Report | German-Russian training course in the regional observatory TERENO North-East

Particpants at Schmarsow Castle (photo: courtesy of A. Cheshev, Vernadsky Foundation).
Participants in the field (photo: courtesy of A. Cheshev, Vernadsky Foundation).
Participants in the field (photo: courtesy of A. Cheshev, Vernadsky Foundation).

What effects does global climate change have on regions and landscapes in Germany? The network of terrestrial environmental observatories TERENO tries to find answers to this question. From 26 to 31 August, the GFZ International Office organized a summer school on this topic for 20 young scientists from Germany and Russia in the heart of the Observatory Northeastern German Lowland (TERENO North-East), coordinated by the GFZ, in the testfield Demmin in Mecklenburg-West Pomerania.

At Schmarsow Castle, a manor built at the end of the 17th century, the participants were trained in modern monitoring technologies for recording long-term ecological effects of global climate change as well as regional effects.

The focus of the training course, jointly hosted by GFZ, University of Potsdam, and the Potsdam section of AWI Alfred Wegener Institute, was on field studies and the evaluation and modelling of ground-based measurements as well as remote sensing data. An entire day was e.g. devoted to the operational use of drones and drone-based data processing.

In addition to the scientific and technological activities all participants praised the intercultural exchange. Further, the summer school will result in future, bilateral cooperation between German and Russian scientists – there is, for example, a joint activity planned in the Lena Delta Region on the topic of permafrost and vegetation change.

This training course was already the second one based on a Memorandum of Understanding between the Helmholtz Association and the Russian Vernadsky Foundation to enable joint research activities. The first one took place in 2016 in Sotchi, Russia. The closing event of this year’s summer school was given at the Russian House of Culture and Science in Berlin. (ak)

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