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25.10.2021 | The tenth anniversary of the mercury monitor "RA-915AM" operation at Lake Baikal


October, 2021 – Listvyanka, Russia. October 24, 2021, is a remarkable date of the tenth anniversary of the continuous operation of “RA-915AM” monitor at the Listvyanka Station in Irkutsk region. The station is managed by Limnological Institute of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

The network of 43 stations distributed over all continents, including Antarctica, was set up within the International Project of Global Mercury Observation System (GMOS). The site at Lake Baikal was chosen due to its location in the center of the huge Siberian territory where such observations were never performed before. The background measurements are the main tool for assessment of the mercury emissions into the atmosphere at the global and regional levels and for simulating the mercury emission processes, transfer, and deposition.

In the course of the project work, the regularities of the atmospheric mercury distribution in the Nothern and Southern Hemispheres were revealed. The obtained measurement results were used in compiling the documents of the UN Environmental Program (UNEP) and in the decisions making of the Conferences of the Parties to the Minamata Convention on Mercury.

The long-term mercury monitoring at the Listvyanka Station made it possible to find out seasonal variations of the mercury content in the air with its distinctive increase in the winter season due to the enhanced mercury emissions from coal combustion and to determine specific local mercury emission sources. The ten-year operation of “RA-915AM” monitor under the adverse Siberian conditions demonstrates its outstanding reliability and the capability of its stand-alone use in various monitoring networks as well as in the framework of the GEO flagship project GOS4M.

Global Mercury Observation System (GMOS) Listvyanka Station