They will use isotope forensics to unravel the interactions between sea ice changes and the processes and consequences of a New Arctic. Welker and his team will use station-based, continuous water vapor isotope (δ18O and δ2H) measurement’s at Pallas National Park in Arctic Finland and a suite of sites that collect precipitation across the Arctic (Pan Arctic Precipitation Isotope Network-PAPIN) for this endeavor. The consortium (UArctic, University of Oulu, University of Alaska Anchorage and Finnish Meteorological Institute) will follow how weather patterns across the north and the characteristics of sea ice drive moisture sources and precipitation isotopic patterns in the different regions (e.g. Barents, Chukchi, N Baffin Bay, Fram St., N Atlantic).

This program is exceedingly timely as it complements University of Oulu’s new Profile4 Arctic Interaction program. And this Academy of Finland award and EU INTERACT support it will allow this team to participate in MOSAiC-a International Arctic Drift Expedition that begins in autumn of 2019 as the Polarstern icebreaker is frozen into the central Arctic ice and drifts south.

“I am really appreciative of this Academy of Finland funding as it solidifies a Pan Arctic consortium that will address one of the most dramatic changes we are seeing across the north-a changing cryosphere and a new water cycle”, Jeff Welker comments.