Frozen Planet (Photo credit: JanetR3)
Frozen Planet is the latest nature series from the BBC Natural History Unit, the same people that produced Planet Earth etc. The series ran in the UK, but, at last, Canadians will see it. Episode One airs March 18, 2012 at 8 PM Eastern on Discovery Channel.
My first inkling that the series was in production occurred when I received a phone call from the production office in Bristol with a request for help. The NHU had a pair of cameramen stranded in Antarctica unable to get home. Would I help facilitate their return to the UK? At the same time, they requested that I assist with the transfer to Antarctica of a new cameraman. I was working in a job that made it possible to help them, and check another item off my bucket list – working with the NHU on a major international series.
I admit that I stretched the definition of working…just a phone call and a requisition…What I did not realize at the time was that logistical support would lead to something bigger. For about 18 months I acted as the liaison between the NHU and the company for which I worked at the time. Names on credits became real people, and I had the vicarious adventure of a lifetime.
There is one episode in particular that I am anticipating: Tourism in the Polar Regions is a theme. There should be plenty of Emperor Penguins and travelers in yellow parkas. That was the episode with which I was most heavily involved – again only slightly in comparison to the actual production team. There are other episodes I am anticipating almost as eagerly. I remember when I heard about the orca footage they shot in Antarctica. They captured for the first time footage of a behaviour that only a handful of people on the planet had ever witnessed.
If you are as passionate about the Polar Regions as I am, then you won’t want to miss Frozen Planet. That’s appointment TV!
Image via Wikipedia
#JackieRichardson was the number one keyword search that brought new readers to this blog. The irreplaceable Ms. Jackie has lost the top spot to two searches that indicate trending issues.
People Seeking Information about Tumblr
I’m not the only one who had problems with tumblr’s email confirmation. Based on the number of people who drop by my site to read that post, the problem is ongoing. Note to tumblr’s boffins – your to-do list is missing an item.
People, you must trust polarprisca on this…HRH was not in Antarctica this year. He was in the Arctic. Harry didn’t tell his grandmother he was going to walk part way to the North Pole, because he didn’t want to worry her. Thoughtful lad.
I met an octogenarian when I sailed to the North Pole who hadn’t told the management of his senior’s home where he was going, for exactly the same reason. True story.
An extra hit of adrenalin
Some people ride roller-coasters, jump out of airplanes, or travel to war zones for an extra hit of adrenaline. My personal choice are the polar regions – the Arctic and Antarctica. Because the danger is basic – humankind against the elements.
Just watched a report by BBC International about an experiment conducted by two of their reporters. For 1 week, 2 South Korean families lived without Internet access. South Korea is the single most wired country in the world. In an African village with no Internet access, for 1 week 2 villagers carried smart phones with Internet access, and dodgy connectivity. Africa‘s penetration is only 7%, the lowest on the planet.
South Korea – there is such a thing as too much Internet. Africa: Access changed the way the village did business.
Problem: The cost of Internet access is too high in the countries that could benefit the most from it.
Note to self: There is nothing happening in your life that even begins to compare to the challenges facing those on the wrong side of the digital divide. Amen.
Image via Wikipedia
In 1911, Amundsen and Scott were racing toward the South Pole, hoping to become the first man to reach one of the last firsts left on the planet. A century later there is another race unfolding, one that is inspired by the events of 1911-12. It is a publishing race. The goal to be the author who releases the definitive commemorative book about the race to the South Pole.
Adrian Raeside was out in front with his book, Return to Antarctica, released in 2010. Roland Huntford has recently released Race for the South Pole.
Like Raeside, Huntford has used diaries written by expedition participants to fuel his story. According to a review I read in Your Family Tree, Huntford’s book “brings together the diaries of both Scott and Amundsen…along with that of Amundsen’s companion Olav Bjaaland.” Published by Continuum books. The ISBN is 9781441169822.
The other industry running a similar race is filmmaking. BBC is about to launch Frozen Planet. There will be others. I’ll post whenever I see something new being promoted.
Russian scientists have been drilling deep into the Antarctic ice sheet hoping to access the water of Lake Vostok for the first time in human history. They have a few precious days left before winter conditions make the drilling impossible for another year.
According to a BBC report, microorganisms have been discovered as they drill down. The coldest temperatures on Earth have been recorded where they are drilling. The drilling team believes there is more to learn. And there lies the dilemma. There is a possibility that the pristine environment of Lake Vostok might be contaminated by our efforts to learn more about the lake. Is our need to know worth the risk: That is the scientific dilemma.
I believe the dilemma should not be assigned to the scientific. It is a human dilemma one each of us faces in myriad ways in a lifetime. Human begins make choices everyday that lead to knowledge but carry an inherent risk – hurting another, the environment or ourselves. I don’t have an answer, do you?