Graduate Advisor: Bob Bolton
Graduate Project Description:
Title: Assessing the Impact of Seismic Surveys on Tundra Health in the 1002 region of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR)
The first step of oil and gas development is to identify areas that have potential for large reserves. In order to do this, the industry conducts surveys using heavy machinery to detect underground seismic signals. More than half of the geographic footprint of industry on the North Slope of Alaska are paths caused by these surveys, which can lead to altered vegetation and the thawing of permafrost. Using a combination of in-situ, drone, and satellite observations, we intend to assess the impact these seismic surveys have on tundra based on vegetation type, soil type, snow characteristics, and other features. By doing this, we can produce risk assessment maps of the 1002 region to minimize tundra disturbance in the case that leasing for oil and gas development if Arctic National Wildlife Refuge continues.