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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: AIR QUALITY IN THE CHESAPEAKE BAY REGION AS INFLUENCED BY AGRICULTURAL LAND USE CHANGES Title: Results of the fourth joint U.S.-Russian Bering and Chukchi Seas expedition (BERPAC)

Authors
item Kohl, Steven -
item Rice, Clifford
item Grebmeier, Jacqueline -
item Chernyak, Sergei -
item Sauer, John -

Submitted to: United States Fish and Wildlife Service
Publication Type: Monograph
Publication Acceptance Date: September 30, 2009
Publication Date: October 23, 2009
Citation: Kohl, S.G., Rice, C., Grebmeier, J.M., Chernyak, S.M., Sauer, J.C. 2009. Results of the fourth joint U.S.-Russian Bering and Chukchi Seas expedition (BERPAC). United States Fish and Wildlife Service. p. 293.

Interpretive Summary: This is a research report of findings that add to a long-running US/Russian cooperation dedicated to the evaluation of the health of the world’s oceans (primarily those separating our two countries). The program is administered by the International Office of the US Fish and Wildlife Service. This monograph is a compilation of the research findings from an oceanographic expedition in 1993 to the Bering and Chukchi Seas. Twenty-one separate research chapters make up this monograph with topics ranging from basic oceanographic and hydrochemical parameters including water mass structure, to biological parameters such as phytoplankton, zooplankton, bacterioplankton, benthic fauna and concluding with observations of pollutant levels and environmental impacts in these waters. A unique whale sighting was reported and a detailed examination of walrus stomach contents are discussed. Metal concentrations were surveyed and an evaluation of anthropogenic pollutants, PCBs, pesticides, Iodine 129, plutonium and tritium throughout the waters of these two seas were carried out. Deposition fluxes of the pesticides, chlorpyrifos and trifluralin, were modeled for the Chukchi Sea and determinations were made for the air water transfer process for hexachlorocyclohexane relative to their transfer processes in the 1988 expedition. Data were evaluated for the long term impacts of climate change on phytoplankton abundances. New information on the importance of biological processes affecting pollutant cycling in oceans was provided by looking at biogenic sedimentation and enhanced abundances of certain pollutant-tolerant bacteria.

Technical Abstract: It is important to monitor the status of arctic oceans especially in terms of the impact human activities are making on these sensitive ecosystems. This is a compilation of research findings from a joint US/Russian expedition to the Bering and Chukchi seas that focuses on the significance of long-term monitoring to establish baseline conditions and early indications of the possible man-induced alterations taking place in these regions. An ecological perspective was applied in interpreting the data as well as concern for early indication of global warming. Twenty-one separate research chapters make up this monograph with topics ranging from basic oceanographic and hydrochemical parameters including water mass structure, to biological parameters such as phytoplankton, zooplankton, bacterioplankton, and benthic fauna and concluding with observations of pollutant levels and their environmental impacts in these waters. A unique whale sighting was reported and a detailed examination of walrus stomach contents are discussed. Metal concentrations were surveyed and an evaluation of anthropogenic pollutants, PCBs, pesticides, Iodine 129, plutonium and tritium throughout the waters of these two seas were carried out. Deposition fluxes of the pesticides, chlorpyrifos and trifluralin, were modeled for the Chukchi Sea and determinations were made for the air water transfer process for hexachlorocyclohexane relative to their transfer processes in the 1988 expedition. Data were evaluated for the long term impacts of climate change on phytoplankton abundances. New information on the importance of biological processes affecting pollutant cycling in oceans was provided by looking at biogenic sedimentation and enhanced abundances of certain pollutant-tolerant bacteria.

Last Modified: 12/18/2014