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ISIS Consortium Launches

Today, a new research group has been announced that will focus on furthering our understanding of the efficacy and impacts of ocean iron fertilization (OIF).

An initial group of twelve universities and research centers from around the world have come together to found the ISIS (in situ iron studies) Consortium.  Its mission is to explore the potential impact of iron fertilization of the oceans for reducing the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the Earth’s atmosphere and to understand the environmental impacts of the technique.   The caliber and diversity of scientists and institutions involved represents a substantial leap in breadth and capability of research on this topic. The consortium website, available at, describes the planned activities and members of ISIS. 

I have been an early team member involved in the concept and implementation of the consortium and am pleased to announce that I will shift my efforts to bring forward a next generation of OIF experiments completely under this new group.  I will do so as a private citizen with no expected commercial benefit.


I believe that the signs global change may be accelerating (record yearly average temperatures, melting of icecaps and glaciers, insufficient winter die-off of pests like the pine bark beetle, ocean acidification, extreme flooding and wildfires, etc) provide a strong rationale to scale up our efforts to explore the potential benefits and repercussions of Ocean Iron Fertilization (OIF) as well as other carbon and solar-based climate engineering techniques.    Given the failure of governments to maintain economic signals that can support market-based solutions, non-commercial efforts like the ISIS Consortium may be our only chance to deliver the answers we need. It is my hope that it serves as a model for others pursuing technologies like this to emulate.

Clearly no single climate engineering approach known today could address all the impacts of climate change—just as no single effort to mitigate carbon emissions can have a majority role by itself.  If ever deployed, climate engineering techniques must be part of a comprehensive and aggressive global effort to limit and eventually eliminate carbon emissions.


I am proud of the role that the team at Climos and our various advisors and colleagues played in advancing the dialogue around OIF, and in particular helping to design a global regulatory framework under the London Convention and Protocol.  I am excited that we may now be entering the important next phase of this research.  Over the next five to ten years we may finally see mature scale studies that give governments the insights they need to make informed decisions.  It is my honor to be able to serve this new larger effort.

As of this date, Climos has ceased regular business activities. Our website will remain active as a record of our activities and the materials we produced.

I would like to personally thank the extraordinary number of people who came together over the last five years in support of us and our mission, and who understood the importance of the fundamental objective we had. 

Particular recognition is owed our Science Advisory Board, including Rita Colwell, Jody Deming, Bob Gagosian, Tom Lovejoy, Deirdre Meldrum and Ed Miles, who courageously supported our goal of bringing this research forward and whose resolve is now vindicated by this new group.

Most of all, I’d like to thank my colleagues, Dick Whilden, Margaret Leinen, Bill Kohrs, Kevin Whilden, Aileen Corpuz, Sharon Manuel and Ben Grant, who together made it all possible. 



Dan Whaley

CEO, Climos


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