Long-Term Ecosystem Research in Norway (LTER-Norway) is part of the wider LTER-Europe (eLTER) which was included on ESFRI’s (the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures) Roadmap in 2018. Supported by 27 European countries, with their wide-ranging national scientific communities representing more than 165 research organizations, eLTER is a unique research platform to better understand the structure and function of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, and their long-term response to changes in environmental, societal, and economic drivers. The inclusion on the ESFRI roadmap opened for further development of eLTER towards a formalized research infrastructure (eLTER RI) through two preparatory H2020 projects, eLTER PLUS and eLTER PPP, that were launched in 2020.
The Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA) participate in eLTER PPP as national contact point for LTER-Norway. This provides an opportunity for Norway to become member of the eLTER RI legal entity, which intends to become an ERIC (European Research Infrastructure Consortium) after 2025. Being an eLTER RI member will strengthen Norway’s role in European ecosystem research, as well as increase our opportunity to be engaged in large and integrated EU research and innovation projects. It will also facilitate data sharing among the Norwegian partner institutions and thereby increase our collaboration.
The Norwegian LTER sites will expand the geographic extent of eLTER RI towards northern latitudes, where ecosystems are highly exposed to- and sensitive to climate change. It will enable researchers in Norway and in other European countries to identify drivers of ecosystem change across environmental, societal, and economic gradients – and explore relations between drivers, impacts, and developmental challenges. Based on this knowledge we will be in a better position to provide science-based recommendations for solving current and future environmental challenges.
The Coordination and Support Action LTER-Norway-PPP, funded by RCN, has enabled the Norwegian LTER consortium to pursue our efforts to prepare the ground for Norway joining the eLTER RI when it becomes a legal entity after 2026. This includes (i) adaptation of the Norwegian LTER site network to comply with eLTER RI technical specifications for standard observations and site categories, (ii) engaging governmental institutions and funding agencies to attain political support and inclusion of LTER-Norway on the national RI roadmap, and (iii) keeping contact with relevant RIs, bodies under international conventions, and other scientific networks.
Long-Term Ecosystem Research in Norway (LTER-Norway) is part of the wider LTER-Europe (eLTER) which was accepted onto the ESFRI (the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures) Roadmap in 2018. Supported by 27 European countries with their wide-ranging national scientific communities representing more than 165 research organizations, eLTER is an essential component of world-wide efforts to better understand the structure and function of terrestrial, freshwater and transitional water ecosystems, and their long-term response to environmental, societal and economic drivers. The inclusion on the ESFRI roadmap opened for further development of eLTER research infrastructure (RI) through two preparatory H2020 projects, eLTER PLUS and eLTER PPP, that was launched in 2020. By being the national contact point (NCP) for LTER-Norway, Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA) takes part in eLTER PPP, although with a limited funding (22.5 k€ over 5 years) from the European Commission. In order to support preparation and clarification of potential LTER-Norway participation in the further implementation of eLTER RI there is a need for a considerable effort in the national LTER network, which will require resources both from internal and external sources. Being part of eLTER RI will, however, imply large benefits for the Norwegian LTER partner institutions and LTER-Norway as a whole, by giving access to a large and highly recognized European community of ecosystem research.