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Climate researchers flying the Jersey flag reach Iceland

Climate researchers flying the Jersey flag reach Iceland

Monday 26 July 2021

Climate researchers flying the Jersey flag reach Iceland


The Jersey captain of an expedition to the Arctic and his crew have reached their summer destination of Iceland.

The Unu Mondo Expedition is a a five-year project that will see Jersey-born Tobias Carter and his crew liaising with research scientists and locals to understand the impact of global warming.

Tobias, the son of former Jersey Senator, Dereck Carter, told Express during their stop-off in Jersey last month, that this summer's journey will see the crew "talking with glaciologists, volcanologists, and we’ll be working with marine biologists on whales and how they might be impacted by the construction of a new port."

The crew have travelled to the Arctic and flown the Jersey flag on the Northabout, a boat entrenched in climate history, as the expedition's co-founder and director, Sophie Simonin explained.

“It’s a 15 metre boat, 50 feet… it’s the only vessel that has been twice around the North Pole,” she said. 

“So the first time it took four years with an Irish team with Jarlath Cunnane from 2001 till 2004, and only 12 years later it took only four months and one day with Sir David Hempleman-Adam.

“So this boat tells a story about how fast things are changing and how fast the climate is changing, and we have to act.”

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Pictured: The crew from left to right - Benjamin Le Botland (Skipper and in charge of logistics), Tobias Carter (Captain and co-founder), Louise Di Betta (Communication and PR), Antonin Charbouillot (Photographer), and Sophie Simonin (Director and co-founder).

Now in Iceland, the crew will be focusing on several aims across their time there, which will take them across Vestmannaeyjar, Reykjavík, Ísafjörður and Húsavík:

  • Oceanography mission: Measuring salinity, temperature and current through a probe installed on board, to better understand the evolution of the ocean and marine currents.
  • Educational mission: 20 pupils from different schools in France will join the crew in the Vestmann Islands, with three coming on board the boat to take samples.
  • Volcanology - glaciology mission: Accompany volcanologists on the erupting volcano, Fagradalsfjall, to discover links in between retreating ice caps leading to potential higher volcanic activity, followed by a field trip to the Sólheimajökull glacier.
  • Marine biology mission - Collection of 150 whale blows to study the impacts of mass tourism on marine mammals.

WATCH: Tobias speaking about the trip...

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