Arctic researchers to discuss NSF-led, interagency initiative to quantify arctic enviro. change

October 24, 2003

Researchers from around the world will meet later this month in Seattle, Wash., to discuss what science can tell us about environmental changes occurring in the Arctic as well as the next scientific steps needed to better understand the complex physical processes that govern the Arctic environment.

The first open science meeting for the Study of Environmental Arctic Change (SEARCH), a multi-agency initiative led by the National Science Foundation (NSF), will take place from Oct. 27-30. SEARCH is a broad, interdisciplinary program of long-term observations, analysis and modeling aimed at understanding a series of significant and apparently interrelated changes that have occurred across the Arctic in recent decades.

Two SEARCH researchers-James Morison, of the University of Washington's Applied Physics Laboratory, and Peter Schlosser, of the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory at Columbia University-will speak at a press briefing on Oct. 28. They will discuss what SEARCH scientists have learned about changes in sea-ice coverage, temperatures and other physical factors in the Arctic and where future research directions may lead. Other panelists will address long-term trends in climate change from a paleoclimatology perspective, discuss contemporary trends in the Arctic's marine and terrestrial environments and examine the social and economic impacts of these changes on Native and other Arctic populations.

Reporters in the Seattle area are invited to the media briefing at the Bell Harbor International Conference Center. Reporters from the Washington D.C. area who are unable to attend the briefing can participate through a telecommunications link at NSF's headquarters. It will also be possible to call into the Seattle and Arlington, Va. teleconference locations. Please contact Peter West, NSF media officer, listed below, for details.

For more information about SEARCH, including a list of participating federal agencies, see

For specific information about the open science meeting, see:

James H. Morison, University of Washington
Peter Schlosser, Columbia University
Jonathan T. Overpeck, University of Arizona
Caleb Pungowiyi, Robert Aqqaluk Newlin Sr. Memorial Trust
Jacqueline M. Grebmeier, University of Tennessee
Mark Nuttall, University of Alberta
Matthew Sturm, Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory

Study of Environmental Arctic Change (SEARCH) media briefing

Tuesday, Oct. 28, 10:15 a.m. Pacific / 1:15 p.m. Eastern

Bell Harbor International Conference Center, Seattle, Wash. and Room 350 at the National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Blvd., Arlington Va.
NOTE: Space in Room 350 is limited; please call ahead to confirm that you will be attending in person.

For more information, contact:

Peter West, 703-292-7761,
LJ Evans, Arctic Research Consortium of the U.S., 907-450-1621,
Sandra Hines, University of Washington, 206-543-2580,

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering, with an annual budget of nearly $5.3 billion. NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 universities and institutions. Each year, NSF receives about 30,000 competitive requests for funding, and makes about 10,000 new funding awards. The NSF also awards over $200 million in professional and service contracts yearly.

Receive official NSF news electronically through the e-mail delivery system, NSFnews. To subscribe, send an e-mail message to In the body of the message, type "subscribe nsfnews" and then type your name. (Ex.: "subscribe nsfnews John Smith")

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For B-roll on Beta SP, contact Dena Headlee, 703-292-7739,

For still images at print resolution, contact Peter West, 703-292-7761

National Science Foundation

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