On the basis of selected mean monthly climatic elements from the 5-year period of whole-year expedition of the Polish Academy of Sciences to Spitsbergen climatic conditions in Hornsund are presented. Thermal seasons of year have been distinguished and the weather course in the annual cycle is discussed.
Height, frequency and spatial differentiation of atmospheric precipitation of the summer season for the period 1975-1982 are presented. Results of the respective investigations are compared with atmospheric precipitation in other areas of the western coast of Spitsbergen.
Air quality and climate change, as two crucial environmental emergencies confronting our societies, are still generally viewed as separate problems requiring different research and policy frameworks. However, they should rightfully be viewed as two sides of the same coin. What we truly need to seek, therefore, are “win-win” solutions.
The aim of this study was to provide an estimation of climate variability in the Hornsund area in Southern Spitsbergen in the period 1976-2100. The climatic variables were obtained from the Polar-CORDEX initiative in the form of time series of daily air temperature and precipitation derived from four global circulation models (GCMs) following representative concentration pathways (RCP) RCP 4.5 and RCP 8.5 emission scenarios. In the first stage of the analysis, simulations for the reference period from 1979 to 2005 were compared with observations at the Polish Polar Station Hornsund from the same period of time. In the second step, climatic projections were derived and monthly and annual means/sums were analysed as climatic indices. Following the standard methods of trend analysis, the changes of these indices over three time periods - the reference period 1976-2005, the near-future period 2021-2050, and far-future period 2071-2100 - were examined. The projections of air temperature were consistent. All analysed climate models simulated an increase of air temperature with time. Analyses of changes at a monthly scale indicated that the largest increases were estimated for winter months (more than 11°C for the far future using the RCP 8.5 scenario). The analyses of monthly and annual sums of precipitation also indicated increasing tendencies for changes with time, with the differences between mean monthly sums of precipitation for the near future and the reference period similar for each months. In the case of changes between far future and reference periods, the highest increases were projected for the winter months.
Climate atlases summarize large sets of quantitative and qualitative data and are results of complex analytical cartographic work. These special geographical publications summarize long term meteorological observations, provide maps and figures which characterise different climate elements. Visual information is supplemented with explanatory texts. A lot of information on short and long term changes of climate elements were provided in published Lithuanian atlases (Atlas of Lithuanian SDR, 1981; Climate Atlas of Lithuania, 2013), as well as in prepared but unpublished Lithuanian Atlas (1989) and in upcoming new national atlas publications (National Atlas of Lithuania. 1 st part, 2014). Climate atlases has to be constantly updated to be relevant and to describe current climate conditions. Comprehensive indicators of Lithuanian climate are provided in different cartographic publications. Different time periods, various data sets and diverse cartographic data analysis tools and visualisation methods were used in these different publications.
Prof. Tandong Yao and Prof. Fahu Chen describe our growing understanding of climate change impacts in the “Pan-Third Pole” region, discussing both coping strategies and research initiatives focusing on the region.
In 1979, Pope John Paul II spent just nine days in his home country, Poland. This historic pilgrimage lead to a ‘spiritual revolution’ that culminated in the peaceful collapse of the authoritarian regime in Poland, and eventually to the disintegration of the Soviet Union. Could leaders of the Christian churches today spark a similar ‘spiritual revolution’ to combat manmade climate change?
Despite many years of research, we have yet to discover all the myriad ways various components of the climate interact. For instance, it looks likely that the circulation of oceanic waters has a much broader impact than previously thought.
The article presents the biometeorological impact of thermal and humidity conditions on the human body in the Hornsund area in the southern Spitsbergen, Svalbard. This was determined based on diurnal air temperature range, the day-to-day variation in average diurnal air temperature and the average diurnal relative humidity. The temporal variability of thermal and humidity biometeorological stimuli in Hornsund was examined for the period 01.11.1978–31.12.2017. A lessening of biometeorological impact was found in the southern Spitsbergen region, including a statistically significant negative trend in strongly- and severely-felt stimuli (according to diurnal air temperature range), and in significant and severe stimuli (according to day-to-day variation in average diurnal air temperature). A non-significant positive trend was observed in the number of days of relative humidity with humid and very humid air. To analyse the spatial variability of the stimuli around the Hornsund fjord, data were used from seven year-round measuring stations for the period 01.07.2014–31.06.2015. The most unfavourable conditions were found on the Hans Glacier, on the summit of Fugleberget and inside the fjord. The paper presents the role of atmospheric circulation on thermal and humidity stimuli. In the Hornsund region, the highest probability of unfavourable sensible temperatures for humans occurring during the year was mostly in winter and early spring. This was related to the advection of air masses from the north-east sector, regardless of baric regime type. It was found that very humid air (> 85%) flowed over Hornsund for practically the entire year from the S–SW as part of both cyclonic and anti-cyclonic systems.
The comparison of the years 1981/82 and 1984/85 on the background of long term climatic observations on Svalbard suggest that two seasons compared belong to extremely different ones with regard to the sea ice, air temperature and biological phenomena. Despite meteorological and hydrological differences, the phytoplankton bloom and breeding period of major crustaceans were placed in the same time of the year. Differences were noted in the structure of zooplankton community, abundance of sea birds and mammals.
Spatial differentiation of temperature and relative humidity of air on western coast of Spitsbergen in 1979—1983 is presented. Applying the author's classification of types of atmospheric circulation in the studied area, its influence on distribution of these elements is shown. Air temperature in the area is related more to the degree of climate continentality than to its latitude. The lowest mean 5—year temperatures were calculated for stations with highest degrees of thermic continentality (Svea Gruber and Svalbard Lufthavn). The highest thermic differentiation occurs from November to March (1 —4°C) and the lowest in May—June and August—October (0.0— 1.5°C). It is opposite if relative humidity is concerned: the highest differences occur in summer (10—15%) and the lowest in winter (0—9%). Influence of atmospheric circulation on air temperature is larger during a polar night than a polar day. Again, it is opposite in the case of relative humidity. In both analyzed seasons the highest thermic differentiation occurred at the circulation type Ca. However, it was the lowest during a polar night at advection of air from northern and southern sectors, and during a polar day at advection from a northern sector and at the type Cc.
Arctic glaciers respond quickly to climatic conditions, which is why they play a special role as climate warming indicators. Studying them in the long term is the key to understanding future global environmental changes.
The pace of climate change observed since the beginning of the industrial era has prompted scientists to seriously consider whether human activity is to blame for global warming. On the geological timescale, however, climate change is certainly nothing new or exceptional – as is clear when one looks at the record of plant and animal fossils.
When a certain Buddhist monk was once setting out on a long, difficult journey, he chose as his traveling companion a servant who was known for having a rebellious and quarrelsome nature. When asked why, he replied that he wanted to practice patience and humility. One might say that the three years when I headed the international CHIHE project were a similar lesson in virtues.
Lacustrine deposits from Ortel Królewski II (Eastern Poland) represent the Holsteinian Interglacial (MIS 11c). They are characterized by an extremely rich occurrence of ostracod and mollusc fauna. Collected samples represent pre-optimal part of the Holsteinian Interglacial corresponding to Picea–Alnus, Taxus and Pinus–Larix zones. Based on ostracod assemblage analysis a depth of the paleolake, the energy of the environment and the average January and July air temperature were reconstructed. Ostracods from Ortel Królewski II indicate a lake with possible periodic overflow sur- rounded by periodically flooded grasslands, which existed in the study area during the pre-optimal part of Holsteinian Interglacial.
The purpose of this article is to present contemporary climatic changes in their actual scale, and to assess their impact on functioning of urban areas situated on the Polish coast. The results of the analysis of variability of hydro-climatic conditions that occurred in the last 65 years (1951-2015) in the area of the Polish coast suggest that important changes were concerning: (1) temperature of the air, and thickness and length of the occurrence of the snow cover, (2) sea surface temperature, and thickness and length of the occurrence of ice cover, (3) sea level rise during storm surges. It was found, however, that the occurrence of catastrophic fl oods from precipitation in the Tri-City area is not the result of climate change, but it is caused by local conditions. The observed increase of air temperatures, and average sea surface temperatures in the Southern Baltic has generally a positive impact on functioning of coastal cities, and does not need any complex adaptation plans to climate changes. Summer is the only period in which the increase of temperature infl uence cities negatively, due to strengthening the urban heat islands. In this case, the architectural solutions, that require large amounts of energy should be eliminated. In urban planning scale, the solutions helping to cool the space in between buildings should be implemented. Sea level rise in the years 2009-2015, caused by storm surges, should be regarded as a signifi cant change in the climate of the Southern Baltic Sea. Taking these changes into account maps of hazard and flood risk, developed in an ISOK project, should be the basis for detailed records in Study of Conditions and Directions of Spatial Development and local development plans of cities, determining the rules and restrictions of the investment and management in the areas at risk of flooding.
The article discusses changes in Polish regulations concerning assessment of the climate hazard in underground mines. Currently, the main empirical index representing the heat strain, used in qualification of the workplace to one of the climate hazard levels in Poland is the equivalent climate temperature. This simple heat index allows easy and quick assessment of the climate hazard. To a major extent, simple heat indices have simplifications and are developed for a specific working environments. Currently, the best methods used in evaluation of microclimate conditions in the workplace are those based on the theory of human thermal balance, where the physiological parameters characterising heat strain are body water loss and internal core temperature of the human body. The article describes the results of research on usage of equivalent climate temperature to heat strain evaluation in underground mining excavations. For this purpose, the numerical model of heat exchange between man and his environment was used, taken from PN-EN ISO 7933:2005. The research discussed in this paper has been carried out considering working conditions and clothing insulation in use in underground mines. The analyses performed in the study allowed formulation of conclusions concerning application of the equivalent climate temperature as a criterion of assessment of climate hazards in underground mines.
Climate change has been affecting plants over the last century and caused changes in life history features such as the flowering time. Herbarium specimens provide a snapshot of the past environmental conditions during their collection. The collection date in a herbarium specimen is a good proxy to determine the flowering period (phenology). In this study, phenological data from subarctic plant specimens collected over 100 years were gathered by using one of the largest herbarium databases in the World. The collection dates of 7146 herbarium specimens were analyzed and significant shifts in the phenology of subarctic plants were detected. In this study, most of the analyzed 142 species in a subarctic biogeographic region tended to flower earlier in the 1950–2018 period compared to the 1900–1949 as a possible result of the climate change. Flowering time shifted from 8 to 26 days in some species. Changes in flowering time may alter species interactions, community composition, and species distribution in a region. Therefore, results of this study may shed light on the possible shifts in phenology and plant responses under the climate change.
This paper presents the first results of measurements of global solar radiation, albedo, ground surface and 2−m air temperature, relative humidity, and wind speed and direction carried out in the central part of Spitsbergen Island in the period 2008–2010. The study site was located on the coastal ice−free zone of Petuniabukta (north−western branch of Billefjorden), which was strongly affected by local topography, character of the ground surface, and sea ice extent. Temporal analysis of the selected meteorological parameters shows both strong seasonal and inter−diurnal variation affected by synoptic−scale weather systems, channelling and drainage effects of the fjords and surrounding glaciers. The prevailing pattern of atmospheric circulation primarily determined the variation in global solar radiation, wind speed, ground surface and 2−m air temperatures. Furthermore, it was found that thermal differences between Petuniabukta and the nearest meteorological station (Svalbard Lufthavn) differ significantly due to differences in sea ice concentrations and ice types in the fjords during the winter and spring months.