Project Description

Cover for the film, Chasing Ice. Features a picture of two large icebergs.

Chasing Ice

2012 · PG-13 · 1h 15m


In the spring of 2005, acclaimed environmental photographer James Balog headed to the Arctic on a tricky assignment for National Geographic: to capture images to help tell the story of the Earth s changing climate. Even with a scientific upbringing, Balog had been a skeptic about climate change. But that first trip north opened his eyes to the biggest story in human history and sparked a challenge within him that would put his career and his very well-being at risk.

Chasing Ice is the story of one man s mission to change the tide of history by gathering undeniable evidence of our changing planet. Within months of that first trip to Iceland, the photographer conceived the boldest expedition of his life: The Extreme Ice Survey. With a band of young adventurers in tow, Balog began deploying revolutionary time-lapse cameras across the brutal Arctic to capture a multi-year record of the world s changing glaciers.

As the debate polarizes America and the intensity of natural disasters ramps up globally, Balog finds himself at the end of his tether. Battling untested technology in subzero conditions, he comes face to face with his own mortality. It takes years for Balog to see the fruits of his labor. His hauntingly beautiful videos compress years into seconds and capture ancient mountains of ice in motion as they disappear at a breathtaking rate. Chasing Ice depicts a photographer trying to deliver evidence and hope to our carbon-powered planet.

About the Filmmakers

Chasing Ice was produced by Dogwoof and directed by Jeff Orlowski. Find out more about the film at


“I don’t have the words to express the beauty, the horror and the hope of this film, and my thanks for this brilliant photographer and his team for taking the incredible risks, braving the most brutal weather and conditions, to show us first hand, how the Arctic is melting. Will this film be all we have to show future generations, if they survive, that we once had a gorgeous earth of which we were supposed to be the good shepherds, the stewards? The exquisite filming, stills of the ice thrill me each time I watch it, 3 times so far…..a must see, even for climate deniers, watch the beauty of the ice, it alone is worth the time.” – Katykay, Amazon

“Everyone should have this not only to witness the very visual effects of climate change, but to help others see for themselves. The photographer who documented this is beyond wonder and risked his life, as did those accompanying him, that we might see for ourselves our rapidly disappearing glaciers. The phenomenal calving of an incredibly large section of glacial ice was captured as it happened because of the keen awareness of their surroundings. We waited and watched with great anticipation and what we witnessed was an occurrence of enormity that none of us will ever see again. The photography is crystal clear and a work of art. This is a beautiful film, an exciting film, and a must see for everyone who cares about the future of our planet. I saw it premiered at the Ashland Independent Film Festival and entered my name with Amazon to receive copies as soon as they were available for purchase. It will make an important gift for those you love and for those who still might not believe in the existence of global warming. Do not pass up the opportunity to see, own, and share this award-winning documentary.” – Dona Nobis, Amazon

“If you are concerned about climate change, this is a very scary film. It really does justice to the enormous scale of ice melting around the planet. James Balog is a bulldog when it comes to chasing down the truth. He spares himself nothing. The footage of the breakup of an ice shelf the size of Manhattan stands out as one of the most awesome and frightening spectacles I’ve ever witnessed. It just takes your breath away. This is also a compelling human story of a man driven to document the death of one of the most dangerous environments in the world. This is a film to watch, keep, and share with everyone you can.” – Sounder, Amazon


Cover for the film, Chasing Ice. Features a picture of two large icebergs.

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