Wednesday was the day for field trips all over DIS. I started off the day at the Center for Ice and Climate at the University of Copenhagen: Niels Bohr Institute. The Center's main activities are the drilling and analysis of ice cores through the Greenland ice sheet. The cores are drilled into the ice sheet ranging from 30 meters (ice from the 1920s) to 3,085 meters (ice from 125,000 BC)! Even cores from hundreds of years ago can be analyzed for atmospheric content and even DNA from plants living during the time period. Then we went into the freezer where the ice cores are stored and experienced a preview of the climate we will enjoy when we travel to Greenland, a mere -26 degrees Celsius!
My next field trip was with my Renewable Energy Systems class to Amagerforbraending, a waste treatment center that generates electricity by incinerating garbage. Approximately 405,000 tons of garbage was incinerated in 2010 to provide power for electricity (20%) and district heating (80%) throughout five counties in Denmark. There is a plan for a new plant to begin construction next year, which should be completed by 2017. The new plant will be more environmentally conscious and will also include a place for people to ski! The hope of the company is that by bringing people on site to ski, they will learn about the incineration process and love the place, not hate it as they do now.
|all decked out in safety gear|
We also had the opportunity to go on the roof of the building to see yet another gorgeous view of the greater Copenhagen area.
|renewable energy class group shot|
|offshore wind park|
Thursday was an uneventful day of classes. However, in my Sustainability in Europe class we watched a segment of the documentary entitled "Dirt! The Movie," which is all about our relationship with soil and it's vital importance to our ecosystem. The excerpt we watched is about a small hummingbird attempting to put out a forest fire one drop at a time. Here is the segment:
"I will be a hummingbird. I will do the best I can."
Today was also a beautiful day weather wise. After a delicious brunch of pancakes, sausage, and eggs with my host parents and two of their friends, we headed to the Copenhagen Zoo. The zoo has recently undergone a large expansion, providing more room for the animals to inhabit, especially the giraffes and elephants. The zoo was very crowded on such a great day, but we still found room to sit down and enjoy some white wine while we looked at the penguins.
|cute baby goat|
We also had some time to stop at the old Carlsberg Brewery elephant statues.
|Carlsberg Brewery elephant statue|
Tomorrow I will be leaving for a week-long study tour to the United Kingdom (visiting Devon and London), so there won't be another update until I return with stories about my English adventures.