Welcome to the new CliC SSG co-chair & members!

With the new year comes new members to the CliC Scientific Steering Group (SSG). We are delighted to welcome Edward Hanna, who joins Fiammetta Straneo as co-chair of the SSG, as well as members Juan Hoefer, Thamban Meloth, Ramiro Saurral and Lauren Vargo. They are appointed for a 4-year period, until December 2025. Read more about them below. And check the current composition of the SSG here.

We take the opportunity to thank outgoing member Lars H. Smedsrud and co-chair James Renwick for long service and invaluable contributions to the project. Wishing you all the best in your future endavours. You will be missed!

James Renwick (co-chair 2017-2021)
Lars H. Smedsrud (member 2016-2021)






Picture of Edward HannaEdward Hanna is Professor in Climate Science and Meteorology and Coordinator of the Lincoln Climate Research Group in the Department of Geography, University of Lincoln, UK. He has wide interests in climate and cryosphere and has been a keen meteorologist since age 7. He obtained his PhD on Antarctic sea ice and climate couplings from the University of Bristol, following a first degree in Planetary Science at University College London. His research focuses on the Greenland Ice Sheet mass balance and how it is influenced by, and influences, climate change and extreme weather. Results of this work have been reported by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and he was a Contributing Author on their Fifth Assessment Report. He is a regular contributor to the National Oceanographic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)’s Arctic Report Card, has published 140 peer-reviewed papers, won the Royal Meteorological Society International Journal of Climatology Editor’s Award 2017 and was a co-recipient of the Institute of Marine Engineering, Science and Technology’s 2019 Denny Medal. He leads a Natural Environment Research Council funded project, collaborating with the Met Office and others, on improving seasonal prediction of atmospheric jet stream changes over the North Atlantic, and therefore weather conditions over north-west Europe, using complex systems models. He also investigates Arctic-mid latitude weather/climate linkages. He has conducted fieldwork in Greenland, Lapland, Svalbard and the Chilean Andes. He currently acts as the CliC liaison for the ISMASS expert group. He is passionate about promoting climate and cryosphere matters with diverse audiences.

Juan Höfer is Associate Professor at the School of Marine Sciences at the the Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Valparaiso, Chile. A biologist studying the biological component of the Oceans over the last 15 years. Juan is particularly interested in the interactions between the physico-chemical conditions and the biological component in a changing ocean. Since 2017 he has researched Antarctic marine ecosystems and how global change (especially freshening) will affect their functioning and thus their role in global biogeochemical cycles and the climate. Ramiro has established a close collaboration with researchers working in the Arctic, broadening the insights achieved by his research.

His main research line now is the effects of melting glaciers on polar coastal ecosystems (MarC theme). He is particularly interested in how the marine cryosphere interacts with coastal Antarctic ecosystems affecting the role that the later will have in the climate system through air-sea fluxes of climate-relevant trace-gases. Up to date, it is unknown what is coming into the oceans along with the meltwater (e.g. trace metals, sediment load) and a reliable assessment of these parameters is key to model and predict the effects that a melting cryosphere would have on Earth climate system. 

Thamban Meloth is a senior scientist and Group Director of Polar Sciences at the National Centre for Polar and Ocean Research (NCPOR) under the Ministry of Earth Sciences, India. His current studies focus on the past climate variability and cryosphere processes in polar regions and Himalaya. Particularly, his studies explore the variability in Antarctic maritime climate during the past millennia and its linkages to the tropical climate modes using ice core proxy records. He also has a strong interest in biogeochemical cycling within snow, ice and other supraglacial systems. Recently, he is also leading studies on the response of Himalayan cryosphere to the changing climate and its hydrological impacts. He has extensive experience in undertaking field expeditions to Antarctica, Himalaya and Svalbard.

Thamban is a Fellow of the National Academy of Sciences India. He has received many awards and recognitions, including the START Young Scientist Award in 2001 and the National Geoscience Award in 2013. Thamban is a member of the scientific steering committee of International Partnerships in Ice Core Sciences (IPICS) and the cryosphere working group of International Arctic Science Committee (IASC).

Ramiro Saurral is a  professor at the Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Universidad de Buenos Aires and a full-time researcher at the Center of Atmospheric Research (CIMA), Argentina. His main research interests include understanding the physical mechanisms associated with climate linkages between high-and mid-latitudes, and how these shape the ocurrence of climate and weather extremes in the mid-latudes. He is also interested in synoptic-scale phenomena such as cold/heat waves and blocking, as well as on the physical processes behind them. Ramiro has expertise in near-term climate predictions (seasonal to interannual scales), and I am interested in the predictive skill of the climate at high latitudes, including sea ice and the effect of warm air reaching the polar regions om frozen surfaces.

Lauren Vargo, postdoctoral fellow, Victoria University of Wellington.

 Lauren Vargo is a researcher at the Antarctic Research Centre at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. She finished her PhD in 2019 at the same research centre, after working at Los Alamos National Lab (2015) and studying at the University of New Mexico (2015) and the College of Wooster (2013). Her research focuses on better understanding how and why glaciers and seasonal snow are changing, by using field observations, remote sensing data, climate reanalysis data, GCM output, and numerical modeling. Lauren help conduct an annual survey of New Zealand glaciers that has run since 1977, and uses these records of glacier change to answer research questions centered around the impact of climate change on glacier melt. In addition to research, her secondary interests include increasing access to science and glaciology, including as the co-founder of Girls on Ice Aotearoa/New Zealand, and communicating climate science in ways that engage and inform the public. Lauren is also involved with the International Glaciological Society (IGS) and the International Association of Cryospheric Sciences (IACS).