The SCAR SSG-PS met before the 2010 SCAR Open Science Conference on 30 July and 2 August, 2010, in Buenos Aires. This SSG meets approximately every two years, but maintains a listserv for all active members where other topics are discussed in between. Further, many of the Scientific Research Programs (SRPs) within the SSG-PS hold more frequent meetings or workshops, especially at themed conferences.
During the time of the meeting, the SSG-PS was led by Chief Officer Maurizio Candidi (Italy), Deputy Chief Officer David Bromwich (USA), and Secretary Tas van Ommen (Australia). Elections were held on 2 August, and a new Chief Officer Takashi Yamanouchi (Japan) was elected, and Candidi was elected as Deputy Chief Officer (Tas van Ommen remained Secretary).
The meeting mainly consisted of reports of the activities of the action / expert groups and the SRPs since the last SSG-PS meeting in 2008 in St. Petersburg. Chairs of each of these groups presented new developments, publications, and new budget requests to the broader SSG-PS.
Some interesting highlights include:
- The release of the SCAR Antarctic Climate Change and the Environment report, led by SSG-PS member and former chair of the SRP Antarctica and the Global Climate System (AGCS) Dr. John Turner (UK). Many members of the SSG-PS played a key role in this remarkable multidisciplinary effort.
- An exciting report from the recently developed Astronomy and Astrophysics from Antarctica (AAA) SRP by John Storey (Australia). This SRP is planning new instrumentation both at South Pole and Dome-A.
- A closing summary of the ICESTAR (Interhemispheric Conjugacy Effects in Solar Terrestrial and Aeronomy Research) SRP, which officially ends this year.
- The proposal to develop two new cross-disciplinary SRPs, one on Southern Ocean Acidification, and another to continue the climate efforts conducted by the AGCS, with enhanced connections to biologists and others in the SSG- Life Sciences.
During the meeting, I was able to present to the SSG-PS body about APECS, what it has been doing, and how APECS can become more involved with the SSG-PS. It should be noted that:
- APECS members can attend and be involved with any SRP or expert / action group within the SSG-PS, although not on the level yet of steering committee / voting privileges. If you are interested in being involved, simply contact the head of any of these groups; information can be found on the main SSG-PS webpage (http://www.scar.org/researchgroups/physicalscience/)
- I am working with Dr. John Storey to see if we can have an APECS member to sit on the steering committee of the AAA, the only SRP in SSG-PS that does not have APECS representation.
- There was a general and sincere interest of SSG-PS members to learn more about APECS, and many attended the panel on Wednesday night during the OSC.