Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research
The PRB serves as the U.S. National Committee to the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR). SCAR is a nongovernmental organization created in 1958 and charged to initiate, promote, and coordinate international scientific activity in the Antarctic with a view to framing a scientific program of circumpolar scope and significance; to review scientific matters pertaining to the integrity of the Antarctic environment, including the conservation of its terrestrial and marine ecosystems; and to provide scientific and technological advice to the Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meetings and other organizations, both governmental and nongovernmental. The Antarctic Treaty governs science activities of member nations in Antarctica, including the United States. The role of SCAR, as codified in the Environmental Protocol of the Antarctic Treaty, is to provide consultation on matters ranging from the development of environmental monitoring guidelines to the review of areas proposed for special management. SCAR representatives attend and participate in the ATCM, held once a year. Although SCAR membership parallels that of the signatories to the Antarctic Treaty, SCAR's deliberations are informal and its recommendations are advisory. SCAR usually addresses issues before they are considered at Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meetings and thus it serves as a valuable way to help U.S. government representatives prepare for negotiations at Treaty Meetings.
The PRB is responsible for communication of SCAR activities in the United States, including distribution of SCAR reports, publications, and announcements; meeting preparation; and facilitating contacts between U.S. scientists, national representatives, and SCAR programs. The PRB is responsible for nomination and selection of delegates, alternate delegates, and scientific committee representatives, and for ensuring that these U.S. participants represent national interests and convey information and decisions from SCAR activities to the U.S. polar community and federal agencies. As the U.S. National Committee, the PRB distributes draft documents for U.S. review, such as draft management plans for Specially Protected Areas, as well as reports from SCAR's various standing scientific committees.The PRB, working with the National Science Foundation, is responsible for preparation of the Annual Report to SCAR. Through the U.S. Delegate and Alternate Delegate, the PRB ensures active U.S. representation in meetings, in the development of reports, and in any recommendations and resolutions conveyed to the ATCM. At present, Dr. Terry Wilson of Ohio State University is the US delegate to SCAR. The alternate US delegate is Deneb Karentz of the University of San Francisco. The SCAR Secretariat is located in Cambridge, England, at the Scott Polar Research Institute.
SCAR functions via an executive committee that meets each year, a meeting of delegates held biennially, and periodic meetings of standing and special committees. For information about these meetings, see the SCAR Events Page.
For information on US SCAR activities, see the US SCAR Website.
SCAR DOCUMENTS OF INTEREST
Recently Updated SCAR Codes of Conduct (these documents may also be found on the page of the SCAR Standing Scientific Group on Life Sciences):
- Code of Conduct for the use of Animals for Scientific Purposes in Antarctica (pdf)
- Code of Conduct for the Exploration and Research of Subglacial Aquatic Environments (pdf)
U.S. REPRESENTATION TO SCAR:
Professor, Department of Geological Sciences, The Ohio State University
Professor, Departments of Biology and Environmental Science, University of San Francisco
Geosciences Scientific Group
W. Berry Lyons
Director, Byrd Polar Research Laboratory, The Ohio State University
Associate Professor of Geological Sciences, University of Alabama
Professor, Department of Geosciences; Pennsylvania State University
Physical Sciences Scientific Group
Fellow, Cooperative Institute for Research in the Environmental Sciences, University of Colorado Boulder
Associate Professor of Glaciology, University of Alaska | Fairbanks
Dr. Allan T. Weatherwax
Dean, School of Science and Engineering, Merrimack College
Senior Research Scientist and Professor
Director, Polar Meteorology Group, The Ohio State University
Life Sciences Scientific Group
Antarctic Ecosystem Research Division, NOAA Fisheries | SW Fisheries Science Center
Associate Professor of Biology, Brigham Young University
Professor of Biology, University of Alabama | Birmingham
Dr. Marc Shepanek
NASA Deputy Chief of Medicine of Extreme Environments
Polar Research Board, National Academies