Assess atmospheric transport trajectories and variation in the wet deposition of mercury across Alaska: Analyze Alaskan NADP-MDN data

Funding Opportunity Number: NPS-DOIP15AC01036
Opportunity Category: Discretionary
Funding Instrument Type: Cooperative Agreement
Category of Funding Activity: Environment
CFDA Number: 15.945
Eligible Applicants Public and State controlled institutions of higher education
Agency Name: DOI-NPS
Closing Date: Oct 01, 2015
Award Ceiling: $100,000
Expected Number of Awards: 1
Creation Date: Sep 02, 2015
Funding Opportunity Description: Project Description Mercury is a toxic, bioaccumulating, biomagnifying pollutant that threatens ecosystems throughout the United States and has been detected at unexpectedly high levels in remote Alaskan sites far from sources. Information on mercury’s transport trajectories and wet depositions patterns in Alaska is poorly understood. Mercury accumulation is an issue that transcends jurisdictional boundaries, is particularly impactful to aquatic and wetland ecosystem, and is thus highly relevant to land managers across that state and members of the public that have ties to fish resources. This effort will improve the state of knowledge about mercury deposition patterns across Alaska and inform state-wide mercury deposition monitoring plans. For the past several years, mercury wet deposition samples and analyte data have been collected at 5 sites in Alaska, but the data has not been analyzed, mined for relevant information, or reported on to the public or agencies tasked with managing aquatic resources. During this effort mercury deposition data will be analyzed by a collaborative team from the National Park Service (NPS) and the Desert Research Institute (DRI). A set of the highest mercury deposition event will be selected and backcast trajectories created using NOAA’s HYSPLIT atmospheric transport model. This will reveal the atmospheric conditions associated with significant deposition events and show where the gaseous mercury originated. A few of the lowest mercury deposition will also be assessed to reveal atmospheric conditions associated with clean conditions. Jointly produced story maps, displaying the story behind mercury deposition events in an easily to digest form, will be produced along with an NPS Natural Resources Report and a NPS-DRI co-authored peer reviewed journal manuscript. This investigation is also being conducted in partnership with the State of Alaska Department of Conservation which is provided some of the NADP mercury data. It address an important issue that has high relevancy beyond the boundaries of national parks and will help inform an important subsistence and recreational resources management issue across jurisdictional boundaries. ARTICLE II – LEGAL AUTHORITY 54 USC§100703 Cooperative study units The Secretary shall enter into cooperative agreements with colleges and universities, including land grant schools, in partnership with other Federal and State agencies, to establish cooperative study units to conduct multi-disciplinary research and develop integrated information products on the resources of the System, or the larger region of which System units are a part.



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