Classic Post: Collapse Video Of A Glacier The Size Of A City | You're Going To Find This Hard To Believe


On May 28, 2008, Adam LeWinter and Director Jeff Orlowski filmed a historic breakup at the Ilulissat Glacier in Western Greenland. The calving event lasted for 75 minutes and the glacier retreated a full mile across a calving face three miles wide. The height of the ice is about 3,000 feet, 300-400 feet above water and the rest below water.

Chasing Ice won the award for Excellence in Cinematography at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, and has won 24 awards so far this year. Playing in theaters now.

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  • Achim Wolf

    Ladies and Gentlemen,

    Scientists warn of a rapid collapse of the Earth’s ecosystem.
    The ecological balance is under threat: climate change, population growth and environmental degradation could lead even in this century an irreversible collapse of the global ecosystem.

    –> http://newscenter.berkeley.edu/2012/06/06/scientists-uncover-evidence-of-impending-tipping-point-for-earth/

    The cardinal reason is the sudden development of human population that threatens to devour all our resources.

    Since 21 August there is therefore a petition at change.org for the introduction of global birth-controls, also in HINDI!

    If you want to support this or publish it on your website, here is the link:

    Please continue to spread the link or the petition as possible to all interested people, organisations etc.

    Thank you and best regards
    Achim Wolf, Germany

  • landocalripken

    So many idiotic comments. Look at a more recent post from unofficial. The ice cap grew by 60% this year. Science is supposed to be observable and testable. So much of what we are told by ‘scientists’ is garbage.

  • Dave

    Two words……population control

    There are just too many people on this planet, changes in climate are just the start, if the number of people keeps increasing at the same rate then water & food will be worth fighting for

    • Biggus D

      woah, unofficial must be really getting popular the google search seeders are attacking… ironic they post here since LV bags are a fine symbol of human arrogance and waste.

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  • Agent P

    That looked like a big blender, just add booze and scantily clad women and let the party begin.
    Oh by the globl wRMING IS REal and mankind causeED ITTO HPN. NOws whers my drink, diD I SETI T dWON?

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  • John Smith

    The sad thing about many of these comments is they are debating what the entire documentary “Chasing Ice” is about.

    “Chasing Ice” was made by a photographer who was photographing remote locations, and decided to do time lapse photography in a few areas with big glaciers, after noting that one seemed to be receding quite a bit. Over the span of a number of years, the time lapse work showed the glaciers were receding HUGELY, and WAY MORE than imagined. Climate change is most assuredly real, and it is absolutely true that huge numbers of glaciers are receding by miles, tens of miles, or more.

    Yes, calving of glaciers is normal. Glaciers “flow” normally and as they get to overhangs or to oceans, they calve off. However, huge recession of glaciers is not normal; when they recede 17 miles in 110 years (and 9 years in 10 years after 8 miles the previous 100 years), it indicates something is going on. That’s what this whole film is about.

    You can debate what’s causing it (human versus normal variation), or what to do about it (politics…), but what’s NOT really debatable is that things are changing, and they’re changing faster than ever. This movie is a very good documentary about the subject; I’d strongly suggest everyone spend 70 minutes of their time viewing it. It’s not a political Al Gore-style claptrap; it’s informative, and it’s scary for what it means for the future.

  • Shiraz Kanga

    Whether climate change is man-made or not is IRRELEVANT. When it rains do you use an umbrella? This is not a man made phenomenon but EVEN THEN you still take precautions. So let’s take precautions against global climate change EVEN IF it is a natural phenomenon.

    • JMSNY

      Agreed. Our country needs to green up our infrastructure to mitigate the effects associated with climate change. Adapting for the future is a wise investment. As it stands, our aging and outdated infrastructure can’t handle severe storms, let alone a changing climate. It’s costing us tons to maintain it. It’s like going to the TV repair man every week to fix a 1950 Zenith TV. It’ll save us billions of dollars down the road and more importantly, it’ll save lives. Plus, it encompasses water efficiency and energy conservation to boot. From restoring wetlands and natural floodplains, utilizing smart and sustainable development, modernizing stormwater management etc. This article explains it much better than I can:

      • Biggus D

        first lets determine if climate change is actually hurtin’ us or helpin’ us… i propose this is debatable

      • JMSNY

        Are you serious? There is NO upside. You can’t be that ignorant, Biggus.

        So you live in a colder climate? It’s not going to make your life more comfortable.. as if you’ll be able to start wearing T-Shirts in April or something? That’s not how climate change works. A few degrees uptick in global temperature over a couple of decades will have devastating consequences on our planet.

        Severe droughts in notoriously dryer areas, increased flooding and rainfall in wetter climates, rising food prices, deadly ground-level ozone pollution (aka smog), wildlife migration, greater intensity of disease, infections and clusters, changes in flora… the list goes on. This is disrupting nature; what prolongs and sustains life on Earth. One little deviation from “normal” has mammoth implications. Heck, take a look at the honey bee. If honey bees went extinct, say goodbye to the vital pollinators that make the growing of vegetables and fruits possible. Albert Einstein himself: “‘If the bee became extinct, man would only survive a few years beyond it’.”

        EPA “Climate Change Impacts and Adapting to Change” – http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/impacts-adaptation/

        The Harvard School of Public Health (Harvard University): “Climate Change and Infectious Disease” – http://chge.med.harvard.edu/topic/climate-change-and-infectious-disease

      • Biggus D

        Look, 150 years ago we didnt have flush toilets, walked everywhere, and didnt even know about electricity or any of its uses (without which our pitiful lives would SUCK!) We drank warm beer, ate the same things all the time and bathed once a week.

        My point, deal with it. It aint like it was before. We’re not going back there unless we have to and this is one dude that is going to fight like hell to make sure that doesnt happen! We will find a way around this global warming thing or we wont. Crying about it now is Tiger Woods crying about gettin on all those biatches… i.e. too late. its a positive feedback loop and according to science we are past the tipping point (see video above).

      • Biggus D

        sorry, forgot most unofficial readers do still drink warm beer, eat the same thing all the time and bathe once a week… maybe those were bad examples but you get my point


    The world’s most prestigious and actively-published climate scientists (97% I believe) tell us climate change is very real and its man-made.

    The debate has always been about whether climate change is man-made or naturally-occurring, NOT whether climate change exists at all. Everyone agrees that climate change is happening.

    When it comes to all things science, I tend to trust scientists. Just as I would trust a doctor when it comes to all things medical.

    So when the world’s scientists warn us that our carbon emissions are behind climate change- I’m going to take their word for it. Plus, we’ve been seeing it recently with all the events associated with climate change: Hurricane Sandy, ocean acidification, rising ocean waters, increasing ocean water temperature. Even smaller instances (but very devastating nonetheless- pine beetles out west wreaking havoc on our forests). Heck, last month was the warmest year on record ever for the U.S.

    Personally, I don’t know if it’s man-made or natural. Heck, it could even be natural but dramatically exacerbated and accelerated by greenhouse gas emissions. But what I do now is, our planet, our health, the environment etc. deserve the benefit of the doubt on this one. I think that’s common sense and in the best interest of mankind. Therefore, I trust the scientific explanation that the world’s growing population and it’s pollution that’s causing this.

    • Biggus D

      people are a “weed species”… i.e. we can basically show up anywhere and thrive or at least survive. Obviously we have the power collectively to affect change on the planet. ho hum… so did algae when it created the oxygen rich atmosphere 4 billion years ago… and that turned out to be a pretty good thing for us.

      so it gets a little warmer and some glaciers melt… last time that happened most of the US and Europe went from frozen wasteland to fertile grounds! Undoubtedly global warming will benefit some while harming others, and of course most will barely notice.

      • James

        “of course most will barely notice”…?

        i would love to know what scientific research led you to this conclusion

        if the overall temperature of the planet rises by 4 degrees – and basically all climatologists agree that we are not only on course to hit that, but are going to greatly exceed it – then what will result will be “incompatible with an organized global community [and] is likely to be beyond ‘adaptation’”. put more bluntly, civilization will collapse and the majority of the human race will die. i am pretty sure everybody will notice that.

      • squawasshole

        You use quotes like they confer some type of authority… are you actually quoting anyone?

        ps. whoever you might be quoting is a quack.

      • Gahgah

        You’re probably right, but at current warming rates the ski season will cease to exist in 100 years. Since this is a ski/snowboard website, I think it’s an appropriate place to advocate for a response to climate change, i.e. lowering our collective carbon footprint. Anyone who wants to teach their kids/grandkids how to ski should take note and take action.

      • Biggus D

        Actually I surf more than I snowboard, so all this increased storm activity is stoking us out… check the 100ft plus wave that got surfed last week!!!

      • JMSNY

        The instances of shark attacks, toxic algae blooms and fish kills are increasing with rising ocean temps and ocean acidifcation as well. Another crappy consequence, smelly and stank ocean waters.

      • Biggus D

        i believe the oceans are under attack by humans, look at the great plastic gyre in the pacific
        i just think its ironic that a bunch of spoiled skiers with internet addictions are bitching about global warming like they arent the ones causing it. get over it you users of disposable goods, its happening and you and I are the ones to blame.

      • JMSNY

        I agree, we (generally speaking) treat our lands and waters like garbage dumps and we pay the price. We take for granted our natural resources which are worth more than gold. Sitting around bitching does absolutely nothing. I agree with you on that as well… Talk the talk, walk the walk. If we want to see a cleaner, healthier planet- we should be doing our part as well. Even small things, like replacing disposables with reusables. The whole reduce, reuse, recycle thing and buying local goes a long way. Conserving water and electricity too. Plus, it doesn’t require a dramatic change in lifestyle. It just comes down to changing some bad habits is all. It’s pretty easy and it saves us money.

        Yeah, I’ve seen the garbage patch photo before on Surfrider Foundation’s page. It’s gross. I’ve seen photos of dead sea turtles and fish with their stomachs cut open, revealing handfuls of plastic pieces and fragments – even worse.

      • Really

        Two comments —
        1. We can’t survive anything. The Great Oxygenation Event you refer to was good to algae (and us), but it was pretty bad if oxygen was toxic to you. This was a huge extinction event, and many until-then adaptable organisms perished.
        2. That event led to global cooling during which the earth became nearly covered in ice. Not a ‘good thing for us’.


        Given how suitable the current climate is to human life, we should be careful about changing it. I agree, we don’t need to worry about life surviving even severe climate change — the earth will get along just fine without us.

      • Biggus D

        we, the humans, are obviously the next extinction event…. carbon emissions, chemical dumps, damming rivers, stripping the oceans of life, filling the oceans with plastic trash, releasing toxic radiation, destroying the rainforests, lots more I cant think of now…

        im not debating that…

        What Im saying is where I live its foggy and chilly alot, and a few more degrees would be welcome most days… thats all.

      • OyVey

        You think that “most will barely notice”??? Do you mean most Americans and Europeans? We are all in this together, and if there are important changes in the Earth’s atmosphere, that could lead to population movement, where do you think millions of people in the global south will go? When you say that it will “benefit some and harm others” are you assuming that when you say “some” you mean “most”?
        You do realize that when weeds, once they sap the ground of nutrients, must find a new place to destroy?

      • JMSNY

        Your statement is false and inaccurate, bro.

        According to NOAA’s page on Paleoclimatology: 150,000 years ago, “It appears that temperatures (at least summer temperatures) were slightly warmer than today (by about 1 to 2°C), but for reasons that are well known – the changes in the Earth’s orbit.”

  • CB

    “Your going to find this hard to believe”….if you are not aware of climate change. Have you looked at the weather this winter? the whole damn thing has been a thaw

    • Anonymous

      Climate change is not short time scale event. To say that “the weather this winter” is an example of it does nothing to back the argument that climate change is occurring – we have always had extra warm/cold seasons and climate change skeptics are the first to point this out.

      • Biggus D

        things change, some ice melts, big deal… expecting a fluid system as complex as our planet to not change is short sighted. life survives because it adapts better than the life that doesnt survive.

      • James

        another good way for life to survive is to not actively destroy the planet’s ecosystems. the human species is not doing so well in that regard

      • Darwin

        Even better not to buy into the oil companies explanations because you don’t have the guts to deal with reality.

        It’s called climate change and it is caused by man.

      • Biggus D

        yeah, i wish those oil companies and all the power plants and car companies, and trucks that bring all my nice stuff to me would just go away so I could walk everywhere, grow all my own food, read only during the day, never use the internet, make my own skis, not need skis because I cant get anywhere near snow, never ride a lift again, throw my phone and tv away, never eat microwave popcorn again… living standards sucked just a few hundred years ago… we have it the best now than any humans ever collectively… it will probably get worse again, i just dont think that is surprising. Would you really give up everything just to make the global temperature a few degrees colder? Or do you think we can have our cake and eat it too?

      • Dazza

        things change dude, some weather changes, big deal. Fisheries collapse, food production plummets, coastal communities are destroyed. Get over it. Expecting the life and standard of living of 9 billion people not to be potentially devastated because we can’t make some simple and obvious changes is short sighted. Life survives, that is all that matters.

      • labrat

        its called the Rate of change “mini D”.. yes adapting to things changing over millions of years is important… the planet adapting to the severity of change that has happened in the last 100 years is going to result in extinction ( maybe not humans first, but we will certainly fall in line at some point)

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