FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact Sharon Tahirkheli (703) 379-2480
July 25, 2000
snt@agiweb.org

AMERICAN GEOLOGICAL INSTITUTE RECEIVES AWARD TO CONTINUE COLD REGIONS DATABASE

ALEXANDRIA, VA — The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded the Cold Regions Bibliography Project to the American Geological Institute. The 5-year award supports the continuance of the Antarctic Bibliography and the Bibliography on Cold Regions Science and Technology and will be administered by the Foundation with funds from its Antarctic and Arctic research programs and from the U.S. Army Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory. Guy G. Guthridge, Office of Polar Programs at the National Science Foundation said of the award, "The high cost of research in remote and cold regions makes every scientific publication from the Antarctic and the Arctic an especially valuable contribution to world science. The Foundation and the Army are pleased that the American Geological Institute, with its bibliographic experience and its international reach to scientific institutions and individuals, is continuing the Antarctic and cold-regions bibliographies."

Scientific investigations being conducted in cold regions, especially during the last two decades, are providing new information about the Earth’s systems, evolution, and origin. These significant discoveries are helping researchers unravel the complexities associated with topics ranging from global climate change and ozone holes to life in extreme environments and weather prediction. The NSF and the U.S. Army have taken a leadership role in supporting this research and making the findings available to the public. In 1994, the director of the Scott Polar Research Institute (SPRI) stated in a letter to the NSF that the “SPRI places the highest importance upon this collaboration....The Antarctic Bibliography provides the essential foundation upon which all Antarctic science must build.” This was reiterated to the NSF in 1996 when the director of the British Antarctic Survey and the acting director of the SPRI wrote “the United States has insured that the Antarctic science community has one of the most complete regional bibliographies available for anywhere in the world” and that “a substantial proportion of publications listed in the Antarctic Bibliography cannot be found in any other bibliography or database.”

The current bibliographic databases contain nearly 250,000 citations of literature published throughout the world over the last 50 years in more than 65 languages, including reports, patents, maps, and other documents. The Antarctic Bibliography covers all disciplines pertaining to the region including biological and geological sciences, medical sciences, meteorology, oceanography, atmospheric and terrestrial physics, expeditions, logistics equipment and supplies, and tourism. The subject matter of the Bibliography on Cold Regions Science and Technology includes scientific and engineering research related to materiel and operations in a winter battlefield, the nature and impact of cold on facilities and activities, cold-related environmental problems, and the impact of human activity on cold environments.

The major goal of the Project is to maintain comprehensive coverage of the published literature on cold regions. AGI will add at least 2000 references annually to the Antarctic Bibliography and a minimum of 5000 references to the Bibliography on Cold Regions Science and Technology. Users of the databases include scientific researchers, government officials, industry, educators, and students. Both bibliographies will be made available to users via web-based products and CD-ROM.

The American Geological Institute has more than 30 years of experience building databases and compiling bibliographies. AGI produces GeoRef, a comprehensive geoscience bibliographic database with more than 2.3 million records, and in January, completed an NSF-funded conversion of the Arctic Bibliography to an electronic file. The Institute will apply its substantial experience and resources to the continued production of the two bibliographies with resultant cost-savings to the federal sponsors.

The American Geological Institute is a nonprofit federation of 35 geoscientific and professional associations that represent more than 100,000 geologists, geophysicists, and other earth scientists. Founded in 1948, AGI provides information services to geoscientists, serves as a voice of shared interests in our profession, plays a major role in strengthening geoscience education, and strives to increase public awareness of the vital role the geosciences play in mankind's use of resources and interaction with the environment. More information about AGI can be found at www.agiweb.org. The Institute also provides a public-outreach web site, www.earthscienceworld.org.