1968. That was a hell of a year. The people were on the streets, revolution was in the air, we released the White Album, and perhaps the most influential photograph of all time was taken by an astronaut called William Anders.
Two of the scientists travelling with Greenpeace on the Arctic Sunrise are Dr Julienne Stroeve, a research scientist at the US National Snow and Ice Data Centre (NSIDC), and Nick Toberg, an ice scientist at Cambridge University. I asked them what research they would be able to do on the ice, and for some insight into why Arctic sea ice is so important, and what impact the melting would have on our climate.
So we all know the Arctic is cold and white and in danger from exploitation by oil companies including Shell Oil, right? Not only is the critical ecosystem in dire need of our protection, it also has an endlessly interesting “About Me” section. Here’s what we think are the coolest things about the Arctic we found pretty surprising.
In just over two weeks I will be standing on the frozen Arctic ocean, preparing to ski to the North Pole. I'll be wearing four layers of fleece and a special hat that someone knitted for me. In my pockets I'll carry some almond chocolate, an iPod, and a declaration of hope for future generations.
As a small team of youth ambassadors for Greenpeace's Arctic campaign begin their trek to the North Pole, I'm reminded of the campaign to save the Antarctic (below), which I led on behalf of Greenpeace in the 1980s.