International Polar Year

Picture from IPY website, Elephant Foot Glacier

From March 2007 to March 2009, grab your parka because it is International Polar Year(s). The organization of this falls to the International Council of Science and the World Meteorological Organization and involves 200 projects, 60 nations, and over 1000 scientists. The main research thrust appears to be the impacts of global warming on the poles and potential of a “ice-free” Arctic. Other projects include the installation of an Arctic Ocean monitoring system, described as an early warning system for climate change, and a census of the deep-sea creatures that populate the bottom of Antarctica’s Southern Ocean. You can catch all the going ons at the official website.

Dr. M (1801 Posts)

Craig McClain is the Executive Director of the Lousiana University Marine Consortium. He has conducted deep-sea research for 20 years and published over 50 papers in the area. He has participated in and led dozens of oceanographic expeditions taken him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses on how energy drives the biology of marine invertebrates from individuals to ecosystems, specifically, seeking to uncover how organisms are adapted to different levels of carbon availability, i.e. food, and how this determines the kinds and number of species in different parts of the oceans. Additionally, Craig is obsessed with the size of things. Sometimes this translated into actually scientific research. Craig’s research has been featured on National Public Radio, Discovery Channel, Fox News, National Geographic and ABC News. In addition to his scientific research, Craig also advocates the need for scientists to connect with the public and is the founder and chief editor of the acclaimed Deep-Sea News (, a popular ocean-themed blog that has won numerous awards. His writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web.