4.3 Advance the understanding of how climate-related changes, biophysical interactions, and feedbacks at different scales in the marine ecosystems impact Arctic marine resources and human communities that depend on them.

Predictive, mechanistic relationships linking climate and biological responses will be central to understanding future scenarios and provide decision makers with the best available information. Interdisciplinary research is needed to understand the ways in which key marine species may respond to climate-related changes, such as loss of sea ice. Actions supporting this Objective will build a portfolio of integrated “climate-ready” management actions, tools, and approaches.

Performance elements from the Arctic research plan

  • 4.3.1 Continue Distributed Biological Observatory (DBO)25 sampling in regions 1-5 and make data publicly available through upload of metadata to the Arctic Data Center/DBO data portal.
  • 4.3.2 Continue DBO coordination activities including annual workshops, via participation in the Pacific Arctic Group (PAG), and produce the first Pacific Arctic Regional Marine Assessment (PARMA) in 2018.
  • 4.3.3 Build connections between DBO and existing community-based observation programs and encourage data sharing. For example, the DBO Implementation Plan discusses fostering connections to existing community-based observation programs in an effort to link offshore observations of biological change to local observations and IK.
  • 4.3.4 Continue research and make simultaneous observations of biological, chemical, and physical variables to examine linkages among marine species, oceanographic and sea ice conditions, and climate change to understand the mechanisms that affect performance and distribution. Quantify feedbacks and interactions of bottom-up and top-down processes that regulate production. Several projects require the integration of IK.
  • 4.3.5 Implement the Regional Action Plan for Southeastern Bering Sea Climate Science and prepare Regional Action Plans for Aleutian Islands and High Arctic Large Marine Ecosystems (LMEs)
  • 4.3.6 Conduct numerical simulations using coupled models to evaluate feedbacks across disciplines and systems.
  • 4.3.7 Continue development, testing, and runs of prognostic models that use Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) scenarios in a regional context to explore current understanding of biophysical interactions and feedbacks, such as perturbations across several modeled food webs from the subarctic to the Arctic to estimate relative ecosystem sensitivities and rates of change.
  • 4.3.8 Monitor and describe temporal changes in anthropogenic and environmental sound in the Alaskan marine Arctic as well as potential implications for ecosystems.

« Marine Ecosystems

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