Hydrological processes in the polar regions include snow redistribution, sublimation and melt, soil freezing and thawing, subsurface water flow in partially frozen soil, cold water evaporation, ice melt, and runoff.

The interaction between these elements affects the delivery of water, sediment, contaminants, and dissolved solids to northern rivers, coastal regions, and oceans. Arctic shelf seas represent about half of the Arctic Ocean and 25 percent of the entire world ocean shelves whilst the arctic drainage contains a large area of ungauged basins where hydrological inputs to the coasts and shelves are very uncertain.

Changing precipitation regimes and storminess, rising air and water temperatures, degradation of permafrost and glaciers, variations in snow cover and freshwater flow to the oceans, increasing coastal erosion, sea level rise, and dramatic changes in sea ice will lead to the rapid rearrangement of already dynamic systems in northern river basins, at the land-sea interface, and on the upper continental shelves. Because they are globally important and changing rapidly, it is imperative to improve prediction of these systems based on an understanding of the underlying processes.

This session encourages submissions on recent developments in the dynamics, prediction, and process understanding of northern hydrology; investigation of biogeochemical and energy exchanges at the land-ocean interface from the coast to the upper shelves; and studies dealing with the coastal environment. This session is supported by the International Permafrost Association and the International Commission on Snow and Ice Hydrology (IAHS).

For further information, please go to:

Or contact:

Nicole Couture
Email: ncouture@nrcan.gc.ca

Heidi Kassens
Email: hkassens@ifm-geomar.de

John Pomeroy
Email: john.pomeroy@usask.ca

Carolyn Wegner
Email: cwegner@ifm-geomar.de