Press Release

NASA to Spotlight Shrinking Arctic Sea Ice and Unprecedented Glacier Study at Copenhagen

By SpaceRef Editor
December 13, 2009
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NASA to Spotlight Shrinking Arctic Sea Ice and Unprecedented Glacier Study at Copenhagen

WASHINGTON — NASA will take its Earth science research and educational programs before a world-wide audience Dec. 7-18 during the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change conference in Copenhagen, Denmark. NASA is one of several U.S. government agencies supporting the first-ever U.S. Center, an outreach initiative housed in Copenhagen’s Bella Conference Center.

Organized by the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Center will host more than 60 events during the conference. The center’s meeting room is a 100-seat auditorium where U.S. and international leaders in the fight against climate change will headline presentations on a wide range of critical initiatives, policies, and scientific research. The center’s reception room serves as a welcome area where visitors can learn more about U.S. climate actions and programs.

The reception room will feature displays and videos using data from U.S. satellites, including NASA’s fleet of Earth-observing research spacecraft. Some of this imagery will be shown on the “Science On a Sphere” projection system, a six-foot, computer-driven globe that displays animated images of the Earth’s land, oceans, and atmosphere. NASA scientists also will be on hand to discuss agency research and programs with visitors.

The U.S. Center, which is open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. local time daily, is located in Hall C5 of the Bella Conference Center. NASA is sponsoring the following presentations during the Copenhagen conference:

State of the Science: Earth’s Changing Polar Ice Cover

The presentation will feature the latest observations and research findings on shrinking Arctic sea ice and the rapidly changing ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica. Speaker: Waleed Abdalati, University of Colorado (Dec. 7, meeting room).

Climate Change Impacts on Civilizations: Lessons from Space Archaeology

NASA is pioneering the use of satellite observations to read the clues of how ancient civilizations reacted to changes in climate. Speakers: Tom Sever, University of Alabama; Ron Blom, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (Dec. 7, meeting room).

“Extreme Ice” Multimedia Presentation

See images from the most wide-ranging glacier study ever conducted using ground-based, real-time photography. Speaker: James Balog, Extreme Ice Survey (Dec. 7, meeting room; Dec. 9 and 16, reception room).

Student Climate Research Campaign

This is a showcase of research projects by secondary school students from around the world conducted through the NASA-sponsored Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) program. Speaker: Donna Charlevoix, University of Colorado (Dec. 8, reception room).

International Global Climate Change Observation from Space NASA plays a leadership role in the Committee on Earth Observation Satellites. The committee’s international member agencies operate and plan missions to measure critical components of climate change. Speakers: Jack Kaye, NASA’s Earth Science Division; Makoto Kajii, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (Dec. 11, meeting room).

The World’s Forests as Carbon Sinks and Sources This presentation will feature the latest scientific knowledge on how forests absorb and release carbon, and how human activities have changed that balance. Speaker: Jeffery Masek, NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center (Dec. 11, meeting room).

Many of the meeting room events will be webcast live on the State Department conference Web site. For a complete schedule of events, visit:

Regular updates on events during the conference will be posted at:

NASA has released a new multimedia climate change resource reel for journalists showcasing downloadable videos, data visualizations, animations, and still images that illustrate key climate change concepts and discoveries. It is available online at:

For more information about NASA and agency programs, visit:

ISS On-Orbit Status 12/04/09

SpaceRef staff editor.