Research Overview

The effects of a warming climate on the terrestrial and marine regions of the Arctic are already becoming apparent; some subsequent impacts to the biologic, hydrologic, and human systems are also becoming evident. It is expected that the effects and consequences of a warming climate will become even more evident within the next 10 to 50 years. These changes will affect the Arctic Basin through impacts on regional weather, oceanic circulation patterns, salinity and temperature gradients, sea ice formation, and water properties. It is difficult to quantify the long-term effects of a changing climate, but it is possible to envision many of the changes that we should expect. In the last 50 years, a wide range of changes in the Arctic have been documented. Many of these changes were evident since the mid-1970s; however, it is quite likely that these changes began or were initiated early in the 20th century, prior to extensive observational records in Arctic regions. Regardless of the driving forces, the combined observations and documentation suggest that the Arctic system may be entering a state not seen before in historic times. The complex interplay of physical, chemical, biological, and social processes interact to such a degree that it is not possible to understand future trajectories without developing more fully holistic perspectives of the complete system. The components of the Arctic are inter-related through a complex network of linkages, feedbacks, and multi-dependent interactions. Our approach to understanding the Arctic system has been to carefully examine the ongoing physical and biological processes and determine the underlying drivers and inherent linkages among system components. It is expected that development of a more integrated and comprehensive understanding of the Arctic system will lead to an improved modeling capability and improved projections of future climate dynamics and system responses.

JAMSTEC-IARC Collaboration Study (JICS)

Arctic Ocean / Sea Ice / Atmosphere

  1. Monitoring of the Arctic Ocean climate (PI: Polyakov)
  2. Sea ice dynamics/thermodynamics observation in the Arctic Ocean (PI: Hutchings)
  3. Storm activity and atmosphere-sea ice-ocean interaction (PI: Zhang)
  4. Development and application of sophisticated data assimilation for the Arctic Ocean (PI: Panteleev)
  5. Biogeochemical observational studies in the Arctic Ocean (PI: Aguilar-Islas)

Terrestrial Processes and Variation

  1. Ecosystems and their variability
  2. State of snow and ice and variability
  3. Greenhouse gases
  4. Hydrological condition and variability

Integrated System Studies

  1. Development of an Arctic System Model (PI: Walsh)
  2. Atmospheric processes: Global-Arctic connection (PI: Alexeev)

Project Oversight

  1. Program Coordination (PI: Hinzman)

Annual Reports



All public JAMSTEC-IARC Collaboration Study (JICS) data are stored in the IARC Data Archive. The JICS data handling policy is available here.

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