Scientists have become increasingly aware of the importance and contribution of polar oceans and the part they play in driving the Earth’s climate. The annual variation of polar sea ice extent influences not only the exchange, but also the distribution of moisture and solar energy. In addition, concentrated seasonal inputs of dense brine contribute to driving ocean circulation. Of particular importance in exerting controls on energy distribution and circulation is the high reflectivity of ice and snow. The higher reflectivity of ice covered water, in contrast to that of ice free water, is capable of generating a greater variation in the degree of solar energy reflected than other regions of the Earth. With this knowledge, it is evident that in order to better understand solar energy transfer and improve present and future climate variability predictions, the capacity to rapidly determine past sea ice extent and the associated climatic response is crucial.
Recent developments in the Petroleum and Environmental Geochemistry Group (PEGG) at the University of Plymouth, UK, have enabled high resolution monitoring of shifts in sea ice cover over the last several thousand years. This is made possible by looking at the chemical fingerprint of specific species of microscopic algae that live within sea ice. Every year when the sea ice melts, these algae are released to the seafloor where their chemical signature is preserved over many years.
Currently, the growth and development of these microscopic algae over the spring season have been monitored in detail in a localised region of the Canadian Arctic. While this has vastly improved our knowledge relating to the monitoring of sea ice, Anthony’s expedition to the North Pole will expand our knowledge into the high Arctic greatly enhancing the range of our sea ice data and will provide increased confidence in sea ice reconstructions. The logistical and technical difficulties in obtaining such samples make this opportunity unmissable in terms of moving forward in climate change studies within the Arctic.
Collecting sea ice for scientific analysis in polar conditions is highly challenging. Long coring devices, similar to an apple corer, will be used to manually ‘drill’ into the frozen sea surface to collect the bottom few centimetres of sea ice where the algae are found to live. A quick inspection of this ice will show whether or not these algae are present. The ice is then gently melted and passed through a small fibre filter to collect the algae. The filter is then sealed in a low volume sterile bag and packed into the sled where it is kept at ambient Arctic temperatures, preserving the algae and their chemical fingerprint for later analysis in the laboratories in Plymouth.
This is what we are looking for;
“Sarah MacNair Landry”:http://www.northwinds-arctic.com/sarah.html from Iqaluit, Baffin Island, Canada
No stranger to cold weather, Sarah McNair-Landry grew up with the Arctic Ocean and a team of dogs in her back yard. With two polar guides as parents, she spent her childhood outside dog sledding and camping. At the age of 17 she got the chance to head out on a “family holiday”, crossing the Greenland ice cap. From there she continued on to become the youngest to reach both the North and South Pole, traveled over 2300km by kite-ski crossing Greenland with her brother and friend, and spent two month traveling by dog sled with legendary explorer Will Steger. Recently she guided a ski expedition to the South Pole and teamed up with her brother to kite-buggy across the Gobi desert.
Between expeditions, she still manages to find time to pursue her other passion: film. And is currently directing a documentary on waste management. She splits her time between Baffin Island and the rest of the world.
2009 Pittarak, Gobi expedition “www.pittarak.com”:www.pittarak.com
2008-09 Guide for South Pole Expedition
2008, Global Warming 101, Greenland Expedition, Kite Ski Traverse East to West
2008 Global Warming 101, “Ellesmere Expedition”:www.globalwarming101.com
2007 “Pittarak Greenland Expedition”:www.pittarak.com, Kite Ski South to North Ice Cap Traverse
2006 “Top of the World North Pole Expedition”:www.adventureecology.com
2005 “Green Speed Expedition”:www.greenspeed.tv double-crossing of the Greenland Icecap, new record of icecap crossing in just 7 days.
2004/5 “Kites on Ice Expedition”:www.kitesonice.ca, to the South Pole and back
2003 “Kids and Kites”:www.kidsonice.ca on Ice Greenland Icecap crossing
“Antony Jinman”:www.antonyjinman.com from Plymouth, United Kingdom
“Climate change is real, it is happening beyond a shadow of a doubt”. Antony’s previous projects and film work in the arctic has helped show the dramatic changes taking place. His interactive expeditions help bring credible eye witness accounts of the changing world directly into the classroom supporting his school outreach work. “Changing how we look at the environment and ultimately how we can live in a more sustainable manner, will be achieved through educating our next generation on environmental awareness.”
Antony is again no stranger to the arctic environment spending the past 3 years training in the arctic and completing numerous successful expeditions including 2 solo trips.
2009 Ski Traverse of Greenland, coast to coast expedition
2009 Solo ski and film project on Baffin Island
2008 Solo Ski Traverse of Baffin Island
2008 Penny Ice Cap Expedition – polarventure.co.uk
2007 Expedition Leader for BSES Expedition to Disko Island – Greenland
2007 Mitchemp Trusts Arctic Challenge, assistant guide
“Linda Beilharz”:http://www.icecapjourneys.com.au/?s=team&p=lindabio&ss=linda from Australia
Linda Beilharz is the first Australian woman to ski from the edge of Antarctica to the South Pole. During her epic 56 day quest, she endured treacherous conditions, including blinding snowstorms and minus 50 degree temperatures. Linda’s extraordinary triumph is testament not only to her physical strength and courage, but to her dogged determination that pushed her inch by inch, across that vast white landscape. Linda has followed that expedition with a crossing of the Greenland Icecap. Linda stepped up into an organizing role for that expedition and performed many of the leadership functions.
Linda has established a not for profit company called “Journeys for Learning”:http://www.journeysforlearning.com.au/ that brings the stories of expeditions to students to enhance learning about resilience, team work and environmental sustainability.
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