Blog Archives

“Join the Watch” to save the Ross Sea

Wellington, New Zealand

The Antarctic Ocean Alliance has launched it’s first report, “Antarctic Ocean Legacy: A Marine Reserve for the Ross Sea,” today in Wellington, New Zealand.  The report calls for a 3.6 million square kilometer fully protected marine reserve in what the Alliance’s Chuck Fox calls  “One of the most amazing and relatively untouched marine environments on earth.”

The Alliance is made up of supporters such as actor and UN Biodiversity Ambassador Edward Norton, Dr. Sylvia Earle, entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson and some 16 global environmental organizations.

“The fate of the Antarctic’s Ross Sea is likely to be decided by 24 countries and the EU this year and the global public knows nothing about it,” said Alliance Campaign Director Steve Campbell.…

Posted in Antarctic Ocean Alliance, Antarctica, Dr. Sylvia Earle, Ed Norton, Ross Sea, Sir Richard Branson |

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It’s All About the Ice – this week on Nova!

Extreme Ice
December 28 at 9 pm ET on PBS
Follow photojournalist James Balog to some of the most remote and beautiful places on Earth as he documents the disappearance of an icy landscape that took thousands of years to form. An artist, scientist, explorer, and former mountain guide, Balog braves treacherous terrain to site his cameras in ideal locations to record the unfolding drama. 
Remarkable time-lapse footage reveals massive glaciers and ice sheets splitting apart, collapsing, and disappearing at a rate that has scientists alarmed. This NOVA-National Geographic Television special investigates some of the latest evidence of a radically warming planet.  
Secrets Beneath the IceWednesday, December 28 at 10 pm ET/PT on PBS  
Almost three miles of ice buries most of Antarctica, cloaking a continent half again as large as the United States.…

Posted in Andrill, Antarctica, Climate Change, Extreme Ice Survey, James Balog, Nova |

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Implications of Environmental Change to Antarctic Marine Ecosystems

By Dr. Phil McGillivary and Gavin Morris reporting from the 25th International Conference on Conservation Biology in Auckland, NZEdited by Deb Castellana

The University of Auckland, New Zealand hosted a series of Marine Think Tanks, in the days before the 25th International Congress of Conservation Biology. One of them, Implications of Environmental Change to Antarctic Marine Ecosystems, dealt mainly with the Ross Sea, Antarctica, which is one of Sylvia Earle’s Hope Spots.
We were lucky enough to catch up with Ed Butler as he rushed off to the airport. Ed is the Manager for Antarctic Science with Antarctica New Zealand (ANZ). He, along with Vonda Cummings of NIWA, facilitated the 3-day think tank on the possible impacts of global climate change on Antarctic marine ecosystems.…

Posted in 25th International Conference on Conservation Biology, Antarctica, Dr. Phil McGillivary, Dr. Sylvia Earle, Gavin Morris, hope spots, Ross Sea |


Peter Young on The Last Ocean – The Ross Sea

Peter Young is one of New Zealand’s leading documentary filmmakers and has worked for most of the major players in the documentary field, including National Geographic, Discovery, BBC and Television New Zealand. He has credits in over a hundred documentaries filmed in New Zealand and around the world and has won many awards for both his camera and producing work. He is currently working on a Last Ocean feature documentary.
Peter is also responsible for founding The Last Ocean Charitable Trust in New Zealand, a public and political campaign calling for the entire Ross Sea region to be designated a Marine Protected Area.
The international body managing the Ross Sea fishery (CCAMLR, the Commission on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources) will meet in 2012 to decide to what extent the waters around Antarctica will be protected.…

Posted in Antarctica, Peter Young, Ross Sea |


Ross Sea, Antarctic Hope Spot

Map of Antarctica

Most people will probably never travel across the Southern Ocean either by ship or plane to the massive southern continent of Antarctica that anchors the South Pole. The Antarctica continent, drifted with tectonic plates into its current position between 30 to 60 million years ago (Ivany, et al., 2008). Once the continent was in place the cold Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC) encircled it, and the land cooled and ice accumulated eventually covering most of the land to a depth of several thousand feet. As the continent cooled, so did the surrounding Southern Ocean, to a temperature several degrees colder than any other. The chill waters of the ACC separate the Southern Ocean from the slightly warmer waters to the north.…

Posted in Antarctica, ocean acidification, Richard Aronson, Ross Sea, Southern Ocean, sub-Antarctic king crab, sylvia earle, Sylvia Earle Alliance |


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