Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Luleå University of Technology launches research project to rescue Barents environment


Thanks to SEK 7 million in funding from the EU and other financiers, Luleå University of Technology in Sweden is now able to launch an urgent research project for the future of the Barents region. The overarching goal is to gather the knowledge and competence needed to solve and prevent looming environmental problems in the area.

The project will be carried out in cooperation between universities and companies in Sweden, Norway, Finland, and Russia and is a step in Luleå University of Technology’s long-term commitment to Barents collaboration.

At its June meeting, the Steering Committee for the EU Interreg KolArctic Program supported an application from Luleå University of Technology for the project “Development of an Environmental Platform for the North Cape and Northwestern Russia.” The North Bothnian County Council (in northernmost Sweden), the Swedish Institute, and the County Council of Finnish Lapland are also contributing to the funding. The project, slated to cover three years, is based on cooperation among universities and university colleges, research institutes, and companies in Finland, Norway, and Russia.

The entire Barents region, and especially northwestern Russia, is an area that is extremely rich in natural resources, but the ecosystem is also vulnerable. If exploitation of resources in northern Russia continues at the same rate as in the past, there will be no hope of sustainable development. At stake is the environment, and the health and living standards of inhabitants.

Today knowledge about environmental issues is available piecemeal on each side of the borders in the Barents region, but much remains to be done in terms of sharing this information. Several research projects aiming to ameliorate the situation have been carried out and are still under way, but what is needed is the broad view, and only a few of the projects have ties with any of the others.

“This is why a survey of ongoing and recently completed environmental projects in the Barents region is a vital first step in establishing a platform for knowledge about environmental issues,” says project leader Walter Ruth, Department of Human Work Sciences at Luleå University of Technology.

The platform will be a tool for strengthening cooperation across borders and for information on relevant research projects. This in turn can prompt new research and development projects and provide services to companies, industries, and authorities to solve environmental problems in the Barents region. Information will also be available to future investors and companies interested in doing business with northwestern Russia.

Besides setting up a broad network of experts across borders, the platform will also lead to shorter communication routes between researchers, companies, and authorities in the form of consultation on research, feasibility studies, and services needed by these companies and authorities.

When the project period is concluded, the network of experts, a new type of interactive database providing access to knowledge bridges between projects touching upon each other, and the services developed for companies, organizations, and authorities will all continue to function. Knowledge about ongoing and concluded projects will disclose gaps that will necessitate new priorities in further research efforts within the framework of the research program created by the project.

“This opens up opportunities for new projects that can involve many more scientists than those directly tied to the platform project. All told, the project can take on strategic environmental dimensions by making key information accessible for solving environmental problems in the Barents region,” says Walter Ruth.

Collaboration in the project involves Sweden’s Luleå University of Technology and Uleåborg University and Rovaniemi Polytechnic in Finland. Russian partners in the project are Arkhangelsk State University of Technology and Murmansk State University of Technology, along with Kola Science Center Apatity.

The Swedish environmental technology company Scandinavian Ecotech AB (SEAB) in Överorneå, with market interests in Finland and Russia, is taking part in the project, as is the company Enviro Data in Luleå, which specializes in solutions for expertise management via the Internet. Two Finnish companies from Uleåborg, PSV-Maa ja Vesi Oy and Projektikonsultit Infra Oy, are also onboard.

The intention is to activate more Swedish and Finnish, as well as Norwegian and Russian, companies in the project. Norwegian research associates will join the project starting next year in the form of Akvaplan-niva (APN) at the Polar Environment Center, Tromsö, which will coordinate further Norwegian collaboration with Narvik University College, Narvik, and Svanhovd Environmental Center, Svanvik. Besides the above-mentioned partners, the project will be supported by a number of other institutions in Sweden, Finland, and Russia.

Luleå University of Technology in Sweden has cooperated with the Barents region for many years in the form of student exchange and graduate courses. Fifteen Russian students recently completed their studies at Luleå, taking their master’s degrees in engineering and economics respectively. A new cooperative agreement was concluded in May for further exchange of students, teachers, and researchers.

Yet another example of cooperation with Russia is the fact that Ingegerd Palmér, rector of Luleå University of Technology, was recently awarded an honorary doctorate at one of the universities in Arkhangelsk.

Lena Edenbrink | alfa
Further information:

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Invasive Insects Cost the World Billions Per Year
04.10.2016 | University of Adelaide

nachricht Malaysia's unique freshwater mussels in danger
27.09.2016 | The University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Etching Microstructures with Lasers

Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.

This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...

Im Focus: Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion

Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

How nanoscience will improve our health and lives in the coming years

27.10.2016 | Materials Sciences

OU-led team discovers rare, newborn tri-star system using ALMA

27.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

'Neighbor maps' reveal the genome's 3-D shape

27.10.2016 | Life Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>