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Climate Change

Volume 690: debated on Tuesday 13 March 2007

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What progress is being made in the United Kingdom contribution to the International Polar Year investigations, conducted by the Cambridge British Antarctic Survey; and whether these studies are being co-ordinated with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. [HL2449]

The British Antarctic Survey (BAS), a wholly owned research centre of the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), is the major UK research contributor to International Polar Year (IPY) 2007-08. BAS is involved in 25 per cent of the 170 endorsed IPY science projects. In addition, all the data emerging from the BAS core research programme “Global Science in the Antarctic Context” (2005-10) can be mapped on to the science framework of the polar year. The BAS programme is explicitly addressing major concerns highlighted in the latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports, such as ozone depletion, shrinking ice sheets and future sea-level changes. BAS scientists are major contributors to relevant chapters of IPCC reports and are expert reviewers.