The EU Arctic Cluster
Providing answers for a changing Arctic
The currently funded Horizon 2020 Arctic projects together build the EU Arctic Cluster – a network, which merges the most up-to-date findings on Arctic change and its global implications. Its objective is to provide guidance and policy-relevant information and to support the EU in advancing international cooperation, in responding to the impacts of climate change on the Arctic's fragile environment, and on promoting and contributing to sustainable development. In doing so, the EU Arctic Cluster cooperates closely with policy makers, indigenous peoples, local Arctic communities, business representatives and the European civil society.
APPLICATE (Advanced Prediction in Polar regions and beyond: modelling, observing system design and LInkages associated with a Changing Arctic climaTE) is a €8 million project, financed by the EU HORIZON 2020 Research and Innovation programme and involves 16 partners from nine countries (Belgium, France, Germany, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom). The project will be carried out over a period of four years.
The multinational and multidisciplinary consortium will work to enhance weather and climate prediction capabilities not only in the Arctic, but also in Europe, Asia, and North America. A focus on the Arctic is important for improved predictions of weather and climate in the mid-latitudes because the changes taking place in the Arctic due to climate change—the retreat of sea ice, warming seas and a warming atmosphere—have the potential to influence weather and climate in the mid-latitudes.
The impacts of severe weather on commerce and infrastructure can be significant, so having adequate tools to predict when and how severe weather systems will affect Europe, Asia and North America is vital to inhabitants of these regions. The APPLICATE project is bringing together an international team of experts in weather and climate prediction to improve climate and weather forecasting models to work on improving prediction tools while expanding and improving observational capabilities in the Arctic.
The APPLICATE project also involves a strong education, training and outreach component in order to train the next generation of experts and raise awareness about the benefits of improved climate and weather forecasting. Members of the APPLICATE consortium will engage with stakeholders who use weather and climate forecasts to obtain constructive feedback, allowing the models and forecasts to be constantly improved and updated, taking into account user needs. Early career scientists in climate-related fields will have the opportunity to participate in a summer school and webinar lectures, while the general public will be able to learn about the project thanks to specially-produced informational videos and publications.
Thomas Jung, Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research
Luisa Cristini - Project Manager
ARICE (Arctic Research Icebreaker Consortium: A strategy for meeting the needs for marine-based research in the Arctic) is project financed by the EU HORIZON2020 RIA Research and Innovation action on the topic "Integrating Activities for Starting Communities". ARICE joins the efforts of 14 partners from 12 different countries (Germany, Sweden, United Kingdom, Norway, Iceland, France, Italy, Poland, Finland, Denmark, Canada and the United States of America). The project will start on the 1st of January 2018 and will run for 4 years. ARICE is an international cooperation strategy aiming at providing Europe with better capacities for marine-based research in the ice-covered Arctic Ocean.
ARICE aims at reaching this goal by better coordinating the existing polar research fleet, by offering transnational access through a "call for ship-time proposals" to a set of six international High Arctic research icebreakers and by collaborating with maritime industry in a "programme of ships and platforms of opportunity".
Nicole Biebow, Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research
Verónica Willmott - Project Manager
Blue-Action will evaluate the impact of Arctic warming on the northern hemisphere and develop new techniques to improve weather and climate forecast accuracy at sub-seasonal to decadal scales. Blue-Action will specifically work to understand and simulate the linkages between the Arctic and the global climate system, and the Arctic’s role in generating weather patterns associated with hazardous conditions and climatic extremes. In doing so, Blue-Action aims to improve the safety and wellbeing of people in the Arctic and across the northern hemisphere, to reduce the risks associated with Arctic operations and resource exploitation, and to support evidence-based decision-making by policymakers worldwide.
Steffen Olsen, Danish Meteorological Institute
Daniela Matei, Max Planck Institute for Meteorology
Chiara Bearzotti, Danish Meteorological Institute, firstname.lastname@example.org
Communication, Dissemination, Engagement, and Exploitation Officer:
Raeanne Miller, SAMS Research Services Ltd, Raeanne.Miller@sams.ac.uk
EU-PolarNet is the world’s largest consortium of expertise and infrastructure for polar research. Seventeen countries are represented by 22 of Europe’s internationally-respected multi-disciplinary research institutions.
From 2015-2020, EU-PolarNet will develop and deliver a strategic framework and mechanisms to prioritise science, advise the European Commission on polar issues, optimise the use of polar infrastructure, and broker new partnerships that will lead to the co-design of polar research projects that deliver tangible benefits for society. By adopting a higher degree of coordination of polar research and operations than has existed previously the consortium engages in closer cooperation with all relevant actors on an international level.
Karin Lochte, Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research
Nicole Biebow - Project Manager
Kristina Bär - Communications Officer
ICE-ARC – Ice, Climate, Economics: Arctic Research on Change
ICE-ARC is an FP7 project that brings together experts in the fields of economics, natural and social sciences, and technology in order to directly assess the environmental, social and economic impact of Arctic sea ice loss. These trans-disciplinary programmes are essential if we are to continue to strengthen the links between science and society.
Jeremy Wilkinson, British Antarctic Survey
Elaina Ford - Programme Manager
The overall objective of INTAROS is to develop an integrated Arctic Observation System (iAOS) by extending, improving and unifying existing systems in the different regions of the Arctic. INTAROS has a strong multidisciplinary focus, with tools for integration of data from atmosphere, ocean, cryosphere and terrestrial sciences, provided by institutions in Europe, North America and Asia. INTAROS is assessing strengths and weaknesses of existing observing systems - both satellite and in-situ - and contributes with innovative solutions to fill some of the critical gaps in the in situ observing network. INTAROS is developing a platform, iAOS, to search for and access data from distributed databases. INTAROS includes development of community-based observing systems, where local knowledge is merged with scientific data. An integrated, sustainable and long-term Arctic Observation System will enable better-informed decisions and better-documented processes within key sectors (e.g. local communities, shipping, tourism, fishing), in order to strengthen the societal and economic role of the Arctic region and support the EU strategy for the Arctic and related maritime and environmental policies.
Stein Sandven, Nansen Environmental and Remote Sensing Center
INTERACT is an infrastructure project under the auspices of SCANNET, a circumarctic network of currently 79 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 in the European Arctic and beyond, and is offering access to numerous research stations through the Transnational Access program.
The project, which is funded by the EU, has a main objective to build capacity for identifying, understanding, predicting and responding to diverse environmental changes throughout the wide environmental and land-use envelopes of the Arctic. This is necessary because the Arctic is so vast and so sparsely populated that environmental observing capacity is limited compared to most other latitudes.
INTERACT is multidisciplinary: together, the stations in INTERACT host thousands of scientists from around the world who work on projects within the fields of glaciology, permafrost, climate, ecology, biodiversity and biogeochemical cycling. The INTERACT stations also host and facilitate many international single-discipline networks and aid training by hosting summer schools.
Katharina Beckmann - Scientific Secretary/Communicator
Most human activity in the Arctic takes place along permafrost coasts, making them a key interface. They have become one of the most dynamic ecosystems on Earth because permafrost thaw is now exposing these coasts to rapid change: change that threatens the rich biodiversity, puts pressure on communities that live there and contributes to the vulnerability of the global climate system. NUNATARYUK will determine the impacts of thawing coastal and subsea permafrost on the global climate, and will develop targeted and co-designed adaptation and mitigation strategies for the Arctic coastal population.
NUNATARYUK brings together world-leading specialists in natural science and socio-economics to:
(1) develop quantitative understanding of the fluxes and fates of organic matter released from thawing coastal and subsea permafrost;
(2) assess what risks are posed by thawing coastal permafrost, to infrastructure, indigenous and local communities and people’s health, and from pollution;
(3) use this understanding to estimate the long-term impacts of permafrost thaw on global climate and the economy.
Coordinator: Hugues Lantuit, Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research
Affiliated Partner: European Polar Board (EPB)
The European Polar Board (EPB) is an independent organisation that focuses on major European strategic priorities in both the Arctic and the Antarctic regions. Current EPB membership includes research institutes, funding agencies, scientific academies and polar operators from across Europe.
The EPB envisions a Europe with a strong and cohesive polar research community and wherein decisions affecting or affected by the polar regions are informed by independent, accurate, and timely advice from the EPB.
The EPB has a mission to improve European coordination of Arctic and Antarctic research, by optimising the use of European polar research infrastructures. We promote multilateral collaborations between our Members and provide a single contact point for the global polar community. We advance the collective knowledge of polar issues, particularly in the context of European societal relevance.
Renuka Badhe - Executive Secretary
Joseph Nolan - Junior Policy Officer