ARC - German Research Vessel to Return From 'Dying Arctic' (With ASPN Podcast)
The German Alfred Wegener Institute's Polarstern ship is set to return to the port on Monday, bringing home devastating proof of a "dying Arctic Ocean" and warnings of ice-free summers in just decades.
Researchers coming back from a year-long research expedition in the Arctic have bad news: the Arctic Ocean is dying.
The Polarstern research vessel will dock in Bremerhaven, Germany on Monday after spending 389 days drifting through the Arctic, where scientists gathered more than 150 terabytes of data and 1,000 ice samples. While it will take up to two years to analyze all of the data, the initial reports said the ocean was failing.
"We witnessed how the Arctic Ocean is dying," mission leader Markus Rex told AFP. "We saw this process right outside our windows, or when we walked on the brittle ice."
Climate change accelerating damage
The Multidisciplinary drifting Observatory for the Study of Arctic Climate (MOSAiC) showed the effect that climate change was having on the Arctic Ocean.
Over 70 research institutes from 20 countries took part in the research, which showed an Arctic Ocean in peril. According to Rex, sometimes so much ice had melted that there were large patches of water that "sometimes stretch[ed] as far as the horizon."
"At the North Pole itself, we found badly eroded, melted, thin and brittle ice," he added.
"On this episode, Peter Ravella and Tyler Buckingham speak with Dr. Victoria Herrmann, the President and Managing Director of the Arctic Institute, a Washington D.C.-based "think and do tank" that seeks to shape policy for a "secure, just, and sustainable Arctic through objective, multidisciplinary research". In addition to managing the Institute and Board of Directors, Dr. Herrmann's focuses her research and writing on climate change, community adaptation, resilient development, and migration. Victoria has testified before the U.S. Senate, served as the Alaska Review Editor for the Fourth National Climate Assessment, contributes to The Guardian and Scientific American on climate policy, and was named one of the most 100 influential people in climate policy worldwide in 2019 by Apolitical. Its our first trip to the Arctic on ASP, and we've got a perfect guide in Dr. Herrmann. Come along, only on ASPN!"