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SPRI Review 2007: Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR)

Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR)

The SCAR Secretariat, hosted by the SPRI, continued its work of coordinating scientific research in the Antarctic region. Publication of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports in 2007 underscored the need for SCAR to continue to focus on climate change and its effects. The Antarctica in the Global Climate System (AGCS) team produced a paper on Antarctic climate change for the Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting (ATCM) in New Delhi. Our Ice Sheet Mass Balance and Sea Level Expert Group is co-organising, for the SCAR XXX meeting, a workshop on modelling ice sheet decay.

Our liaison with the International Arctic Science Committee (IASC) continues to strengthen, and we have formed a joint Bipolar Action Group to help IASC and SCAR think about how they might work more closely together in future, and how they might best contribute to the IPY and its legacy. We also opened discussions about a possible partnership with the newly formed International Association of Cryosphere Sciences (IACS), a body of the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics. A major task has been to help to develop, with our Arctic counterpart IASC, the plan for the XXX SCAR meeting in Russia in July 2008.

One of the main legacies from the International Polar Year (IPY) will be observing systems. During the year SCAR collaborated with the Climate and Cryosphere (CliC) project to design a Cryosphere Observing System. We also continued to develop a network of Pan-Antarctic Observing Systems (PAntOS). The sinking of the MS Explorer off the Antarctic Peninsula also led SCAR to form an Action Group on Antarctic Fuel Spills.

Four new SCAR Research Fellows were appointed: Ignino Coco (Italy); Stefanie Kaiser (Germany); Delphine Lannuzel (Belgium); and Glen Phillips (Australia). In the SCAR Secretariat, Marzena Kazmarska left to take up a post in Svalbard, and was replaced as Executive Officer by Mike Sparrow from the UK's National Oceanography Centre, while Karen Smith was replaced by Rosemary Nash as our Administrative Officer.

Colin Summerhayes (Executive Director)