The 1st Southern Hemisphere Conference on Permafrost (SouthCOP2019) is an international conference of permafrost. It was held in Queenstown, New Zealand for 11 days from December 4 to 14, 2019. Queenstown is surrounded by a rich natural environment and Lake Wakatipu. Before and after the meeting, some field trips were conducted on the surrounding natural environment.
At the conference, I was able to learn about the latest research mainly on topics such as remote sensing observation, rock glaciers, relation between permafrost and climate change, and permafrost in alpine areas. In particular, I was really impressed with two presentations. One is about the detection of flow velocity of rock glaciers using satellite data and another is a database of the latest satellite observation results. Through my presentation about the permafrost thawing at post-wildfire areas in Siberia, I was able to exchange information with overseas researchers.
After the meeting, I participated in a three-day field trip. Two local researchers served as guides, and about 20 researchers participated in the trip. The main destinations were the Alpine Fault, which traverses the South Island of New Zealand, and the periglacial environment of the Otago region, which is formed through the thawing and freezing of frozen soil. Local researchers told us about the terrain through excavation at some sites. The experience of communication in English with other researchers increased my willingness to participate in overseas research activities.
Finally, thanks to the ArCS project, I gained valuable experience at the international conference and the field trip. I would like to express my gratitude again to this project for giving me precious opportunity.
Yanagiya Kazuki (Hokkaido University)