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Research Area 1 - Northern landscapes and ecosystems

Project leader: Martin Lavoie
Project leader: Esther Lévesque

A detailed understanding of the recent and ancient history of northern geo-ecosystems is essential to fully comprehend their current state. This includes the question of how northern systems were influenced by glacial and post glacial history, in particular during the Quaternary Period, and studies of land surface processes, biodiversity, interactions between species and the impacts of disturbances on the structure and composition of northern systems. The research is supported by data acquisition made possible through the use and development of CEN's extensive network of environmental monitoring stations, and application of advanced instrumentation and observation methods.

This research area includes three themes.

Researchers: Lavoie, Martin ; Lévesque, Esther ; Allard, Michel ; Antoniades, Dermot ; Arseneault, Dominique ; Bernatchez, Pascal ; Bernier, Monique ; Berteaux, Dominique ; Bety, Joël ; Bhiry, Najat ; Boucher, Étienne ; Boudreau, Stéphane ; Buffin-Bélanger, Thomas ; Chokmani, Karem ; Comte, Jérôme ; Culley, Alexander ; Côté, Steeve ; Dominé, Florent ; Fauteux, Dominique ; Festa-Bianchet, Marco ; Fortier, Daniel ; Fortier, Richard ; Francus, Pierre ; Gauthier, Gilles ; Gravel, Dominique ; Greer, Charles ; Hétu, Bernard ; Kinnard, Christophe ; Lajeunesse, Patrick ; Langlois, Alexandre ; Laurion, Isabelle ; Lecomte, Nicolas ; Legagneux, Pierre ; Lemieux, Jean-Michel ; Lessard, Jean-Philippe ; Marie, Guillaume ; Molson, John ; Moore, Jean-Sébastien ; Ouarda, Taha ; Payette, Serge ; Pelletier, Fanie ; Pienitz, Reinhard ; Rautio, Milla ; Royer, Alain ; Simard, Martin ; St-Laurent, Martin-Hugues ; Therrien, René ; Tremblay, Jean-Pierre ; Villarreal A., Juan Carlos ; Vincent, Warwick F. ; Voyer, Normand ; Vézina, François.

Theme 1.1 - Landscapes and geomorphological processes

Theme leader: Patrick Lajeunesse

This theme focuses on northern landscape transformations brought about by glaciation and post-glaciation geomorphological processes at various spatio-temporal scales. Two main aspects are studied: 1) the history and dynamics of the Laurentide and Innuitian Ice Sheets, specifically the limits of their maximum extent, their phases of stability and instability and the links between these events and past climate change; 2) the dynamics of post-glaciation geomorphological processes (variations in sea and lake water levels, river beds, sediment transport, watershed dynamics, etc.) and their impacts on northern landscapes in relation to climate change and natural disasters.

Researchers: Lajeunesse, Patrick ; Allard, Michel ; Antoniades, Dermot ; Bernatchez, Pascal ; Bhiry, Najat ; Boucher, Étienne ; Buffin-Bélanger, Thomas ; Fortier, Daniel ; Fortier, Richard ; Francus, Pierre ; Hétu, Bernard ; Lemieux, Jean-Michel ; Marie, Guillaume ; Molson, John ; Pienitz, Reinhard ; Therrien, René.

Theme 1.2 - Structure and function of northern terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems

Theme leader: Stéphane Boudreau

This theme focuses on the complex trophic interactions between the organisms found in various ecosystems as well as on the factors controlling these interactions. Ecosystem dynamics (terrestrial, aquatic, riparian and coastal) result from the combined effects of disturbances (fire, insect outbreaks, climate change, resource exploitation) and biotic interactions (competition, predation, herbivory), both acting on various spatial and temporal scales. For terrestrial ecosystems, this theme studies northern biocenoses through the examination of the dynamics occurring in various plant strata, animal populations and plant-animal interactions. For aquatic systems, we examine how physical and chemical variables influence productivity, biodiversity, trophic interactions and biogeochemical processes.

Researchers: Boudreau, Stéphane ; Arseneault, Dominique ; Berteaux, Dominique ; Bety, Joël ; Culley, Alexander ; Côté, Steeve ; Fauteux, Dominique ; Festa-Bianchet, Marco ; Francus, Pierre ; Gauthier, Gilles ; Gravel, Dominique ; Greer, Charles ; Hétu, Bernard ; Kinnard, Christophe ; Laurion, Isabelle ; Lavoie, Martin ; Lecomte, Nicolas ; Legagneux, Pierre ; Lessard, Jean-Philippe ; Lévesque, Esther ; Moore, Jean-Sébastien ; Pelletier, Fanie ; Pienitz, Reinhard ; Rautio, Milla ; Simard, Martin ; St-Laurent, Martin-Hugues ; Tremblay, Jean-Pierre ; Villarreal A., Juan Carlos ; Vincent, Warwick F. ; Voyer, Normand ; Vézina, François.

Theme 1.3 - Observation tools and indicators to monitor the northern environment

Theme leader: Dominique Berteaux

Recent and current changes in the environment are monitored and analysed in situ using CEN’s extensive network of field and climate stations. Systems for measurements and the monitoring of environmental variables using new generation sensors are developed, calibrated in laboratories and tested in the field to maintain the SILA network at the cutting edge and to broaden the scope of the environmental parameters measured. The research team applies new technologies and methods specifically developed and adapted for the characterisation of northern geo-ecosystems. Remote sensing allows the refined monitoring of changes on a temporal scale while covering vast territories for the study of coastal areas, aquatic systems and plant, snow and ice cover to better understand geo-ecosystem dynamics. Terrestrial, aerial and satellite telemetry allows wildlife monitoring in real-time, thereby helping us understand their use of land relative to other biotic and abiotic factors, in addition to enabling us to track eco-geosystem dynamics. Molecular, genetic and biochemical analyses quantify the variations in biodiversity and assess the physiological state of aquatic and land communities. With the use of these tools, field data collected at small scales can be extrapolated to regional and continental scales. A project in preparation aims to acquire and deploy aerial drones for regional aerial telemetry. Unique protocols for data gathering and standardization have recently been developed through the ADAPT program. The data collected are archived in CEN’s database and are now available to the international community thanks to the on-line publication Nordicana D.

Researchers: Berteaux, Dominique ; Allard, Michel ; Antoniades, Dermot ; Arseneault, Dominique ; Bernatchez, Pascal ; Bernier, Monique ; Bety, Joël ; Bhiry, Najat ; Boucher, Étienne ; Buffin-Bélanger, Thomas ; Chokmani, Karem ; Comte, Jérôme ; Côté, Steeve ; Dominé, Florent ; Fortier, Richard ; Gauthier, Gilles ; Kinnard, Christophe ; Langlois, Alexandre ; Laurion, Isabelle ; Lévesque, Esther ; OUARDA, Taha ; Payette, Serge ; Pienitz, Reinhard ; Rautio, Milla ; Royer, Alain ; Simard, Martin ; Vincent, Warwick F. ; Voyer, Normand ; Vézina, François.

 

 
 

Research Area 2 - Responses to climate change in the past, present and future

Project leader: Florent Dominé
Project leader: Gilles Gauthier

Northern environments have been subject to constant change throughout the last few thousand years, but the pace of change appears to have accelerated markedly over the last century. The aim of this theme is to determine the rate of change at different spatio-temporal scales, to evaluate the magnitude of present changes relative to the past, and to understand the consequences for northern land and coastal geo-ecosystem function. These studies focus on critical thresholds, feedback mechanisms at the ecosystem level, and on the effects of global warming. The research aims to identify the mechanisms by which these changes act on various geo-ecosystem variables, and to anticipate the magnitude and direction of change by understanding the causal processes and consequences.

This research area includes five themes.

Researchers: Dominé, Florent ; Gauthier, Gilles ; Allard, Michel ; Amyot, Marc ; Antoniades, Dermot ; Arseneault, Dominique ; Babin, Marcel ; Bernier, Monique ; Berteaux, Dominique ; Bety, Joël ; Bhiry, Najat ; Boucher, Étienne ; Boudreau, Stéphane ; Buffin- Bélanger, Thomas ; Chokmani, Karem ; Comte, Jérôme ; Couture, Raoul-Marie ; Culley, Alexander ; Côté, Steeve ; Fauteux, Dominique ; Festa-Bianchet, Marco ; Fortier, Daniel ; Fortier, Richard ; Francus, Pierre ; Galvez, Rosa ; Garneau, Michelle ; Gravel, Dominique ; Grenon, Martin ; Hétu, Bernard ; Kinnard, Christophe ; Lajeunesse, Patrick ; Langlois, Alexandre ; Larivière, Dominic ; Laurion, Isabelle ; Lavoie, Martin ; Lecomte, Nicolas ; Legagneux, Pierre ; Lemieux, Jean-Michel ; Lessard, Jean-Philippe ; Lovejoy, Connie ; Lévesque, Esther ; Molson, John ; Moore, Jean-Sébastien ; Ouarda, Taha ; Payette, Serge ; Pelletier, Fanie ; Pienitz, Reinhard ; Pilote, Martin ; Rautio, Milla ; Rochefort, Line ; Roulet, Nigel Thomas ; Royer, Alain ; Simard, Martin ; Sonnentag, Oliver ; St-Laurent, Martin-Hugues ; Therrien, René ; Tremblay, Jean-Pierre ; Villarreal A., Juan Carlos ; Vincent, Warwick F. ; Vézina, François.

Theme 2.1 - Paleo-environmental analyses for improved predictions of environmental change

Theme leader: Reinhard Pienitz

Models predicting the current and anticipated impacts of climate change on geo-ecosystem dynamics must be supplied by paleo-environmental reconstitutions derived from a variety of archives. These supply critical information on climate forcings and geo-ecosystem dynamics through time. We are carrying out long historical reconstitutions with fine temporal and stratigraphic resolutions to understand natural climate variation and better define the processes which shaped the changing environmental conditions during the Quaternary Period. The analysis of geo and bio-indicator databases (magnetic susceptibility, granulometry, geochemistry, diatoms, pollen, invertebrates, pigments, etc.) is undertaken to better define the transformation patterns of Northern Canadian landscapes to reconstitute the history of environmental change and to comprehend the evolutionary change in key species. The development of paleo-ecological reference points and historical environmental data help to define target zones for ecological restoration and to elaborate monitoring and conservation programs.

Researchers: Pienitz, Reinhard ; Allard, Michel ; Antoniades, Dermot ; Arseneault, Dominique ; Bhiry, Najat ; Boucher, Étienne ; Francus, Pierre ; Hétu, Bernard ; Lavoie, Martin ; Payette, Serge ; Rautio, Milla ; Rochefort, Line ; Simard, Martin.

Theme 2.2 - Climate effects on aquatic ecosystems and their biogeochemical processes

Theme leader: Isabelle Laurion

This theme examines the impacts of climate change on the physical characteristics of northern aquatic environments (ice cover, stratification, thermal regime) and their implications on biogeochemistry, contaminant dynamics, plant and microbial biodiversity and biological productivity. Climate change affects river flow and expands aquatic thermokarst ecosystems associated with thawing permafrost and the acceleration of the hydrological cycle. These aquatic ecosystem types release more gaseous carbon into the atmosphere than permafrost, thus contributing to climate change-inducing mechanisms. On the other hand, carbon is sequestered in some thermokarst ponds. The main objective of this theme is to decipher the biogeochemistry, hydrology, and ecology of aquatic environments as well as our knowledge of their links with the terrestrial environment. The complexity of these important systems requires the development of optical, paleo-climatic, limnological, and molecular tools to estimate the emission of greenhouse gases as well as their transformation and responses to actual and future changes. We are contributing to the quantification of climate feedback and improving our ability to better predict the northern climate.

Researchers: Laurion, Isabelle ; Amyot, Marc ; Antoniades, Dermot ; Babin, Marcel ; Bhiry, Najat ; Chokmani, Karem ; Comte, Jérôme ; Couture, Raoul-Marie ; Dominé, Florent ; Fortier, Daniel ; Francus, Pierre ; Galvez, Rosa ; Garneau, Michelle ; Kinnard, Christophe ; Langlois, Alexandre ; Larivière, Dominic ; Lovejoy, Connie ; OUARDA, Taha ; Pienitz, Reinhard ; Pilote, Martin ; Rautio, Milla ; Roulet, Nigel Thomas ; Sonnentag, Oliver ; Vincent, Warwick F. 

Theme 2.3 - Climate-vegetation-permafrost interactions and their inclusion in climate change models

Theme leader: Dominique Arseneault

Modeling the exchanges between the atmosphere, vegetation and permafrost using high spatial resolution (ex. cells of 40 x 40 km) requires parameters measured in the field and algorithms that reproduce the interactions between these three components of the environment. For example, the impact of vegetation growth on the physical properties of snow and thermal patterns of the permafrost is not yet represented in any models. The necessary parameterizations must be developed, based on observations, measurements and monitoring in the field from, amongst other things, our network of SILA-Qaujisarvik stations where the number of measured variables is increasing constantly. This data allows the quantification and formalization of the exchanges of energy and matter between the various environmental components in order to include them in the modeling and better predict the impacts on northern environments and infrastructures. A projection with advanced and accurate technology infers setting up a data bank of georeferenced data listing thermal parameters of geological surfaces and of plant, snow and ice cover necessary for the calculations. The data collected is available to the international community via Nordicana D.

Researchers: Arseneault, Dominique ; Allard, Michel ; Babin, Marcel ; Bernatchez, Pascal ; Bernier, Monique ; Berteaux, Dominique ; Dominé, Florent ; Fortier, Richard ; Gauthier, Gilles ; Kinnard, Christophe ; Laurion, Isabelle ; Lévesque, Esther ; Roulet, Nigel Thomas ; Royer, Alain ; Sonnentag, Oliver ; Vincent, Warwick F.

Theme 2.4 - Climate effects on terrestrial food web interactions and animal biodiversity

Theme leader: Steeve Côté

Climate change will affect the biocenosis of northern ecosystems, however, the response of the organisms will vary at all levels, from the individual to the ecosystem level. These varying responses could disrupt spatial and temporal synchronization between trophic levels, thereby affecting biodiversity. These phenomena are amplified in northern regions where the species diversity is low, thereby increasing the influence of a single species on ecosystem dynamics as a whole, and where species migrate great distances. This theme examines these dynamics for the key boreal forest and tundra herbivore species, including ungulates, geese, and lemmings across a 3000 km latitudinal gradient. Long term monitoring of these populations, their feeding habits and the predator-prey interactions are coupled with in situ experiments (artificial warming, variations in snow cover) and experiments in controlled environments (acclimation to varying temperatures) to evaluate the sensitivity of northern food webs to disturbances and to model the effects of these disturbances. In addition, field studies coupled with satellite-telemetry data allow us to evaluate the actual and future state of various animal populations.

Researchers: Côté, Steeve ; Berteaux, Dominique ; Bety, Joël ; Boudreau, Stéphane ; Culley, Alexander ; Dominé, Florent ; Fauteux, Dominique ; Festa-Bianchet, Marco ; Gauthier, Gilles ; Gravel, Dominique ; Lecomte, Nicolas ; Legagneux, Pierre ; Lessard, Jean- Philippe ; Lévesque, Esther ; Moore, Jean-Sébastien ; Pelletier, Fanie ; Rochefort, Line ; St-Laurent, Martin-Hugues ; Tremblay, Jean-Pierre ; Villarreal A., Juan Carlos ; Vézina, François.

Theme 2.5 - The changing water cycle in northern environments

Theme leader: Jean-Michel Lemieux

In the dual context of climate warming and socio-economic change, water resources in the North are often difficult to access and are vulnerable to contamination. The cold temperatures make their exploitation complex as local communities depend on surface waters as their main source of drinking water and these freeze over the winter months, causing water shortages in the communities. In the context of permafrost thaw, the exploitation of underground water may become an alternative option since the water freed by permafrost thaw and the melting of land ice and snow could replenish aquifers and further increase groundwater supplies. In-depth knowledge of the water cycle in northern environments allows a better understanding of the feedback loop existing between climate warming, permafrost degradation, and geosystem dynamics. The evolution of the depth of the active layer is analyzed using satellite imagery coupled with field data. This allows us to closely monitor surface-layer temperatures as well as evaluate snow cover and its influence on the Earth’s energy balance. In the boreal zone, we also analyze the short and long term variability of the water supply in hydroelectric dams and natural systems.

Researchers: Lemieux, Jean-Michel ; Allard, Michel ; Antoniades, Dermot ; Buffin-Bélanger, Thomas ; Fortier, Richard ; Grenon, Martin ; Kinnard, Christophe ; Langlois, Alexandre ; Larivière, Dominic ; Laurion, Isabelle ; Molson, John ; Pienitz, Reinhard ; Royer, Alain ; Therrien, René.

 

 
 

Research Area 3 - Environmental risk assessment and adapting to change

Project leader: Michel Allard
Project leader: Najat Bhiry

Inuit communities and northern natural systems are increasingly exposed to the risks associated with climate change and economic development. These issues affect civil security, the stability and integrity of geo-ecosystems, traditional food sources and safe access to these resources. In partnership with Inuit communities, government and industry, these projects assess the vulnerability of communities, geo-ecosystems, and terrestrial and coastal infrastructures in order to develop tools and practices adapted to the rapid change. The approaches include analysis of the frequency of risk, formulation of landscape restoration techniques, and mitigation strategies for natural resource extraction and exploitation. Historical and cultural practices are studied to evaluate community resilience and adaptation strategies. Knowledge exchange, science education and training, and the development of monitoring and outreach programs are important components of this theme.

This research area includes five themes.

Researchers: Allard, Michel ; Bhiry, Najat ; Arseneault, Dominique ; Bernatchez, Pascal;  Bernier, Monique ; Berteaux, Dominique ; Bety, Joël ; Boudreau, Stéphane ; Buffin  Bélanger, Thomas ; Chokmani, Karem ; Côté, Steeve ; Doré, Guy ; Doyon, Bernard ; Festa-Bianchet, Marco ; Fortier, Daniel ; Fortier, Richard ; Galvez, Rosa ; Garneau, Michelle ; Gauthier, Francis ; Gauthier, Gilles ; Grenon, Martin ; Hétu, Bernard ; Lajeunesse, Patrick ; Langlois, Alexandre ; Lasserre, Frédéric ; Lavoie, Martin ; Legagneux, Pierre ; Lemieux, Jean-Michel ; Lévesque, Esther ; Marie, Guillaume ; Mercier, Guy ; Molson, John ; Moore, Jean-Sébastien ; Pienitz, Reinhard ; Rautio, Milla ; Raymond, Jasmin ; Rochefort, Line ; Rodon, Thierry ; Royer, Alain ; Simard, Martin ; St-Laurent, Martin-Hugues ; Therrien, René ; Tremblay, Jean-Pierre ; Vincent, Warwick F. ; Woollett, James.

Theme 3.1 - Modelling permafrost dynamics for landscape management and community adaptation

Theme leader: Guy Doré

Northern infrastructures in the communities of Nunavik are exposed to natural hazards such as ground subsidence and landslides which are triggered by thawing permafrost. We document the causal processes of these natural hazards, their frequency and their potential recurrence. Researchers then model coupled physical phenomena such as heat transfer, underwater flow regime, and thaw consolidation of permafrost. These simulations are based on extensive datasets obtained in the field including geomorphological, geotechnical and geophysical surveys, and continuous real-time monitoring. Climate change scenarios generated by the Ouranos Consortium are also integrated in the analyses. The aim is to develop efficient developmental tools and adaptation strategies to reduce the negative impacts of change on the communities and thereby increase the sustainability and viability of their infrastructures.

Researchers: Doré, Guy ; Allard, Michel ; Bernier, Monique ; Doyon, Bernard ; Fortier, Daniel ; Fortier, Richard ; Langlois, Alexandre ; Lemieux, Jean-Michel ; Lévesque, Esther ; Mercier, Guy ; Molson, John ; Raymond, Jasmin ; Royer, Alain ; Therrien, René.

Theme 3.2 - Hazard and extreme event assessment for northern territories and development of management tools

Theme leader: Pascal Bernatchez

Climate warming and socio-economic development increase the intensity and frequency of many natural hazards such as ice jams, ice pushes, submersion, erosion, avalanches, rock and landslides, thinning ice cover, forest fires and insect outbreaks. These hazards and industrial development already disrupt traditional and socio-economic activities of northerners and raise vulnerability and public safety issues. The accelerated development of the North generates new challenges. For example, the safe exploitation of mining resources resides on the detailed knowledge of the geomechanical properties of fractured rock masses and is based on a sound understanding of the short and long term evolution of the mines exploited in these areas. The objectives of this theme are to: 1) define the origins and the causes of these hazards; 2) evaluate present and future vulnerability of the northern populations and characterize the activities that take place on the territory, 3) develop adapted designs and exploitation methods, 4) develop tools for land and risk management as well as risk prevention, which can assist decision-makers, 5) transfer these tools to the local communities as well as to the governmental and industrial partners. We use a combination of traditional knowledge on natural hazards, environmental monitoring networks, climate models, coupled physical phenomena models, statistical analyses, and remote sensing to achieve these objectives.

Researchers: Bernatchez, Pascal ; Allard, Michel ; Bernier, Monique ; Bhiry, Najat ; Buffin-Bélanger, Thomas ; Chokmani, Karem ; Doré, Guy ; Fortier, Richard ; Gauthier, Francis ; Grenon, Martin ; Hétu, Bernard ; Lajeunesse, Patrick ; Langlois, Alexandre ; Lemieux, Jean-Michel ; Marie, Guillaume ; Mercier, Guy ; Molson, John ; Therrien, René.

Theme 3.3 - Sustainable practices for conservation, natural resource exploitation and ecological restoration of northern landscapes affected by human activities

Theme leader: Line Rochefort

In order to propose sustainable solutions, the decision-making processes related to the changes affecting northern regions in terms of the environmental, economic and social components must be based on a solid scientific foundation. Our aim is to improve the methods used in the management of renewable natural resources as well as in the mitigation strategies developed for the exploitation of these resources (e.g. mining and oil exploration and exploitation). We experiment with various strategies in order to minimize the impacts of human activities, sustain ecological services (e.g. traditional food sources, availability and quality of drinking water, long term carbon sequestration in bogs) and maintain the ecological integrity of protected northern areas. We use restoration ecology to develop new practices adapted to the extreme climate found in northern habitats, protected areas and villages.

Researchers: Rochefort, Line ; Bernier, Monique ; Berteaux, Dominique ; Bety, Joël ; Boudreau, Stéphane ; Côté, Steeve ; Doré, Guy ; Festa-Bianchet, Marco ; Galvez, Rosa ; Garneau, Michelle ; Gauthier, Gilles ; Grenon, Martin ; Lasserre, Frédéric ; Lévesque, Esther ; Moore, Jean-Sébastien ; Pienitz, Reinhard ; Raymond, Jasmin ; St-Laurent, Martin-Hugues ; Tremblay, Jean-Pierre ; Vincent, Warwick F.

Theme 3.4 - Historical insights into the adaptability of northerners

Theme leader: James Woollett

The long history of northern land occupancy by aboriginal people provides a wide variety of empirical examples of their adaptability to environmental change in the past 5000 yrs. We identify periods of major environmental and ecological change in the past and define the relationship between these changes and environmental, economic and historical factors. We evaluate the historical impacts of human activity on the evolution of northern landscapes and resources (deforestation, bogs, and exploitation of animals). In order to do this, we use a combination of scientific disciplines (earth sciences, chemistry, archaeology, history, anthropology, remote sensing, and historical ecology) and traditional knowledge. We study the cause and effect of the variability of subsidence modes (fishing, hunting and farming) and land management practices over the past 1000 years in Icelandic study sites. Our work clarifies our understanding of the way land (forests, bogs, driftwood) and marine resources facilitated the survival of the various cultures. The data gathered assist the community in developing tools and practices of land use planning which are adapted to the environmental context, while allowing them to better assert their history and reinforce their cultural identity.

Researchers: Woollett, James ; Arseneault, Dominique ; Bernier, Monique ; Bhiry, Najat ; Lavoie, Martin ; Pienitz, Reinhard ; Rautio, Milla ; Rodon, Thierry ; Simard, Martin.

Theme 3.5 - Tools and methods to enhance knowledge transfer and exchange

Theme leader: Thomas Buffin-Bélanger

We develop and use innovative methods to acquire, share, transfer and manage knowledge in order to make CEN’s fundamental and applied expertise available to other users. CEN contributes to the education and social health sectors in the North by developing outreach programs and sharing its research infrastructures and resources with the communities. In order to better interpret the processes operating in the natural environment, to predict their evolution, and develop relevant tools adapted to the North, we work in close collaboration with northern stakeholders and communities to assist them in the acquisition and assimilation of information emerging from CEN’s research. Our partners from the public and private sectors are involved in projects targeting specific research priorities and these partners have access to our expertise and infrastructures. Validation of the applied use of our data and expertise by these sectors is essential to train HQP, revise our methods, improve them, and become more efficient in our capacity to transfer and share knowledge. The creative use of knowledge transfer tools facilitates information sharing with the various users and makes the data and knowledge issued from our work readily accessible and easy to use.

Researchers: Buffin-Bélanger, Thomas ; Allard, Michel ; Bernatchez, Pascal ; Bernier, Monique ; Bety, Joël ; Bhiry, Najat ; Lasserre, Frédéric ; Legagneux, Pierre ; Lévesque, Esther ; Moore, Jean-Sébastien ; Raymond, Jasmin ; Rodon, Thierry.

 

 
 

Research Area 4 - Transdisciplinary projects

Leader : Warwick F. Vincent

Over the next few years, CEN’s science program will run four major research initiatives under Theme 4 which integrates research priorities described across Research Themes 1 to 3. Theme 4 comprises major projects which bring together and effectively coordinate the multidisciplinary research themes undertaken by CEN researchers. The first program described is currently taking place under the auspices of the Observatoire Hommes-Milieux International Nunavik (OHMI-Nunavik). Program 4.2 is the Northern Gradient project which will maximize use of CEN environmental data collected over decades across its extensive North-South gradient in the Canadian East. Lastly, 4.3, is the emerging international T-Mosaic initiative (Terrestrial – Multidisciplinary Distributed Observatories for the Study of Arctic Climate) which extends Northern Gradient project objectives internationally, across Canada and the North Pole to Europe, Greenland and Russia. This is co-led by several CEN researchers.

This research area includes three themes.

Research team : Vincent, Warwick F. ; Allard, Michel ; Antoniades, Dermot ; Arseneault, Dominique ; Bernier, Monique ; Berteaux, Dominique ; Bety, Joël ; Bhiry, Najat ; Boucher, Étienne ; Boudreau, Stéphane ; Chokmani, Karem ; Culley, Alexander ; Côté, Steeve ; Dominé, Florent ; Doré, Guy ; Fortier, Daniel ; Fortier, Richard ; Francus, Pierre ; Gauthier, Gilles ; Gravel, Dominique ; Lajeunesse, Patrick ; Langlois, Alexandre ; Laurion, Isabelle ; Lavoie, Martin ; Lecomte, Nicolas ; Legagneux, Pierre ; Lessard, Jean-Philippe ; Lovejoy, Connie ; Lévesque, Esther ; Marie, Guillaume ; Payette, Serge ; Pienitz, Reinhard ; Pilote, Martin ; Rautio, Milla ; Rodon, Thierry ; Royer, Alain ; Simard, Martin ; St-Laurent, Martin-Hugues ; Therrien, René ; Tremblay, Jean-Pierre ; Vézina, François.

Theme 4.1 - Observatoire Hommes-Milieux International Nunavik (OHMI)

Leader: Monique Bernier

The Observatoire Hommes-Milieux International Nunavik (OHMI) was jointly created by the Institut Ecologie et Environnement of CNRS in France, CEN, Kativik Regional Government, and Makivik Corporation. The multi- and inter-disciplinary research focuses on environmental and social-economic aspects, which do not specifically fall within the scope of current programs. These aspects are studied from complementary perspectives: wildlife, resources, health, housing, employment, and environmental safety. OHMI-Nunavik is the eighth of 13 existing OHMIs. The project is overseen by Sylvie Blangy (CEFE) in France and by Monique Bernier (INRS) at CEN. The research program continues until 2019-2020 and is currently under evaluation for a seven year renewal.

Research team : Bernier, Monique ; Bhiry, Najat ; Chokmani, Karem ; Francus, Pierre ; Lévesque, Esther ; Marie, Guillaume ; Pienitz, Reinhard ; Rodon, Thierry ; Tremblay, Jean-Pierre.

Theme 4.2 - Northern Gradient

Leader : Joël Bêty

The nine CEN research stations and >110 environmental monitoring stations span a remarkable gradient of climate regimes and ecozones over 3500 km, from high boreal forest (Radisson) to forest and shrub tundra (W-K, Umiujaq, Lac à l’Eau Claire, Boniface), true tundra (Salluit, Nettilling Lake) and polar desert (Bylot Island, Ward Hunt Island). This integrative project aims to facilitate access to these sites and to coordinate the collection of environmental observations along this 30 degree latitudinal gradient, to better understand environmental change on northern geo-ecosystems. In collaboration with multiple partners and collaborators, CEN will maximize the use, interpretation, and synthesis of environmental data to better predict the impact of climate on northern ecosystems and geosystems. The former project Hudsonia21 was integrated as a subset of the Northern Gradient initiative. Collaboration and exchange are envisaged with partners in the EU project INTERACT to extend this work to the circumpolar scale.

Research team : Bety, Joël ; Allard, Michel ; Antoniades, Dermot ; Arseneault, Dominique ; Berteaux, Dominique ; Bhiry, Najat ; Boudreau, Stéphane ; Chokmani, Karem ; Culley, Alexander ; Dominé, Florent ; Fortier, Daniel ; Gauthier, Gilles ; Gravel, Dominique ; Lajeunesse, Patrick ; Langlois, Alexandre ; Laurion, Isabelle ; Lavoie, Martin ; Lecomte, Nicolas ; Legagneux, Pierre ; Lovejoy, Connie ; Lévesque, Esther ; Pienitz, Reinhard ; Rautio, Milla ; Royer, Alain ; Simard, Martin ; Vincent, Warwick F. ; Vézina, François.

Theme 4.3 - Terrestrial – Multidisciplinary Distributed Observatories for the Study of Arctic Climate (T-MOSAIC)

Leader : Warwick F. Vincent

CEN is playing a key role in the emergent international T-MOSAiC project (2018-2023). The Multidisciplinary drifting Observatory for the Study of Arctic Climate (MOSAiC, http://www.mosaicobservatory.org) will be a multinational year-round study (2019-2023) of the central Arctic Ocean to measure the coupling between atmosphere, sea ice, ocean and ecosystem processes. The overall goals are to improve sea ice and regional weather forecasting systems, and “to enhance understanding of the regional and global consequences of Arctic climate change and sea-ice loss“. The Terrestrial Working Group of IASC (T-MOSAiC) has extended the MOSAiC initiative to improve knowledge about Arctic terrestrial and freshwater systems, and their interactions with other Earth system components in response to global climate change. These responses potentially include alterations in biogeochemical cycles, greenhouse gases fluxes, biodiversity and food webs, snow cover and permafrost dynamics, extreme weather events, coastal erosion processes and their spatial distribution, as well as in the transport of water, soil organic matter, nutrients and pollutants from terrestrial to freshwater and ultimately marine ecosystems. CEN is co-leading this initiative with several of its researchers.

Research team : Vincent, Warwick F. ; Antoniades, Dermot ; Bety, Joël ; Bhiry, Najat ; Culley, Alexander ; Fortier, Daniel ; Laurion, Isabelle ; Rautio, Milla.

 

 
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