Commemorative Lectures by Winners of the Blue Planet Award 2008

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Commemorative Lectures by Winners of the Blue Planet Award 2008
  • October 17, 2008

Commemorative Lectures by Winners of the Blue Planet Award 2008

The National Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES) is pleased to host the commemorative lectures by winners of the 2008 Blue Planet Award on November 14, 2008. This award recognizes scientific contributions to environmental issues. Winners are invited to NIES every year to address the researchers at NIES and other members of the Tsukuba community.

  • Date: Friday, November 14, 2008
  • Time: 1pm to 2:30pm
  • Place: Conference Room (Climate Change Research Hall, 1st Floor) at the National Institute for Environmental Studies (16-2 Onogawa, Tsukuba)
  • Language: Both lectures will be given in English. There will be no simultaneous interpretation.
  • Cost: This event is free but requires pre-registration.

Please fill out the application form ( by November 7 if you would like to attend.

The National Institute of Environmental Studies is located on Nishi Odori, just north of the intersection of Nishi Odori and Route 354. (The intersection is named "Inarimae".) From Tsukuba Center, drive south on Nishi Odori, past Minami Odori and Doho Park (which will be on your left). Continue south past the west campus of the National Institute for Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST West) on your right and the Meteorological Research Institute on your left. At the following intersection, turn right (you will see a Coco's restaurant on your left). If you reach Route 354, you have gone too far.


The Climate Change Research Hall is located inside the NIES Campus. Immediately after you enter the main gate, turn right. Follow the road north. The first building you encounter will be the Climate Change Research Hall. The lectures will be held on the first floor of that building.

2008 Winners: Dr. Claude Lorius (French Republic) and Professor José Goldemberg (Federative Republic of Brazil)


Blue Planet Prize

This year marks the 17th awarding of the Blue Planet Prize, the international environmental award sponsored by the Asahi Glass Foundation, chaired by Hiromichi Seya. Two Blue Planet Prizes are awarded to individuals or organizations each year that make outstanding achievements in scientific research and its application, and in so doing help to solve global environmental problems. The Board of Directors and Councillors selected the following recipients for this year. Both recipients will be awarded a certificate of merit, a commemorative trophy and a supplementary award of 50 million yen.


Dr. Claude Lorius (French Republic)

Dr. Claude Lorius (French Republic)
Director Emeritus of Research, CNRS   
Member of the French Academy of Sciences

Dr. Lorius began his research on Antarctic glaciers and ice sheet from the mid-1950s and made a total of 22 polar expeditions mostly to Antarctica. Through those expeditions together with various teams of international experts, he drilled ice cores, analyzed them and disclosed the global climate change which took place in the last 400,000 years. Comprehensive studies on the ice cores allowed to obtain both past temperatures and composition of the atmosphere. Among those achievements, the relation he discovered between climate change during glacial and interglacial periods and atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide and methane through ice sheet cores drilled at Vostok station, the coldest place on earth, was exceptional. Based on these results, Dr. Lorius has indicated that current atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide is unprecedentedly high and that this high level may possibly be due to human activity and warned of a consequent global warming of the planet.
Professor José Goldemberg (Federative Republic of Brazil)

Professor José Goldemberg (Federative Republic of Brazil)
Professor, Institute of Electrotechnics and Energy, University of São Paulo, Former Rector, University of São Paulo

Professor Goldemberg began making a thorough study on energy problems from the late 1960’s, and in 1973 after the oil crisis he served a major role in the adoption of bio-ethanol program, thus had made major contributions in formulating and promoting energy policies in Brazil. In the 1980’s he designed an energy strategy which contributed to global sustainable development in which he devised a pioneering concept of “technological leapfrogging” for the developing countries where they could develop through strategies by introducing innovative technologies and with this concept he made a significant contribution in promoting renewable energy for a sustainable development. In 1992 as the Environment Minister of Brazil, he was active in preparing for the Rio Earth Summit and afterwards he exhibited strong leadership on environmental issues including energy, global warming, ethics, policies and deforestation, not only in Brazil domestically but also internationally including United Nations and other organizations, and in particular, he contributed in the implementation of many policies associated with improvements on energy use and conservation.