NAPA funding and Havsutsikt
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NAPA funding and Havsutsikt

A lot of activities going on related to the Ikka project in Greenland including grants, media attention and popular science publications. Fantastic!


First of all a sincere and humble thank you to the Nordic Institute in Greenland (NAPA) for granting us support to a multitude of new projects related to the Ikaite columns in Ikka Fjord, SW Greenland. This is fantastic news for us as the project would otherwise have come to an end. In the coming months effort will be put into creating an open access database at Aarhus University hosting a multitude of data from the 27 years of research in Ikka Fjord and surroundings. This database will contain both research data as well as photos and video material. From this material we hope to create a baseline for the biological life that existed on the columns in 1995-97 and compare it to life coverage and biodiversity on the columns today. My two main co-workers are biologist Susse Wegeberg from Aarhus University in Denmark and biologist Lina Rasmusson from University of Gothenburg in Sweden. In addition, several collaborators in Greenland and the Nordic region will aid on the many subprojects. Besides creating the database and a bio-baseline, the new NAPA project aims at helping the local community of Arsuk in highlighting and advertising the beauty and rareties of the nature and history of the area of Ikka Fjord – Grønnedal – Arsuk Fjord. Three researchers (Bengt Liljebladh, Paul Seaman and Gabrielle Stockmann) will go back to Ikka Fjord this summer to supplement seawater measurements and finish profiles of Ikka Fjord with local help from Arsuk and hopefully the Joint Arctic Command (JACO). Ten dataloggers were deployed in Ikka Fjord last summer, but due to extremely bad weather, the divers couldn’t retrieve more than five dataloggers, and therefore five dataloggers still remain in the seawater. With the help of Danish Navy divers from JACO, the goal is to retrieve these five dataloggers and thereby get seawater temperatures from a whole year of measurements in Ikka Fjord. Oceanographer Bengt Liljebladh will bring the Idronaut CTD probe like last year to measure conductivity, temperature, depth, pH, Eh, oxygen and fluorescence. All of these parameters are valuable when evaluating the conditions for biological life in the fjord and on the columns. Paul Seaman will bring a VR camera, which can be lowered from the sea surface and film 360° among the columns. This will aid the biologists in their work on estimating life coverage and biodiversity in their initial studies. The long-term goal is to have a biological expedition going there in the future for more thorough on-site studies. Other subprojects planned for 2022-23 include experiments at University of Gothenburg on CO2 sequestration and seawater warming effects on Ikaite column stability and mineralogy.


Secondly, a new popular science article about the Ikaite columns by Bengt Liljebladh and marine geologist Richard Gyllencreutz from Stockholm University has just been published in the Swedish journal ‘Havsutsikt. A very nice story, well written and beautiful photos from the two professional divers and underwater photographers, Uli Kunz and Florian Huber, who joined us on the expedition to Ikka Fjord last summer. Congrats to all!

—- Featured image at the top is taken by Uli Kunz, SUBMARIS.

Photo: Uli Kunz, SUBMARIS. The 2021 Ikka expedition at the Íka hut with Jonathan Rasmussen, Uli Kunz, Erik Sturkell, Florian Huber and Gabrielle Stockmann in the back row, and Bengt Liljebladh, Richard Gyllencreutz, Paul Seaman, and Kunuk Albrechtsen in the front row.