There is an urgent need to better understand the current state and health of Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. Recent decades have witnessed unprecedented changes in Antarctic sea-ice coverage, ocean salinity and temperature and ice-shelf stability, with far-reaching implications for Earth’s climate system, global sea-level rise, ecosystems and society.

The East Antarctic Monitoring Program aims to deliver sustained, coordinated, and long-term (multi-decadal) observations of essential climate, ocean and biological/ecological variables in key areas of East Antarctica and the Southern Ocean at the appropriate temporal and spatial scales.

These observations are critical to improving our understanding of the role of this complex ice-ocean-atmosphere-biosphere system in the broader Earth system – and to detect and quantify the nature and impacts of change and variability therein. 

Detecting change allows us to mitigate against pressures and more confidently predict future responses to a warming climate by improving our capacity for both short-term forecasting and long-term prediction.

The Integrated East Antarctic Monitoring Program explicitly links monitoring to end-user needs to inform management and policy interventions framed in the Australian Antarctic Strategy, and contributing to international frameworks and commitments.