1. Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR)
SCAR’s mission is to advance research, including observations from Antarctica, and to promote scientific understanding, education and knowledge of the Antarctic region. To this end, SCAR is responsible for initiating and coordinating international research on Antarctica and the Southern Ocean for the benefit of global society. It provides independent and objective scientific information advice to the Antarctic Treaty System and other bodies, and is the main vehicle for the international exchange of information on Antarctica within the scientific community.
Descriptions of SCAR’s activities and scientific results are available at: http://www.scar.org/
2. Meeting of Latin American Antarctic Program Administrators (RAPAL)
RAPAL is a Latin American coordination meeting that takes place annually between Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Uruguay, Ecuador and Peru to deal with scientific, logistical and environmental issues in Antarctica. It originated from the meetings between the Antarctic Institutes of Argentina, Chile and Uruguay, with its first editions in Buenos Aires (1987), Santiago (1988) and Montevideo (1989). As of 1990, the operators of the Antarctic Programmes of Brazil, Peru and Ecuador were incorporated, and in the most recent editions Colombia and Venezuela have participated as observers.
In these meetings it has been agreed to hold biennial Antarctic Science Congresses in order to share information on the results of the research that Latin American programs have been developing, and thus aim at a greater joint research taking advantage of the scientific and logistical capabilities of the region’s programs.
To date, a total of 29 meetings have been held, which have facilitated coordination and cooperation among countries in the development of Antarctic operations. Important documents have also been prepared with the aim of promoting the protection of the Antarctic environment, safety and Antarctic occupational health, among which the following stand out:
- Antarctic Accident Prevention Manual
- Manual on First Aid (Recommendation XXI-12)
- Antarctic Environmental Protection Guidelines Manual (Recommendation XXIII-2)
On the website http://www.rapal.org.ar/ it is possible to find the documentation generated in each Meeting, the terms of reference, audiovisual material and contact details, among others.
3. Council of Administrators of National Antarctic Programmes (COMNAP)
COMNAP is the organization in charge of National Antarctic Programmes that brings together, in particular, the national authorities responsible for planning, directing and managing support for Antarctic scientific activities on behalf of their respective governments.
COMNAP is an international association, formed in September 1988, whose Members are the 30 National Antarctic Programmes of: Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Chile, China, Czech Republic, Ecuador, Finland, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Poland, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States and Uruguay. Currently, the National Antarctic Programmes of Canada (from August 2016), Portugal (from August 2015) and Venezuela (from August 2015) are observer organizations of COMNAP.
The purpose of COMNAP is to develop and promote best practices in the management of support for scientific research in Antarctica. As an organization, COMNAP is in charge of adding value to the efforts of National Antarctic Programs, serving as a forum to develop practices that improve the effectiveness of activities in an environmentally responsible manner, facilitating and promoting international alliances, and providing opportunities and systems for the exchange of information.
COMNAP strives to provide the Antarctic Treaty System with both objective, practical, technical and apolitical advice and first-hand knowledge of Antarctica provided by the broad group of National Antarctic Programme experts.