Polar News

News from a variety of sources dealing with polar related topics. Many thanks to APECS members for contributing to this shared resources! You can add these articles as a RSS feed in your favorite reader.

The Belmont Forum has released a call for proposals on Arctic Observing and Research for Sustainability as part of its 2014 International Opportunities Fund to encourage interdisciplinary and trandisciplinary science. The call seeks to bring together integrated teams of natural scientists, social scientists, and stakeholders to develop projects that utilize existing Arctic observing systems, datasets and models to evaluate key sustainability challenges and opportunities in the Arctic region.

This funding opportunity will support projects that advance research utilizing and developing both the relevant information streams and the sustainability science necessary to assess, predict, inform, and communicate resilient pathways. The call focuses on four themes relevant to observing and sustainability that hold particular urgency in the Arctic: the natural and living environment, the built environment and infrastructures, natural resource management and development, and governance. Recognizing that the Arctic is a highly interdependent system, these themes are not unrelated and projects may address interactions amongst these themes.

Three types of submissions are being sought – small collaboration grants, synthesis projects, and research proposals. Available funding for meritorious projects is 13 million euros, comprising contributions from Canada, China, France, Iceland, India, Italy, Japan, the Nordic Council of Ministers, Norway, Russia, the United States of America, and the World Ocean Council. Possibilities for collaboration with non-participatory countries exist as well. All proposals require collaboration amongst three or more countries and integrate across natural and social sciences while also including end-users, policy-makers, or other relevant stakeholders in the project. A researcher matching tool is available on the Belmont Forum website to better enable connection between interested international proposers.

For more information about research themes, national priorities and agency contacts, proposal submission documents, and to access the researcher matching tool, please visit the funding website: http://igfagcr.org/cra-2014-arctic-observing-and-research-sustainability . Proposals for this funding opportunity are due 31 July 2014.

by Katriina O'Kane

Profiles from the Arctic, a web-documentary series about research in the Canadian high Arctic, was released today at http://www.arcticprofiles.ca. Distributed over the next several months as a set of 25 profiles, it will bring life to science and field stories from the Arctic, and discuss the importance of conducting research in this challenging environment.


The series will feature interviews conducted with prominent scientists, students, and staff who work around Resolute Bay’s Polar Continental Shelf Program (PCSP), an important research facility and logistics’ centre in the Canadian high Arctic. New profiles will be released regularly, in which the audience can engage with audio clips, short videos, and photographs.


A key message of the series is the urgent need for more research in the Canadian Arctic. As the Arctic warms, there is growing interest in developing resources and introducing other forms of economic activity such as shipping. Yet questions remain unanswered about how landscapes and animals across the North will respond. Researchers are helping to answer those questions, studying subjects like contaminants, bacteria, permafrost, glaciers, sharks, lakes, a meteor impact, narwhals, and more. Their field work exposes them to encounters with polar bears and wolves, and offers them a chance to visit some of the most spectacular landscapes in Canada. This web-documentary series is a rare chance to get an intimate view of what researchers do, and the challenges they face.


To explore, visit: www.arcticprofiles.ca 



1 - Catherine Girard is a master’s student at the University of Montreal, studying contaminants in food and their digestion by the body. She will be one of the researchers profiled for the web-documentary series: www.arcticprofiles.ca (Katriina O’Kane / Canadian Polar Commission)



2 - The PCSP (pictured) is an important research station and logistic's centre in the Canadian high Arctic, located near Resolute Bay, Nunavut (Katriina O’Kane / Canadian Polar Commission).



3 - Marie-Claude Williamson (right) prepares to have her photograph taken, while Katriina (left) holds up a reflector to balance out the strong Arctic sun (Evan Hall / Canadian Polar Commission).



4 - George Benoit (left) is the warehouse manager at the PCSP, and has been working up in Resolute Bay for 40 years. Christopher Omelon (right) is a scientists studying bacteria-mineral interactions. Both will be profiled in the web-documentary series (Evan Hall / Canadian Polar Commission).


The April 15, 2014 deadline to nominate a title for the William Mills Prize is fast approaching.

The William Mills Prize for Non-Fiction Polar Books was established in memory of William Mills, a core member of Polar Libraries Colloquy during its middle years and a consummate polar librarian as well as author.
The book prize honors the best Arctic or Antarctic nonfiction books published throughout the world. The prize consists of $300 US and the right to use the William Mills Prize logo when advertising the winning book.
Qualifications for Nomination
1. The book must be nonfiction, about the Arctic or Antarctic.
2. The book may be any type of substantive work of nonfiction, or reference resource. Textbooks, anthologies, edited works, and other small-scale efforts will not be considered unless they are truly outstanding contributions to polar literature.
3. The book must have been published for the first time within the two calendar years before the Colloquy at which the award will be given. The timeframe for the 2014 award is January 2012 to December 2013. Re-releases, translations of older materials, and updated editions will not be eligible.
4. The official language of the Colloquy is English. For this reason books must be published in an English language version to be eligible.
Nominations should include information such as the title, author(s), publisher and date of publication, as well as a statement from the nominator explaining why the the book should be considered for the prize and what value the title brings to polar literature.
For more information about the William Mills Prize, or to submit nominations, please email millsprize@gmail.com
The deadline to submit a nomination is April 15, 2014.
A list of previous William Mills prize winners is available at http://arcticcentre.ulapland.fi/polarweb/plc/mills.asp

The editors of "Witness the Arctic" invite article suggestions for future issues, including the spring 2014 issue that will be published in mid-June. Welcomed topics include Arctic sciences, data management, related agency updates, and policy or international news.

"Witness the Arctic" is a newsletter that serves an audience of Arctic scientists, educators, agency personnel, and policymakers. It provides information on current Arctic research efforts and findings, significant research initiatives, science education, national policy affecting Arctic research, international activities, and profiles of institutions with major Arctic research efforts. The Arctic Research Consortium of the United States (ARCUS) publishes three issues of the newsletter per year with funding from the NSF's Arctic Sciences Section.

"Witness the Arctic" editors welcome suggestions for news items or short articles appropriate for the newsletter and relevant to its audience. Articles should provide information of interest to a broad cross-section of the Arctic and climate change research community. Editors will work with individuals to develop articles based on the suggestions received."

To provide suggestions for articles, please email Betsy Turner-Bogren
( betsy@arcus.org).

For further information about Witness the Arctic, please see:

Or contact:
Betsy Turner-Bogren
Email:  betsy@arcus.org

Young researchers interested in conducting research in the atmospheric sciences, glaciology, geosciences and microbiology (excluding marine microbiology) at, or near, the Princess Elisabeth Antarctica station (located in Dronning Maud Land in East Antarctica at 71.57°S 23.20°E) are encouraged to apply.

Applicants must be either doctoral researchers or researchers who have completed their PhD within the past 10 years and should submit an original research proposal for a project which will include field campaigns operating from the Princess Elisabeth Antarctica station during two austral summers (2014–15 and 2015–16). Please note that the successful applicant will continue to work at their current research organisation.

The deadline for applications is Thursday April 10, 2014.

A joint initiative of the InBev-Baillet Latour Fund and the International Polar Foundation, the €150,000 research grant aims to promote scientific excellence in Antarctica and underscores the crucial role polar science plays in furthering our understanding of the Earth and how it functions.

Detailed information and application documents are available at: http://www.polarfoundation.org/projects/detail/inbev_baillet_latour_fellowship

For any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at: fellowship@polarfoundation.org.

With the objective of to encourage, recognize, promote and reward young people who demonstrate, through videos, the importance of activities from Brazil in Antarctica the Navy of Brazil promoted a video contest. The target audience were students (15-19 years) of High school of Basic Education. Four students were selected and the prize is a trip to Antarctica for the students (two from private education and two from public education) and four teachers! The selection, from more than 200 videos, was performed by a judging panel which the APECS-Brazil took part. Students will to Antarctica in March and they will experience the logistics of travel and arrival in Antarctica, know the structure that Brazil has in the region, as well as participate in research activities together with researchers from Brazilian Antarctic Program.

The International Summer School at the University of Oslo Norway has launched a new interdisciplinary course in Arctic Studies.

The course combines Natural Sciences, Law and Social Sciences to explore the environmental, legal, and political changes in the Arctic region. Participants will learn about current issues involving the Arctic's changing environment and how this impacts the legal framework provided by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. The course also explores how this may generate new opportunities, risks, and governance challenges for Arctic states, companies and non-Arctic stakeholders.

Scholarships Available:
A limited number of participants will be eligible for financial support to attend this six week course from 21 June - 1 August 2014.

Apply now!
Request an application by 10 March 2014 to see if you qualify for financial support.

Contact the International Summer School at iss@admin.uio.no or (+47) 22 85 63 85 for more information.
A full course description can be found on our website at http://www.uio.no/english/studies/summerschool/new-courses/index.html.

In summer 2014 the University of Innsbruck and the European Academy of Bozen/Bolzano (EURAC) will for the first time organise a summer school on the topic "Mummies and Glacial Archaeology".

This two-week course taking place in the Schnalstal / Val Senales region of South Tyrol and the EURAC laboratories will encompass practical experiments and in-depth scientific study in the fields of glacial archaeology and interdisciplinary mummy research. Areas covered will include anthropology, paleopathology, glacial archaeology, paleoecology, archaeobotany and climate research as well as modern scientific and medical methods in mummy research. Led by the University of Innsbruck, this course will for the first time offer participants the chance to acquire multidisciplinary university-level knowledge relevant for high-level university work as well as for activities at state monument offices and research-oriented museums.

The course will bring together leading international scientists presenting state-of-the-art knowledge and the latest research results and methods.

The summer school is aimed in particular at (international) students who have graduated from Master's study programmes in the field of natural sciences and are keen to deepen and expand their existing knowledge through interdisciplinary work. Participants must have completed a Master's in a natural sciences subject or in archaeology. All applicants must submit a letter of motivation, a CV and proof of graduation from a Master's study programme. Decisions on admission to the course will be taken by the Rectorate based on recommendations made by the course directors.
Attendance fee: 1.850€ (excl. accommodation)

more info:

The upcoming CUAHSI cyberseminar series will focus on snow

Friday, February 7, 2014 (3:00pm ET)

Title: The World of Arctic Snow
Presenter: Dr. Matthew Sturm, University of Alaska, Faribanks, Geophysical Institute

Friday, February 14, 2014 (3:00pm ET)

Title: Assessing Snow and Snowmelt Runoff in Remote Mountain Ranges
Presenter: Dr. Jeff Dozier - University of California, Santa Barbara, Bren School of Environmental Science Management in conjunction with Dr. Anne Nolin - Oregon State University, Department of Geosciences

Friday, February 21, 2014 (3:00pm ET)

Title/Topic: Snowmelt processes in forests: Apparent paradoxes and implications for advancing hydrologic understanding in complex terrain
Presenter: Dr. Timothy E. Link - University of Idaho, Department of Forest, Rangeland, and Fire Sciences

Friday, March 7, 2014 (3:00pm ET)

Title/Topic: Large-scale Snow Extent over Northern Hemisphere Lands
Presenter: Dr. David A. Robinson - Rutgers University, Department of Geography

Details, including instructions on how to connect, can be found here:


The Alaska Center for Climate Assessment and Policy (ACCAP) will be hosting three webinars.

February 18, 2014 at 10am (AKDT ): Historical Sea Ice Atlas For Alaska Waters

Speaker: John Walsh of the University of Alaska Fairbanks and Lena Krutikov of the Scenarios Network for Alaska and Arctic Planning (SNAP)

Register and more information

March 11, 2014 at 10am (AKDT): What Do Alaskans Need?: A Review of Documents Addressing Research Needs Related to Climate Change

Speaker: Corrie Knapp (Alaska Center for Climate Assessment and Policy - ACCAP)

Register and more information

April 22, 2014 at 10am (AKDT): NOAA Climate.gov: An Audience-Focused Approach to Public Communication

Speaker: David Herring, Director of Communications & Education, NOAA Climate Program Office

Register and more information

If you have any questions please contact Tina Buxbaum at 907-9-474-7812 or by email at tmbuxbaum@alaska.edu.

9-20 September 2014
Karthaus, Italy

The course will provide a basic introduction to the dynamics of glaciers and ice sheets with a focus on ice-climate interactions. The course is meant for Ph.D. students that work on (or will soon start working on) a glaciology-related climate project. The registration fee will be € 600. This includes lodging, full board, course material and excursion.

Lecturers include: T. Blunier, E. Bueler, D. Dahl-Jensen, A. Fowler, H. Gudmundsson, A. Jenkins, F. Navarro, F. Nick, A. Stroeven, C. Tijm-Reijmer, W. van Pelt, R. van de Wal, J. Oerlemans (convenor).

Send your application to the convenor (j.oerlemans@uu.nl), before 10 May 2014.
You will be notified about the decision of the Selection Committee by 13 June 2014.
Your application should include:
• A short statement why you want to partipate in this course
• Affiliation and name of supervisor
• A description of your research project (~200 words)
• A curriculum vitae
Please supply this information as a single PDF file.

Karthaus course website:

Sponsored by:

The Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research, Utrecht University
Netherlands Earth System Science Centre
The Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen
SVALI (Nordic countries)

The course will take place 16th - 31st of August 2014 at Arctic Station, on Disko Island, western Greenland.

Detailed information is available online at: https://www.uib.no/rs/acdc and on the flyer

Advanced graduate students and early post-docs are encouraged to apply. The registration is now open and the application deadline is the 1st of March 2014.

The main focus of this year's course will be on understanding the basic principles and dynamics behind changes to the Greenland ice sheet in the past, present and future. The course aims to provide an environment for engaging discussions between all participants (students and lecturers), exchange of concepts and ideas between meteorology, oceanography, paleoclimate and glaciology, and identification of key scientific challenges.

The current list of confirmed lecturers includes: Fiamma Straneo (WHOI), David Battisti (U. Washington), Camilla Snowman Andresen (National Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland), Kerim Nisancioglu (BCCR/U. Bergen), Patrick Heimbach (MIT), and Øyvind Paasche (U. Bergen), amongst others. 

The Integrated Marine Biogeochemistry and Ecosystem Research (IMBER) project is an interdisciplinary global environmental change research initiative that is focused on understanding the sensitivity of marine biogeochemical cycles and ecosystems to global change and predicting ocean responses to global change and the effects on the Earth System and human society.

The IMBER Open Science Conference will provide a synthesis of a range of topics related to marine biogeochemistry and ecosystem research and the human dimension of global marine change.

The IMBER Scientific Steering Committee invites you to participate in the Open Science Conference to learn about current research, present new research findings, share your knowledge, and develop a framework for future marine research directions and collaborations.

The conference is from 23 - 27 June 2014 in Bergen, Norway. The call for abstracts ends on 31 January 2014!

For more information and the full call for abstracts go to http://www.imber.info/index.php/Meetings/IMBER-OSC-2014

I'd like to announce the DVD release of my documentary film Glacial Balance, currently available to the educational market on a sliding fee scale at glacialbalance.com. Beginning Monday, the film will also be available for individual retail purchase.

The film is a country-by-country journey along the spine of the Andes, providing a narrative of climate change impacts on communities. At the same time we visit with an international array of scientists studying these glaciers while they still exist. Being a filmmaker, and not a scientist, my goal when approaching the subject was to communicate difficult scientific concepts in understandable language. However, I wanted to do this without relying on a narrator, but allow the locals and the scientists to narrate the story through edits of long-form interviews.

A $25 Special Edition 2-DVD set of Glacial Balance is now on sale for home use. The asking price of 2-DVD sets for educational institution use is $300, but we are working on a sliding scale. Understandably, this price is more feasible for universities than K-12 schools. If there is interest from a school, but budgetary limitations, we will work with any budget - yes, any budget. The film is also available to license for non-profit & for-profit screenings, and I am available to travel to colleges to present the film and talk with students.

Please feel free to share the film's info with anyone who may be interested.

Ethan Steinman

The Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research in collaboration with the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory is proud to host the 2014 Ice Sheet System Model (ISSM) Workshop. The workshop will take place at the Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research at the University of Bergen, Bergen, Norway, from Monday, June 2d to Wednesday, June 4th, following the IGS conference in Chamonix. Registration will be open on April 1st, 2014.

If you are interested in attending, please send an email to issm@jpl.nasa.gov so that we can get a rough head count.

Interactive sessions will be offered for beginners/advanced users and developers interested in learning how to use ISSM. Updates to ISSM since last year's workshop, including user-requested features (i.e. a new Python port, support for new OS/Platforms, etc) will be presented. Also, we invite participants to showcase their work during an open poster session. Details for participating in this poster session will be available on the registration website (http://issm.jpl.nasa.gov/issmworkshops/).

A limited amount of travel support may be provided by CliC (Climate and Cryosphere) to help students or early-career scholars attend the workshop. Details on applying for travel support will be provided on the registration page. In addition, there is no fee for participation in the workshop.

We hope this workshop will generate fruitful interactions between our team, the growing community of ISSM users, and the broader cryosphere community.

We look forward to your participation!

The sea ice and snow pages of the Integrated Climate Data Centre (ICDC) at the University of Hamburg, Germany may be of interest to those working on the marine cryosphere:

On this web portal a number of unique data sets produced at the University of Hamburg are available:

1) The Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) sensor allows retrieval of the sea ice thickness as long as freezing conditions prevail. Data of the SMOS sea ice thickness are available for the Arctic daily at:

2) A variety of sea ice concentration algorithm data exist. "Home made" are data of the ARTIST sea ice concentration algorithm which is used to compute fine grid resolution daily ice concentrations at both hemispheres:

Please also don't miss the near-real-time AMSR2 sea ice concentration which comes at a breath-taking grid resolution of 3.125 km! Just click on the png-images under:

Because we are part of the ESA-CCI Sea Ice ECV project we also host the first sub-set (more to come within the next month) of the sea ice prototype product under:

3) The finer spatial resolution obtained with AMSR-E compared to SSM/I makes it a candidate for detecting leads during winter as has been done for the data set of the Arctic lead area fraction offered here:

4) Still SSM/I can be also used to derive the location of polynyas and thin ice areas as has been done, for instance, for winter months for the Southern Ocean:

5) Finally we offer the melt pond cover fraction on Arctic sea ice for summers 2000-2011 derived from 8-day MODIS imagery composites:

Please don't hesitate to contact us in case you have difficulties to get, use, or interpret the data. We will be happy to assist you.

Up to £5000 to support the development of the careers of promising young scientists, working in any field of Antarctic science. The purpose of the award is to broaden the scope of an existing research project, especially for postdoctoral studies, through:

a) funding extra field or laboratory work,
b) purchasing/contributing towards the cost of a key piece of equipment, or
c) funding international collaboration

Website link for details of how to apply: http://www.antarcticsciencebursary.org.uk/apps.php

ICIMOD is pleased to announce an open call for seven participants in a training workshop on glacier hydrological monitoring and assessments, to be held in Kathmandu and Langtang Valley, Nepal in from 21 April – 12 May 2014 (http://www.icimod.org/?q=12074). The training is funded by the Regional Environment, Science, Technology and Health Office for South Asia (REOSA) at the US Embassy at Kathmandu, and is supported by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The goals of the training are to bring together international scientific experts and early-career scientists from ICIMOD regional member countries to discuss approaches, problems, and advances in the monitoring of glacier hydrological resources. Seven positions are available through this open call. Through background theory and problem-based learning, the participants will develop understanding of the complexities of monitoring and assessing glacier water resources in the Himalayas, and will build collaborations with other early-career researchers from the region.

Each participants return economy air travel to Kathmandu, accommodation, meals, and all trekking fees will be covered. A basic set of trekking equipment will also be provided. As ICIMOD is a progressive institution with a focus on gender equality, female candidates are especially encouraged to apply.

To apply you must meet the following qualifications:

· Applicants must be a citizen of one of the following regional member countries of ICIMOD (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, or Pakistan). Proof of citizenship will be required for selected participants.

· Applicants must be able to enter Nepal, and will be responsible for their own visa arrangements

· Applicants must be pursuing a post-graduate degree (MSc or PhD) or post-doctoral research in a related discipline at an accredited university:

o Glaciology, snow and ice hydrology, climate change, meteorological downscaling, remote sensing of cryospheric change

o Studies should be focused on high-mountain Asia

· Applicants must be physically fit and capable of conducting rigorous field work. High-altitude and mountaineering experience is recommended, but not required.

The deadline for open applications is 12 January 2014, 23:00 UTC. To apply, please see the background information and details on the application process at http://www.icimod.org/?q=12074

The U.S. Ice Drilling Program Office (IDPO) has three announcements and calls for participation:

1. Community members interested in identifying the next deep and intermediate-depth drilling sites in Greenland and Antarctica (using the DISC Drill or Intermediate Depth Drill) are invited to participate in a short meeting to identify community consensus on the target sites and dates at the upcoming IDPO Community Workshop on Ice Coring at U.C. Irvine on February 26 & 27, 2014. Results of these discussions will form the basis of the drilling sites identified in the IDPO Long Range Science Plan for 2014-2024. IDPO can help with travel costs. If you are interested please send an email to Mary Albert ASAP, but preferably before Dec 20, at Icedrill@Dartmouth.edu.

2. IDPO will support the activities of the U.S. Ice Core Working Group (ICWG), as one of three working groups of the IDPO (the other two are Borehole Logging and Subglacial Access). Ice core scientists interested in serving on the ICWG should contact Mary Albert ASAP, but preferably before Dec 20, at Icedrill@Dartmouth.edu.

3. IDPO is working with the French and Italians to plan a scientific traverse from Dome C to South Pole in austral summer 2017-18, with return traverse in 2018-19. Scientists interested in the endeavor should contact Mary Albert ASAP, but preferably before Dec 20, at Icedrill@Dartmouth.edu.




We are pleased to announce the first circular for the Second PAST (Paleo-Arctic Spatial and Temporal) Gateways International Conference and Workshop.

Conference website http://pastgateways2014.inogs.it/content/first-circular

Lucchi, R.G.; Rebesco, M.; Zennaro, M. (OGS, Trieste)

Colucci, R.R. (CNR-ISMAR Trieste)

Monegato, G. (CNR-IGG, Turin)

Barbante, C. (CNR-IDPA Venice, and University of Venice)

O'Cofaigh, C. (University of Durham, Chair of PAST Gateways)

'PAST Gateways' (Palaeo-Arctic Spatial and Temporal Gateways) is an IASC endorsed network research programme, the scientific goal of which is to understand Arctic environmental change during the period preceding instrumental records and across decadal to millennial timescales. The focus of the six year programme is on the nature and significance of Arctic gateways, both spatial and temporal, with an emphasis on the transitions between major Late Cenozoic climate events such as interglacials to full glacials and full glacial to deglacial states, as well as more recent Holocene fluctuations. There are three major themes to the programme: (1) Growth and decay of Arctic Ice Sheets; (2) Arctic sea-ice and ocean changes, and (3) Non-glaciated Arctic environments. PAST Gateways follows on from the previous network programmes of 'PONAM' (Polar North Atlantic Margins), 'QUEEN' (Quaternary Environment of the Eurasian North) and, most recently, 'APEX' (Arctic Palaeoclimate and its EXtremes). It is interdisciplinary in nature and seeks to bring together field scientists and numerical modellers to advance understanding about Arctic climate change. The network involves scientists from across Europe, Russia, Canada and the USA.

PAST Gateways Steering Committee
H. Alexanderson, C. Andresen, L. Bjarnadottir, J. Briner, A. de Vernal, G. Fedorov, M. Henriksen, N. Kirchner, R. Lucchi, H. Meyer, C. O'Cofaigh (Chairman), R. Noormets, K. Strand, and R. Urgeles.

PAST Gateways website: http://www.geol.lu.se/pastgateways/

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