135 episodes

The Arctic and the Antarctic are privileged locations for observers interested in understanding how our world is shaped by the forces of nature and the workings of history. These areas have inspired countless humans to undertake epic expeditions of discovery and have witnessed both great triumphs and miserable defeats. As a planetary litmus paper it is at the poles we can detect the effects of natural oscillations and human activities on the global ecosystems.

Curiously Polar Chris Marquardt

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.8 • 12 Ratings

The Arctic and the Antarctic are privileged locations for observers interested in understanding how our world is shaped by the forces of nature and the workings of history. These areas have inspired countless humans to undertake epic expeditions of discovery and have witnessed both great triumphs and miserable defeats. As a planetary litmus paper it is at the poles we can detect the effects of natural oscillations and human activities on the global ecosystems.

    137 A Comprehensive Polar Library, Part 1

    137 A Comprehensive Polar Library, Part 1

    Watch this on video | Buy us a coffee: Chris / Henry / Mario
    POLAR NEWSREEL
    There have been historical mentions of polar bears using tools to hunt walruses mainly based on accounts by Inuit local. An article by Dr Ian Stirling, the foremost authority on polar bears, reviews the knowledge on the matter and concluded that "possible tool use by polar bears in the wild is infrequent and mainly limited to hunting walruses // Space technology has an impact in the polar area in more than one way, reports The Barents Observer. This Thursday parts of a rocket will hit the surface of the Barents Sea and hopefully avoid the many vessels that are present in the area. // Cleaning the Arctic of past sins is a priority of the Russian Chairmanship of the Arctic Council. The Barents Observer reports of success for an expedition to find the location of nuclear material dumped in the sea. // Being different is usually considered detrimental to reproductive success, but new research shows that penguins with unusual coloring still find mates. // The demand for krill oil seems to increase and so is the fleet equipped for harvesting this resource. But is it a good - sustainable - idea? // While trying to save award-winning director Alexander Melnik during strategic drills in the Arctic, Russian Emergency Situations Minister Yevgeny Zinichev died tragically.
    A COMPREHENSIVE POLAR LIBRARY, PART 1
    This week we present a collection of our most favorite polar books, gems that are not to miss for your comprehensive polar library.

    For pioneering expeditions to climb the Arctic peaks: H.W. Tilman (1974) "Ice with Everything" and (1977) "Triumph and Tribulation", originally by Nautical Publishing Company. Look for these and other fascinating works by the prolific Tilman on Amazon
    In "The Ice at the End of the World: An Epic Journey Into Greenland's Buried Past and our Perilous Future" writer Jon Gertner explains how Greenland has evolved from one of earth’s last frontiers to its largest scientific laboratory. The story begins with adventure describing explorations of Greenland’s ice covered interior from the 1880’s through the 1930s, leading to climate change, the future of Greenland’s ice sheet and glaciers, and what that holds for the world.
    An account of the events during World War 2 that led to the establishment of the Sirius Patrol in North East Greenland and beginning of the home-rule: David Howarth (1957) "The Sledge Patrol", Collins. On Amazon
    Many books have been written about the story of Ernest Shackleton, but Nick Bertozzi managed to address a different audience to this remarkable story of survival. The graphic novel "Shackleton: Antarctic Odyssey" is introducing Shackleton’s expedition aboard in a nice and surprisingly uplifting way.
    About the expeditions seeking the North West Passage and especially about the Franklin voyage and all the rescue efforts that followed, but not only: Pierrre Berton "The Arctic Grail, the quest for the North West Passage and the North Pole 1818-1909", first edition in 1977, my copy shown during the podcast is 1988 published by McLelland and Stewart. Last published in 2000 by The Lyons Press and still available on Amazon
    Icelandic writer Andri Snær Magnasson manages what many people before and after him couldn't manage: making Climate Change personal. In his book "On Time And Water" he uses elements of memoir, world history, mythology and the latest scientific reportage to help readers connect with and truly understand where we are in the fight and what is at stake. A true marvel.

    This is an episode of the Curiously Polar podcast
    with
    Chris Marquardt https://chrismarquardt.com/
    Henry Páll Wulff: https://henrypall.com/
    Mario Acquarone https://www.buymeacoffee.com/polarmario
    Listen to all podcast episodes at https://curiouslypolar.com
    All video episodes at https://tfttf.com/curiouslypolarvideo
    Find u

    • 53 min
    136 Back With a Vengeance

    136 Back With a Vengeance

    Watch this on video | Buy us a coffee: Chris / Henry / Mario
    POLAR NEWSREEL
    The time of discoveries in the polar regions has not ended yet. A team that was aiming to land at Oodaaq island, the northernost dry land in the world north of Greenland, actually landed on new emerged bank slightly northwest of it and thus serendipitously discovered the, so far, northernmost emerged land in the world. The discoverers have suggested the name “Qeqertaq Avannarleq”, which means “the northernmost island” in Greenlandic.
    Algae are the basis of all life in the oceans. This project from UNIS in Svalbard studied how the rapid temperature rise in the Arctic affects the sea ice algae and the phytoplankton. The results are to be used for modeling the impact of Arctic warming on the ecosystem.
    Penguins have inspired the shape of one of the newest additions to the instruments to study oceans: the Quadroin, a 25kg and €80,000 wireless AUV that can sample data autonomously down to 150m in environments where other vehicles are unable to go, for example, under sea ice or in shallow water.
    For the first time in recorded history rain fell at the normally snowy summit of Greenland. Over a weekend in mid August temperatures at the Greenland summit rose above freezing for the third time in less than a decade. The rain dumped 7 billion tons of water on the ice sheet, the heaviest rainfall on the ice sheet since record keeping began in 1950.
    Our currently most favourite iceberg out in the ocean, the well documented A-74 that's nearly the size of Greater London, reportedly touched the western tip of Brunt Ice Shelf due to strong easterly winds. The bump, however, has not been strong enough to effect Brunt Ice Shelf and nearby Halley research station of British Antarctic Survey which has been in hibernation since the begin of the pandemic.
    BACK WITH A VENGEANCE
    After a two months break we are back with an alarming topic. The IPCC has recently released the first part of their Sixth Assessment Report focusing on "The Physical Science Basis" of climate change. Two more parts are due for completion next year, "Mitigation of Climate Change", and "Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability" as well as eventually the "Sixth Assessment Report Synthesis Report: Climate Change 2022". The good news on this report is: There is nothing new. There's no big news, nothing that we didn't already know. We're seeing the effects of climate change already. And this report just confirms what our research and experience has told us is happening. "The Physical Science Basis" states that unless there are immediate, rapid and large-scale reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, limiting warming to close to 1.5°C or even 2°C will be beyond reach. What’s surprising is that the IPCC uses in this report a very strong, definitive language, like the use of words like unequivocal in a way that leaves no doubt. It takes away all the conspiracy arguments of the so-called sceptics. In its press release the IPCC summarises the report very clear: "Climate change is bringing multiple different changes in different regions – which will all increase with further warming. These include changes to wetness and dryness, to winds, snow and ice, coastal areas and oceans."
    This is an episode of the Curiously Polar podcast
    with
    Chris Marquardt https://chrismarquardt.com/
    Henry Páll Wulff: https://henrypall.com/
    Mario Acquarone https://www.buymeacoffee.com/polarmario
    Listen to all podcast episodes at https://curiouslypolar.com
    All video episodes at https://tfttf.com/curiouslypolarvideo
    Find us here:
    Web: https://curiouslypolar.com
    Twitter: https://twitter.com/curiouslypolar
    Instagram: https://instagram.com/curiouslypolar

    • 46 min
    135 The Best Explorer Polarquest

    135 The Best Explorer Polarquest

    Watch this on video | Buy us a coffee: Chris / Henry / Mario
    POLAR NEWSREEL
    A decision by the National Geographic Society gave popular recognition to the Southern Ocean as the World’s fifth ocean with its own distinct features. On Amery Ice Shelf a large meltwater lake suddenly disappeared. After spending 24,000 years frozen in permafrost a tiny multi-cellular animal called Rotifer has been revived. On the other side of the planet soils from rocky ridges in the center of Antarctica don’t contain no microbes, something never found anywhere else.
    THE BEST EXPLORER POLARQUEST 2021
    For years, Mario’s father has conducted explorations, especially in polar waters, on his own sailing boat, Best Explorer, with the ambition to expand the knowledge of places and peoples and at the same time to conduct cultural and scientific projects in collaboration with public and private institutions. After finishing his circumnavigation of the Arctic, Best Explorer is writing a new chapter joining the Polarquest 2021 and will set sail on a scientific exploration of Svalbard and the Arctic ocean, sampling of water for eDNA, driftwood for drift paths and accumulation dynamics, mapping glaciers with drone and side-scan sonar survey looking for the wreck of the famous airship Italia.
    This is an episode of the Curiously Polar podcast
    with
    Chris Marquardt https://chrismarquardt.com/
    Henry Páll Wulff: https://henrypall.com/
    Mario Acquarone https://www.buymeacoffee.com/polarmario
    Listen to all podcast episodes at https://curiouslypolar.com
    All video episodes at https://tfttf.com/curiouslypolarvideo
    Find us here:
    Web: https://curiouslypolar.com
    Twitter: https://twitter.com/curiouslypolar
    Instagram: https://instagram.com/curiouslypolar

    • 39 min
    134 Polar Explorers, pt. 2: The Heroine of Wrangel Island

    134 Polar Explorers, pt. 2: The Heroine of Wrangel Island

    Watch this on video | Buy us a coffee: Chris / Henry / Mario
    POLAR NEWSREEL
    In Episode #125 we talked about Dinosaurs in Antarctica and recently we stumbled across the trailer for an upcoming film with the same title, check it out! The 43rd Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting between 14 and 24 June marks the 60th Anniversary of the Antarctic Treaty and the 30th Anniversary of the Madrid Protocol (also known as Protocol on Environmental Protection. While those talks are taking place a debate on the future of the Antarctic Treaty System has been initiated, raising the question how to maintain Antarctica a military-free continent. In Russia the supposedly most dangerous vessel no longer poses a nuclear threat to the Arctic. Researchers of the University of Waterloo have recently found that several toxic, long-lasting human-made contaminants have found in people living in northern Canada.
    THE HEROINE OF WRANGEL ISLAND
    Born in the remote settlement of Spruce Creek, forty miles east of Nome, Alaska, 23-year-old Iñupiat women Ada Blackjack was stricken by life hardships already at young age. When she joined an Arctic expedition across the Chukchi Sea to Russia's Wrangel Island in 1921 out of her desperation to pay for her last surviving son’s medical care, no one could have guessed that she would raise to fame.
    The Wrangel Island Expedition was a curious and baffling episode in the history of Arctic exploration—at best, an example of shocking hubris; at worst, a case of murderous neglect. Almost from the beginning, the team was ill-prepared, had bad luck and made poor decisions.
    Setting sail with four young men in their twenties on an expedition to colonise the island north of Siberia, she had doubts when she realised that the hired Inuit families to come along on the expedition bailed out of the venture on the day of departure. Hired for her sewing and cooking skills, Ada suddenly became in charge of the camp when three of the expedition party perished while searching for help after the promised ship didn’t picked them up the next summer. Left alone with the deadly ill last man of her team, she took care about him until his death and learned how to survive in the hazardous condition of the high north. Even though she lacked any wilderness skills, she taught herself to hunt and trap, picked roots, hauled wood, made her own clothing, and dodged hungry polar bears.
    It was her wish to be reunited with her son that drove her will to survive. She returned two years later as the only survivor put in the rank of heroines, presented as the female Robinson Crusoe. Later she has been accused of negligence, after having let the fourth man, Knight, die. Fame did not benefit her and she spent the rest of her life trying to get out of poverty.
    Despite of her fame, life continued to be a struggle for Ada. Bennet never overcame his health issues and eventually died, at age 58, in 1972. Unlike the organisation of the expedition, Vilhjalmur Stefansson, Ada didn’t profit from the expedition. Deeply wounded by the media circus and the experiences she had on Wrangel Island, she withdrew more and more and led a simple life as a reindeer herder.
    Then, on May 29, 1983, Ada Delutuk Blackjack Johnson died at age eighty-five at the Palmer Pioneers’ Home, where no one knew she was once an Arctic hero.
    The experimental dramatic short film Ada Blackjack Rising preserves her memory and brings together the current inhabitants of Northern Alaska with that legendary woman from the same land. The film is based on the biography, Ada Blackjack: A True Story of Survival in the Arctic, written by Jennifer Niven.
    This is an episode of the Curiously Polar podcast
    with
    Chris Marquardt https://chrismarquardt.com/
    Henry Páll Wulff: https://henrypall.com/
    Mario Acquarone https://www.buymeacoffee.com/polarmario
    Listen to all podcast episodes at https://curiousl

    • 1 hr 1 min
    133 Mario is Back

    133 Mario is Back

    Watch this on video | Buy us a coffee: Chris / Henry
    POLAR NEWSREEL
    After the 2019 Ministerial meeting could not agree on a joint ministerial declaration the Arctic Council adopted in Reykjavík its first-ever strategic plan for the Council's work for the next ten years, marking the end of the two-year Icelandic Chairmanship and beginning of the Russian Chairmanship. // Scientists of the Norwegian Polar Institute and the University of Bergen research the world’s largest creatures, blue whales and fin whales, and their exposure to a wide variety of chemicals during their cycles of movement across ocean basins. // Recently, the 2.000 square kilometre-large iceberg D-28, which calved from Amery ice shelf in September 2019, impacted ice shelves in the Queen Maud Land area of Antarctica creating 5 new icebergs.
    MARIO IS BACK
    Listeners who have been following Curiously Polar for a long time have missed him, but after a well-deserved break, Mario Acquarone is back in front of the microphone. The three of us now regularly dive into the vastness of the polar regions again. In this episode we will introduce you to Mario in more detail and talk about what to expect in the coming weeks.
    This is an episode of the Curiously Polar podcast
    with
    Chris Marquardt https://chrismarquardt.com/
    Henry Páll Wulff: https://henrypall.com/
    Mario Acquarone
    Listen to all podcast episodes at https://curiouslypolar.com
    All video episodes at https://tfttf.com/curiouslypolarvideo
    Find us here:
    Web: https://curiouslypolar.com
    Twitter: https://twitter.com/curiouslypolar
    Instagram: https://instagram.com/curiouslypolar

    • 26 min
    132 Polar Explorers, pt. 1: The Woman Who Tamed The Arctic

    132 Polar Explorers, pt. 1: The Woman Who Tamed The Arctic

    Watch this on video | Buy us a coffee: Chris / Henry
    POLAR NEWSREEL
    20-24°C hotter than average but truly mind-boggling for this time of year, a ferocious heatwave has reached large parts of the Russian Arctic with +30°C (86.5°F). The workhorse of Antarctic field operations, the Twin Otter DHC-6, had its 1st flight 56 yrs ago in 1965 - Happy Birthday! Global warming has unlocked hundreds of Viking artifacts from the ice of the Norwegian mountains in recent years. The new heavyweight champion in the league of icebergs is A-76, a hunk of ice that measures 1,670 square miles (4,320 square kilometers) and broke of the Ronne Ice Shelf on May 13. An a new study shows that those giant icebergs may be playing a larger role in carbon sequestration and Earth’s global carbon cycle than previously thought.
    THE WOMAN WHO TAMED THE ARCTIC
    The first part of the Polar Explorers mini series introduces the woman who tamed the Arctic. As a true explorer, Louise Arner Boyd has contributed greatly to our understanding of the Arctic today, particularly our understanding of the coasts of Greenland.
    Born in 1887 into a wealthy family in San Rafael, California, her intense interest in the Arctic grew after the first sight of the pack ice while touring Svalbard in her late thirties. Boyd would dedicate the rest of her life and fortune to learning more about the Arctic through science and the lens of her camera.
    Louise Arner Boyd led seven self-financed Arctic expeditions, published three books of photographs through the American Geographical Society, chartered the first private flyover of the North Pole, and was honoured with numerous awards and medals from myriad organisations and governments.
    Boyd's 1931 and 1933 expeditions to the northeast coast of Greenland provided the basis for her book The Fiord Region of East Greenland, which included 350 photographs. For these trips, Boyd chartered the Veslekari, a large ship, and brought along surveyors, geologists, and botanists. Boyd served as leader of the expedition and the only photographer, having invested in some very high-end equipment and learned the principles of photogrammetry, the science of taking and interpreting photographs to create models or maps. Her excellent photographs led to the accurate mapping of a remote area of eastern Greenland that was relatively unknown. Subsequently, Denmark named this area “Louise Boyd Land."
    This is an episode of the Curiously Polar podcast
    with
    Chris Marquardt https://chrismarquardt.com/
    Henry Páll Wulff: https://henrypall.com/
    Listen to all podcast episodes at https://curiouslypolar.com
    All video episodes at https://tfttf.com/curiouslypolarvideo
    Find us here:
    Web: https://curiouslypolar.com
    Twitter: https://twitter.com/curiouslypolar
    Instagram: https://instagram.com/curiouslypolar

    • 32 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
12 Ratings

12 Ratings

blitzcon ,

Excellent Podcast!

We have been looking a long time for podcasts to learn more about antarcic and arctic regions. Finally we found Curiously Polar! The hosts are engaging, educational, and funny. They have good chemistry in their conversations. They fit a lot of information into short episodes. It's educational but also it is conversational in a laid back style.

3812GWGate ,

Chris and Mario are the best!

Hey, if you love to learn about the Arctic, or about climate, or weather, or ocean currents, or drinks that are served in a Russian coal miners' Pub in Barentsburg on Spitsbergen-- here it is!! If you love curious German photographers, or Italian ship captain/naturalists who speak English with a Norwegian accent-- this is it!! I am now binge listening for the second time, and have already planned my next trip to Svalbard, up to 80 degrees North latitude. If you grew up reading and dreaming of Nansen, Byrd, Amundsen and Scott, this is the podcast that will delight you. The only bad thing is that sometimes they have to pause because they are on adventures that make them (even more) inaccessible than usual. But that's life in the Arctic...

NashuaGuy ,

Great topic!

I enjoy all of these episodes as the Arctic is a place that I am definitely considering visiting in the near future. However I am going to Antarctica this December and hope to hear some information about that as well, as that is my immediate need and it seems to be very much geared toward the Arctic.....but very interesting nevertheless.

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