Took The Kids To Watch The Documentary “Chasing Ice.”

After posting an article about the woman who had been changed by watching the film “Chasing Ice,” I made it a priority to see the documentary myself and to bring my kids to it. I wanted to get their take on the film because it’s really about their future.

Chasing Ice - James Balog“Chasing Ice” tracks the efforts of nature photographer James Balog to time-lapse photograph the shrinking glaciers of Iceland, Greenland and Alaska. He is supported by a team of scientists, technicians, and his family. Mr. Balog’s goal was to photograph the glaciers over 3-years and he wasn’t sure what he would capture during that span.

When James Balog and his team piece the photos together, the final video of the glaciers retreating is pretty startling. In some instances, they had to shift their cameras multiple times to keep the receding glaciers in frame. And the melt wasn’t just about the glaciers retreating; the team noticed that the glaciers followed a recede and shrink (in height) pattern.

“Is it too late to do anything?”
Chasing Ice (Film)Right after the movie, I had to find out what my kids and their friend thought about Chasing Ice. They weren’t shocked by the film but they were a little quiet. Then my daughter’s friend asked her dad: “is it too late to do anything?” I think that’s the question the filmmakers wanted viewers to ask themselves after watching the film.

What can we do? On a daily basis, we can all make an effort to live as small as possible but what’s happening in the Arctic circle is bigger than just consuming less. Chasing Ice was the alarm – now we need to take action and develop more effective ways to get our elected officials to listen and act. That is why we’re going to turn this into a series of posts that pick up where the film ends. Check back in a couple weeks for our followup article on what you can do to help make a difference. [Chasing Ice]

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Geothermal Power Isn’t As Sexy As Solar Or Wind And That’s Why It May Be The Most Promising

SMU Geothermal Laboratory and Google.org
Enhanced Geothermal SystemsGoogle and SMU recently completed a study to more accurately determine how much energy could be generated using geothermal sources under the US. This is SMU’s Geothermal Laboratory’s third study on the availability geothermal and their results are pretty amazing – the geothermal potential under the US is nearly 3 million megawatts, or 10 times the amount of power produced by coal plants today. Even crazier is that the geothermal energy potential under West Virginia is greater than what the state could generate annually from coal.

Geothermal is kind of the Ugly Betty on the renewable energy scene and much like the fullback in football. Never glamorous, it rarely gets the same attention as cool solar or sleek wind turbines. Non-glamorous Iceland has found a way to harness its geothermal resources and they currently get 53% of their primary energy from the hot stuff – when will we? [TPM]

For more information, check out A New Geothermal Map of the United States and A Googol of Heat Beneath Our Feet

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