By SILKE SCHMIDT
This past weekend (Nov 1-3, 2013), a documentary film festival called “Tales from Planet Earth” at UW-Madison included the screening of one of the most stunning visualizations of global climate change produced to date.
The film “Chasing Ice” features James Balog, an award-winning National Geographic photographer, and his team from project “Extreme Ice Survey”. In 2005, the EIS team began to deploy a series of time-lapse cameras in Iceland, Greenland, and Alaska to capture a multi-year record of the retreat of the world’s largest glaciers. Battling major technological challenges as well as personal health issues, Balog ultimately succeeded in his mission of documenting the alarming rate at which massive mountains of ancient polar ice are disappearing from our planet.
In addition to watching James Balog chase the ice, the Aldo Leopold Nature Center (ALNC) is a great place for taking a trip to the poles without ever getting on an airplane. The December 2013 program focuses on the role of the polar ice caps in climate change research and life on Earth. Check out the ALNC’s hands-on exhibits, hear about glacial explorations, and watch amazing ice sheet footage in the giant ALNC theaters. December is a great time of year to learn more about the North (and South) Pole!