Melting Ice, Rising Seas (Part Four) - Prof Rob DeConto, University of Massachusetts

Dedicated to all things on Antarctica and the Southern Ocean, the Antarctic Report ( is an online portal published by Camino, a digital content and publishing company based in Auckland, New Zealand. The site showcases the hard science which underlines the importance of Antarctica as a bellwether of global climate change. It also highlights the continent's unique political status, as well as the exceptional demands its environment places on people and equipment, and the romantic allure for travellers and explorers as the least discovered continent on the planet.

The Antarctic Report was born out of the highly successful World Science Week, which brought together more than 2,000 of the world’s leading scientists, researchers and government science advisors for a series of international science summits in Auckland during August and September 2014. These major global gatherings included the 31st triennial General Assembly of the International Council for Science (ICSU) and the 6th biennial Open Science Conference of the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR).

Many of the scientists took part in a series of public lectures sponsored by the Royal Society of New Zealand and the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, with the support of both the University of Auckland and AUT University where the presentations were held.

Prof Rob DeConto is Professor of Geosciences at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, USA. His background spans geology, oceanography, and atmospheric science. He has held research positions at both the US National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). His early research used numerical climate models to better understand the mechanisms responsible for past periods of extreme global warmth. In recent years, his research has shifted toward the polar regions – including fieldwork in Antarctica, the development of coupled climate-ice sheet models, and the application of those models to a wide range of past and future climate scenarios. DeConto currently serves on a number of national and international science boards and advisory panels and he is currently co-chair of ACE (Antarctic Climate Evolution), an international research programme under the auspices of the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research

During his presentation, DeConto explains his research using physical and numerical models of ice sheet movement in Greenland and Antarctica to simulate the modern system and to test those models relative to future scenarios of Greenhouse gas increases.

'Melting Ice, Rising Seas' was a presentation by five of the world's leading experts on the current state of the Antarctic Ice Sheet and surrounding Southern Ocean, how climate change is impacting upon them, and the consequences for Planet Earth as the 21st century progresses. (The video recording of the seminar is presented here in four separate parts)

Bryan Storey, Vice President of SCAR, and Professor of Antarctic Studies at University of Canterbury, NZ (Convenor)
Jonathan Bamber, Professor of Physical Geography, University of Bristol, UK
Tim Naish, Director of Victoria University of Wellington’s Antarctic Research Centre, NZ
Rob DeConto, Professor of Geosciences at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, USA
Steve Rintoul, Research Team Leader, Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Australia
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