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Hearts in the Ice

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 Welcome to  "Hearts in the Ice" Thank you all for helping us to reach our Goal !

All donations through this site are in Canadian dollars. If you want to donate 100usd - you would donate 134 Cdn Dollars ( please check exchange rates)  Thank you for the bottom of our hearts. xx

WHAT  is " Hearts in the Ice"?

“Hearts in the Ice” Polar ambassadors and Citizen Scientists Sunniva Sorby and Hilde Falun Strom work to engage, and educate people around the world on Climate Change issues.
Working to inspire action, collaboration and engagement we invite you to join the movement as they work to embrace the planet beyond their 9-month stay at Bamsebu.
Mother earth needs her daughters!
Please support the “Hearts in the Ice” project.
All money raised will help to expand the technology, citizen science collection and educational outreach to schools around the world!

WHAT are Sunniva and Hilde doing in the High Arctic isolated for 9 months and why?
Simply put- they are both serving as ‘citizen scientists’ in the Arctic until May 2020. In its richest form “Citizen Science” has the power to transform science and society. We live in a time where technology and information are abundant so it only makes sense to share information and collaborate on research that can help us all better understand the impact our changing climate is having on our wildlife, micro-organisms, ice, weather and people.
While Hilde and Sunniva are the nucleus of “Hearts in the Ice”, they have a network of science partners that are as diverse as a snowflake- yet all aligned and connected in some way to what they are doing here at Bamsebu for science, innovation and technology.
“Both of us work for Polar operators that have been engaging their guests in Citizen Science data collection for years- Sunniva with #PolarLatitudes and Hilde with #Hurtigruten. This type of Citizen science has made it possible for people like you and us to collect data and observations that have real scientific value. Data collected has shaped policy and made breakthroughs in research and impacted local decisions.
Our planet and resources benefit from all of us being curious and engaged! Very powerful!

WHERE are Hilde and Sunniva right now?

So here we are at our 20 sq mtr trappers cabin “Bamsebu” with no running water, no electricity and no Netflix, located at 78’ north, 140 km away from the nearest neighbor! We are using solar power and windmills for electricity and have a low carbon footprint. We have a unique and formidable ability to collect, record, observe and document for 7 different research entities.
Each project comes with specific protocol. On a practical level each one requires time, data connectivity, lots of layers to get outside and need we say, commitment.
The best part is that we are sharing all of this with kids from around the world through expert hosted themed calls ; themes like technology, bio-diversity, our ocean, citizen science, weather; hosted zoom calls with no cost for the teachers and students- check it out and join us here : 
We are loving the work we are doing and want to keep asking the questions so we can all better understand what to do in this world where the climate is rapidly changing and impacting people, resources and wildlife!

WE WOULD LOVE YOUR HELP and financial support to grow our platform and efforts!”
“We are collecting salt water, sea temps and phytoplankton for Scripps Institute of Oceanography, observing the phenomenal Aurora and Cloud types for Nasa, flying thermal drones for BCIT, Insect sampling, sea ice biological sampling, PolarBear and wildlife observation for UNIS, and ice core sampling, sea ice thickness and collecting plastic and inspecting the stomach lining of dead fulmars for the Norsk PolarInstitut”

A FEW WAYS TO GET INVOLVED and support this Historic project:

1.    Sign up and follow Hilde and Sunniva’s monthly blog dispatches from their small- 20sqmtr- remote trappers cabin called “Bamsebu” 78’ north, 140 km away from the nearest neighbor.
2.    Follow them on social media :
3.    Check out the website: 
4.    Please consider a contribution (tax deductible from the US) through this Gofundme page. “Hearts is the Ice” is mutually controlled by Hilde and Sunniva so every donation goes directly to further communication, citizen science efforts and school engagement.
5.    Pursue citizen science projects in your neighborhood- stay curious and join as active ambassadors.
6.    Watch the 5-minute video trailer here: 
WHY do we do this and what will the impact of what we collect bring us?
We do this because we can and because we care!! We are in a place – the Arctic ,where  climate change is accelerated. If we can find a new species underwater and add even a drop of understanding to whether or not phytoplankton thrive in the polar night and add to our understanding around patterns of polar bear visits and responses when there are polar bear conflicts- we all benefit.
The data assimilation takes time so stay in touch with us so that we can share findings when we get them!

Here are the names behind our projects and the science we are adding to:

1a.     NASA- GLOBE Clouds-Arctic Cloud Observations- 
Marile Colon-Robleshas been our key contact here.
For Bamsebu- Researchers are interested in cloud observations with a focus on what happens beneath the thick layers. The Arctic is known for fog type clouds and satellites cannot clearly see what happens below them.
They are also interested in reports distinguishing between fog and haze. Fog is a cloud that occurs in the ground, Haze is caused by aerosols or pollution in the air and makes the skies look not so clear.The third is to detect very thin high clouds, like noctilucent clouds and necras. Changes observed with these clouds are possibly related to human effects on the atmosphere.
1b.    NASA- AURORASAURUS-platform for viewing and recording the Aurora:   Dr.Elizabeth Macdonaldis our key contact.
There are different types of aurora at different times of day and this is one science project that will have us happily missing sleep.Positioned at nearly 78deg North latitude, Bamsebu offers a unique vantage point of the Aurora which is visible in the southern (rather than northern) portion of the sky. Combined with the extended observation period (nine months), we have the potential to contribute substantially to the understanding, structure and environmental conditions under which Aurora Borealis occurs.  Specific science questions of interest:
1)    Monitoring cusp aurora-noon time
2)    Correlation with compass -would likely indicate very dynamic aurora.
2.    Scripps Institution of Oceanography- 
Our key contact here is Alison Cusick. Phytoplanktonare microscopic algae that drift in the oceans. They use sunlight, nutrients and carbon from the ocean to produce biomass in a process we know as photosynthesis. They are primary producers and basically the equivalent of plants on land. They play a critical role in drawing carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere and contribute toover half of the Earth’s oxygen. This is more than plants and trees combined.
Freshwater from melting glaciers has a negative impact on phytoplankton reproduction.Here we will use a Secchi diskunderwater, pull a phytoplankton net and do a time series- weekly. Until recently researchers thought that phytoplankton were dead/resting during the polar night but research done from 2011-15 find that not to be true.

3.     BCIT- British Columbia Institute of Technology- Visible and Thermal Drone Data
Our Key contact here is Dr Eric.Saczuk. Drone datawill be captured to create a map of the coastal area where the ocean water sampling for Scripps is taking place. The drone captures both color and thermal imagery which will be analyzed for any correlation with data provided using the Secchi disks. The drone flights will also be timed (weather permitting) with the overflight of the joint NASA and CNES CALIPSO satellite for the purpose of mapping distribution of phytoplankton in a near-shore marine environment.
This type of study could produce important baseline data allowing future projects to leverage the far greater area that can be captured with a drone compared with ground sampling to accurately classify satellite imagery regarding phytoplankton concentrations.

4.    UNIS- University Institute of Svalbard 
Our Key contact here is Borge Damsgaard.  Insect sampling- we have collected up until Nov 3rd and will put the “insect tent” back up in April. We have done 4 insect samplings -what they are interested in is diversity, distribution and activity. Most data is only from summer. Polar Bear observation- UNIS quantifies polar bear observations and conflicts with humans. They use data from a fixed station such as Bamsebu to look for patterns of Polar Bear visits (where, how, who , when) and also to understand responses when there are human- polar bear conflicts.  Sea Ice biological sampling- During the last 30 years, the winter period with sea ice cover in Svalbard fjords have declined on average from five to one month. UNIS has worked with sea ice organisms for many years and they will use our help at Bamsebu to collect sea ice during the spring season.

5.    Norwegian Polar Institute- 
Our Key contact is Kim HolmenInternational Director. Daily observations of sea ice distribution in the bay combined with weekly snow depth and ice thickness measurements. Observations of the formation of icing layers on snow (e.g. rain during winter) The VanKeulen fjord area has been investigated for effects of ongoing climate change by a number of projects that usually have been of short duration and mainly in summer seasons. Bamsebu will allow for year round observations that can strengthen and enhance the ability to utilize remote sensing data to evaluate that climatic state in the region.
The simultaneous observation of physical and biological parameters will provide new data between climate and ecosystems in the region.The vanMijen and vanKeulen fjords are unique in the West coast of Spitsbergen as the only ones that still experience sea ice formation.
Year round observations on the ground from these fjords are almost exclusively from van Mijen and " Hearts in the Ice will thus provide some new and unique information.

6.     Norwegian Polar Institute- 
Our Key contact is Geir Wing Gabrielsen.
Fulmars are pelagic seabirds that belong to the large group of the tubenoses of which the albatrosses are the best known representatives. These birds forage exclusively at sea and never on land and even rarely close to shore. The fulmar is a poor diver, and thus feeds off what is available. Like most tubenosed seabirds, fulmars regularly ingest a variety of marine debris, probably mostly taken directly, either intentionally because resembling prey, or non-intentionally when mixed with attractive food wastes. But indirect ingestion e.g. through fish or scavenging on guts of other dead animals, also occurs.  Hearts in the Ice will open the stomach sacs of the dead fulmars to better understand the origin of plastics and quantity.

As we mentioned earlier, we are very excited to engage with kids globally during this adventure, share resources with them and collect their stories. We make a live satellite/video call every two weeks to schools around the world. If you are teacher or at a school that is studying climate change and want to connect with us, please connect here: 
Please support the “Hearts in the Ice” project.

WHERE does your contribution go?
All money raised will help to expand the technology, citizen science collection and educational outreach to schools around the world!
You can donate any amount you want, no donation is too small. Thank you! 
All donations will receive a receipt upon request.  

                                            The 20 sq mtrs Trappers cabin called " Bamsebu", home for Hilde and Sunniva for 9 months

The polar bear is our neighbour and greatest danger, we will live in harmony with them. We will
observe changes in real-time, even during the three months of complete darkness. We hope our 
project and campaign can connect us all in a more uplifting and personal way around the changes we  are all affected by.


“Hearts in the Ice is a courageous, thoughtful and deeply loving initiative. Courageous on the part of
the two women –to leave home, hearth and comfort, to winter in such demanding conditions,
thoughtful in the focus – to build awareness of the first-hand consequences of climate change in the Arctic, and deeply loving in the expressed care for our planet. Homeward Bound is proud to be in
alliance. We wish the team all good fortune. We will watch and listen for the unfolding story ” 
                                                                            -Fabian Dattner
                                  Dreamer and Co-Founder,


If you have made it this far- from the bottom of our hearts, we thank you for your support of our
project.  Our Blog will be updated bi-monthly so please sign up /like our facebook page :
FB: @heartsintheice, Inst: #2heartsintheice, Tw: 2heartsintheice , 

Squamish chief: 
High North news(from September) 
Svalbardposten:   Icebreaker 
Journal Accès Laurentides : 
Canadian Geographic: 
Radio Canada Interviews: 
Scandinavian Traveller : (page 46) 

Visit Norway: 
Expediton news : 
Squamish chief: 
Choose : 
The Guardian: 
The Rosebud: 
Explore by the seat of your pants: 
Ground Control: 

Wings World Quest newsletter: 
Visit Svalbard- recent: 
CNN-The Big Story- coming Jan2020          
SUR LE FRONT Documentary
French Tv2- coming Feb 2020
Norwegian NRK2 Minut for Minut
Coming Jan 30-Feb 8 2020


Sunniva Sorby

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