Ship, Snow and Svalbard
Our first day onboard of the ship „Aleksey Maryshev”:
In the morning Dr. Martin Sommerkorn a WWF-scientist gave us some interesting facts about “Arctic and global warming”. For example the arctic permafrost stores large amounts of methane. If the permafrost would keep on melting this would cause big problems for our planet, because methane is about 22 times worse for our climate than carbon dioxide.
Although the facts are quite important to understand the topic “global warming” a walk to a snow-covered mountain was my today’s highlight.
After going off-board by zodiacs-boats we had a walk to a snow-covered mountain. While walking we saw some reindeers running on the snow, admired a young seal swimming just in front of us und had a great view over several glaciers.
This nature we, the 18 “Ambassadors for the Future”, want to be saved by the whole world by combating global warming. Therefore I say to you: let’s act together now in order to conserve our unique planet!
Bye for now!
PS: If you want to have some more information about our trip go to Voyage for the Future (in German!)
DateJune 13, 2008 | 11:44 am
First Steps in the Arctic
First steps in the Arctic
written by Greta
Hello from Svalbard, Spitsbergen.
Now it is already our second day up here in the arctic. “We”, that is Johannes (18) from Bavaria and Greta (19) from North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. We are the two so called “Ambassadors of Change” chosen out of lots of applicants from Germany.
On Monday we set off for our “Voyage for the future” – a trip together with 16 other young people from all over the world (Great Britain, Russia, United States, Canada, Norway, Sweden, Japan and the Netherlands). We all came here to find solutions and ways of combating global warming. As we are all young adults between 18 and 21 years we all are very concerned about our future and what the head of states are planning at the moment.
If we make a difference maybe our governments will start to make a difference, too. That is what we want to show the world out there. Making a difference is not that difficult! During our journey we will talk to a lot of scientists and other people who are very involved in climate change and in the arctic so that we will have a good basic knowledge about the arctic and climate change.
So probably you might already be very curious about what we have been doing until now. On Monday we went from Frankfurt to Oslo where we spent our first night and met all the other highly motivated Ambassadors of change. The next day, on Tuesday we finally arrived in the arctic. Even the view out of the airplane window was already stunning.
After we checked in at Mary Ann´s Polarrigg we went to the University of Longyearbyen.
Longyearbyen is one of the very few settlements of Svalbard – a town with almost 2000 inhabitants coming from 40 different nations. There we listened to a lecture by Olav Eira, a reindeer herder from the indigenous Saami people. (Reindeer photo in previous entry, scroll down the page). He told us a lot about how climate change impacts his everyday life. It was so interesting to see how he and the other Saami live and at the same time it was sad to experience that exactly those people who contribute such a little to global warming suffer more from its impacts than we do.
In the evening all of us kept working on our blogs and most of us totally forgot to go to bed. That is because there is no night. Or let’s say there is no darkness since the sun never sets.
So people got a bit confused and all of us were really tired today in the morning. Of course this did not stop us from having our next adventure.
A local guide showed us a bit of Longyearbyen and its landscape which is just sooo beautiful.
Of course we used that opportunity to take a lot of pictures. As for example in front of the “Be aware of polar bear”-sign. The guide had to carry a gun because there is always a slight risk that a polar bear could find its way to Longyearbyen and then you would be facing a tough problem.
In a few minutes we are heading off for the ship. That is going to be the main part of our journey and it is definitely going to be very exciting. And you guys should just keep on following our cool and interesting blog where we will tell you about all our adventures.
DateJune 11, 2008 | 3:54 pm
Greta and Johannes should now be on board their ship.
Sounds like they’ll be busy for quite some time today before they get time to blog.
In the meantime, I’d like to respond to Eliza Honey, who says she loved the photos on the Ice Blog but dreads the message. “Early reading of books re;Antartica and the Arctic were a formative experience in the late 40’s. As old age approaches and the chaotic world continues on its path to destruction I wish strength to your arm and those dedicated people around you. Keep up the good work and more photos please”, says Eliza.
Well, Eliza, while we wait for our dedicated young “ambassadors” to send us their first report from Svalbard, Spitzbergen, here are some more pictures which I took during a trip to the scientific research base in Ny Alesund, Spitzbergen, this time last year.
There is a “flash gallery” with more if you click here:
The runway at Ny Alesund – cleared of snow in June.
The “3 Crowns” at midnight
Views from the Monitoring Station above Ny Alesund
A Svalbard reindeer, in Longyearben.
DateJune 11, 2008 | 9:38 am
Voyage for the Future
Greta and Johannes are two of 18 young people setting sail today for a 12-day Arctic voyage, along the coast of Svalbard. They have been chosen by WWF as “Ambassadors for the Future”, to learn about climate change and pass the message on to the world’s political leaders. They’ll be blogging as guests on the Ice Blog for the next 12 days, as they sail along this route:
DateJune 9, 2008 | 8:26 am
Baked Alaska Online!
My “Flash Gallery”, with Alaskan photos and information, is now online.
Baked Alaska Flash Gallery
And Deutsche Welle is currently broadcasting the first installment of the “Climate Change College in Alaska” radio feature series. You can listen online or subscribe to the podcast.
Alaskan Climate Change Series on LIVING PLANET
DateJune 5, 2008 | 7:58 am