25 January 2018

Hans Christian Steen-Larsen

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The lecture given by Hans Christian Steen-Larsen on Friday 19 January was captivating. Hans Christian is a climate scientist who works in polar regions analysing ice cores – which are up to 3km long – in order to study what has happened to the climate. His research requires him to live in some of the most extreme environments on the planet, where the temperature can often drop below minus 40 degrees Celsius, for months on end.

During the talk he showed the audience how ice cores had extremely small air pockets that capture the atmosphere from thousands of years ago. Incredibly, scientists in polar regions discovered that the ice core they had drilled was approximately 800,000 years old. The current goal is to drill an ice core one and a half million years old and it is believed that such ice exists in Antarctica.

The research of Hans Christian and his team offers compelling new evidence that shows the immense rise of carbon dioxide and methane levels in today’s atmosphere, which is like nothing seen in the last 800,000 years. Han Christian’s talk also gave a fascinating insight to the potential environment of the future and highlighted why it is important to take action now and preserve our planet for future generations.

Henry Hollingworth, Year 9

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