A windy path toward preserving Arctic ice

Researchers walk on melting iceThe rapid melting of Arctic ice is among the most dramatic effects of climate change. This is because the thawing of permafrost is likely to drive temperatures even higher throughout our planet and cause a number of cascading effects. Recognizing that human habits are unlikely to change enough for this melting trend to be reversed, Steve Desch – a School of Earth and Space Exploration professor – decided to explore other options. Desch formed an interdisciplinary research team, including sustainability scientist Hilairy Hartnett. The team created an innovative ASU class called "Geodesigning the Arctic" that focused on one solution in particular: using a windmill pump, buoy and hose to artificially increase the thickness of Arctic ice. The next steps for the team are working with colleagues internationally to promote the idea of Arctic ice management and applying these ideas to saving – and perhaps creating – more Arctic ice.