Project Dashboard

TundraPeat (149009)
Proposal Status: Conformity Determination Issued
Project Overview
Type of application: New
Proponent name: Julie Loisel
Company: Texas A&M University, Dept. of Geography
Start Date: 2019-07-10
End Date: 2019-07-22
Operation Type: Seasonal
Project Description:
TundraPEAT Project—Understanding Peat Expansion in Arctic Tundra in a Warming Climate This is a new 5-year project that was recently funded by US NSF’s Macrosystem Biology program, to understand peat expansion in Arctic tundra. Amplified climate warming in the Arctic in recent decades has caused a multitude of changes in terrestrial ecosystems. Most of these changes have the potential for strong feedbacks on the global climate system, which has prompted considerable debate about carbon balance and the “greening” vs “browning” of high-latitude systems. However, the impacts of these changes on belowground processes and associated carbon budget are still uncertain due to several complex interactions. Some Arctic tundra landscapes have shallow ‘peat patches’, which have organic layers too thin (<30 cm) to be classified as peatlands, but still represent a significant net carbon sink at decadal-centennial timescales. Also, these peat patches represent the initial stage of peatland formation in the pan-Arctic region, as peatland conditions may migrate northward in a warming climate. We recently found abundant peat patches dominated by Sphagnum (peat moss) on hillslopes dominated by tussock tundra communities, on the North Slope of Alaska. However, we don’t know how widespread these tundra peat patches are, why they are there, and what factors control their formation, distribution, and dynamics. We know that peatlands have been an important carbon sink over multi-millennial timescales. However, we don’t know how they respond to recent and future environmental changes at decadal-centennial timescales, the most relevant timescales of rapid Arctic climate change and for climate change mitigation. Furthermore, we don’t understand the possible cross-timescale interactions between plant production and peat decomposition processes. The specific aspect of the TundraPeat project concerned with this permit to Dr. Julie Loisel is described below: Dr Loisel and her team of students intend to visit CHARS and the vicinities in July 2019 to collect soil and vegetation samples and install 2 weather stations equipped with belowground temperature sensors to monitor changes in soil temperature.
Persons: 6
Days: 12
Project Map
List of all project geometries:
ID Geometry Location Name
4750 polygon South Hadley Bay
4751 polygon CHARS / Greiner Lake area
4752 polygon Queen Maud Estuary (north)
Planning Regions:
Affected Areas and Land Types
Inuit Owned Surface Lands
Extablished National or Territorial Park
Settlement Area
Project Land Use and Authorizations
Project Land Use
Scientific Research
Licensing Agencies
NRI: Scientific Research Licence
EC: 0
Other Licensing Requirements
No data found.
Material Use
Type Quantity Size Use
ATV 2 approx 83 x 48 x 48 in We will use 2 ATVs to access research sites within the Greiner Lake area.
aircraft 1 probably twin otter We will use a twin otter aircraft to fly to the south Hadley Bay and the Queen Maud Estuary sites
weather station 2 approx 72 x 60 x 48 We will install 2 weather stations in the Greiner Lake area.
Peat corer (Russian style) 1 approx 24 x 3 x 3 in We will use a Russian corer to extract peat samples from all 3 areas
Fuel Use
Type Container(s) Capacity UOM Use
Aviation fuel 0 0 Gallons To fuel up the plane -- the aircraft time (and pilot + fuel) will be provided by Air Tindy.
Gasoline 0 0 Gallons To fuel up the ATVs, which will be provided by a local vendor in Cambridge Bay.
Hazardous Material and Chemical Use
Type Container(s) Capacity UOM Use
No records found.
Water Consumption
Daily Amount (m3) Retrieval Method Retrieval Location
Waste and Impacts
Environmental Impacts
We predict minimal impacts. We will only generate minimal waste from daily living (such as toilet paper and tissues), which we will carry back to Cambridge Bay with us. We will not leave any waste on site (no trash, no equipment left behind permanently, etc.). We do not produce any chemical waste or generate any pollution from our research activities (manual peat coring and soil sampling). The small amount of trash that will result from daily activities will be disposed of at CHARS.
Waste Management
Waste Type Quantity Generated Treatement Method Disposal Method
No data found.
Category: Application related document - Conformity Determination Letter
Recieved: 2019-01-08
Originator: Peter Scholz
Public Registry ID: 15039
Document Size: 223.84 Kb