Denmark recently hosted an annual meeting of INTERACT, the international Arctic change monitoring program. The program brings together more than 80 Arctic and high altitude research stations in Northern Europe, the USA, Canada, Greenland, Scotland, and Russia, including three TSU bases open to all project participants. In 2020, scientific working groups will conduct a wide range of studies, from clarifying the characteristics of permafrost and fire melting in boreal forests to studying the effects of heatwaves on DNA and the endurance of Arctic bumblebees.
Applicants for research for 2020 were identified by expert selection. Researchers from France, Britain, Germany, Poland, Belgium, and other countries will work at the scientific bases of Tomsk State University. Among the teams, there are those who, having received good results, will return to the TSU bases for the second time. For example, scientists from the University of Adam Mickiewicz (Poland) previously conducted work in the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug at the stations Khanymey and Mukhrino (included in the TSU SecNet network). They investigated peat deposits to reconstruct the picture of hydroclimatic changes in permafrost and boreal peatlands associated with global warming over the past 1,000 years.
In 2020, scientists from Poland plan to view peatlands as an archive of past fires. Using the paleoecological method, researchers will analyze the reaction of peatlands to climate change in the Holocene (the recent millennia).
Scientists from Belgium who study the northern species of bumblebees as an indicator of climate change will also work at the TSU station. In 2017, at Khanymey, they received interesting data on how heat and cold stress affect pollinating insects. In 2020, they intend to conduct similar studies at the Aktru station.
In addition, several other research groups received a positive opinion from the experts and will conduct their research with the support of TSU. Scientists from the Czech Republic expect to obtain new data on the Tardigarda, microscopic invertebrates, which are also called water bears, on their expedition to Aktru. These animals can live in severe conditions, including on glaciers, and be in a state of suspended animation for up to several hundred years.