Popular Arctic News and Current Events

Popular Arctic News and Current Events, Arctic News Articles.
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Sudden aging
Coralline red algae have existed for 130 million years, in other words since the Cretaceous Period, the time of the dinosaurs. At least this was the established view of palaeontologists all over the world until now. However, this classification will now have to be revised after fossils discovered by researchers at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg in conjunction with researchers at La Trobe University in Melbourne prove that coralline red algae existed as far back as 430 million years ago. (2019-01-16)

Was that climate change?
A new four-step 'framework' aims to test the contribution of climate change to record-setting extreme weather events. (2017-04-24)

Research pioneers
Five UC Santa Barbara professors join the ranks as Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) for 2018. Election as an AAAS Fellow is an honor bestowed upon AAAS members by their peers for 'their efforts toward advancing science applications that are deemed scientifically or socially distinguished.' (2018-11-27)

Team discovers a significant role for nitrate in the Arctic landscape
Because of the very low nitrate levels found in arctic tundra soil, scientists had assumed that plants in this biome do not use nitrate. But a new study co-authored by four Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) Ecosystems Center scientists challenges this notion. The study has important implications for predicting which arctic plant species will dominate as the climate warms, as well as how much carbon tundra ecosystems can store. (2018-03-23)

Sea floor uplift after last ice age causes methane release in the Arctic today
Present-day release of methane from an area of the Arctic Ocean is an effect of the uplift of the sea floor, rather than anthropogenic ocean warming, a new study in Nature Communications states. (2018-02-06)

Molting bowhead whales likely rub on rocks to facilitate sloughing off skin
Bowhead whales molt and rub on large rocks -- likely facilitating exfoliation -- in coastal waters in the eastern Canadian Arctic during late summer, according to a study published Nov. 22, 2017, in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Sarah Fortune from University of British Columbia, Canada, and colleagues. (2017-11-22)

Increasing loss of spring sea ice taxes polar bear metabolism
Tracking polar bears during the spring -- their prime hunting season, when sea ice conditions should be ideal -- reveals that in recent years, many bears are expending notably more energy than they are consuming. (2018-02-01)

Unraveling a major cause of sea ice retreat in the Arctic Ocean
Quantitative analysis has evidenced the acceleration system of melting ice: dark water surfaces absorb more heat than white ice surfaces, thus melting ice and making more water surfaces in the Arctic Ocean. (2017-09-06)

Arctic wintertime sea ice extent is among lowest on record
Sea ice in the Arctic grew to its annual maximum extent last week, and joined 2015, 2016 and 2017 as the four lowest maximum extents on record, according to scientists at the NASA-supported National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) and NASA. (2018-03-23)

Shifting bird distribution indicates a changing Arctic
Shifts in the distribution of Spectacled Eiders, a predatory bird at the top of the Bering Sea's benthic food web, indicate possible changes in the Arctic's marine ecosystem, according to new research in The Condor: Ornithological Applications. (2016-06-01)

Arctic Ocean methane does not reach the atmosphere
250 methane flares release the climate gas methane from the seabed and into the Arctic Ocean. During the summer months this leads to an increased methane concentration in the ocean. But surprisingly, very little of the climate gas rising up through the sea reaches the atmosphere. (2016-05-27)

Polar vortex defies climate change in the Southeast
Overwhelming scientific evidence has demonstrated that our planet is getting warmer due to climate change, yet parts of the eastern US are actually getting cooler. According to a Dartmouth-led study in Geophysical Research Letters, the location of this anomaly, known as the 'US warming hole,' is a moving target. During the winter and spring, the US warming hole sits over the Southeast, as the polar vortex allows arctic air to plunge into the region, resulting in persistently cooler temperatures. (2018-02-13)

University of Montana ecology professor helps map climate corridors
The corridors of land vital for many wildlife species in the face of climate change often are unprotected. Now, a recently published study from a University of Montana ecology professor and other researchers has tracked these shifting North American habitats. (2018-07-11)

Warming Arctic climate constrains life in cold-adapted mammals
A new study led by Joel Berger has uncovered previously unknown effects of rain-on-snow events, winter precipitation and ice tidal surges on the muskoxen. (2018-01-18)

Scientists, students to make first live, interactive broadcasts from Arctic Ocean's Northwest Passage
A team of scientists and students, conducting research aboard the R/V Akademik Ioffe, will offer select museums, as well as classrooms and citizen scientists worldwide, an opportunity to explore with them in real time a dramatically changing Arctic Ocean, and to discuss their research in the first-ever live, interactive broadcasts from the fabled Northwest Passage. (2018-06-21)

Wandering greenhouse gas
On the seafloor of the shallow coastal regions north of Siberia, microorganisms produce methane when they break down plant remains. If this greenhouse gas finds its way into the water, it can also become trapped in the sea ice that forms in these coastal waters. (2018-03-16)

Shedding light on arctic zooplankton in the dark
We know that tiny marine creatures in the Arctic respond to weak light from the Moon or the Northern Lights during the polar night. Now researchers have learned that artificial light from research vessels can also have a negative effect. (2018-02-01)

Study shows polar bear metabolic rates are higher than previously predicted
A new study on polar bear metabolism, behavior, and foraging success sheds important light on their energy demands. The study, published in the journal Science, found that polar bears have metabolic rates greater than previously predicted and greater than other terrestrial mammals of similar size. The study reinforces the understanding that polar bears are reliant on a diet of fat-rich seals to survive in the energetically-demanding Arctic. (2018-02-01)

Arctic sea ice thinning at record rate
The thickness of sea ice in large parts of the Arctic declined by as much as 19 percent last winter compared to the previous five winters, according to data from ESA's Envisat satellite. (2008-10-28)

Gas hydrate breakdown unlikely to cause massive greenhouse gas release
A recent interpretive review of scientific literature performed by the US Geological Survey and the University of Rochester sheds light on the interactions of gas hydrates and climate. (2017-02-09)

Bad sign for global warming: thawing permafrost holds vast carbon pool
Permafrost blanketing the northern hemisphere contains more than twice the amount of carbon in the atmosphere, making it a potentially mammoth contributor to global climate change depending on how quickly it thaws. (2008-09-03)

Alaskan microgrids offer energy resilience and independence
The electrical grid in the contiguous United States is a behemoth of interconnected systems; if one section fails, millions could be without power. Remote villages in Alaska provide an example of how safeguards could build resilience into a larger electrical grid. These communities rely on microgrids -- small, local power stations that operate autonomously. Recent articles in the Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy provide reviews of energy technologies and costs for microgrids in Alaska. (2017-12-26)

Freeze and flee: The costly 'escape' response of narwhals
East Greenland narwhals exhibit both 'freeze' and 'flee' responses when escaping from threats, researchers report. (2017-12-07)

Is Arctic warming influencing the UK's extreme weather?
Severe snowy weather in winter or extreme rains in summer in the UK might be influenced by warming trends in the Arctic, according to climate scientists in the US and the UK. (2018-01-04)

Ocean floor mud reveals secrets of past European climate
Samples of sediment taken from the ocean floor of the North Atlantic Ocean have given researchers an unprecedented insight into the reasons why Europe's climate has changed over the past 3,000 years. (2017-11-23)

Streams can be sensors
Scientists at Michigan State University have shown that streams can be key health indicators of a region's landscape, but the way they're being monitored can be improved. (2017-12-29)

Shedding light on the science of auroral breakups
Japanese scientists have quantitatively confirmed how energetic an auroral breakup can be. Using a combination of cutting-edge ground-based technology and new space-borne observations, they have demonstrated the essential role of an auroral breakup in ionizing the deep atmosphere. The research furthers our understanding of one of the most visually stunning natural phenomena. (2019-02-08)

Arctic sea ice annual freeze-up underway
After reaching the second-lowest extent ever recorded last month, sea ice in the Arctic has begun to refreeze in the face of autumn temperatures, closing both the Northern Sea Route and the direct route through the Northwest Passage. (2008-10-03)

Methane seeps in the Canadian high Arctic
Cretaceous climate warming led to a significant methane release from the seafloor, indicating potential for similar destabilization of gas hydrates under modern global warming. A field campaign on the remote Ellef Ringnes Island, Canadian High Arctic, discovered an astounding number of methane seep mounds in Cretaceous age sediments. (2017-04-13)

Salty snow could affect air pollution in the Arctic
In pictures, the Arctic appears pristine and timeless with its barren lands and icy landscape. In reality, the area is rapidly changing. Scientists are working to understand the chemistry behind these changes to better predict what could happen to the region in the future. One team reports in ACS' Journal of Physical Chemistry A that sea salt could play a larger role in the formation of local atmospheric pollutants than previously thought. (2016-10-12)

The Transpolar Drift is faltering -- sea ice is now melting before it can leave the nursery
The dramatic loss of ice in the Arctic is influencing sea-ice transport across the Arctic Ocean. As experts from the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research report in a new study, today only 20 percent of the sea ice that forms in the shallow Russian marginal seas of the Arctic Ocean actually reaches the Central Arctic, where it joins the Transpolar Drift; the remaining 80 percent of the young ice melts before it has a chance to leave its 'nursery.' (2019-04-02)

New rare species of whale identified
Researchers have identified a new rare species of beaked whale with a range in the remote North Pacific Ocean. (2016-07-28)

How will environmental changes affect western Greenland?
Thirty-one miles north of the Arctic Circle lies Kangerlussuaq, Greenland. It is one of the most studied regions in the Arctic. To highlight environmental change and impacts in the Kangerlussuaq area, Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine Research (AAAR),'has released a special issue, to examine how past, present and future climate impacts may affect this landscape. Three of the 10 articles feature lead authors, who are alumni of the Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) at Dartmouth. (2018-04-06)

Maize fields entice geese to winter in Denmark
More and more geese remain in Denmark for the winter. They forage in the growing number of maize fields all over the country. Researchers warn that, in the long term, the many geese may cause problems for agriculture. (2018-02-28)

Methane hydrate dissociation off Spitsbergen not caused by climate change
For years, methane emissions from the seabed have been observed in the Arctic Ocean off Spitsbergen. The assumption that the warming of seawater by climate change is responsible for the release of methane, has not been confirmed. Research from an international team shows that post-glacial uplift is the most likely cause of methane hydrate break-down. The study is published today in the international journal Nature Communications. (2018-01-08)

Scientists discovered where black carbon comes from in the Arctic in winter and summer
Scientists from seven countries published an article on the study of the sources of black carbon (BC) emissions in the Arctic. BC aerosols are formed under incomplete fossil fuel combustion and biomass burning. Soot which is the main component of BC amplifies the melting of snow and ice cover, accelerating global warming. Based on the complex elemental and isotopic analysis the scientists revealed the seasonal contribution of various Arctic areas to BC emissions. (2019-02-15)

Research brief: Shifting tundra vegetation spells change for arctic animals
For nearly two decades, scientists have noted dramatic changes in arctic tundra habitat. UMN researchers set out to discover what could be behind the changes. (2018-03-06)

Predicting climate change
Thomas Crowther, ETH Zurich identifies long-disappeared forests available for restoration across the world. In his AAAS session, Crowther describes how such an effort, could absorb as much as 135 gigatons of atmospheric carbon. Crowther will also describe data from thousands of soil samples collected by local scientists that reveal the world's most abundant population of soil organisms in arctic and sub-arctic regions and the most dominant populations of plants and animals in tropical regions. (2019-02-16)

Scientists break record by finding northernmost hydrothermal vent field
Inside the Arctic Circle, scientists have found black smoker vents farther north than anyone has ever seen before. The cluster of vents -- one towering nearly four stories -- are venting water as hot as 570 F. Dissolved sulfide minerals that solidify when vent water hits the icy cold of the deep sea have, over the years, accumulated around the vents in what is one of the most massive hydrothermal sulfide deposits ever found on the seafloor. (2008-07-24)

A look at the US cold snap from NASA infrared imagery
Imagery and an animation of infrared imagery from the AIRS instrument aboard NASA's Aqua satellite showed the movement of cold, Arctic air over the U.S. from Dec. 1 to Dec. 11. That frigid air mass is expected to affect states from the north central to the northeastern and Mid-Atlantic. (2016-12-13)

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