In October 2023, the organisations currently involved in the Planning Group have released an inital concept note and timeline for the 5th International Polar Year 2032-33 that can be downloaded below.
Why an International Polar Year in 2032–33?
This is a critical decade for people and the planet. Extreme weather, rising temperatures, rising sea levels, and devastating events such as droughts, floods, wildfires, marine warming, ocean acidification, and record lows in sea ice extent are becoming ever more prevalent, affecting ecosystems, economies, and human wellbeing around the world. Many changes are taking shape faster than previously predicted, and as the IPCC 6th Assessment Report made clear, many of the most serious consequences are linked to unprecedented changes in the Arctic and Antarctic. The urgency of understanding the consequences of such rapid change in the polar regions for global climate, biodiversity and human societies is now clear and has never been greater.
A 5th International Polar Year (IPY) will provide a vital opportunity to close outstanding major knowledge gaps through targeted attention and globally-coordinated action enabling polar researchers, knowledge holders, rights holders and stakeholders to achieve major breakthroughs in the knowledge required to protect the global environment, develop effective national and local strategies to mitigate and adapt to environmental changes, and accelerate progress towards achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals.