Thursday, April 17, 2014
A Day Discussing the Barrow Environmental Observatory…
While my primary focus in Barrow is science, it is important to point out that the NGEE Arctic team chose the Arctic Coastal Plain on the North Slope of Alaska as its initial area of research for a reason; the Barrow Environmental Observatory (BEO). The BEO encompasses 7,500 acres of Arctic tundra that was set aside by the village of Barrow for national and international research. Every year several hundred scientists come here to study Arctic ecosystems, both terrestrial and marine. In addition to providing access to the outdoor laboratories, the community of Barrow has built a modern research facility where scientists can undertake analyses while away from their home institution. These resources, and logistical support provided by UMIAQ, have made it possible for our team to get off to a quick, productive, and safe start.
Resources like the BEO and the Barrow Arctic Research Center (BARC) must be managed so that these can sustainably meet the needs of a growing community of users. Therefore, an Advisory Committee has been formed to provide feedback on the policies and procedures for managing the BEO. Today was the first meeting of that advisory group. Our agenda was a simple one, but nonetheless the scope of which will grow given the significance of the Arctic and the North Slope of Alaska to climate-related research across multiple state and federal agencies, and private companies.