The Antarctic Treaty reserves Antarctica as a protected place for scientific investigation. Because of this special designation and all the important work that happens at the bottom of the world, the research stations are often visited by politicians who are responsible for writing environmental legislation or influencing environmental policy.

Diana and Prince Albert

This year a PRINCE visited the station! Albert Grimaldi (better known as Albert II, Sovereign Prince of Monaco) visited Antarctica to meet with scientists studying climate change. He is very curious about global warming and wants to understand how it is impacting the southernmost continent, and how this might affect the rest of the planet.

As part of his scientific tour of McMurdo, the prince visited our lab and checked out the worms under the microscope!
Prince Albert at the Microscope

Byron and Diana answered his questions about the ecology of the Dry Valleys, and they took the opportunity to stress the importance of our Antarctic research in understanding not only climate change, but complex interactions between soil animals and their environment that cannot be done anywhere else. He seemed very interested in our research and complimented us on all our hard work.
Ecology Lecture for the Prince