Resilient Arctic societies and industrial development - Technological development and transportation
- 09:10 Visual reporting: an approach to sharing context-rich information in environmental planning and decision-making
Authors: Tracie Curry ( University of Alaska Fairbanks )
Iñupiat communities on the North Slope (the northernmost region of Alaska) are facing numerous challenges and opportunities related to the current and projected effects of climate change, and resource development activities with potential for far-reaching impacts on indigenous ways of life. Though these changes have significant local impacts, most planning and decision-making activities happen outside the local scale, and involve numerous other actors such as government agencies, Industry, and NGOs. A major challenge within this transdisciplinary dynamic is cultivating a meaningful understanding among outsiders of the personal experience of change and its local impacts for Arctic communities. Additionally, among information sources generated, shared, and used for decision-making, local and indigenous knowledge are often underrepresented due to conventions that privilege Western science. This leaves decision-makers with imperfect or insufficient information, and may lead to biased decisions that ultimately harm North Slope communities.
There are strong arguments for the inclusion of local and indigenous knowledge in research and decision-making. However, methods to achieve meaningful inclusion of this information in practice are not well-documented. In response, the focus of this project is the content and format of information transmitted from local communities to outside entities, and the potential for context-rich images within this information to help convey qualitative and experiential detail. Through a case study of the Native Village of Wainwright in North Slope, Alaska, this research draws from semi-structured, in-depth interviews with Elders from the community to identify major themes of social-environmental change. It also incorporates input from agency decision-makers involved in North Slope environmental planning to understand desirable characteristics of visual reporting methods. The project and its methodology are the outcome of an iterative process in partnership with the Wainwright Traditional Council and with guidance from a project steering committee comprising local leaders from the community.
- 09:25 Submarine communications cables: A case study of Arctic decision-making and institutional development
Authors: Juha Saunavaara ( Hokkaido University )
Some years ago, the Arctic Ocean was still described as one of the last oceans that were not crisscrossed with submarine communications cables. This situation is now changing. The Quintillion Subsea Holdings has just laid a submarine cable around Alaska and is ready to proceed with its plan to lay a data cable between East Asia and Europe through the Northwest Passage. In the meantime, the Finland-based project aiming at the submarine communications cables between northern Europe and East Asia through the Northeast Passage is advancing under the leadership of Cinia Group. While these projects are linked, for example, to questions concerning the digitalization of the Arctic and regional development of the North, they can also be approached as a case study of Arctic governance and decision-making. Besides being compact and concrete (i.e. discussion focuses on a few ongoing projects), the Arctic data cables are also complex (i.e. a great number of actors, forums, aims and means and resources to achieve one's objectives) and highly politicized topics. This study challenges the tradition of focusing on the framework of Arctic national states and the Arctic Council and pays attention to the role of Arctic Economic Council, non-Arctic states (especially in East Asia), regional authorities in Arctic and non-Arctic states, private and governmentally owned companies, funding agencies and investors both inside and outside the Arctic. In other words, this case study is expected to demonstrate the versatility of actors involved in the Arctic decision making and introduce the main forums where discussion and decision-making concerning the Arctic data cables take place.
- 09:40 The Norwegian Barents Sea-Lofoten Ocean Management Plan: How Have The Valuable & Vulnerable Areas Been Protected From Maritime Vessel Activity?
Authors: Onni Irish ( Jebsen Center for Law of the Sea, UiT / Center for Coastal & Ocean Mapping, University of New Hampshire )
The Norwegian Barents Sea-Lofoten integrated ocean management plan (plan) was designed using an ecosystem based management architecture, an approach that examines an ecosystem holistically, accounting for both human and natural uses. The plan identifies seven areas where the environment and natural resources are considered valuable and vulnerable. To determine these spatial areas, scientific assessments were conducted to assess hotspots for biodiversity and productivity. According to the Norwegian Government, however, “the designation of areas as particularly valuable and vulnerable does not have any direct effect in the form of restrictions on commercial activities, but indicates that these are areas where it is important to show special caution” (Meld.St.20 (2014-2015), p.24). This statement begs the question, what constitutes “special caution”? Specifically, what precautions must commercial activities give to the valuable and vulnerable areas? Although the plan’s original intent was to protect the valuable and vulnerable areas from one form of commercial activity in particular (i.e., petroleum industry), other commercial activities are growing in the region, namely maritime vessel traffic. Maritime vessel activity encompasses all forms of traffic, from cruise ships and fishing vessels to bulk carriers and petroleum industry supply ships. All of these vessel types present a series of risks to the Barents Sea, including the introduction of potential hazardous pollution and alien species or physically disturbing the environment during transit and scarring the seafloor (e.g., anchoring or fishing gear). Additionally, the declining extent of Arctic sea ice is opening up new navigation routes. Five of the seven potential Arctic Ocean shipping routes pass through the Barents Sea; indeed, three of these routes pass near Svalbard, a critical archipelago in the northern section of the Barents Sea that enjoys strict marine protection. This research will investigate whether measures taken by Norway to regulate maritime traffic have an effect on vessel movement within the valuable and vulnerable areas. The first step to complete this research is to review domestic policies and international agreements Norway has adopted that are applicable to maritime traffic in the Barents Sea. Secondly, AIS (vessel) data will be analyzed using GIS software from 2005 to 2017 to determine if the adopted measures have affected maritime traffic patterns with respect to the valuable and vulnerable areas. Such research is timely given the growing risks maritime commercial activity pose to the Barents Sea, including the impact climate change is having on Arctic maritime shipping routes.
- 09:55 Analysis of the solar energy potential on buildings in Tromsø
Authors: Clara Good ( UiT - The Arctic University of Norway ); Tobias Boström ( UiT - The Arctic University of Norway )
Solar energy is a little used resource at high latitudes. This is partly due to the misconception that the solar resource is not sufficient in the north. On the contrary, there are conditions that make the northern regions highly suitable for solar energy utilisation, such as low temperatures, which increase photovoltaic (PV) efficiency, and solar reflection from snow, which can increase the available radiation.
The number of solar energy systems in Tromsø today is negligible. This study presents a potential analysis for building integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) systems or building added photovoltaic (BAPV) systems in Tromsø. The purpose of the study is to quantify the contribution that solar energy could make to the local energy system.
A major benefit of PV systems on buildings is that roofs and facades are typically “unused” spaces. These types of PV installations will therefore not occupy any additional areas and potential land use conflicts can be avoided. In addition, solar energy systems are silent, require no fuels and do not produce emissions. Using a local network of distributed renewable energy sources, such as solar energy systems, can also contribute to a more resilient energy system.
The analysis presented here performed using statistical data on the building mass. It is assumed that the PV systems are installed on buildings (private homes as well as office or industrial buildings) and the analysis is therefore based on an estimation of available areas on roofs and facades. The suitable area for PV installations is determined using the simplified method proposed by IEA PVPS Task 7, which is based on the ground floor area of the buildings and relative factors for architectural and solar suitability.
The focus of this study is PV systems that generate electricity. The energy output of different types of PV systems on specific buildings are simulated using PVsyst, but rule-of thumb values are also used in the urban-scale analysis.
Since the potential analysis presented here is based on statistical data, it can only provide an estimate of the actual potential. Future, more detailed studies will utilise GIS in combination with LiDAR data to analyse the potential on actual buildings in Tromsø, existing as well as planned.
Wednesday 24th January 2018
09:10 - 10:40