BELFAST — Climate scientist and explorer Paul Mayewski and glaciochemist Mariusz Potocki will give a free public talk titled “The National Geographic and Rolex Perpetual Planet Extreme Mt. Everest Expedition,” Friday, March 6, from 5:30 – 6:30 p.m., in the auditorium at the Hutchinson Center, in Belfast.
The goal of the two-month multinational, multidisciplinary National Geographic and Rolex Perpetual Planet Extreme Mt. Everest Expedition was to document people’s impacts on one of the planet’s most severe environments.
Mayewski, director of the University of Maine Climate Change Institute, was the expedition leader and lead scientist for the international project that involved 55 science partners, National Geographic staff, journalists, Sherpas and porters.
From Base Camp at an altitude of 17,514 feet, he directed the biological, geological, glaciological, meteorological, mapping and multimedia enterprise which took place all over the mountain, both at lower elevations and nearly to the 29,029-foot summit.
Water flowing from Himalayan glaciers is a resource for energy, food and consumption for about 20% of the world’s population, according to the Hutchinson Center, in a news release.
“One billion people living in the watershed will be stressed due to the shrinking of the glaciers,” said Mayewski, in the release. “Initially from flooding and landslides, and later due to drought.”
This marked Mayewski’s fourth scientific expedition on Everest, which Tibetans call Chomolungma and Nepalis call Sagarmatha for “mother of the sky.” Mayewski has led nearly 60 research expeditions around the globe, many in Antarctica, where he was the first person to explore large tracts of the continent. “Mayewski Peak,” a summit in Antarctica’s Saint Johns Range, is named in his honor.
A video, a summit suit, a drill used to secure the highest ice core in the world, and other items from the expedition will be displayed.
About the Hutchinson Center:
The Hutchinson Center is an outreach center for the University of Maine in Orono, that serves as an educational and cultural center for the Midcoast area. It is named for University of Maine President Emeritus Frederick E. Hutchinson. The mission of the Hutchinson Center is to broaden access to University of Maine academic and non-degree programs and services, lifelong learning opportunities, and professional and career development experiences using innovative approaches that increase synergy among University of Maine System entities, University of Maine departments and divisions, and that engage a wider Maine community. This is accomplished by providing (1) University of Maine System degree and non-degree programming in a variety of live, online, distance, and hybrid formats, including professional and career development opportunities, and academic counseling and support services for students, especially for non-traditional students, (2) conference and meeting facilities and services, and (3) by partnering with the local community to promote education, lifelong learning, cultural, and economic development opportunities that serve local communities and the University of Maine.
About the University of Maine:
The University of Maine, founded in Orono in 1865, is the state's land grant and sea grant university. As Maine's flagship public university, UMaine has a statewide mission of teaching, research and economic development, and community institutions in the Northeast and attracts students from Maine and 49 other states, and 67 countries. It currently enrolls 11,240 total undergraduate and graduate students who can directly participate in groundbreaking research working with world-class scholars, according to UMaine. The University of Maine offers 35 doctoral programs and master's degrees in 85 fields; more than 90 undergraduate majors and academic programs; and one of the oldest and most prestigious honors programs in the U.S. The university promotes environmental stewardship, with substantial efforts campuswide aimed at conserving energy, recycling and adhering to green building standards in new construction. For more information about UMaine, visit umaine.edu.