Life on the Ice: Q&A with Icebreaker’s Partner Antarctica New Zealand

Icebreaker is proud to partner with Antarctica New Zealand, the Crown Entity responsible for developing, managing and executing New Zealand Government activities in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean.  “Icebreaker is thrilled to partner with Antarctica New Zealand – our ethos are perfectly aligned,” says Jeremy Moon, Founder of Icebreaker. “We have a shared mission to build upon the way we interact with nature, a passion for collaboration, acting with integrity, and a sincere commitment to protecting the environment.” We recently caught up with Jeanine Begg, General Manager of Marketing and Communications, to find out more about Antarctica NZ and all the amazing work they’re doing.

What does Antarctica NZ do?

Antarctica New Zealand is a Government agency charged with carrying out New Zealand’s activities in Antarctica; supporting world leading science and environmental protection. Our vision is: Antarctica and the Southern Ocean – Valued, Protected, and Understood. We work to ensure that Antarctica’s environment continues to be valued and protected, that scientists are supported to find the answers to complex scientific questions, and that these science outcomes are communicated back to the public and policy makers.

Antartica 1

What happens down at the ice?

Lots of Research! What we know for sure is that Antarctica is changing, and it’s changing at a rate which has not been recorded before. The research objective remains: How will Antarctica’s ice sheets, atmosphere, ocean and ecosystem respond as the globe warms?

Scott Base

Scott Base

How does Global Warming affect Antarctica and New Zealand?

For a nation like New Zealand whose population is largely settled along our beautiful coastlines, sea level rise and changing weather patterns are problematic.

If continued warming of the planet is going to affect Antarctica’s ice sheets (i.e. melt them), it will most likely be from warm ocean water spilling over the continent edge and into the interior of Antarctica and beneath its floating ice shelves. Our work on the Ross Ice Shelf research work helps us to understand this, as does our work at Cape Adare where we hope to identify species that can tell us what is already happening.

Tell us how Antarctica NZ fits with Icebreaker?

New Zealand’s operation in Antarctica is amongst the most efficient in the world.  This is partly due to strong national and international partnerships and partly because we’re innovative, environmentally responsible and use kiwi ingenuity to solve problems effectively. We’re proud to partner with Icebreaker, an iconic Kiwi brand, trusted to keep us warm in even the most extreme of temperatures.

Icebreaker provide the world’s best base layers to every visitor to the ice to keep them nice and toasty in the negative 20 degree temperatures.

Antartica 2.0

How can we help the effects of Global Warming?

There are lots of ways people can make a difference, all with little cost and effort. Be conscious of what you’re purchasing and where it’s been produced. Plant your own vege garden! Of course minimising your energy use can be as simple as using energy saver or LED light bulbs, or using the washing machine twice a week rather than four times. Waste management is the big one though. This connects back to unnecessary packaging, active recycling and avoiding over production!  The cumulative good of each of us making little changes to our daily routines can have a powerful global impact. Check out our TEDx on this very topic!

Check out life on the ice via Antarctica NZ’s Facebook and Twitter accounts

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