CHRISTOS S. ZEREFOS

Secretary General, Academy of Athens; Climate Envoy for Greece; Head, Research Centre for Atmospheric Physics and Climatology, Academy of Athens, Greece, zerefos@geol.uoa.gr.


ACADEMIC POSITIONS

Head, Research Centre for Atmospheric Physics and Climatology of the Academy of Athens (2008- ); Professor of Atmospheric Physics, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece (2002-2010); Professor of Atmospheric Physics and Director of the Postgraduate Studies in Environmental Physics, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece (1979-2002); Head of the Center for Environmental Effects on Health, Biomedical Research Foundation, Academy of Athens (2003- ). Scientific Collaborator (Samarbeidspartnere), University of Oslo, Norway (1995); Honorary Fellow (Fulbright Scholar), University of Minnesota, USA (1985); Visiting Professor, Physics and Astronomy Department, Boston University, Boston, USA (1983); In the past 4 decades has supervised 55 masters and more than 30 PhD theses.


HONOURS AND AWARDS

Ηas received a number of internationally recognized awards, among which the Order of Honour from the President of the Hellenic Republic (2020) and the French Government Decoration “Commandeur dans l’ordre de Palmes académiques“ (2015). Honorary Professor of the Physics Department of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (2018), Honorary Doctorate Degree, University of Patras (2016), Honorary Degree of Doctor of Humane Letters, University Division of the American College ANATOLIA, Thessaloniki (2008). Global Ozone Award, UNEP on the 10th Anniversary of the Montreal Protocol (1997), Awards of the American Geophysical Union (Editors Award for Excellence in Refereeing, 1998 and Yoram Kaufman Award, 2015), of the European Academy of Sciences (Blaise Pascal Medal, 2015), UNEP Honourable Mentions (1995, 1999, 2012), “Honorary Member” of the International Ozone Commission (2016), the Gold Medal of the City of Thessaloniki (2008), Badge of Honor of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences (2018), the “Ioan Ursu” Medal of the Balkan Physical Union (2018), the "European Union Prize for Cultural Heritage / Europa Nostra Award" awarded to the National Observatory of Athens for the establishment of the Geoastrophysics Museum and the rehabilitation of the laboratories and the Library of the National Observatory under his supervision (2010). In the past 20 years has acted as contributor or reviewer in most WMO/UNEP Scientific Assessments of Ozone Depletion (Montreal Protocol Who’s Who https://montrealprotocolwhoswho.org/, https://public.wmo.int). Has served as review editor of Chapter 5: Solar Ultraviolet Irradiance at the Ground of IPCC “Aviation & the Global Atmosphere” Report (1999)[1][2][3] and as reviewer, for the IPCC “Special Report on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (SREX)” (2012) (https://archive.ipcc.ch/ipccreports/sres/aviation/index.php?idp=54, https://www.ipcc.ch/site/assets/uploads/2018/03/SREX_Full_Report-1.pdf). The Nobel Peace Prize for 2007 was awarded to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and former US Vice President Al Gore.

His proposal to the Greek Government (2019) for the creation of a flexible international mechanism to protect natural and cultural heritage monuments from climate change has been included in the emblematic UN activities by the Secretary General of the UN, Antonio Guterres. This initiative has been supported by more than 100 countries, UNESCO, the World Meteorological Organization and other NGOs such as ICOMOS and Europa Nostra.


SELECTED MEMBERSHIP TO SCIENTIFIC SOCIETIES AND COMMITTEES

Member of the American Geophysical Union (1983-1999) and Life Member (since 2000), Foreign Member of the Norwegian Academy of Sciences and Letters (since 1998), Secretary of the International Ozone Commission (2000-2008) and President (2008-2016), Member of the European Academy of Sciences and Arts (since 2002), Member of the Environment Strategy Group (ESG) of the European Academies Science Advisory Council (EASAC) (since 2002), Fellow of the Institute of Physics (since 2002), Member of the Hellenic National Commission for UNESCO (since 2006), Member of the Academy of Athens (since 2007), Member of the International Academy of Astronautics (since 2008), President of the Greek National Committee of the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics (IUGG) (since 2008) and Member of the IUGG Council (since 2016), National Representative of the Greek GEO Office (since 2008), Member of the Academia Europaea (since 2008), Corresponding Member of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences (since 2009), Member of the Georgian Academy of Natural Sciences (since 2009), Member of the European Academy of Sciences (since 2010), Member of the Board of Directors of the Centre for Hellenistic Studies, Library of Alexandria (since 2011), Member of the National Council for Climate Change Adaptation of the Ministry of Environment and Energy (since 2017), Climate Envoy for Greece (since 2019).


RESEARCH POSITIONS

Has been working in the field of atmospheric sciences and climatology for the past 45 years. His research positions include Postdoc, Advanced Study Programme at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, USA; the National Hellenic Research Foundation; the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, USA; the University of Oslo; the Laboratories of Atmospheric Physics, Universities of Athens and Thessaloniki, Greece; the National Observatory, Athens; the Academy of Athens. Participated in more than 90 research projects (60 of which from EU, WMO and the US). Has participated in prestigious international research committees and commissions e.g. Member of EU Advisory Groups for DGXII; Member of the WMO AD HOC Scientific Steering Committee on UV Monitoring and the WMO AD HOC Scientific Steering Committee on Ozone (Ozone-SAG); Member of the ENRICH Council of the European Union; Member of the WMO Executive Council Panel of Experts/CAS Working Group on Environmental Pollution and Atmospheric Chemistry; Member of EU (EC) Stratospheric Science Panel which organized all European Arctic stratospheric ozone experiments, among other large projects. Has served as Secretary and President of the International Ozone Commission (IO3C) and elected Honorary Member of IO3C in 2016.


SELECTED RESEARCH

Christos Zerefos became known in the 70s for his studies on the long- and short-term variability of ozone. The solar activity effects in the lower stratosphere, e.g. his paper with Paul Crutzen (JGR, 1975) was one of the first studies to model the physics of solar activity-stratosphere relations. With Harry van Loon they first observed the El Nino signals in the lower stratosphere (Mon. Weather Rev., 1982) and in the columnar ozone (JGR, 1992). His early papers on long term trends in stratospheric temperatures and total ozone include one of his most important papers with Stolarski et al. (Science, 1992), which boosted the scientific basis for the Montreal Protocol, which led out to the phase out of halocarbons. This work has been updated in 2014 (Zerefos et al., ACP, 2014).
His papers on the inverse relationship between ozone and UV-B, provided for the first time evidence that UV-B had significant positive trends. “A note on the recent increase of solar UV-B over northern mid latitudes”, GRL, 1995, “Optical properties of tropospheric aerosols …, Appl. Optics, 1997, "Spectral measurements of solar UVB radiation and its relations to total ozone, SO2, and clouds", JGR, 1993 as well as his papers on record low total ozone anomalies and the effects of volcanic eruptions (e.g. with Bojkov “Record low total ozone during northern winters of 1992 and 1993", GRL 1993). In the 80s Zerefos pioneered in establishing regular well calibrated observations of UV spectral irradiance worldwide. In the 90s has pioneered in the establishment of the European UV-B observing network which started from his initiative with Anne Webb and Alkis Bais (Zerefos et al, GRL, 1997). His thorough research with the Brewer spectroradiometer led to its establishment as a model instrument to measure columnar ozone, SO2 and UV spectral irradiances (Zerefos et al., J. Photoch. & Photobio., 1995; Zerefos et al., GRL, 1997) and with Bais and McElroy (GRL, 1996; Appl. Optics, 1998). His papers on the inverse relationship between ozone and UV-B, provided for the first-time evidence that clear sky UV-B had significant positive trends (GRL, 1995; Appl. Optics, 1997) as well as his papers on record low total ozone anomalies and the effects of volcanic eruptions (e.g. with Bojkov, GRL 1993).
In the 90s Zerefos has organized large EU-funded campaigns to study the processes of ozone-aerosol-radiation and photochemical interactions in the Mediterranean (PAUR Campaigns I, II and MEDCAPHOT Campaign with Ziomas) (Zerefos et al., JGR, 1997; Balis et al., JGR, 1997; Zanis et al., JGR, 1997; Hofzumahaus et al., JGR, 1997; Kourtidis et al., JGR, 1997; Kouvarakis et al., JGR, 1997). In the 2000s he participated in the MATCH Campaigns joining the European group led by Rex, Schultz and others which studied ozone loss rates inside and outside of the polar vortex (JGR, 2001; GRL, 2000, 2006). On another collaborative project with Stohl et al., studied and reviewed mechanisms of stratosphere-troposphere exchange (JGR, 2003) and with Harris he revisited trends in stratospheric and free tropospheric ozone (JGR, 1997). Notable is his research in the variability of UV-B (GRL, 1997; GRL, 1998) and its natural fluctuations from volcanic signals in the ozone layer (JGR, 1994). He has experimentally discovered the effects in the stratosphere of the solar eclipses of 1999 (JGR, 2000) and 2006 (ACP, 2007, 2008) presenting evidence of atmospheric gravity waves following the supersonic transport of the moon’s shadow in the ozone layer.
Has served as review Editor of Chapter 5 of the IPCC Aviation Report (1999) and as Reviewer of the IPCC Special Report on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (2013). The paper with Sausen “Aviation radiative forcing in 2000: An update on IPCC” (Met. Z., 2005) as well as his papers in JGR, 1997, 2005; ACP, 2003, 2012; Tellus B, 2009 in which the solar radiation ozone climate interaction and trends are studied, are included among his highly cited papers.
His pioneering work on the use of red-to-green ratios to detect aerosol in paintings by great masters (Zerefos et al, 2007, 2014) is being widely discussed in scientific and mass media globally. Other papers include climatological-paleoclimatological studies with Luterbacher et al. (Climate Change, 2010; Environ. Res. Lett., 2016). More recently, his papers on Copernicus services and products have been widely quoted (Inness et al., ACP, 2013, 2015; Wagner, ACP, 2015; Eskes, Geosci. Model Dev., 2015) and together with several of the previously mentioned papers have been selected as hot spots by the editors of prestigious scientific journals. His bibliometric indices are: 269 publications with 8.634 citations (without self-citations), h-index 56 (from Web of Knowledge, March 2022) and a total of 520 publications with 14.537 citations, h-index 67 (from Google Scholar, March 2022).
In the past 45 years Zerefos has established a high-level long-lasting collaboration with WMO and the DG Research and Innovation of EU. He has co-organized with WMO the historic 1984 Quadrennial Ozone Symposium where the ozone “hole” has first been presented by Chubachi and established by Farman et al. (1985) as well as the adoption of Bass and Paur ozone absorption coefficients, which has been globally used by the global ozone observing network. Also, in collaboration with WMO, he organized the 2004 Quadrennial Ozone Symposium and other international ozone-climate symposia in 1994, 1995, 1998, 1999. On the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the Montreal Protocol has co-organized with WMO a Symposium in 2007 at Athens, Greece. Subsequently has co-organized with Sophie Godin-Beekmann the 30th anniversary of the Montreal Protocol in Paris, France (2017).
Has created from zero the WMO Northern Hemisphere Ozone Mapping Center (1991), which has served the international scientific community. This service has been appreciated by the WMO RA-VI Congress (2-13 May 1994) and by the European Commission particularly during 1995-1996 in which reliable satellite observations were not available. Has acted as author, contributor, or reviewer in almost all WMO/UNEP Scientific Assessments of Ozone Depletion. Co-authored more than 20 WMO related reports and has established, in collaboration with WMO, the WMO “Professor Mariolopoulos Award”, created in 1996 and a WMO trust fund was created, fully financed by the Mariolopoulos-Kanaginis Foundation.


RESEARCH CENTERS CREATED FROM ZERO UNDER CHRISTOS ZEREFOS INITIATIVE

In the past 35 years Christos Zerefos has created from zero recognized educational and research Institutions such as: (1) The Laboratory for Atmospheric Physics, Physics Department, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (1981) [http://lap.physics.auth.gr/] (2) The WMO Northern Hemisphere Ozone Mapping Center, Laboratory of Atmospheric Physics, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (1991) (http://lap.physics.auth.gr/ozonemaps2/), (3) The Graduate Program on Environmental Physics, Physics Department, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (1991) (http://lap.physics.auth.gr/pms/) (4) The Center for the Environmental Effects on Health, Biomedical Research Foundation of the Academy of Athens (2003) http://www.bioacademy.gr/lab/zerefos), (5) The UNESCO Chair on Natural Hazards (2006-2019) (http://en.unesco.org/sites/default/files/list-unesco-chairs.pdf) (6) The Greek GEO Office of the National Observatory of Athens (www.greekgeo.noa.gr) (2007) (7) The Geoastrophysics Museum, National Observatory Athens, Greece (2008) (http://www.noa.gr/museum/english/index_en.html), (8) The Navarino Environmental Observatory at Messenia, Greece together with the University of Stockholm and TEMES S.A. (2009) (https://www.navarinoneo.se/).


ADMINISTRATIVE POSITIONS

Secretary General, Academy of Athens (2020- ); Focal Point for Greece, Action for Climate Empowerment (ACE) of UNFCCC (2020- ); Climate Envoy for Greece (2019- ); President elect of the General Assembly of the Greek Foundation for Research and Innovation, Ministry of Education, Research and Religious Affairs (2017-2018); Vice President of the Centre for Renewable Energy Sources and Saving (CRES) (2014-2016); Vice President of the National Council for Research and Technology (2014-2016); Director of the Greek Edition of National Geographic (2013-2014); External Member of the Council of the Democritus University of Thrace (2013-2016); Coordinator of the Climate Change Impacts Study Committee of the Bank of Greece (2008- ); President of the Board of Directors of “Biomedical Sciences and Technologies S.A.” of the Biomedical Research Foundation of the Academy of Athens (2008- ); Member of the High Level Working Group of the Group on Earth Observations (GEO) (2008- ); Member of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) (2005-2010); President of the Board of Directors of the National Observatory, Athens (2005-2010); President of the Mariolopoulos-Kanaginis Foundation for the Environmental Sciences (2004- ); National Representative at the Council of the European Space Agency (2004-2006); Chairman of the Sectoral Scientific Council on Environment and Renewable Energy of the National Committee for Research and Technology (2003-2009); President of the American Universities Alumni Association, Branch of Northern Greece (1999-2003) and Honorary President (2003- ); President of the Balkan Physical Union (1997-2003); Coordinator of the Balkan Environmental Research and Development Institute (B.E.R.D.I.) of the Balkan Physical Union (1992); Director of the WMO Northern Hemisphere Ozone Mapping Center, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (1991- ); State Secretary for the Environment, Ministry of the Environment, Hellenic Republic (1989); Director of the Division of Applied and Environmental Physics, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (1984 and 1985); Director of the Research Center for Atmospheric Physics and Climatology, Academy of Athens (1979).


FOOTNOTES

1. IPCC Pachauri Letter

2. IPCC Certificate

3. UNEP Executive Director Letter