Polar Explorer Headlines Climate Change Program



Polar explorer, environmental scientist, author and adventurer Tim Jarvis AM poses for a picture during his Mawson expedition to Antarctica. Jarvis along with MU professors will deliver a series of lectures the week of March 23rd in the Lemmond Theater.

MU Public Relations

   The Dr. Midori Yamanouchi Lecture Series and the departments of biology, and history and government are bringing polar explorer, environmental scientist, author and adventurer Tim Jarvis AM, to campus in March to headline a week-long series of presentations and lectures that focus on climate change and global exploration. The public is invited to attend the free series of events.

   Jarvis will deliver the keynote, “Course of Action: Lessons from a Lifetime of Polar Exploration,’’ on Monday, March 23 at 7:30 p.m. in Lemmond Theater in Walsh Hall. Due to limited seating, tickets are required. Reservations can be made beginning Feb. 9 by calling the Cultural Events Box Office at (570) 674-6719 or by logging on to cougarconnect.misericordia.edu/polar to register for tickets. Tickets can be picked up at the Box Office in Mercy Hall Room 221.

   A question-and-answer session and book signing event will immediately follow Jarvis’ feature presentation.

   Throughout his career, Jarvis has been working to understand climate change through his experiences as an explorer and as a climate scientist. Armed with master’s degrees in environmental science and environmental law, Jarvis is committed to finding pragmatic solutions to major environmental issues related to climate change and biodiversity loss. The Australian global ambassador uses his public speaking engagements, films and books about his expeditions and work to promote progressive thinking in these areas.

   The polar traveler wrote the book, “Chasing Shackleton,’’ about his most recent expedition in 2013. The Discovery Channel and PBS made the documentary about the recreation of the early 20th century expedition. Jarvis is also the author of “The Unforgiving Minute,’’ which chronicles his first three polar expeditions.

   “In recreating Shackleton’s heroic 800-mile boat journey and almost impossible crossing of the jagged peaks and crevasse-riddled glaciers of South Georgia, Tim Jarvis brings history to life,’’ said Margot Morrell, author of ‘Shackleton’s Way,’ “and, even more valuable for today’s world, provides a timely reminder of enduring human values – courage, perseverance, determination and, above all else, Shackleton’s beloved optimism.’’

   His book, “Mawson: Life and Death in Antarctica’’ was officially endorsed by the United Nations Environment Program in 2009, and was released in conjunction with an international documentary of the same title. Sir Douglas Mawson, an Australian geologist, Antarctic explorer and academic, was a key expedition leader during the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration.

   Jarvis wrote the book about Mawson’s ill-fated trek and also recreated it for the documentary using 100-year-old gear and starvation rations. The book and film are about Mawson’s 1913 adventure with a team of explorers that were sent to Antarctica to survey King George V’s land. Their journey turns both tragic and death defying when a member of the exploration team, a sled team of dogs, and essential supplies fell into a deep crevasse and disappeared. Mawson was the sole survivor of the expedition.

   In addition, Jarvis has received accolades from academia, governmental and environmental agencies, and many more. Among his many accomplishments is the record he holds for the fastest unsupported journey to the Geographic South Pole. In 2004, he was awarded the Australian Geographic Society’s “Spirit of Adventure’’ medal for his kayak journey across Australia’s largest salt lake. He was conferred as a Member of the Order of Australia in the 2010 Australian honors list for his services to the environment, community and exploration.

   In 2009, he was named a fellow of the Yale World Fellows Program based on his international leadership in the field of environmental sustainability. Jarvis was awarded the Sydney Institute of Marine Science Emerald Award in 2013 for services to the environment. He is the 2013 Australian Adventurer of the Year.

   The five-part program begins Sunday, March 15 from 2-5 p.m. in the Catherine Evans McGowan Room of the Mary Kintz Bevevino Library with the screening of the documentary, “Chasing Shackleton.’’ The film captures Jarvis’ recreation of Sir Earnest Shackleton’s 1916 rescue mission across 800 miles of the Southern Ocean. Jarvis uses a replica life boat and the same rudimentary equipment and period clothing as Shackleton in this endeavor. Many regard the explorer’s story as the greatest survival journey of all time.

   An encore screening of “Chasing Shackelton’’ will be held Friday, March 20 from 2-5 p.m. in Sandy and Marlene Insalaco Hall’s Huntzinger and Alden Trust Rooms 218-219.

   Faculty members also are presenting two special lectures. “The Heroic Age of Polar Exploration’’ will be delivered by Brian Carso, Jr., J.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of history and government, on Tuesday, March 17 from 7-8 p.m. in Insalaco Hall Rooms 218-219. Carso will address how the early 20th century witnessed heroic quests to reach the South Pole. The illustrated lecture will examine the triumphs and tragedies of the expeditions led by Roald Amundsen, Robert Falcon Scott, Mawson and Shackleton as they opened the Antarctic frontier.

   On Wednesday, March 18, Anthony Serino, Ph.D., associate professor of biology, is offering the lecture, “Climate Change: Is it Getting Hot in Here?,’’ in Insalaco Hall Rooms 218-219. Serino will present current evidence that climate change is happening, and that human activities are largely responsible for them. His talk will outline climate change effects and their downstream consequences, while offering a reasonable assessment of these changes. Serino will also discuss possible actions that might be taken to combat the changes associated with global warming.