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      Biosphere Reserve Information



Photo: Mikael Krekula
  General Description   Situated about 200 km north of the Arctic Circle in north-west Sweden, this biosphere reserve comprises mixed terrestrial ecosystems (sub-arctic mountain birch, alpine and sub-alpine heaths, meadows, mires, bare rock communities) surrounding the nutrient poor Lake Torne.
The biosphere reserve is only sparsely inhabited (25 to 200 people depending on the season, 1999). Tourism provides main income opportunities in the region, which is otherwise also used for hunting, fishing and livestock raising. Meetings among representatives from the tourist sector and Saami villages aim at managing tourism in areas of cultural importance for Saami people.
The research and education infrastructure in the biosphere reserve is well developed and comprises the well-equipped Abisko Scientific Research Station with a large number of permanent and visiting scientists. Public education programmes, exhibitions, and guided tours are also offered. Activities in the biosphere reserve have been reinforced recently with the establishment of a new MAB office in Abisko. A project, financed by the Swedish Research Council (FRN), seeks to provide a framework for the development of scientific understanding and management tools for the ecological and economic sustainable use of the natural resources of the Lake Torne Area Biosphere Reserve. The extent and spatial distribution of natural resources in the area are currently identified. A database and a Geographical Information System (GIS) are under development as a management tool for storing, processing and presenting information.
  Major ecosystem type   Tundra communities and barren arctic deserts
  Major habitats & land cover types   Lowlands to mountains; subarctic mountain birch (Betula spp.) forest; alpine and subalpine heaths represented by heather (Calluna sp.) and bilberry (Vaccinium spp.), meadows and mires with Salix spp.; bare rock communities; nutrient poor lake
  Location   6825'N; 1900'E
  Area (hectares)    
  Total   96,500
  Core area(s)   11,050
  Buffer zone(s)   25,000 (Lake Torne)
  Transition area(s) when given   60,400
  Altitude (metres above sea level)   +340 to +1,610
  Year designated   1986
  Administrative authorities   Swedish MAB Committee Swedish Nature Protection Board County administration
  Brief description   Geomorphic processes
Hydrology and meteorology
Paleoclimatology and paleogeomorphology
Climate change, UV-B radiation, CO2
Adaptions and dynamics of organisms
Population and communities response to environmental changes
Conservation of genetic resources
Sustainable development in Abisko National Park
Economical impact by the road E10
  Specific variables...    
  Abiotic   Acidic deposition/Acid rain, climate, geomorphology, hydrology, meteorology, uv radiation/solar radiation.
  Biodiversity   Community studies/Communities, conservation, evolutionary studies/palaeoecology/evolution, genetic resources, population genetics/population dynamics.
  Socio-economic   Tourism, transport.
  Integrated monitoring   Environmental change, impact and risk studies/environmental impact, sustainable development/sustainable use.
  Contact address   Mikael Krekula
MAB, Man and the Biosphere, Lake Torne Area Biosphere Reserve, ANS
PO Box 62
SE-981 07 Abisko
  Telephone   (46.980) 400 21
(46.980) 402 90
  Fax   (46.980) 402 80
  Web site

Last updated: 09/01/2002

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