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National Geographic & NZARI Announce 3-Year Partnership

National Geographic, the New Zealand Antarctic Research Institute (NZARI) and Antarctica New Zealand announced today an unprecedented, cross-platform partnership to document the hard working men and women working on the frontiers of science at New Zealand’s Scott Base, Antarctica.

The partnership includes significant funding to support scientific research and an agreement to showcase the challenging work undertaken by the researchers and support staff through a global television series for National Geographic Channel, articles in National Geographic Magazine and multimedia content on the National Geographic web platforms.

Antarctica is a continent that is entirely focused on science. Every single Antarctican is either engaged in pivotal scientific projects to learn more about the planet, or engaged in supporting this research – or both. Between the extremes of the harsh continent itself and the focused dedication of the communities around the work, life on an Antarctic base is like a fully operational extraterrestrial facility – a space station on ice. Each person on base works to keep the science running and to make this place habitable, from contemplating how to drill through the 300-metre-thick Ross Ice Shelf to how to serve hot meals to a cold crew to gearing up and guiding teams to brave the elements on the ice. Now, for the first time, National Geographic is entering into an exciting new partnership which will allow it to accompany the research expeditions, and document life in this isolated outpost like never before.

“There is no one but National Geographic who can truly offer a 360 degree look inside this important scientific community,” said John Francis, Vice President for Research, Conservation, and Exploration at the National Geographic Society. “The work being done here not just by the scientists but the army of support staff is heroic, and the world should know about it.”

“We are all about bringing our viewers a real look inside places most will never go, “ added Tim Pastore, President, Original Programming and Production for National Geographic Channel. “Our series will document the incredible feats that take place on a daily basis on the least explored continent in the world.”

“Nat Geo Studios is thrilled to be able to document the great work that all of these men and women are doing every day,” added Brooke Runnette, President, National Geographic Studios. “Their stories are not just heroic, but inspirational, and through all of our platforms we can provide a comprehensive portrayal of the people and their projects unlike any other media company in the world.”

"NZARI is excited to be entering into this new partnership with the National Geographic Society. It will help us launch some challenging new research expeditions deep into the interior of Antarctica to investigate how vulnerable Antarctica and its ice sheets and ice shelves are as the Earth's oceans and atmosphere warm. At the same time we hope to learn how the changing ice cover and temperatures will impact the fragile and iconic life of Antarctica and the
Southern Ocean," says Professor Gary Wilson, Director of NZARI.

The coverage is expected to include inside access to those on the ground who keep this isolated world running, including travelling with helicopter pilots and crew who work in numbing temperatures flying teams across giant glaciers, ice shelves and to wildlife colonies, while the base team monitors storms and white-outs approaching. We will be right alongside scientists researching charismatic megafauna – the great predators of the Southern Ocean. Camera teams will also be driving shotgun with the brave men and women who clear the roads (after building them) to transport scientists, and then build camps for their three-week field work out in the elements. These are the real heroes that make science possible.

The series is expected to air on National Geographic Channel in 440 million homes in 171 countries and 45 languages.

Further details on the specific projects will be announced in the coming months.

Source: National Geographic Channel