russia). The Lagrangian long-range dispersion model (Danish Emergency Response Model for Atmosphere) was run in a long-term mode to simulate atmospheric transport, dispersion and deposition over the Northern Hemispheric’s domain north of 10°N, and results were integrated and analyzed in the GIS environment. Analysis was performed on annual and seasonal scales, including depositions, impact on urban areas and calculating individual and collective loadings on population in selected regions ofRussiaand Scandinavian countries.

It was found that wet deposition dominates, and it is higher in winter. The North-West Russia is more influenced by the Severonikel emissions compared with the Scandinavian countries. Among urban areas, the Russian cities ofMurmansk(due to its proximity to the source) andArkhangelsk(due to dominating atmospheric flows) are under the highest impact. The yearly individual loadings on population are the largest (up to 120 kg/person) for theMurmanskregion; lower (15 kg/person) for territories of the northernNorway, and the smallest (less than 5 kg/person) for the easternFinland,KareliaRepublic, andArkhangelskregion. These loadings have distinct seasonal variability with a largest contribution during winter-spring for Russia, spring – for Norway, and autumn – for Finland and Sweden; and the lowest during summer (i.e. less than 10 and 1 kg/person for the Russia and Scandinavian countries, respectively). The yearly collective loadings for population living on the impacted territories inRussia,Finland,Norway, and Swedenare 2628, 140.4, 13, and 10.7 tonnes, respectively.

SUSTAINABILITY

145-156 332
Abstract

This article describes the Pan-Eurasian Experiment (PEEX) program and indicators for monitoring of implementation and digitalization of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) inRussia, especially environmental goals. The authors considered the possibility of integration and identification of the methodological approaches of the socio-economic research to environmental sciences. Paper gives insights into the international framework of the United nations, addreses several relevant indicators to be monitored in a Russian perspective and summarizes shortly the status of the monitoring activities and provide an overview on the main tasks for the upcoming years to reach the sustainable development goals established by the United Nations. The tasks to which the Goals divided are considered in detail. The indicators of Russian statistics that can be used to monitor the implementation of these tasks are determined. It is shown, that more detailed regional analysis and new data is needed in order to quantify the feedbackloops.

157-170 229
Abstract

The spread of almost all diseases caused by living pathogens is determined primarily by environmental conditions. These pathogens like any other biological objects are the components of the certain natural ecosystems. An essential part of any medico- geographical assessment is the search for links between the spread of diseases and factors of the geographical environment. The role of factors that affect the spread of the natural diseases is unequal. The climatic factor is deemed one of the main determinants for the spread of naturally-determined diseases. This factor manifests itself at all levels of territorial differentiation. The goal of these studies was to identify the natural and climatic suitability of the certain territory for spread of diseases in order to assess the possible influence of the climatic factor on the medico-geographical situation in the context of the regional environment. The objectives are to estimate the role of climatic and weather parameters in the functioning of natural foci inRussia; to assess the natural and climatic suitability of the territory for spread of diseases; and to identify the climatic preconditions of spread of particular climate-dependent infections. In this study, on the example of several climate- depended diseases different approaches to medico-geographical assessment have been implemented and number of new methodological solutions have been proposed.

171-186 511
Abstract

Despite different perceptions, discourses and approaches, the post-Cold War Arctic is with a high geopolitical stability based on institutional, international cooperation started by the Arctic states and supported by Arctic indigenous peoples, non- governmental organizations and sub-national governments. As a result, there are neither armed conflicts nor serious disputes on national borders. Behind the high geopolitical stability are on the one hand, common interests of the Arctic states to decrease military tension and increase political stability by causing a transformation from confrontation to environmental cooperation. On the other hand, there are certain features of Arctic geopolitics as prerequisites for a transformation, such as firm state sovereignty, high degree of legal certainty, and flexibility in agenda setting. When assessing a state of Arctic geopolitics and IR of the post-Cold War era, there is an ambivalence on how ‘geopolitics’ is defined. Behind are the dualism of military presence based on the nuclear weapons’ systems and the high stability based on international, institutional cooperation between the eight Arctic states. As well as, that there are two major competing discourses: first, the Arctic as a ’zone of peace’ and exceptional in world politics, and second, that there is a race of resources and the consequent emerging conflicts in theArctic. In addition, there are fresh reminders that Arctic geopolitics is impacted by (grand) environmental challenges and ‘wicked problems’, in particular climate change; and that new multi- dimensional dynamics has made Arctic geopolitics global. The article aims to draw up a holistic picture of the post-Cold War Arctic, and discuss what might be special features of Arctic geopolitics in globalization. The article examines and discusses the transformation of approach from classical geopolitics to critical geopolitics by applying main approaches of geopolitics to the Arctic/Arctic geopolitics.

 
187-188 113
Abstract

This special issue of the journal Geography, Environment, Sustainability includes the publications presented at the 3rd Pan-Eurasian Experiment (PEEX) Science Conference which was held on September, 19-22nd,2017, inMoscow,Russia. The conference was hosted byLomonosovMoscowStateUniversity, Faculty of Geography. More than 150 participants from 12 countries (Finland,China,Norway,Germany,Denmark, etc) took part in this event.



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ISSN 2071-9388 (Print)
ISSN 2542-1565 (Online)