Arctic Field Projects

Project Title: Collaborative Research/RUI: Past, Present and Future Productivity of Arctic Woody Vegetation in a Warming Climate (Award# 0612346)

PI: Lloyd, Andrea H (
Phone:  (802) 443.3165 
Institute/Department: Middlebury College, Department of Biology 
IPY Project? NO
Funding Agency: US\Federal\NSF\GEO\PLR\ARC\ARCSS
Program Manager: Dr. Neil Swanberg (
Discipline(s): | Biology\Dendrochronology | Biology\Forest Ecology | Biology\Land Cover Change | Meteorology and Climate |

Project Web Site(s):

Science Summary:
The expansion of forest vegetation within and into the Arctic is one of the profound transformations that the Arctic land surface is likely to undergo in the coming decades. The spread of forest vegetation has significant ramifications for the Arctic System, as it is likely to cause both positive and negative feedbacks on climate, and to alter the availability of crucial natural resources. Although forest expansion within and into the Arctic has been widespread in recent decades, there is growing evidence that non-linear responses to warming may prevail within areas of expanding forest. In particular, large areas of ‘browning’ (declining trends in NDVI) have recently been identified in the southern Arctic. The goal of this research is to assess the relationships among tree growth, climate, and NDVI in order to identify the causes of non-linear responses to temperature (i.e., the ‘browning’ response) and better understand the likely effects of future warming on the productivity and dynamics of forest vegetation expanding into the Arctic. This research will yield the first circum-arctic analysis of tree growth response to climate, addressing the critical question of the prevalence (and causes) of non-linear responses to climate in Arctic forests. This will provide important insight into the likely future trajectory of land cover change in the southern Arctic.

Logistics Summary:
This collaborative project between 0612346 (Lloyd, Middlebury College) and 0612341 (Bunn, WWU) will create the first circum-arctic analysis of tree growth response to climate. The researchers plan to visit approximately 10 sites in central Siberia and NWT, Canada, in order to update tree-ring chronologies that were collected in the late 1980s / early 1990s. In late summer/early fall 2007, the PI will travel to Rostov, Russia, to meet with Russian collaborators. There, the team will define sampling criteria and protocols, identify sites, and develop a schedule. In summer of 2008, the team will conduct sampling trips around Zhigansk, and in the Cherskii area. The latter work will be completed in collaboration with the Polaris Project (grant 0732944). Sites will be accessed via boats or vehicles. As appropriate, Russian project collaborators will take samples on behalf of the US researchers. Samples will be returned to the home institute via a combination of hand-carry and exportation. In 2009, a team of three will travel to Canada. Basing out of Yellowknife they will spend about a week using fixed-wing aircraft to access area lake sites.

In 2007, CPS will provide a plane ticket, lodging and subsistence for the trip to Russia. In 2008, CPS support will include commercial air tickets to/from Russia, Cherskii user days, lodging and per diem, and sampling support. In 2009, CPS will provide Canadian air charters and lodging/per diem, as well as excess baggage fees on the return for hand-carry transport of samples. All other costs will be paid by the researchers from the grant.
SeasonField SiteDate InDate Out#People
2008Russia - Cherskii07 / 10 / 2008 07 / 25 / 20082
2008Russia - Yakutsk07 / 03 / 2008 07 / 26 / 20083
2008Russia - Zhigansk07 / 07 / 2008 07 / 14 / 20082
2009Canada - Yellowknife07 / 09 / 2009 07 / 31 / 20093

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Parameters used to generate this report:, Grant# = "0612346", IPY = "ALL" 
     Number of projects returned based on your query parameters = 1