Explore Antarctica virtually, in a special seven-day FREE online festival that celebrates the extraordinary continent which is both a bucket list travel destination for some of us and an important research tool for scientists seeking to understand climate change.
Normally, January is when thousands of people head to the Antarctic, either for work or adventure. But since the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic has affected both international leisure travel and scientific research, it’s safer, easier and less expensive to take a virtual journey.
Antarctica NOW is Monday, Jan 25 through Sunday, Jan. 31, with different content each day, including documentaries, and interviews with writers and photographers. And it’s all FREE.
The festival is sponsored by Shackleton, a British company which produces performance outdoor clothing company. It’s named for Ernest Shackleton, who led three expeditions to Antarctica when exploration was about discovering new lands and breaking records.
Today’s explorations in the seventh continent are more focused on fields of science, climate and conservation, all of which are playing a pivotal role in our understanding of the planet.
Discussion topics at the 7-day festival will include:
- What’s the polar power struggle playing out in Antarcticaright now?
- How do events in Antarctica impact on everyone?
- What’s left for Antarctic explorers? Who gets to decide who goes?
- How fast are the ice shelves melting?
- What’s the link between Antarctica and space research?
- What can the ice tell us about the past – and the future?
- Are we winning the wildlife conservation battle?
- How can we make the world sit up and notice?
Find everything on Shackleton’s website and social media channels.
Curated by writer and editor Rachel Halliburton (Avaunt Magazine), the festival brings together some of the most exciting and significant voices in the Antarctic community, including explorers, geopoliticians, scientists from the European Space Agency, cartographers and prize-winning photographers, to investigate and raise awareness of the most urgent and critical issues threatening the frozen continent.
As Shackleton said himself, ‘It’s in our nature to explore, to reach out into the unknown. The only true failure would be not to explore at all,’ We invite everyone to explore what makes Antarctica both critical and wonderfully compelling.’
The Event Schedule:
Each program is at Noon, ET (9am on the West Coast, and 6pm in Great Britain)
Klaus Dodds, Professor of Geopolitics at Royal Holloway University of London
A new Cold War? – why the Antarctic is on the brink of an international power struggle
Mark Drinkwater, Head, Earth and Mission Science Division at the European Space Agency
Checking Earth’s Pulse at the Poles from Space: Are 2020 vital signs cause for concern?
Dr Mackenzie Grieman, Post Doctoral Research Associate at the Department of Earth Sciences, Cambridge University
Ice as a time machine – what stories can glaciers and ice sheets can tell us about our past?
Sebastian Copeland, Photographer, filmmaker, explorer & philanthropist
Waking the giant – how can photography help bring about change?
Lizzie Daly, Biologist & wildlife broadcaster
From gentoo penguins to Antarctic blue whales – what needs to be done to win the wildlife conservation battle?
Hugh Broughton, Architect and leading designer of research facilities in the Polar Regions
Polar architecture – what are the challenges of designing for the world’s most extreme environment?
11am ET – Steve Jones, Expedition Manager at Antarctic Logistics & Expeditions
Earth’s final frontier – what advice do today’s explorers need and why did Scott and Shackleton’s expeditions go wrong?
Noon – Louis Rudd MBE, Record-breaking polar explorer & SAS Soldier
Tales of the Unexpected – the inside story on The Spirit of Endurance Expedition.
Visiting Antarctica is on my bucket list. Yours, too?