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AMC is currently engaged in a multi-year research study, funded by the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), to understand the impact of climate change and air pollution on higher elevation and alpine ecosystems.  This collaborative project integrates long-term data sets and research strengths of the AMC, Mt. Washington Observatory and Plymouth State University.

Early goals of this three-year project are to: 
  • tabulate the long-term mountain climate and air pollution records from NH's Presidential Range collected by the AMC and MWO and analyze the former using biologically relevant indices;

  • expand on-mountain monitoring along the MWO Auto Road transect and establish new biologically relevant climate measurements such as cloud ceiling height;

  • use satellite images to investigate relationships between snow cover and alpine plant distribution; and

  • relate "Citizen Scientist" monitoring of alpine and forest flower phenology to the climatic record.

This initial research has resulted in two peer-reviewed scientific papers, which have been accepted for publication in the journals Atmospheric Environment and Arctic, Antarctic and Alpine Research.* 

Read more about initial findings in "Northeastern Alpine Ecosystems – Survivors or Victims of Climate Change" by AMC Research Director Dr. Kenneth Kimball

*[1] Murray, Kimball, et al. (2009). A 16-year comparison of fine particle and aerosol strong acidity at the interface zone (1,540 m) and within (452 m) the planetary boundary layer of the Great Gulf and Presidential-Dry River Class I Wildernesses on the Presidential Range, New Hampshire USA.  Atmospheric Environment

[2] Seidel, Kimball, et al. (2009). Evidence of climate change declines with elevation based on temperature and snow records from 1930s to 2006 on Mount Washington, New Hampshire, USA. Arctic, Antarctic and Alpine Research

Contact
Dr. Kenneth D. Kimball, Director of Research
Appalachian Mountain Club
PO Box 298, Gorham, NH 03581
603-466-2721 x8149
kkimball@outdoors.org