Union-wide
Side Events
Disciplinary Sessions
Inter- and Transdisciplinary Sessions

Session programme

ITS5

ITS – Inter- and Transdisciplinary Sessions

ITS5 – The Anthropocene

ITS5.1/SSP2.1/CL3.01/GM6.7/SSS13.32 Media

The Anthropocene is a topic of broad and current interest that is being discussed across various disciplines, within Earth Sciences, but also in the humanities and in the media. Its significance and usefulness as the youngest epoch of the Geological Time Scale is examined by the Working Group of the Anthropocene of the Subcommission on Quaternary Stratigraphy, part of the International Commission on Stratigraphy. A multidisciplinary and transdisciplinary approach for investigating and discussing the Anthropocene is feasible, including not only various Earth Sciences disciplines such as stratigraphy, sedimentology, geochemistry and palaeontology, but also archaeology, geography, geomorphology and various disciplines of the humanities and the arts. This session invites transdisciplinary and interdisciplinary contributions on the significance, usefulness and application of the term, as well as case studies including proposals on possible GSSPs (Global Boundary Stratotype Section and Point) for a definition of the Anthropocene as part of the Geological Time Scale. The session will foster transdisciplinary dialogue and interdisciplinary cooperation and understanding on the scale and reach of anthropogenic changes within the Earth System.

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Co-organized as SSP2.1/CL3.01/GM6.7/SSS13.32
Convener: Michael Wagreich | Co-conveners: Katrin Hornek, Kira Lappé, Colin N. Waters, Jan Zalasiewicz
Orals
| Wed, 10 Apr, 16:15–18:00
 
Room N1
Posters
| Attendance Wed, 10 Apr, 14:00–15:45
 
Hall X1
ITS5.2/OS4.13/EOS10.2/BG3.18/GM6.6/HS11.63 Media

Plastic contamination has been reported in all realms of the environment from the tropics to the polar oceans. The consequences of this contamination may be severe for ecosystems and could adversely affect ecosystem services such as fisheries and even human health. Our poor knowledge of plastics sources, their composition, sizes, pathways, hot spots of accumulation and ultimate fate prevents an assessment of environmental risks and the development of appropriate mitigation strategies. In order to understand current distributions of plastics and the way they evolve in space and time, much better observations and common consistent measuring methods are required but simultaneously, observations must be combined with computational models from their sources on land to rivers, estuaries, oceans and sea ice. This requires improved standardized accurate observations and the development of advanced modelling capabilities to quantify and predict contamination levels.

The session aims to set up a forum for multi-disciplinary discussions to create a global picture of plastic contamination in the environment and to suggest approaches for future research, monitoring and mitigation of plastic pollutions impacts. The session will provide a framework to advise legislators and industry on the best ways to reduce the risks of serious damage from this contaminant.

This session will draw together data on plastic contamination across all sizes of plastics, from nano- and micro-plastics to large plastic fragments, and across all environments and locations. It will combine observations with state-of-the-art computational modelling to promote the fast advance of research and improve our understanding of how plastic pollution affects environments worldwide. We invite contributions on new methods and field observations, laboratory experiments, novel modelling approaches, related scientific initiatives and projects. New ideas for citizen-science involvement and for mitigation strategies to reduce plastic contamination of the environment are especially welcome.

Invited speaker: Prof. Dr. Erik van Sebille

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Co-organized as OS4.13/EOS10.2/BG3.18/GM6.6/HS11.63
Convener: Jörg-Olaf Wolff | Co-conveners: Richard Lampitt, Simon Dixon, Jessica Hickie, Alice Horton, Ilka Peeken, Anna Rubio, Stefanie Rynders
Orals
| Mon, 08 Apr, 08:30–12:30
 
Room N1
Posters
| Attendance Mon, 08 Apr, 16:15–18:00
 
Hall X4
ITS5.4/GI2.7/AS4.43/BG1.39/ERE5.6/GMPV6.4/HS11.65/NH8.7/OS4.33/SSS8.7

The session gathers geoscientific aspects such as dynamics, reactions, and environmental/health consequences of radioactive materials that are massively released accidentally (e.g., Fukushima and Chernobyl nuclear power plant accidents, wide fires, etc.) and by other human activities (e.g., nuclear tests).

The radioactive materials are known as polluting materials that are hazardous for human society, but are also ideal markers in understanding dynamics and chemical/biological/electrical reactions chains in the environment. Thus, the radioactive contamination problem is multi-disciplinary. In fact this topic involves regional and global transport and local reactions of radioactive materials through atmosphere, soil and water system, ocean, and organic and ecosystem, and its relation with human and non-human biota. The topic also involves hazard prediction and nowcast technology.

By combining >30 year (halftime of Cesium 137) monitoring data after the Chernobyl Accident in 1986, >5 year dense measurement data by the most advanced instrumentation after the Fukushima Accident in 2011, and other events, we can improve our knowledgebase on the environmental behavior of radioactive materials and its environmental/biological impact. This should lead to improved monitoring systems in the future including emergency response systems, acute sampling/measurement methodology, and remediation schemes for any future nuclear accidents.

The following specific topics have traditionally been discussed:
(a) Atmospheric Science (emissions, transport, deposition, pollution);
(b) Hydrology (transport in surface and ground water system, soil-water interactions);
(c) Oceanology (transport, bio-system interaction);
(d) Soil System (transport, chemical interaction, transfer to organic system);
(e) Forestry;
(f) Natural Hazards (warning systems, health risk assessments, geophysical variability);
(g) Measurement Techniques (instrumentation, multipoint data measurements);
(h) Ecosystems (migration/decay of radionuclides).

The session consists of updated observations, new theoretical developments including simulations, and improved methods or tools which could improve observation and prediction capabilities during eventual future nuclear emergencies. New evaluations of existing tools, past nuclear contamination events and other data sets also welcome.

Public information:
The release of radioactive materials by human activity (such as nuclear accidents) are both severe hazard problem as well as ideal markers in understanding geoscience at all level of the Earth because it cycles through atmosphere, soil, plant, water system, ocean, and lives. Therefore, we must gather knowledge from all geoscience field for comprehensive understanding.

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Co-organized as GI2.7/AS4.43/BG1.39/ERE5.6/GMPV6.4/HS11.65/NH8.7/OS4.33/SSS8.7
Convener: Masatoshi Yamauchi | Co-conveners: Nikolaos Evangeliou, Yasunori Igarashi, Liudmila Kolmykova, Daisuke Tsumune
Orals
| Mon, 08 Apr, 14:00–15:45
 
Room N1
Posters
| Attendance Mon, 08 Apr, 16:15–18:00
 
Hall X1
ITS5.5/HS10.11/BG6.6/GM5.5

In recent years there has been a growing emergence of interdisciplinary research areas concerned with investigating the dynamic and multifaceted interactions between biotic and abiotic components of aquatic ecosystems. Such is the acknowledged importance of these interactions, that quantifying and understanding the two-way feedbacks of interacting abiotic and biotic components is recognised as a key contemporary research challenge. However, the different terminology used by various disciplines highlights the separation rather than the overlap between disciplines. Further, in many instances the creation of new sub-disciplines (or research areas) is not developing the study field, but arguably is leading to the ‘reinvention of the wheel’ in parallel disciplines. Changing the traditional perspectives by bridging the gaps between disciplines is therefore key to bring considerable advances in aquatic research.
This session focuses on bringing together scientists from different backgrounds dealing with the effects of environmental (both biotic and abiotic) stressors on the aquatic biosphere, from individual organisms through to whole ecosystems with the aim of simulating truly interdisciplinary research. Several temporal scales ranging from a single event (e.g. response to hydropeaking, predatory attacks) to long term evolution (e.g. adaptation to climate change, ecosystem modification) may be considered. We expect strong contributions from researchers transcending a variety of disciplines such as geomorphology, engineering, ecology and environmental sciences. Emphasis is given to studies dealing with stressors driven by climate change or anthropogenic activities. In this context we particularly welcome contributions on consolidated or novel measurement techniques and modelling tools to assess the effects of environmental stressors (e.g. flow modifications, habitat alterations) on biota, such as vegetation, macroinvertebrates and fish, that cross disciplinary boundaries.

The session will include an invited keynote by Prof. Markus Holzner from ETH Zürich.

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Co-organized as HS10.11/BG6.6/GM5.5
Convener: Davide Vettori | Co-conveners: Kate Mathers, Riccardo Fornaroli
Orals
| Wed, 10 Apr, 14:00–15:45
 
Room N1
Posters
| Attendance Wed, 10 Apr, 16:15–18:00
 
Hall A
ITS5.6/GM6.2/BG1.46/CL2.28/ERE8.8/GI1.9/NH9.28/SSS13.27

The originality of the session is to emphasize on the central position of human activities in environmental research (both terrestrial and atmospheric), as a driving factor and/or a response, by combining different spatio-temporal scales.
Continental environments (under various climatic conditions) experience profound societal and physical changes, which prompt scientists to investigate the complex interactions between environmental functioning and human activities.
The complexity originates from the multiplicity of factors involved and resulting spatial and temporal variabilities, of their multiple origins in time (historical integration) and/or legacy.
As a consequence, causal links in this societal-environmental relationship are difficult to establish but, it is fundamental to understand these causal links to adapt, conserve, protect, preserve and restore the functioning of the environment as well as human activities. From this point of view, the geographical approach highlights the relationships (or their absence) through the expression of the spatial and temporal trajectories of the processes studied by clarifying the observation of signals.
The ensuing issues on the relevance of indicators used in different supports of nowadays research (imagery, archives, models ...) are raised as a methodological open up.
In this context, oral and poster presentations dealing with any studies related to the following issue(s) are welcome:
- human forcing on the environments and environmental resilience
- response of socio-systems to environmental changes
- scenarios, prospective and retrospective models of the evolution of environments and human activities
- management modes (adaptive management) of anthropised continental environments, reciprocity, mutual benefits (ecosystem services), positive feedback

The session may include the following methodological aspects:
- in situ metrology,
- statistical and numerical modeling,
- spatio-temporal analysis,
- remote Sensing,
- surveys,
- landscape analysis,
- paleoenvironmental approach,
at various scales:
- spatial scales, from the station and site through watershed,
- time scales from the event to the Holocene.

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Co-organized as GM6.2/BG1.46/CL2.28/ERE8.8/GI1.9/NH9.28/SSS13.27
Convener: Armelle Decaulne | Co-conveners: Anne-Julia Rollet, Olivier Planchon, Thorsteinn Saemundsson, Etienne Cossart
Orals
| Wed, 10 Apr, 10:45–12:30
 
Room N1
Posters
| Attendance Wed, 10 Apr, 16:15–18:00
 
Hall X2