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Amundsen Day at NASA/GISS and the Explorers Club in New York City

The 14th of December is the 100th year anniversary of Amundsen`s success reaching the South Pole in 1911.

Jostein Bakke, Department of Earth Science, University of Bergen, is the Norwegian Fulbright Arctic Chair for 2011/2012.

The Amundsen Day in New York will be an occasion to revisit and discuss changes that have taken place in the Polar Regions over the past 100 years, with a special focus on the most recent decades of rapid climate change at high latitudes. State-of-the-art research on both Antarctica and the Arctic will be presented by top-notch US and Norwegian scientists. The Amundsen day is collaboration between University of Bergen, The Norwegian Fulbright Foundation and the Norwegian General Consulate in New York.

The Amundsen Day will be an opportunity to accentuate the vital need for international cross-disciplinary research at high latitudes, and for efforts to promote international educational and research collaboration, exemplified by the University of the Arctic and the Fulbright Arctic Chair program” says Jostein Bakke who is the Norwegian Fulbright Arctic Chair for 2011/2012. This year’s Norwegian Fulbright Arctic Chair is focusing on the inter-hemispheric linkages between Antarctica and the Arctic, a subject that Amundsen too was concerned with. Bakke has been a visiting scientist this fall at Climate System Research Center at UMASS where Professor Ray Bradley is director. Through Bradley´s extensive network of polar scientists an impressive program been composed containing a mixture of Amundsen expert´s such as Ed Larson and Ross McPhee and a panel of highly competent polar researchers such as e.g. Eric Steig, Paul Mayewski, Giff Miller, John Small, Gawin Schmidt, Robin Bell. From Department of earth science at University of Bergen Kikki Kleiven, Yngve Kristoffersen and Jostein Bakke will attend. The anniversary is an excellent opportunity that can spur scientists and the public to obtain more knowledge about the changes currently taking place in the Polar Regions. Hopefully the unique atmosphere and rich history of the Explorers Club will provide an ideal backdrop for the celebration of the 100-year anniversary for Amundsen´s success at the South Pole. Both Amundsen and Nansen were members in the Explorers Club. Speakers will adopt a 100-year perspective, and draw a narrative from Amundsen days up to the recent decades of dramatic change, taking into account the significant increase in knowledge about the poles that has been gained over the past few decades.

We hope this afternoon at NASA GISS and the evening event at the Explorers Club will shed light on the great challenges that currently face the Polar Regions of the world” says Jostein Bakke. It is also an important to show that Norway and US have close collaboration in Polar Research. Three staff members working in the Polar Regions from Earth Science are presently at research stays in US, in addition to Bakke at UMASS, Kikki Kleivein and Ulysess Ninnemann are guest scientists at Lamont Doherty Laboratory for one year.

Amundsen Day webpage.