The Arctic Council is well-positioned to play a leadership role in better understanding the impact of Covid-19 in the Arctic and spearheading activities to respond to the pandemic in the short-, medium- and longer-term. This briefing document was prepared to inform initial discussions regarding the coronavirus pandemic in the Arctic at the Senior Arctic Officials’ executive meeting (SAOX) on 24-25 June 2020. It draws together available information – to date (June 2020) – about the impact of Covid-19 in the Arctic: Briefing Document for SAOs June 2020 For public release Page 10 of 83 Covid-19 and the actions taken to respond in the Arctic region. The document draws from a wide spectrum of sources, reflecting the complex and intricate nature of how Covid-19 affects Arctic peoples and communities, including national and subnational statistical databases and tools, peer-reviewed articles, policy statements, technical guidelines, field surveys, and local observations from Arctic communities.
Forest ecosystems, their products and services play an important role in achieving ambitious climate change mitigation objectives at the same time requiring profound adaptation to climate change. Forest management schemes to support climate action have to be developed within their regional context but also have to be aligned with national or EU-level climate, forest and sustainability policies. The conference on “Managing forests in the 21st century” is the final conference of the FORMASAM, REFORCE and FOREXCLIM research projects. The conference bringstogether scientific experts on forest management from all over Europe facing very specific management challenges. The aim isto discuss and improve the understanding the role of forests and forest management in the context of climate change. The conference addresses climate change impacts, as well as needs for mitigation and adaptation especially with regard to the following scientific questions: 1. What are the impacts of climate extremes and disturbances? 2. What are the management challenges (and options) for resilient forests? 3. What can we do to increase the contribution of forest management to climate change mitigation?
The paper provides findings of the research work and scientific discussions under the “Global Sustainability Strategy Forum” (GSSF) that aims to develop evidence-informed judgments on challenges and solutions. It views attaining sustainability as a set of closely-coupled societal and environmental challenges and opportunities that require integration of multiple disciplines, new research methods, and new knowledge sources with sensitivity to regional and cultural diversities. The project is designed to produce innovative insights and strategies to support effective governance of transitions to sustainability of our complex global social-ecological system within its inherent resource limitations, and to develop sustainable lifestyles that are practical and appealing in the different regions and cultures of the world.
The global climate change is one of the most dangerous threats to human society in the 21st Century. The dramatic losses have already been observed, and the risks are rising over time. CEECCA region experiences many negative impacts of global warming, which is faster and stronger than the world average. Numerous adaptation and resilience measures are required to protect people, but regional governments often underestimate and ignore the social implications of climate policies.This paper explores what are the priority challenges for CEECCA countries and how to address them effectively.
This book examines how Russia, the world’s most complicated country, is governed. As it resumes its place at the centre of global affairs, the book explores Russia’s overarching strategies, and how it organizes itself (or not) in policy areas ranging from foreign policy and national security to health care, education, immigration, science, sport, agriculture, the environment and criminal justice. The book also discusses the structures and institutions on which Russia relies in order to deliver its goals in these areas of national life, as well as what’s to be done, in policy terms, to improve the country’s performance in its first post-Soviet century. Edited by Irvin Studin, the book includes contributions from a tremendous list of Russia’s leading thinkers and specialists, including Alexei Kudrin, Vladimir Mau, Alexander Auzan, Simon Kordonsky, Fyodor Lukyanov, Natalia Zubarevich and Andrey Melville.
Global warming is recognized as one of the most urgent challenges for human society in the 21st century. The international community has agreed to undertake necessary actions to prevent dangerous anthropogenic impacts on the climatic system. Based on the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (2014), the UNFCCC Parties adopted the Paris Agreement aimed at limiting the global mean surface temperature rise by “well below 2 degrees Celsius”. Such an ambitious “climatic” target requires unprecedented efforts to reduce carbon emissions to almost zero worldwide this century. Moreover, in order to keep the warming below 1.5°C, the global total emissions must be reduced by 50% or more by 2050 (compared to current levels) and reach net-zero levels afterwards. In practical terms, it means that most of the countries should deeply decarbonize their economies, energy systems, industries, transport, buildings, products and services, while continuing growth of GDP and the standard of living of the population. The developed countries agreed to take the lead in climate change mitigation under the UNFCCC; however, the largest developing countries and emerging economies have started playing substantial roles in carbon emissions nowadays. In this decade, China became the world No.1 CO2 emitter overcoming the United States. The Northeast Asian (NEA) region, including China, Japan, Mongolia, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the Republic of Korea, and the Russian Federation, is responsible for annual emissions of over 12.4 billion tonnes of CO2 or approximately 40% of global energy-related CO2 emissions. These countries are huge contributors to global warming today and may increase their share further. The traditional way of combusting the huge fossil fuels reserves (coal, gas, and oil) available in the Northeast Asian region would emit greenhouse gases substantially exceeding the amounts that would warm the planet by 2°C. On the other hand, plentiful sources of renewable energy (solar, wind, hydro, tidal, and biomass, etc.) in combination with advanced technologies, investments, and land infrastructure developments can transform the Northeast Asian countries into decarbonized, climate- and environment-friendly economies with sustainable growth and development, fully consistent with the goals and commitments under the Paris Climate Agreement. Delays with the deep decarbonization of the Northeast Asian economies will impose higher risks for communities and life-supporting ecosystems, more losses and stranded assets for businesses, and slower technological progress worldwide. The analysis of challenges and opportunities in deep decarbonization pathways for the Northeast Asian region as a whole is presented in this publication. We raise many questions, and yet have not so many answers. By publishing this text, we want to invite all interested and concerned parties to start thinking about and debating these new, but very up-to-date issues of deep transformation of our economies, industries, consumer behavior, and ways of living in climate-neutral patterns, in order that we can urgently meet the need to save our planet and keep it in good shape for the generations to come.
The development and use of Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) has been a contentios subject for the last three decades. while there has been a number of social science analysis of the issues, this is the first book to assess the role of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in the debate at such wide geographic scale. The various posiotions, for and against GMOs, particularly with regards to trangenic crops, articulated by NGOs in the debate are dissected, classified and juxtaposed to corresponding campaigns. these are discussed in the context of paradigms, including nature fundamentalism and the organic movement, post-colonialism, food sovereignty, anti-globalism, sustainability and feminism. This book also analyses how NGOs interprete the debate and the persuasive communication tactics.
The Paris Climate Agreement established a new target of combating global warming "well below 2 degrees Celsius". This goal will lead to the transformation and deep decarbonization of world economy aiming at nearly zero carbon emissions soon after 2050. The Northeastern Asian countries (responsible for 40% of global CO2 emissions) have all rechnological, resource and ivnestment potential for decarbonization both domestically and internationally, and can show leadership in this efforts on global scale.
The book provides the first in-depth, multidisciplinary study of reurbanization in Russia's Arctic regions, with a specific focus on new mobility patterns, and the resulting birth of new urban Arctic identities in which newcomers and labor migrants form a rising part. It is an invaluable reference for all those interested in current trends in circumpolar regions, showing how the Arctic is becoming more diverse culturally, but also more integrated into globalized trends in terms of economic development, urban sustainability, and migration.
The piblication provides the key lessons learnt from DDPP project experience on designing long-term pathways of low carbon development for 16 world largest economies. The Paris Climate Agreement requires countries to build their concrete vision of the national low-emission transition, consistent with global climate goals that would widely shared by domestic stakeholders and explicitly articulated with domestic socio-economic priorities. We analyze the experience of USA, France, Germany, Russia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, UK, Mexico, Canada, Italy, Brazil in projecting the deep decarbonization scenarios for their economies by 2050.
The book presents a brief summary of the scientific research on deep decarbonization of 16 largest economies by 2050.
This report examines the changes happening in Russia ever since the issue of global warming was introduced on the global agenda. Only today, after the planet has experienced a variety of catastrophic natural disasters, have world leaders and decision makers grown more aware of the urgency of the problem. In Russia, where climate changes have been more significant than globally on average, the government has increased its objectives in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and put forward a number of initiatives and green policy measures to achieve more sustainability in the long term. Russia’s target for greenhouse gas emissions in 2030 is set at 70-75 percent of the base level of 1990, according to the new action plan adopted by the Kremlin. Other states also recognize the problem but their positions differ in the way the issue should be solved. India, China, the U.S. and Brazil, all of which are important players analyzed in the report, find it hard to reach common ground in reaching a globally binding agreement. Whether this will be done ultimately depends on the outcome of the Paris climate change conference. The report also considers the state of the Russian climate change movement from the experience of NGO activities in Russia, provides an overview of the development of the Russian green energy sector with specific success stories and analyzes the prospects of renewable energy development in different regions of the country.
This supplementary material contains case studies presenting specific aspects of the DDPP country pathways. They illustrate and complement the cross-cutting analysis included in the 2015 DDPP synthesis report
The Deep Decarbonization Pathways Project (DDPP) is a collaborative global research initiative seeking to understand how individual countries can transition, on a technological, socio-economic and policy “pathway”, to a low-carbon economy consistent with the internationally agreed goal of limiting anthropogenic warming to less than 2 degrees Celsius (2°C). Achieving this goal requires that the world cut global net emissions of greenhouse gases (GHG) so that they approach zero between 2050 and 2075, consistent with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)1 2014 findings that to ensure a better-than-even chance of remaining below a 2°C temperature rise, global annual emissions will need to be reduced 42%–57% by 2050 (relative to 2010), and 73%–107% by 2100. This will entail, more than any other factor, the profound transformation of energy systems through steeply reducing carbon intensity in all sectors of the economy. We call this transition “deep decarbonization” and our products, Deep Decarbonization Pathways (DDPs).
The present volume is the fourth issue of the Yearbook series entitled ‘Evolution’. The title of the present volume is ‘From Big Bang to Nanorobots’. In this way we demonstrate that all phases of evolution and Big History are covered in the articles of the present Yearbook. Several articles also present the forecasts about future development.
The main objective of our Yearbook as well as of the previous issues is the creation of a unified interdisciplinary field of research in which the scientists specializing in different disciplines could work within the framework of unified or similar paradigms, using the common terminology and searching for common rules, tendencies and regularities. At the same time for the formation of such an integrated field one should use all available opportunities: theories, laws and methods. In the present volume, a number of such approaches are used.
The volume consists of four sections: Universal Evolutionary Principles; Biosocial Evolution, Ecological Aspects, and Consciousness; Projects for the Future; In Memoriam.
This Yearbook will be useful both for those who study interdisciplinary macroproblems and for specialists working in focused directions, as well as for those who are interested in evolutionary issues of Cosmology, Biology, History, Anthropology, Economics and other areas of study. More than that, this edition will challenge and excite your vision of your own life and the new discoveries going on around us!
The Deep Decarbonization Pathways Project (DDPP) is a collaborative initiative to understand and show how individual countries can transition to a low-carbon economy and how the world can meet the internationally agreed target of limiting the increase in global mean surface temperature to less than 2 degrees Celsius (°C). Achieving the 2°C limit will require that global net emissions of greenhouse gases (GHG) approach zero by the second half of the century. This will require a profound transformation of energy systems by mid-century through steep declines in carbon intensity in all sectors of the economy, a transition we call “deep decarbonization.” Successfully transitioning to a low-carbon economy will require unprecedented global cooperation, including a global cooperative effort to accelerate the development and diffusion of some key low carbon technologies.
This collection is a special issue of Russian Sociological Review dedicated to the concept of border. The concept itself seems to draw attention in many disciplines. As spatial phenomena, borders are always drawn in spaces, while social scientists, philosophers and other academics often have different meanings of space. Recent reconsiderations of space in terms of networks, flows and events, bring even more complexity to the concept. The current volume contributes to both theoretical and empirical studies of borders on various levels. Contributions look at the relevant phenomena from contemporary or historical perspectives, study narratives about borders, reconstructions of the empirical configurations of borders and other objects (such as bodies), exploring how borders emerge and reshape existing spaces, etc. Overall, the issue contributes to the emerging interdisciplinary field of border studies and encourages cross-disciplinary dialogue.
Work-book «The current state of the Russian oil and gas industry» is offered for publication as a training aid for students qualified at the direction 131000 “Oil and gas engineering”. We have described the geology of hydrocarbons, in particular - the geology of heavy oil, unconventional resources of energy, etc. In this workbook there are also methods for the development of deposits of heavy oil and produce shale oil. Special attention was given to unconventional sources of hydrocarbons, exactly, gas hydrates and clayey shale. Novelty of work-book is presentation of oil and gas terminology to students from China. This work-book is published for the first time and will be very useful for self-study students of oil and gas disciplines, as well as oil and gas terms in Russian, English and Chinese. The manuscript is classified as «Approved by UMO on Higher Education in the field of applied geology as a work book for students enrolled in the direction 131000 “Oil and Gas Engineering”».
Light absorbing particles, such as mineral dust, are a potent climate forcing agent. Many snow‐covered areas are subject to dust outbreak events originating from desert regions able to significantly decrease snow albedo. Here, using a combination of Sentinel‐2 imagery, in situ measurements and ensemble detailed snowpack simulations, we study the impact on snow cover duration of a major dust deposition event that occurred in the Caucasus in March 2018. This is, to the best of our knowledge, the first study using ensemble approach and Sentinel‐2 imagery to quantify the impact of a dust event on the snow cover evolution. We demonstrate that the calculation of the impact is strongly affected by the snow model uncertainties but that the March 2018 dust event systematically shortened the snow cover duration in Western Caucasus. The shortening is higher for location with higher accumulation and higher elevation (median values of 23 ± 7 days) than for location at lower elevation (median values of 15 ± 3 days). This is because for sites with higher location and higher accumulation, melt occurs later in the season when more incoming solar energy is available. This highlights the huge impact of a single 1‐day event on snow cover duration, and consequently, on the hydrology of a large region.
ABSTRACT. A nonparametric clustering method, the Bagging Voronoi K-Medoid Alignment algorithm, which simultaneously clusters and aligns spatially/temporally dependent curves, is applied to study various data series from the Elbrus region (Central Caucasus). We used the algorithm to cluster annual curves obtained by smoothing of the following synchronous data series: titanium concentrations in varved (annually laminated) bottom sediments of proglacial Lake Donguz-Orun; an oxygen-18 isotope record in an ice core from Mt. Elbrus; temperature and precipitation observations with a monthly resolution from Teberda and Terskol meteorological stations. The data of different types were clustered independently. Due to restrictions concerned with the availability of meteorological data, we have fulfilled the clustering procedure separately for two periods: 1926–2010 and 1951–2010. The study is aimed to determine whether the instrumental period could be reasonably divided (clustered) into several sub-periods using different climate and proxy time series; to examine the interpretability of the resulting borders of the clusters (resulting time periods); to study typical patterns of intra-annual variations of the data series. The results of clustering suggest that the precipitation and to a lesser degree titanium decadal-scale data may be reasonably grouped, while the temperature and oxygen-18 series are too short to form meaningful clusters; the intercluster boundaries show a notable degree of coherence between temperature and oxygen-18 data, and less between titanium and oxygen-18 as well as for precipitation series; the annual curves for titanium and partially precipitation data reveal much more pronounced intercluster variability than the annual patterns of temperature and oxygen-18 data.
The ability of smectite clays to incorporate gases in their interlayers is shown to be conditioned by interlayer spacing, depending, in turn, on phyllosilicate layer composition and effective size of the charge-balancing cations. As illustrated by earlier in situ X-ray diffraction and spectroscopic characterization of the gas/clay interface, most smectites with small-size charge-balancing cations, such as Na+ or Ca2+, accommodate CO2 and CH4 in their interlayers only in a partially hydrated state resulting in the opening of the basal spacing, above a certain critical value. In the present study CH4 and CO2 adsorption isotherms were measured for Na- and Mg-exchanged montmorillonite up to 9 MPa using a manometric technique. The process of dehydration of these clays was thoroughly characterized by thermogravimetric analysis and powder X-ray diffraction. A dramatic decrease in specific surface area and methane and carbon dioxide adsorption capacities for fully dehydrated samples in comparison to partially dehydrated ones is assigned to the shrinkage of interlayer spacing resulting in its inaccessibility for the entry of CH4 and CO2 molecules. This observation is direct evidence of CH4 and CO2 adsorption capacity variation depending on the opening of smectite clay interlayer spacing.
We investigate in this paper the sensitivity of the representation of the Denmark Strait overflow produced by a regional z-coordinate configuration of NEMO (version 3.6) to the horizontal and vertical grid resolutions and to various numerical and physical parameters. Three different horizontal resolutions, 1/12°, 1/36°, and 1/60°, are used respectively with 46, 75, 150, and 300 vertical levels. Contrary to expectations, in the given numerical set-up, the increase of the vertical resolution did not bring improvement 5 at eddy-permitting resolution (1/12°). We find a greater dilution of the overflow as the number of vertical levels increases, and the worse solution is the one with 300 vertical levels. It is found that when the local slope of the grid is weaker than the slope of the topography the result is a more diluted vein. Such a grid enhances the dilution of the plume in the ambient fluid and produces its thickening. Although the greater number of levels allows for a better resolution of the ageostrophic Ekman flow in the bottom layer, the final result also depends on how the local grid slope matches the topographic slope. We also find that for a fixed number of levels, the representation of the overflow is improved when the horizontal resolution is increased to 1/36° and 1/60°, the most drastic improvements being obtained with 150 levels. With such a number of vertical levels, the enhanced vertical mixing associated with the step-like representation of the topography remains limited to a thin bottom layer representing a minor portion of the overflow. Two major additional players contribute to the sinking of the overflow, the breaking of the overflow into boluses of dense water which contribute to spread the overflow waters along the Greenland shelf and within the Irminger Basin, and the resolved vertical shear that results from the resolution of the bottom Ekman boundary layer dynamics. This improves the accuracy of the calculation of the entrainment by the turbulent kinetic energy mixing scheme (as it depends on the local shear) and improves the properties of the overflow waters such that they more favorably compare with observations. At 300 vertical levels, the dilution is again increased for all horizontal resolutions. The impact on the overflow representation of many other numerical parameters was tested (momentum advection scheme, lateral friction, bottom boundary layer parameterization, closure parameterization, etc.) but none had a significant impact on the overflow representation.
Pyongyang is often used as a metonym for North Korea's leaders and the issues their policies create for the world. However, the profound internal changes rapidly transforming the city since the 1990s make Pyongyang a fascinating urban case study. This profile is an attempt to shed light on one of the most ‘mysterious’ cities in the world; firstly, through analysis of its socio-economic dynamics and, secondly, by examining its possible transformation into a post-socialist city through a comparison of its spatial characteristics with Central and East European capitals. We also consider how the city retains substantial state socialist characteristics.
This paper explores the consequences of different policy assumptions and the derivation of globally consistent, national low-carbon development pathways for the seven largest greenhouse gas (GHG)–emitting countries (EU28 as a bloc) in the world, covering approximately 70% of global CO2 emissions, in line with their contributions to limiting global average temperature increase to well below 2 °C as compared with pre-industrial levels. We introduce the methodology for developing these pathways by initially discussing the process by which global integrated assessment model (IAM) teams interacted and derived boundary conditions in the form of carbon budgets for the different countries. Carbon budgets so derived for the 2011–2050 period were then used in eleven different national energy-economy models and IAMs for producing low-carbon pathways for the seven countries in line with a well below 2 °C world up to 2050. We present a comparative assessment of the resulting pathways and of the challenges and opportunities associated with them. Our results indicate quite different mitigation pathways for the different countries, shown by the way emission reductions are split between different sectors of their economies and technological alternatives.
The aim of the study was to assess temporal trends in health risks related to most common persistent contaminants, including polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), dichloro-diphenyltrichloroethanes (DDTs), lead (Pb), as well as mercury (Hg) among indigenous peoples living in coastal areas of Chukotka in Arctic Russia. This is examined in relation to exposure pathways and a range of social and behavioral factors capable of modifying the exposure to these contaminants, including place of residence, income, traditional subsistence, alcohol consumption, and awareness of risk prevention. The primary exposure pathway for PCBs is shown to be the intake of traditional foods, which explained as much as 90% of the total health risk calculated employing established risk guidelines. Nearly 50% of past DDT-related health risks also appear to have been contributed by contaminated indoor surfaces involving commonly used DDT-containing insecticides. Individuals who practiced traditional activities are shown to have experienced a 4.4-fold higher risk of exposure to PCBs and a 1.3-fold higher risk for DDTs, Pb, and Hg. Low income, high consumption of marine mammal fat, alcohol consumption, and lack of awareness of health risk prevention are attributed to a further 2- to 6-fold increase in the risk of PCBs exposure. Low socioeconomic status enhances the health risks associated with exposure to the persistent contaminants examined.
Russia is one of the largest carbon emitters in the world, possessing huge resources of both fossil fuels and zero-carbon energy sources. The Paris Agreement targets require substantial efforts to limit global warming to “well below 2 °C”. Energy-economic modeling provides sound conclusions that continuation of existing energy and climate policy will lead to stabilization of energy carbon emissions in Russia at the current level in 2010–2050 (about 30% below 1990). Stronger mitigation policies could gradually reduce domestic energy CO2 emissions by 61% from 2010 to 2050 (75% below 1990). Deep decarbonization policies with even more ambitious commitments could ensure an 83% reduction in energy CO2 emissions from 2010 levels (88% below 1990) by 2050. All key sectors (energy, industries, transport, and buildings) can play a substantial role in decarbonizing the national economy. However Russia’s historical reliance on domestic consumption and exports of fossil fuels creates strong barriers to decarbonization. Emission reduction costs are expected to be below 29 USD/tCO2 by 2030, 55 USD/ tCO2 by 2040, and 82 USD/tCO2 by 2050 in the most ambitious decarbonization scenario. The results of this study provide insights into how Russia can enhance its ambitions to implement the Paris Agreement and contribute to global efforts toward building a climate-neutral economy by 2050.
The Great Acceleration of the anthropogenic impact on the Earth system is marked by the ubiquitous distribution of anthropogenic materials throughout the global environment, including technofossils, radionuclides and the exponential increases of methane and carbon dioxide concentrations. However, personal care products as direct tracers of human domestic habits are often overlooked. Here, we present the first research combining fragrances, as novel personal care products, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) as combustion and industrial markers, across the onset of the Great Acceleration in the Elbrus, Caucasus, ice core. This archive extends from the 1930s to 2005, spanning the profound changes in the relationship between humans and the environment during the twentieth century. Concentrations of both fragrances and PAHs rose throughout the considered period, reflecting the development of the Anthropocene. However, within this rising trend, remarkable decreases of the tracers track the major socioeconomic crises that occurred in Eastern Europe during the second half of the twentieth century.