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 purpose of the study was an assessment of LiDAR point clouds for automating the mapping of land use and land cover changes, mainly land abandonment and the process of secondary forest succession. Detailed information about land cover was determined based on airborne laser scanning data. The presented study focuses on the analysis of the spatial range and structure of vegetation. The study area was located in Milicz district in the voivodeship of Lower Silesia – the central west part of Poland. The areas of interest were parcels where agricultural land had been abandoned and forest succession processes had progressed. Analysis of the spatial range of the secondary forest succession was carried out using a reclassified nDSM. Reclassification of the nDSM was done using > 1 m, > 2 m and > 3 m for the pixel values, representing the height of vegetation above the ground. Parameters such as height of vegetation, standard deviation of height and cover density were calculated, to show the process of the increase in forest succession on abandoned agricultural land. The results confirmed a discrepancy between the cadastral data and the actual use of the plots. In the study area, more than three times as much forested and wooded area was detected than had been recorded in official databases. Analyses based on airborne laser scanning point clouds indicated significant diversity in the vertical and horizontal structure of vegetation. The results demonstrated gradual succession of greenery in the research area.
Species composition and density of Gastrotricha in bottom sediments were studied, on an annual basis, in the littoral of the mesotrophic Lake Piaseczno (Łęczyńsko-Włodawskie Lakeland). The number of species from spring to autumn remained on the same level (from 24 in spring to 22 in autumn), but in winter in littoral of the lake there were recorded only 8 species. Species diversity expressed by the Shannon index, in spring, summer and autumn was high and amounted 2.86; 2.69 and 2.77 respectively. In winter the value of the index was significantly lower and amounted 1.80. In individual seasons the mean density of Gastrotricha valued from 50 103 indiv. m-2 during winter to 1238 103 indiv. m-2 in spring. The density of Gastrotricha in spring was more than 24 times higher than that winter. There were no significant differences in species diversity Gastrotricha from spring to autumn, although the peak abundance was recorded in the spring. It is necessary to add, that the density of Gastrotricha during the spring peak was one order of magnitude higher from that in summer and autumn. The similarity of the fauna found in winter to the fauna occurring in other seasons, is significantly low, ranging from 24 to 27%. Seasonal changes in amount and diversity of the gastrotrich fauna are probably the result of temperature changes and food availability.
The pinnipeds were counted on the western shore of Admiralty Bay during 1994. It was found that the numbers of one breeding species Mirounga leonina is stable, the remaining four species show a variable pattern of occurrence. However, there is no evidence to detect any trend since 1988.
Prof. Mirosław Kofta, a psychologist from the University of Warsaw’s Faculty of Psychology and Institute for Social Studies, discusses political change in Poland, authoritarian personality, and civil society.
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.
This paper is an attempt to explain the concept of emergence of spatial systems. It indicates basic features of this concept, such as: coevolution, selforganization, patterns, sudden changes, hierarchy. The emergence of complex systems is very fruitful approach to the theoretical reconstruction of the processes of space economy. It should be included in the discussion on evolutionary economics and geography. Recently, in both disciplines creative research is carried out on this subject matter.
Over the last 20 years, Polish society’s attitude towards people with disabilities has changed for the better. However, we still have not completely rid ourselves of prejudices, fears, and stereotypes.
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?
“We can see that all the recent predictions of a better future for the world are largely misguided. It is no longer certain even that the Cold War is definitively a thing of the past,” says Jerzy Szacki, a historian of ideas and sociologist, a professor emeritus of the University of Warsaw, and an ordinary member of the Polish Academy of Sciences.
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.
A 6 km long stretch of the coast of Calypsostranda between Skilvika and Josephbukta, situated on the western side of Recherchefjorden, was investigated. It is made of an accumulative marine terrace at a height of 2–8 m a.s.l. (terrace 1) and width of 40–180 m, divided by a cliffed section in the frontal moraines of Renardbreen. From the character and intensity of changes, the area was divided into 6 zones. The aim was to analyse the dynamics of changes within coastal zone from 1936 to 2007 and to characterise the influence of various morphogenetic factors (marine, fluvial, cryospheric). The important element of this study has been to determine sources and directions of sediment transport. The dynamics of changes of coastal zone in the Calypsostranda region was established from archival maps and precise GPS measurements for the periods: 1936–1960, 1960–1990, 1990–2000, 2000–2005, 2005–2006, 2006–2007. Comparing the extension of shoreline between 1936 and 2007 showed that there was more erosion than accumulation. Nearly 110 000 m 2 of the area of terrace 1 decreased, whereas about 77 000 m 2 appeared. The net balance for 1936–2007 was about −32 700 m 2 , on average over the whole length of the shoreline, it re − treated by 5.7 m (0.08 m a −1 ). The cease of sediment delivery in the extramarginal sandur fans area of Renardbreen caused intensification of marine processes, that made the shore − line retreat by over 100 m. Continuing sediment delivery from the Scottelva catchment, with contribution of material from erosion of the north end of the shoreline studies, caused the aggradation of coastal zone by over 60 m near its mouth.
The aim of this study was to investigate the possible use of geoinformatics tools and generally available geodata for mapping land cover/use on the reclaimed areas. The choice of subject was dictated by the growing number of such areas and the related problem of their restoration. Modern technology, including GIS, photogrammetry and remote sensing are relevant in assessing the reclamation effects and monitoring of changes taking place on such sites. The LULC classes mapping, supported with thorough knowledge of the operator, is useful tool for the proper reclamation process evaluation. The study was performed for two post-mine sites: reclaimed external spoil heap of the sulfur mine Machów and areas after exploitation of sulfur mine Jeziórko, which are located in the Tarnobrzeski district. The research materials consisted of aerial orthophotos, which were the basis of on-screen vectorization; LANDSAT satellite images, which were used in the pixel and object based classification; and the CORINE Land Cover database as a general reference to the global maps of land cover and land use.
Hørbyebreen surged in the 19th or early 20th century, as suggested by geomorphological evidences and looped medial moraines. In this study, we investigate its wide−spread geometry changes and geodetic mass balance with 1960 contour lines, 1990 and 2009 digital elevation models, in order to define the present−day state of the glacier. We also study its thermal structure from ground−penetrating radar data. Little is known about the glacier behaviour in the first part of the 20th century, but from its surge maximum until 1960 it has been retreating and losing its area. In the period 1960–1990, fast frontal thinning (2–3 m a −1 ) and a slow mass build−up in the higher zones (~0.15 m a −1 ) have been noted, resulting in generally negative mass balance (−0.40 ± 0.07 m w. eq. a −1 ). In the last studied period 1990–2009, the glacier showed an acceleration of mass loss (−0.64 m ± 0.07 w. eq. a −1 ) and no build−up was observed anymore. We conclude that Hørbyebreen system under present climate will not surge anymore and relate this behaviour to a considerable increase in summer temperature on Svalbard after 1990. Radar soundings indicate that the studied glacial system is polythermal, with temperate ice below 100–130 m depth. It has therefore not (or not yet) switched to cold−bedded, as has been suggested in previous works for some small Svalbard surge−type glaciers in a negative mass balance mode.
Time series of weekly and daily solutions for coordinates of permanent GNSS stations may indicate local deformations in Earth’s crust or local seasonal changes in the atmosphere and hydrosphere. The errors of the determined changes are relatively large, frequently at the level of the signal. Satellite radar interferometry and especially Persistent Scatterer Interferometry (PSI) is a method of a very high accuracy. Its weakness is a relative nature of measurements as well as accumulation of errors which may occur in the case of PSI processing of large areas. It is thus beneficial to confront the results of PSI measurements with those from other techniques, such as GNSS and precise levelling. PSI and GNSS results were jointly processed recreating the history of surface deformation of the area of Warsaw metropolitan with the use of radar images from Envisat and Cosmo- SkyMed satellites. GNSS data from Borowa Gora and Jozefoslaw observatories as well as from WAT1 and CBKA permanent GNSS stations were used to validate the obtained results. Observations from 2000–2015 were processed with the Bernese v.5.0 software. Relative height changes between the GNSS stations were determined from GNSS data and relative height changes between the persistent scatterers located on the objects with GNSS stations were determined from the interferometric results. The consistency of results of the two methods was 3 to 4 times better than the theoretical accuracy of each. The joint use of both methods allows to extract a very small height change below the level of measurement error.
The aim of this study was to assess the anisakid nematode distribution pattern in the fish collected from the South Shetland Islands . A total of 32 fish species were examined for the presence of nematodes in 1978, 1979, 1981 and 2007/2008. The fish were caught off the South Shetland Islands ( Elephant Island , Shishkov Island and in Admiralty Bay – King George Island ). Three genera of L3 larval nematodes were identified: Anisakis sp., Contracaecum spp. and Pseudoterranova decipiens. The infection level was higher on the shelf around the islands than in Admiralty Bay . This is explained by a higher abundance of the final hosts in the region. A comparison of the infection data from 1978/79 and 2007/2008 with data from 1994/96 (Palm et al. 1998, 2007) was done. The parameters of infection of Notothenia coriiceps and Lepidonotothen nudifrons by Pseudoterranova decipiens were decreasing within the 30 years period.
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.
Seasonal changes in the Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba Dana) autoproteolytic activity were followed throughout the year. Using the kinetic formula for the first order reaction, the initial reaction rate (y0), the rate after 5 minutes (y5) and the average reaction rate (yx) after 0, 5, 10, 15 and 20 min of incubation of mixed homogenate at 40° + 0.2°C were determined in each sample. Changes in the krill autoproteolytic activity over the year were found to follow a sinusoid with a maximum during the austral summer (January) and a minimum during the austral winter (July-August). The maximum initial reaction rate was about ten times the minimum initial rate, which is an evidence of a considerable seasonal variation in the krill autoproteolytic activity associated presumably with the krill feeding intensity.
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.
An autobiographical lecture at the Faculty of Social Sciences of The John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin, presents the genesis and evolution of my research projects in their tight connection with the ontology of development and educational achievements in science and school practice. It is an introspective and socio-historical insight into the emergence of ideas, the scope of my personal involvement in radical changes in pedagogy as science and practice from kindergarten to university professor. My works have been appreciated, among other things, by rewarding the third honorary doctorate honoris causa.