Polar Week, March 2014

It is March, the days are getting longer, and this means that Polar Week must be just around the corner!

Each equinox APECS, along with its many partners, celebrates the polar regions around the world with Polar Week (http://www.apecs.is/outreach/polar-week/polar-week-march-2014). During Polar Week there are events held all around the world engaging people in learning more about Polar Science. You can find a list of events below (as well as here), and a map of the events here.

tag polarweekmarch2014 map

TAG polarweekmarch2014 map    Click here to see the map

So why is Polar Week so important? Most people who are not polar scientists often ask “why study the polar regions”?

First, the polar regions are an important part of global circulation patterns for both the atmosphere and the oceans. For example, the strength of Gulf Stream, which keeps northern and western Europe relatively warm in the winter is in part driven by the currents of water coming off of Greenland and the eastern Canadian Arctic.

Second, in a time of changing climatic conditions, the polar regions are like the canary in the coal mine. The polar regions are warming and predicted to change at a much faster pace than the rest of the globe. By studying the polar regions, we are getting clues into how the globe is changing.

The above reasons are just a few reasons why the polar regions are an important system for science to study. In the coming weeks during March 2014 several APECS Canada members are taking over the blog posts over on Science Borealis, a site where  Canadian science blogs come together. The blogs will start with why polar science, and then continue to go on to discuss community-based research,  scientists working in the polar regions, and some examples of how polar science is telling us about global patterns.

I hope that you enjoy reading the polar science blogs, but also the other great offers on hand on the Science Borealis site!


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