1. The programme framework is ready
  2. Venue stood the test
  3. Committees ready to start working
  4. 1st Circular: Call for session proposals
  5. Oslo's new signature
  6. POLARCAT won the race for first proposal
  7. All programme proposals welcome
  8. IPY Open science in St.Petersburg
  9. Programme of 39 sessions
  10. Offer to registered participants: 30 percent discount on excursion to Svalbard
  11. IASC provides travel support to early career scientists
  12. 2nd Circular: Call for abstracts
  13. Time to get a booth at PolarEXPO!
  14. PolarCINEMA ready to receive polar films and TV-documentaries
  15. Steven Chown to be awarded the Martha T Muse Prize at IPY-OSC
  16. The IPY ‘From Knowledge to Action’ Conference to be held in Montreal in 2012
  17. Unique opportunity for science teachers
  18. A new precedent for the involvement of early career scientists
  19. Several opportunities to get travel support
  20. More than 2200 abstracts submitted on deadline
  21. Registration now open
  22. 400 stipends distributed to early career polar scientists
  23. Get your Letter of Invitation
  24. Invitations out for the PolarTEACHERS conference
  25. PolarCINEMA committee very satisfied with the turnout
  26. More than 2500 abstracts accepted
  27. RV Oceania to Oslo for IPY-OSC
  28. Institutions invited to indicate interest for the PolarFESTIVAL
  29. Poster guidelines
  30. Time slots allocated for sessions
  31. Book before 6th May: Glaciers and fjords - excursion to the scenic highlights of Western Norway
  32. Draft programme ready
  33. HRH Crown Prince Haakon will open the IPY-OSC 2010
  34. HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco will attend the conference
  35. 9th June Keynote: Katherine Richardson
  36. 10th June Keynote: Ole Henrik Magga
  37. Tinker Foundation travel grants for Latin American participants
  38. 11th June Keynote: David Barber
  39. 12th June Keynote: Alexander Frolov
  40. 2200 have registered so far
  41. Make sure your media contacts are invited
  42. PolarEXCHANGE with Sue Nelson
  43. Patrick Webber awarded with the first IASC Medal
  44. Arctic sea ice cover heading towards another record low?
  45. Teachers and young scientists join forces in Oslo
  46. Making marfu and melting ice
  47. Preparing for tomorrows polar science
  48. Launch of the Polar Information Commons (PIC) Tuesday afternoon
  49. Cruising the Oslo Fjord for polar history
  50. Warm opening of a cool conference
  51. A territory of dialogue
  52. From policy to action
  53. Signing agreement for cooperation
  54. Rising sea levels on the agenda
  55. Prestigious prize for work in Antarctica
  56. Polar expedition to the FRAM Museum
  57. More cold and snowy winters to come
  58. Arctic and Antarctic partners sign agreement on polar education
  59. Medal for science and inspiring mentorship
  60. Science should incorporate indigenous knowledge
  61. A road movie on ice
  62. Data on ice loss in the Arctic Ocean can be misleading
  63. On the making of polar documentaries
  64. Encounters on Polar Street
  65. Morning plenary: Vladimir Kattsov
  66. International Polar Year officially closed
  67. Survey shows Norwegians believe in science
  68. 1st Circular out for IPY 2012 MONTRÉAL
  69. 2nd Circular out for IPY 2012 in Montreal
  70. Reminder: Call for abstracts
  71. One week left till Abstract Deadline
  72. Updating the IPY Publications Database for the IPY 2012 Conference in Montreal
  73. Time to register for the IPY 2012 conference

Prestigious prize for work in Antarctica

Chown 2 ing (Ingressbilde)

Professor Steven Chown has received the first Martha T. Muse Prize. In his Prize Lecture, he focused on changes in the biodiversity in Antarctica.

The Martha T. Muse Prize ( )

is awarded to individuals who have demonstrated excellence in Antarctic science or policy and who show clear potential for sustained and significant contributions that enhance our understanding of Antarctic science or policy and promote Antarctica's preservation for future generations. The Prize, which carries with it a US$100,000 monetary award, is supported by the Tinker Foundation and administered by the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR). The support of the US Polar Research Board and the

Academy of Sciences were instrumental in establishing the Prize. The Prize is inspired by Martha T. Muse's passion for Antarctica and is a legacy of the International Polar Year 2007‐2008.

Professor Chown receives the Martha T. Muse Prize for his outstanding work in science and policy in Antarctica. The US 100,000 monetary award is supported by the Tinker Foundation and administered by the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR).

From science to policy

- Professor Chown clearly exemplifies the attributes of the prize, said Renate Rennie, Chairman and President of the Tinker Foundation.

She referred to the prize criteria demanding a recipient who is not only excellent in science in Antarctica, but who also contributes substantially towards preservation of the area.

Chown is a professor at Stellenbosch University in South Africa, as well as a world renowned advisor to the Antarctic Treaty System. To him, policy advising is of vital importance.

- It is insufficient to go to a meeting of experts and formulate 20 recommendations without ensuring that they are enforced, he stated in his Prize Lecture.

Fifty years of change

Chown reminded the audience that in the fifty years that have passed since the 3rd International Polar Year, the earth's population has increased from 2.9 billion to 6 billion people.

- Changes in the global system influence the Antarctic and vice versa, he stressed.

To Steven Chown, policy advising is of vital importance.Photo: John Petter Reinertsen, SAMFOTO
To Steven Chown, policy advising is of vital importance.
Chown showed how these impacts have been seen in his own region, in particular on the small, sub-Antarctic island Marion Island which is located at 47 degrees south.

- On Marion Island, the average temperature has increased by 1.5 degrees over past 50-60 years, and the annual precipitation has decreased by 600 millimeters, said Chown.

He showed photographs from the 1960s and compared them to photographs taken in 2009, illustrating a major change in the island's climate and biodiversity.

Biological invasions

Alongside the changes in the global climate, the world has witnessed a dramatic increase in biological invasions over the past fifty years.

- The Antarctic is a very special place, being basically free from invasional species at most sites due to the absence of human interventions. However, we find more and more alien species on the sub-Antarctic islands, he pointed out.

He presented data showing the correlation between the increased number of visits to the islands, and the increase of alien species.

- The more occupants in an area, the more likely are alien species. This is true for mammals, vascular plants and insects.

One example is that of Mediterranean mussels that are transported to the islands on the hull of ships.

Prevention better than cure

- The world today is very much connected, Chown stressed. - How we change one area, has an effect on the biodiversity in other parts of the world. We can not afford to ignore that message, he said.

To illustrate the complexity, Chown cited an example from Australia, where the eradication of

once led to an increase of rabbits, and the more recent eradication of rabbits has had a negative impact on plant life.

Professor Steven Chown receives the Martha T. Muse Prize from Renate Rennie, Chairman of the Tinker Foundation.Photo: John Petter Reinertsen, SAMFOTO
Professor Steven Chown receives the Martha T. Muse Prize from Renate Rennie, Chairman of the Tinker Foundation.
- The lesson from this is that prevention is always much better and more cost effective than cure, said Chown.

Vision for the future

Chown ended his lecture by expressing his hope for the next generation of scientists.

- I hope they will look back and say that the 4th International Polar Year really changed the way things are done, he said. - May our future scientists be able to say that we succeeded as scientists and as people, and that we no longer have the problems that our ancestors had, he concluded.

Lead photo: Two princes were present when Steven Chown received his prize. From the left: Professor Chuck Kennicut, Prince Albert II of Monaco, Professor Steven Chown and Crown Prince Haakon of Norway (John Petter Reinertsen, SAMFOTO).

Last updated: 09.06.2010