Journey to South Georgia

Researchers with the University of Maine’s Climate Change Institute recently wrapped up an expedition to South Georgia Island in the South Atlantic Ocean. During the trip, the team drilled on Nordenskjold and Fortuna glaciers for what may be the first-ever ice core samples from the island, and also gathered an ice pit sample from the Szielsko Ice Cap. The explorers blogged about their adventures and activities during the expedition.

The Kuli South Georgia Expedition team members were Climate Change Institute Director Paul Mayewski, UMaine graduate students Bjorn Grigholm and Mariusz Potocki, UMaine postdoctoral researcher Dan Dixon, Chilean researchers Gino Casassa and Marcelo Arevalo, EMT medic Alex Kuli, and freelance journalist Alex George Kuli. The Kuli South Georgia Expedition team is expecting to return Nov. 4, depending on weather.

In a blog posted Oct. 20 on the expedition website, the researchers noted information from the ice cores and the ice pit sample will help scientists determine how the island’s current air supply differs from the air hundreds of years ago. The team, which is returning to the Falkland Islands en route to its return to the U.S., faced weather-related delays during the expedition, but the bloggers wrote Mayewski considers the trip a success.

“The ice samples from the Szielsko, Nordenskjold and Fortuna glaciers will allow him to lay the groundwork for a full-blown coring expedition to South Georgia in the coming years,” the bloggers wrote.

Before leaving on the trip, Mayewski delivered a talk on “Climate Change — Perspectives, Realities and Future Change” at Chile’s Universidad de Magallanes — American Corner. The lecture featured research work in South America and Antarctica.

To read the blog updates, go to For more information about the Climate Change Institute go to

Contact: Jessica Bloch, (207) 581-3777