In this podcast, BCB host Sonia Scaer talks to NASA Emeritus Scientist Dr. Bob Bindschadler about his upcoming presentation “What Ice Sheets Hate: And Why You Should Care” on Monday December 7, at 8:00 PM.

The pub at the Treehouse Café in Lynwood Center is the venue for monthly first Monday “Open Mic Science” conversations. The public is invited to grab a beverage and explore ideas in various aspects of science and technology in an informal, social setting. Inspired by Café Scientifique, the gatherings are committed to public understanding of science.

Bob has spent many years studying the ice sheets of the Antarctic, has led field expeditions to Antarctica, and has participated in many expeditions to glaciers and icecaps around the world. He has advised the US Congress and Vice President Al Gore on the stability of ice sheets and ice shelves, and has served on many scientific commissions and study groups as an expert in glaciology and remote sensing of ice.

Bob explains “Thawing permafrost, thinning sea ice and retreating glaciers all signal changes that have become the ‘new normal’ for the colder parts of our planet”, and they foretell a future of rising sea levels. Observations of this accelerating ice loss have surprised the experts and confounded the predictive models that policy makers might rely on to take action. The distant future is easy to forecast—less ice on Earth—one million years of paleoclimate data say so, but more detail is needed.

Bob explains that direct field studies have identified a number of causes for the sudden awakening of the ice sheets. Climate models do not incorporate many of the more rapidly acting processes. All have a common element, which will be explained in the lecture. Studies indicate that continued ice sheet mass loss may well be irreversible and will affect your life—whether you attend the lecture or not!

Bob is now a resident of the Port Townsend area and is actively engaged in community education.

For more details, visit the Open Mic Science website.