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Extreme Ice Survey: James Balog

Photographer James Balog explains why he looks to glaciers to understand climate change.

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"Ninety-five percent of the glaciers in the world are retreating or shrinking," says photographer James Balog during this July 2009 speech. "In these images, we see ice from enormous glaciers, ice sheets that are hundreds of thousands of years old, breaking up into chunks and, chunk by chunk by chunk, iceberg by iceberg, turning into global sea level rise."

This process is one that Balog has been documenting as part of the Extreme Ice Survey, a network of time-lapse cameras that record glaciers receding.


This speech was given during a conference for TED (Technology, Entertainment. Design), a nonprofit "devoted to ideas worth spreading."

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