Letter from the SAO Chair on the planning prior the International Polar Year (IPY) 2007/2008.
"Planning is underway for an International Polar Year (IPY) in 2007/8 to celebrate, respectively, the 125th, 75th, and 50th anniversaries of the first two International Polar Years (IPYs) and the International Geophysical Year (IGY). More than an anniversary, the IPY is expected to intensify and enhance polar research, engage the next generation of scientists in polar exploration and illustrate to the public the crucial role that the polar regions play in Earth’s ecosystem. The concept of the IPY has been endorsed and advanced by a broad range of polar and global research groups, including the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) and the XXVI Session of the Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting. Many governments, including members of the Arctic Council, have set up national committees to co-ordinate input into the IPY process. In February of this year, structure was given to many of the ideas that had emerged with the establishment of the International Science Council’s (ICSU) Planning Group. According to the ICSU’s Terms of Reference, it should stimulate and encourage debate among a wide range of interested parties on the objectives and possible contents of the IPY (see attachments 1 and 2)." /.../