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SCAR has led several initiatives that have had a direct link to policy, created to address environmental protection and practices in Antarctica, as well as global agreements regarding impacts of climate change.

Here are just a few examples:

Codes of Conduct

25th Anniversary of the Madrid Protocol

At the SCAR Open Science Conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in August 2016, a mini-sympoisum was held to look at the progress made since the establishment of the Madrid Protocol which led to the creation of the Committee on Environmental Protection of the Antarctic Treaty System. For more on the symposium and resulting efforts, see the 25th Anniversary mini-symposium page.

The Monaco Assessment

In June 2015, SCAR, in partnership with the government of the Principality of Monaco, and Monash University, held a meeting of biodiversity, legal and policy experts to assess Antarctic and Southern Ocean biodiversity and its conservation status in the context of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011 to 2020. See The Monaco Assessment page for the full background to the meeting.

To date, Antarctica and the Southern Ocean have not been adequately represented in global biodiversity assessments undertaken as part of Strategic Plan Activities. The meeting considered the current status of biodiversity conservation in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean, available evidence for this status, and both their trajectory and evidence for this trajectory, in the context of each of the 20 Aichi Targets of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011 to 2020.

The full assessment was completed and appeared in the journal PLoS Biology in the 28th March 2017 issue (, along with comprehensive evidence underpinning the assessment.

The Antarctic Conservation Strategy

In September 2013, a workshop was convened jointly by SCAR and COMNAP to identify responses to conservation challenges in Antarctica. The outcomes of the workshop are being used to inform the drafting of an Antarctic Conservation Strategy. An information paper on progress was presented to the XXXVII ATCM in 2014 ( pdf IP011: Antarctic Conservation Strategy (231 KB) ).

Read the pdf Report from the Workshop on Antarctic Conservation Strategy (380 KB) , held in September 2013, Cambridge, UK

Flipped Symposium

At the SCAR Open Science Conference in Auckland, New Zealand in August 2014, a mini-symposium was held to discuss science and policy in Antarctica: