Discovery Magazine

Pacific Marine Arctic Regional Synthesis of the Northern Bering, Chukchi and Beaufort Seas

Florida Tech will participate in the Pacific Marine Arctic Regional Synthesis (PacMARS) effort to develop a synthesis of Arctic science that focuses on the marine ecosystem in the greater Bering Strait region, including the northern Bering, Chukchi and Beaufort seas. The goals of the PacMARS research team and collaborators include the following: (1) identify and synthesize existing data sets that are critical for evaluating the current state of knowledge of this marine ecosystem, including human dimensions and (2) define the high-priority, overarching scientific themes and research needs for the next decade or more of marine ecosystem studies of the Pacific Arctic Region. This synthesis of Arctic science will contribute to NPRB’s overall mission to promote understanding of north Pacific ecosystems in order to further effective management and sustainable use of marine resources, from subsistence use to fisheries to industrial exploration and development. The research will be accomplished by bringing together multiple data sets and/or providing internet-based linkages to data sets while developing practical synthesis mechanisms. The data assembled and other synthesis products of Arctic science will be publicly available at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR)’s Earth Observing Laboratory (EOL; This data inventory and synthesis of Arctic science enables the second objective of the project, the development of forward science planning and identification of science needs for an integrated, multi-agency research and modeling effort in the Chukchi/Beaufort region that could be initiated in 2014.

The PacMARS team is led by Jacqueline Grebmeier and Lee Cooper, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES); John Trefry, Florida Institute of Technology (FIT); Bodil Bluhm, Steve Okkonen, and Gay Sheffield, University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF); James Moore, National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), Robert Campbell, University of Rhode Island (URI); Kenneth Dunton, University of Texas, Austin (UT); and Carin Ashjian, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI).