SOLO – Sisimiut Oplands Lavinefare Oversigt

SOLO – Sisimiut Oplands Lavinefare Oversigt

Research leader: Marco Marcer, PostDoc, Arctic DTU – Ilinniarfeqarfik Sisimiut
Others involved: Qeqqata Kommunia, Qamuteralaat – Sisimiut Snescooterforening and ALPsolut

Keywords: snow, avalanche, Greenland, natural hazards

Research area, purpose and research questions:
Snow avalanches are a major hazard in mountain areas and avalanche forecast services are an effective tool
adopted by most countries to face this issue. Such service is not yet operative in Greenland despite winter activities
are popular and avalanche accidents occurred in the past. To tackle this issue, Ilinniarfeqarfik Sisimiut (Arctic DTU)
and local stakeholders designed the project SOLO (Sisimiuts Oplands Lavinefare Oversigt), a pilot for the
development of an avalanche warning service in Sisimiut. The project will, (i) develop a database of avalanche
occurrences, (ii) map avalanche terrain in the Sisimiut area and (iii) systematically acquire information on
avalanche conditions.

The avalanche knowledge of the local community will be gathered in a digital database. We
will use this database to analyze terrain and weather patterns that cause avalanche occurrences, creating a map of
avalanche hazard and obtaining basic knowledge for avalanche warning.

Arctic DTU will study snow evolution during the winter season 2021-2022 in collaboration with an avalanche expert and a local field assistant in order to
ensure knowledge transfer. Thanks to SOLO, we will provide valuable avalanche-oriented knowledge in Greenland,
towards the creation of a permanent avalanche forecast service.

Methods of inclusion of society and dissemination to society:
We aim to hire permanent Sisimiut resident as field assistant and social media manger during the snow season
2021-2022. Considering that the municipality is open to future developments of project SOLO, our goal is that this
person will be able to lead the avalanche warning system by the end of the project.

We aim to communicate our observations periodically through a dedicated facebook page, allowing the public to interact with feedback and observations. By the end of the project, we will summarize our observations and lessons
learned through a public seminar.

Project start and completion date: 01/11/2021 – 31/10/2022

Granted: 97.893,00 kr.

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