Wednesday, July 20, 2016

After breakfast, Pierre Cousteau and I took a snowmobile out into one of many untouched areas of the ice sheet.

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The expanse of unlimited ice and sky is an awesome experience.  It makes one feel humbled by the force of nature. 
Perhaps this is what it is all about.
Humans have changed the balance of the earth’s atmosphere, and we will need to address this issue or the natural course of events will prevail.

Pierre meditated and I sat behind my camera.

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Jim, Kurt, Juan, David, and Alan went to work helping to chop, load and carry ice blocks out of the auxiliary room in the ice core pit. The auxiliary room was too shallow to accommodate all of the ice cores that would be stored for the duration of the drilling.

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Snow is gathered in a crate outside of the Dome and melted to provide water for the kitchen and bathroom.

Jim works out by shoveling snow for the snow crate.

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Juan and I revisited the snow pit one last time in order to relax and enjoy the crystal beauty of the blue snow.

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Outside there was a simple bamboo pole that had accumulated pristine snowflakes.

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We reconvened in the Dome to discuss world events with Alan.

After lunch, David helped in the kitchen making perfect Chocolate Chip cookies. He later chopped garlic and peeled tomatoes for our evening dinner.

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Some of us went back into the ice pit to watch more ice core drilling.

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Mika cut a piece of the ice core for me so that I could see the tiny air bubbles that were trapped in the ice.

 

Juan gave a PowerPoint recap of our 3 days at EGRIP, and what we needed to communicate about climate change to the public.

1. The increase in the amount of Greenhouses gasses in the atmosphere is heating our ocean.

Air cools quicker than water, so we now have a built-in 13-meter rise in sea level through thermal expansion, the melting of the Greenland ice sheet, and the melting of mountain glaciers.

2. In the past 50 years, the average temperature of Greenland has risen 10 degrees C, which is the equivalent of changing the temperature of Copenhagen to the temperature of Gibraltar or changing the temperature of Minneapolis to Atlanta.

The Arctic is melting twice as fast as the rest of the Earth.

3. The Arctic Sea Extent is diminishing.

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4. Abrupt climate change is when the temperature increases 1 degree C per year over 5 years. This is 100 times faster than current global warming.

5. The rise in sea level will shift civilization. Florida is on porous soil and will not be able to sustain a rise in sea level.

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We finished a bottle of wine, talked until late, packed and spent our last night in our sleeping bags trying to digest all of the information that we had acquired at EGRIP.