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GEACEP- Greenhouse to ice-house: Evolution of the Antarctic Cryosphere and Palaeoenvironment


This project is part of the BAS GSAC five year research programme. It was funded by NERC and covered a period from 2005 to 2009.

GEACEP aims to investigate the relationship between the evolution of Antarctic ice and the changing global environment over the last ~30 million years.

It will involve data collection through new field measurements from the Ross Sea and the Antarctic Peninsula, and reference records from southern high latitudes and a representative number of sites worldwide. The results will be compared with the outputs of numerical climate models, to improve their ability to reproduce past large-scale changes.

GEACEP has links with CACHE, GRADES, ACES, BIOFLAME and COMPLEXITY. It has one component, ISODYN- Icehouse Earth, Stability Or DYNamism?

Scientific Objectives

  • Examine the nature of past warm climates over the last 30 million years
  • Clarify the forcing and feedback mechanisms associated with the climate shift from "greenhouse " to "icehouse " conditions ~30 millions years ago
  • Examine the stability of the permanent Antarctic ice sheet over its ~20 million years history

Data Availability

Data sets collected during this project are available to the academic community.

Acronyms used in the text:

BAS- British Antarctic Survey

GSAC- Global Science in an Antarctic Context

NERC- Natural Environment Research Council

CACHE- Climate and Chemistry: forcings, feedbacks and phasings in the Earth system

GRADES- Glacial Retreat in Antarctica and Deglaciation of the Earth System

ACES- Antarctic Climate and the Earth System

BIOFLAME- Biodiversity, Function, limits and Adaptation from Molecules to Ecosystems

COMPLEXITY- Natural Complexity Programme