The long term research program ICECUBE (Coastal Underwater Benthic Ecosystems) provides fundamental information on the structural and functional biodiversity of Antarctic coastal benthic ecosystems. The Antarctic marine ecosystem is under threat as a result of global climate change and other anthropogenic influences. Characterising the structure and function of benthic ecosystems and determining ... their relationships to key environmental factors across a range of spatial and biological scales is essential to an improved understanding of Antarctic ecology and wise management of the Antarctic coastal zone. Several sites in the Ross Sea Region, including Cape Evans, New Harbour, Dunlop Island, Spike Cape, Granite Harbour and two sites in Terra Nova Bay, Gerlache Inlet and Tethys Bay were investigated. Dive surveys to characterise the physical habitat, quantify biodiversity (epifauna and flora) of the seafloor, collect sediment cores to determine grain size, stable isotope struture, benthic chlorophyll concentration, algal species composition and relative abundance, collect sea-ice algal cores and make measurements on water temperature, water column chlorophyll fluorescence and changes in photosynthetically available radiation are part of the data collection from these sites. This information will be used to develop models of biodiversity response over multiple spatial scales and levels of biological organisation, that will enable us to better-predict how this valuable ecosystem will respond to trace the movement of primary production through the benthic community.