are based to a large extent on information and results from
recent (largely unpublished) monitoring and research work.
Data from such activities are compiled together with routine
monitoring data within AMAP Thematic Data Centres (TDCs).
Data are made available from the TDCs to scientists engaged
in AMAP assessments under strict conditions that protect
the rights of data originators. These conditions are described
in AMAP's Data Policy documentation. Consideration
of quality assurance issues is an integral component of
the AMAP monitoring and assessment process.
AMAP Thematic Data Centres have been established
to meet the following objectives:
- to provide access to data from recent monitoring
and research activities conducted as part of the AMAP
National Implementation Plans (NIPs);
- to provide a means to ensure that data
are treated in a consistent manner, undergo uniform statistical
analysis, etc., including application of objective quality
- to begin the process of establishing a
long-term archive of Arctic-relevant monitoring data,
for use in future assessments of, e.g. temporal trends,
- to meet the terms of reference of the Ministerial
declarations, charging AMAP with establishing databases
of sources, types, and levels of radionuclide contamination
of the atmospheric, aquatic and terrestrial environments
of the Arctic and northern areas.
To date, six TDCs have been established, for:
- atmospheric contaminants data: at the Norwegian Institute for Air Research (NILU),
- marine contaminants data: at the International
Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES), Copenhagen,
Denmark - ICES Environmental Data Centre.
- freshwater and terrestrial contaminants data: at the University of Alaska - Fairbanks (UAF), Fairbanks, USA - UAF Syncon Database.
- radioactivity data, including both sources and levels and trends: at the Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority (NRPA), Oslo, Norway.
- human health data: at the National Institute
of Public Health (NIPH), Copenhagen, Denmark.
AMAP TDCs are located at established
centres with appropriate expertise and facilities for conducting
the types of international data handling work required by
AMAP. Some of these centres also conduct data handling work
for other international monitoring programs, facilitating
harmonized reporting of data to meet the needs of different