Govt drops BAS merger
The Government has dropped plans to merge the British Antarctic Survey with the National Oceanography Centre.
Making the announcement, Science Minister David Willetts said that, having listened to responses to the public consultation on the proposed merger, the Natural Environment Research Council decided not to proceed.
In a Written Ministerial Statement today, Mr Willetts said:
“The British Antarctic Survey is a national and international asset that delivers world-class environmental science, and this country’s strategic presence in Antarctica and the South Atlantic. The UK’s commitment to continuing this dual mission in the region is as strong as ever.
“NERC has already committed to maintain the funding of the British Antarctic Survey at £42m a year for the rest of this spending review period.”
On Wednesday Mr Willetts said the merger was based on scientific grounds, telling MPs
“There is a scientific judgment here, which was put forward in the consultation document, that, partly as a result of climate change, polar science and oceanographic science are converging.”