South Pole Ozone Changes

What Are They Doing?

Ms. Bergholz traveled to Antarctica in 1999 as a TEA teacher to collect data on atmospheric ozone. Since then, ozone depletion and global warming have become even more urgent international concerns. Late 2007, Ms. Bergholz joined Dr. Hofmann once again at the NOAA Clean Air Facility at the South Pole Station to collect new data on atmospheric ozone, to compare with the data they collected in 1999. Ms. Bergholz and Dr. Hofmann measured the positive influences of the Montreal Protocol on substances that deplete the ozone layer. The group collected information on atmospheric ozone (surface ozone, total ozone, and ozone profiles), carbon dioxide, and aerosols. Comparisons were made to atmospheric data in other parts of the world in order to predict the influence that the Kyoto Protocol and other clean air policies might have.

Where Are They?

The team worked from the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station in Antarctica. The South Pole Station is the southernmost continually inhabited place on the planet. Its name honors Roald Amundsen who reached the South Pole in 1911 and Robert F. Scott who reached the South Pole in 1912.

Expedition Map


At the South Pole from December 6, 2007 - January 14th, 2008: Research Experience Reflections This PolarTREC project as part of the International Polar Year (IPY) was for me an unusual opportunity to return to the South Pole with the same research team and compare atmospheric ozone data collected in 1999 with the ozone data collected during the PolarTREC project in December 2007/January 2008. I traveled to Antarctica in 1999 as a TEA teacher to collect data on atmospheric ozone and had the opportunity to return with Dr. David Hoffman’s NOAA team from Boulder, Colorado to continue our study...
Leaving the ice! Thank you and good by. South Pole:  Temperature: minus 28 C, Minus 18 F  Windchill: minus 38 C, minus 36 F  Wind: 6 knts. Weather: Windy, clearing sky It was time to go. Many hugs and good by’s. Amy met me at the ski-way. It was windy but overcast. However, as we were waiting for the plane to get ready, the sun appeared. When I walked towards the plane, a halo was greeting me right as I passed it: it was going to be a good flight back to McMurdo and Christchurch. Last photo at the ceremonial pole: Jauary 14, 2008. Elke just before the flight at the Ceremonial Pole...
Life at the South Pole Station: a retrospective photo journal. Temperature: -26 C, -18 F Windchill: - 36. 5C, -34 F Wind: 7 knts. Weather: clear and sunny. It is Sunday, and brunch is served at 10 am. Many people enjoy this day as their day off from work and many activities are planned in the gym (soccer, volleyball) and in the dining hall (spelling bee contest). I was busy packing my bags, mailing the last packages and postcards (the post office is open this afternoon) because tomorrow, Monday, January 14th, I will be leaving the South Pole before noon. I was also looking forward to...
Dedicating the New Elevated South Pole Station to the new century. Temperature: - 29 Celsius, -18 F Windchill: - 43 Celsius, - 44 F Wind: in the morning 12 knots Weather: Sunny, with some high clouds When we got up this morning we found out that the weather allowed for a C17 to leave Christchurch with the NSF delegation on board; they were going to switch to a LC 130 in McMurdo and arrive at the South Pole, early afternoon. The Dedication celebration could proceed as planned! At 7: 30 am we all gathered to have our group picture taken for Congress as the last historical photo in front...
Passing of time, the Dome and Sir Ed Hillary. Temperature: - 32 Celsius, - 22.4 F Windchill: - 46 Celsius, - 47 F Wind: in the morning 17 knots Weather: Sunny, with some high clouds, no flights due to a storm in McMurdo. We are still hoping that the visitors from NSF will be able to take the plane early tomorrow morning from Christchurch and come to our Dedication celebration. It will be a long day for them coming to the South Pole for 5 hours and being here under such extreme conditions. However, it will be all worth it. In the mean time, the station has geared up for the big day....

Expedition Resources

Project Information

4 December 2007 to 16 January 2008
Location: South Pole Station
Project Funded Title: Measuring Change in the Ozone Layer at South Pole Station, Antarctica

Meet the Team

Elke Bergholz's picture
United Nations International School
New York, NY
United States

Elke Bergholz teaches high school Biology at the United Nations International School in New York City. Over the course of her career she has taught Life Science, Physical Science, General and Honors Biology, Environmental Science, AP Biology, Biotechnology, Human Physiology, and Biology for the International Baccalaureate, an internationally accepted high school diploma. Ms. Bergholz has advised an after school river monitoring student group for several years and is a research mentor to several students completing independent biology research. Prior to teaching, Ms. Bergholz conducted research for many years in different parts of the world in marine biology, fisheries biology, and oceanography. Ms. Bergholz traveled to Antarctica in 1999 as a TEA teacher to collect data on atmospheric ozone and will return with Dr. David Hoffman to continue their studies.

David Hofmann's picture
NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory
Boulder, CO
United States

David Hofmann began his career at the University of Wyoming, leading an atmospheric physics group that used large balloons to study the stratosphere. During the 1980’s his group was at the forefront of stratospheric aerosol and Antarctic ozone hole studies. In 1990 Dr. Hofmann assumed leadership of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) global greenhouse gas and ozone monitoring efforts. His group at NOAA’s Earth System Research Laboratory in Boulder, Colorado, monitors important greenhouse gases at many sites around the world, including permanent stations in the Arctic at Barrow, Alaska, and the Antarctic at the South Pole Station.

Bryan Johnson's picture
NOAA Environmental System Research Lab
Boulder, CO
United States