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Arctic Daily Update: May 23, 2016


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May 23, 2016  
Conference on Water Innovations for Healthy Arctic Homes: September 18-21, 2016, Anchorage, Alaska. This circumpolar conference will bring together engineers, health experts, researchers, community members, policymakers, and innovators to discuss health benefits, challenges and innovations associated with making running water and sewer in remote northern communities safe, affordable and sustainable. Information and an expression of interest in attending can be found here. (The full link is: http://wihah2016.com/)
Today's Congressional Action:  
The House and Senate are expected to consider non-Arctic legislation.
Flood-Endangered Native Village Builds Berm Against Rising Tide to 'Give Us More Time.' "Twenty years from now, this place would probably be under water," says Rhoda Asicksik, who lives in the western Alaska coastal village of Shaktoolik. "That's what really, really concerns me." Asicksik and most of Shaktoolik's 350 residents want the federal and state governments to move the community away from the barrier spit on which it's built - and which is in danger of being engulfed by the ocean or being swamped by waves driven by powerful storms. KUAC
thinice Spring Has Sprung in the Arctic... But it's way too Early for it. One of the coldest places on Earth is already starting to see signs of spring - a good month or two before it should, according to researchers. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced Friday that Barrow Observatory, located 320 miles north of the Arctic Circle, just reported the earliest snowmelt in 78 years of recorded historyHuffington Post
The US Doesn't Need to Wait for an Arctic Port to Boost Maritime Safety, Report Says. Even though no one yet is offering to spend money to build a full-service U.S. Arctic port, some steps could - and should - be taken in the next few years to prepare for the potential onslaught of new maritime traffic in the Bering Strait and waters further north, a new federal report says. The report, issued by the U.S. Committee on the Marine Transportation System's Arctic task force, makes 43 specific recommendations it says would improve safety, communications and information for mariners using the narrow strait and the Chukchi and Beaufort seas to the north in the near future. The U.S. Committee on the Marine Transportation System is a Cabinet-level, interdepartmental committee chaired by the secretary of the Department of Transportation. Alaska Dispatch News
permafrost Bright Shrubs an Unexpected Ally Against Tundra Warming. Rapid warming in northern mountain environments is resulting in both reduced snow cover and expanding shrub growth-but there's a bright side to all this, according to new research from the University of Alberta. Other recent studies have shown that spring snow cover duration in the Yukon has decreased by about 11 days per decade over the past 50 years. Because the highly reflective snow cover acts as a shield against solar energy, the advancing snow melt exposes more of the relatively dark tundra underneath, thus compounding the warming effect. Phys.org
Study Helps Explain Sea Ice Difference at Earth's Poles. Why has the sea ice cover surrounding Antarctica been increasing slightly, in sharp contrast to the drastic loss of sea ice occurring in the Arctic Ocean? A new NASA-led study finds the geology of Antarctica and the Southern Ocean are responsible. A NASA/NOAA/university team led by Son Nghiem of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, used satellite radar, ea surface temperature, land form and bathymetry (ocean depth) data to study the physical processes and properties affecting Antarctic sea ice. They found that two persistent geological factors-the topography of Antarctica and the depth of the ocean surrounding it-are influencing winds and ocean currents, respectively, to drive the formation and evolution of Antarctica's sea ice cover and help sustain it. Phys.org
arctic shipping Investment Attractiveness of Northern Sea Route Falls With Dwindling Oil Prices. Falling oil prices have harmed the investment attractiveness of the shipping route lying along Russia's Arctic coast - often referred to as the Northern Sea Route, Russian Transport Minister Maksim Sokolov told the media on the sidelines of the Russia-ASEAN summit. He said that on the one hand climate change and the melting of the ice cap is a factor that makes the route more lucrative than it has been so far. "But on the other, the fluctuations of oil prices the world market has seen for the past two years have greatly harmed the investment attractiveness and economic model of the Arctic shipping route's operation. The price of crude has slumped and the transportation companies' costs in the price of oil are not as significant," he said. Hellenic Shipping News
The Arctic Ocean is About to get Spicier. Relative temperature and salinity variations within seawater of the same density. Warmer, saltier ocean water is considered spicy while cooler, fresher water is minty. Climate change will spice up the Arctic Ocean, researchers report in the April Journal of Physical Oceanography.
Seawater that is both salty and cold is the most dense, and therefore sits deep in the ocean. Unlike the rest of the world's oceans, in the cold Arctic, the density of seawater is almost entirely determined by saltiness rather than temperature. Science News
Legislative Action 
No Arctic legislation was formally considered Friday.
Future Events
High North Dialogue 2016: The Blue Future of the Arctic, May 25-26, 2016. HND is an annual conference hosted by the High North Center at Nord University, engaging a wide audience of researchers and future leaders of the region. It will address the necessary questions to effectively promote dialogue between interested stakeholders on how to sustainably develop the different realities of the many Arctics. PhD and Masters students can also participate in a week long credit awarding graduate course.
Bridging the Future of Arctic Social Science Research, May 31-June 2, 2016 (Providence, Rhode Island, USA).The event is sponsored by Arctic Horizons. The workshop will bring together researchers working on multidisciplinary natural/social science projects addressing issues of contemporary change in the North with social scientists focused on policy development at a global scale. This focus draws on the expertise of Brown University's Watson Center for International Studies (http://watson.brown.edu), the Institute at Brown for Environment and Society (IBES, http://www.brown.edu/academics/institute-environment-society/about), and the Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology's (http://www.brown.edu/haffenreffer) six-decade engagement with northern people and northern heritage.

14th IATS Seminar, June 19-25, 2016 (Bergen, Norway). The University of Bergen (UiB) is honored to host the 14th IATS Seminar in Bergen, Norway, from Sunday 19 to Saturday 25 June 2016 in co-operation with the Network for University Co-operation Tibet-Norway, an academic network with the universities of Oslo, Bergen and Tromsø as partners. The convenor is Professor Hanna Havnevik, Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages, University of Oslo, and Chair of the Network.
11th International Conference on Permafrost (ICOP 2016), June 20-24, 2016 (Potsdam, Germany). The Alfred Wegener Institute has teamed up with UP Transfer GmbH and the University of Potsdam to organize a great conference for you, permafrost researchers. The conference aims at covering all relevant aspects of permafrost research, engineering and outreach on a global and regional level.
Arctic Ambitions V, June 23-24, 2016 (Anchorage, Alaska, USA). Arctic Ambitions V conference focuses on commercial opportunities in the Arctic, such as engineering, construction, architecture, natural resource development, environmental services, maritime shipping and logistics, and international trade. This event is sponsored by World Trade Center Alaska.
Conference on Water Innovations for Healthy Arctic Homes: September 18-21, 2016, Anchorage, Alaska. This circumpolar conference will bring together engineers, health experts, researchers, community members, policymakers, and innovators to discuss health benefits, challenges and innovations associated with making running water and sewer in remote northern communities safe, affordable and sustainable. Information and an expression of interest in attending can be found here. (The full link is: http://wihah2016.com/)
13th International Conference on Gas in Marine Sediments: September 19-22, 2016 (Tromso, Norway). GIMS 13 promotes the study of natural gas and release systems on a global scale and  facilitates interdisciplinary and international cooperation. The conference  intends to bring together geologists, biologists, microbiologist, geophysicists, oceanographers, geochemists and scientists from modeling disciplines. The forum will provide a platform for current knowledge and future programs in gas inventories, fluxes and their role within the carbon cycle and biodiversity. Conference is organized by CAGE - Centre for Arctic Gas Hydrate, Environment and Climate at UiT The Arctic University of Norway. Abstract submission deadline is May 30th and registration deadline is June 20th. For more information: http://gims13.uit.no
Bridging the Future of Arctic Social Science Research, September 23-24, 2016 (Monticello, Virginia, USA). The event is sponsored by Arctic Horizons.  The event will reassemble the members of the National Steering Committee and a small but diverse selection of representatives from the five regional workshops, to total about 15 people. The aim will be to identify and synthesize the core threads of the previous workshops and public contributions proffered between workshops. The target output for the workshop will be a final report draft and outline of steps leading to the final report release in June 2016. The Jefferson Institute will manage production of the publication.
Second International Conference on Natural Resources and Integrated Development of Coastal Areas in the Arctic Zone, September 27-29, 2016 (Arkhangelsk, Russia). The Conference is organized by FASO of Russia, Russian Academy of Sciences, Government of Arkhangelsk region, Arkhangelsk Scientific Center and International Arctic Science Committee (IASC). Conference is aimed at elaboration of research-based practical measures and instruments for realization of human, natural and transport-logistical potential of the Arctic zone, including development of the Northern Sea Route and implementation of models of integrated coastal areas management. For additional information, please email.
Inuit traditions are a repository of Inuit culture and a primary expression of Inuit identity. The theme for the 2016 Inuit Studies Conference invites Elders, knowledge-bearers, researchers, artists, policy-makers, students and others to engage in conversations about the many ways in which traditions shape understanding, while registering social and cultural change. The institutional hosts of "Inuit Traditions," Memorial University of Newfoundland and the Nunatsiavut Government, invite you to contribute to an exchange of knowledge to be held in St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, October 7-10, 2016. Presentations on all aspects of Inuit studies will be welcome.
Arctic Technology Conference, October 24-26, 2016 (St. John's, Canada).  Founded in 1969, the Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) is the world's foremost event for the development of offshore resources in the fields of drilling, exploration, production and environmental protection. The Arctic Technology Conference (ATC) is built upon OTC's successful multidisciplinary approach, with 14 technical societies and organizations working together to deliver the world's most comprehensive Arctic event.
The 5th Forum for Arctic Modeling and Observational Synthesis (FAMOS) project School and Meeting, November 1-4, 2016 (Woods Hole, Massachusetts, USA).The major goals of the meeting are to discuss results of ongoing FAMOS activities, and to plan 2016-2017 coordinated modeling and observing projects, with a special focus on high and very high spatiotemporal resolution processes. You can register here.

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