'Under the Pole' Project to explore oceans between Alaska, Antarctica
"Under the Pole" is an expedition to explore our ocean floors. A team of divers and scientists are sailing around the world to better understand the ecosystem down below, and one team is about to embark on a journey from Alaska to Antarctica.
Ghislain Bardout, the project's initiator and director, joined KTVA's Daybreak to discuss the project.
"It started nearly 10 years ago", Bardout said. "To go to the North Pole, to see the landscape of ice...then I decided to organize an expedition, focus on the underwater world, because it's really something that the human eye is not used to seeing that fantastic, amazing world."
The goal of the expedition is understanding the ecosystem as a whole, as Bardout told us, "For the last decade we were in the Arctic, working on the sea ice formation, biology, ecology, all of that."
It's hard work, and the northern waters are incredibly cold -- conditions which require heated diving suits, but lead to a unique experience.
"We are learning to dive deep, very deep and more than 300 feet below the Arctic Ocean," Bardout said. "We have been able to dive longer, up to three, four hours in negative temperature waters."
Ultimately, however, Bardout's dedication to the project extends beyond the dives themselves.
"We try to share our understanding of the Arctic and of the global warming of the Arctic, which is very important and coming very fast," Bardout said.
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