About The Film

Witness the extraordinary life of Dr. Lonnie Thompson, an explorer who went where no scientist had gone before and transformed our idea of what is possible. Daring to seek Earth’s history contained in glaciers atop the tallest mountains in the world, Lonnie found himself on the frontlines of climate change—his life’s work evolving into a salvage mission to recover these priceless historical records before they disappear forever.


Lonnie G. Thompson, PhD

Professor, Senior Research Scientist

Lonnie G. Thompson, a Distinguished University Professor at The Ohio State University, and senior research scientist, specializes in paleoclimatology, ice cores, and climate change. He's a pioneer in tropical ice core paleoclimatology, using solar-powered drilling equipment in regions like the South American Andes, the Himalayas, and Kilimanjaro. Thompson's research highlights the Earth's climate system's interconnections, particularly focusing on El Niño and monsoon systems. His glacier observations reveal the alarming impact of global warming, exceeding natural climate variability for millennia.

Keith R. Mountain, PhD

Associate Professor

Keith R. Mountain, Ph.D., an associate professor, focuses on climatology, climate change, radiative and surface energy balances, statistical analysis, geomorphology, and glaciology. His research extends to Arctic and Alpine environments, and he is dedicated to geographic education.

Justin Gillis

Environmental Science Reporter

Justin Gillis, a New York Times reporter, specializes in environmental science, particularly climate change. He authored "Temperature Rising" from 2010 to 2013, earning the John B. Oakes Award. In 2014, he led "The Big Fix," critically assessing climate change solutions. Gillis joined the Times in 2010 and previously served as an editor covering energy and food. With a journalism degree from the University of Georgia, he has worked for the Associated Press, The Miami Herald, and The Washington Post.

J. Madeleine Nash

Senior Science Correspondent

Time magazine's senior science correspondent, J. Madeleine Nash, known for her impactful cover stories, such as "How Life Began" and "Evolution's Big Bang." Nash has made significant contributions to climate science reporting. Originally from Greensboro, NC, she joined Time as a "clip girl" in 1965 and rose through the ranks. Nash's impactful reporting spans critical topics, shedding light on climate change's scientific aspects.

César A. Portocarrero Rodríguez

Engineer, Edmund Hillary Medal Winner

César A. Portocarrero Rodríguez, awarded the 2017 Sir Edmund Hillary Mountain Legacy Medal, is a Peruvian engineer known for his work on glacial lakes in the Andes. He addresses climate change-related risks, including glacial lake outburst floods and melting glaciers. Portocarrero's efforts extend to international collaboration, sharing expertise in sustainable practices in high-altitude regions.

Kim M. Cobb, PhD

Professor, Climate Scientist

Kim M. Cobb, an American climate scientist, is a professor at Brown University and directs its Institute for Environment and Society. She specializes in oceanography, geochemistry, and paleoclimate modeling. Cobb's research uses corals and cave stalagmites to study past climate change, contributing to over 100 peer-reviewed publications. She also played a crucial role in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's Sixth Assessment Report. She has received awards like the NSF CAREER award and the Hans Oeschger Medal for her significant contributions to climate science.

Dr. Michael E. Mann, PhD

Professor, Climate Researcher

Dr.Mann is a professor at the University of Pennsylvania, known for climate research. He played key roles in IPCC reports, received awards like NOAA's outstanding publication award, and contributed to the Nobel Peace Prize. Mann is an influential communicator, authoring books, and co-founding RealClimate.org. He's a Fellow of prestigious scientific organizations and received the Leo Szilard Award and Humanist of the Year in 2023. His work focuses on climate change's science, impacts, and policy implications.

Ellen Mosley-Thompson, PhD

Professor, Senior Climate Scientist

Ellen Mosley-Thompson, a Distinguished University Professor in Geography (Atmospheric Sciences), specializes in paleoclimatology, ice cores, and climate change. She utilizes ice cores from polar ice sheets and mountain ice fields to reconstruct Earth's climate history. With extensive field experience, including leading expeditions to Antarctica and Greenland, her research focuses on abrupt climate changes, glaciology, glacier retreat, Holocene climate variability, and climate change in Polar Regions.

Regina Thompson

Assistant Director, Victim Services Division

Regina Thompson is the Assistant Director of the FBI's Victim Services Division since July 2020. She has an extensive FBI career, with roles in intelligence and leadership positions. Before the FBI, she worked in counseling and education. Thompson holds a graduate degree in social work/clinical counseling and undergraduate degrees in Chinese language and criminology.

Yao Tandong, PhD

Prominent Glaciologist

Yao Tandong is a prominent glaciologist specializing in climate change impacts on the Tibetan Plateau. His research on ice cores and stable isotopes reveals significant warming trends over the past century. He has conducted extensive fieldwork, authored over 200 publications, and received numerous awards for his contributions. As a member of various scientific organizations, including AGU and AAAS, he continues to advance our understanding of high-altitude environmental changes.

Film makers

Adam Paul Smith


Adam has spent over a decade participating in the assembling of films, TV, documentaries, and live events. Having worked within the departments of Motion Picture Literary, and Independent and International Film at ICM (International Creative Management) (acquired by CAA), and then as an executive and creative producer at an independent development and production company, (Act 4 Entertainment), he understands what it takes to work with investors while creating the space for creativity to thrive. The work has garnered awards, critical acclaim, and press from outlets such as The New York Times and The Guardian. His years of industry experience balance out the team with the vision of how to navigate producing projects from conception to distribution. Growing up in Apartheid South Africa and now living as an immigrant in the United States, Adam cares about using the power of story for good, intentionally building projects and teams around common cores. He is a big-picture outside-the-box thinker, who is not afraid to challenge the status quo, or roll up his sleeves and get dirt on his face.

Alex Rivest


Alex Rivest is a Massachusetts Institute of Technology-trained PhD Neuroscientist. Having worked alongside Nobel Prize winner Dr. Susumu Tonegawa, his research has been published in two of the most highly renowned scientific journals, Science and Nature Neuroscience. Alex grew up in an environment where curiosity and question-asking were highly valued, and he has dedicated his life to helping teach others about the wonders of the world. As an educator, he received the Angus MacDonald Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching at MIT, and founded the non-profit Blue Kitabu, which built a sustainable primary school in central Ghana. As a science filmmaker, Alex’s videos have accumulated over 70 million views online, and have been featured everywhere, from billboards in Times Square to installations in science museums and even in an opera production of “Das Rheingold.” CANARY is his directorial debut.

Danny O'Mally


Danny O'Malley is a Grammy nominated and James Beard nominated film director. Best known for his work on Netflix's Chef's Table, where he serves as co-executive producer and a director. Danny has worked filming with bands across the US including Tegan and Sara, The Rentals, The Decemberists, Kraftwerk, and more. His documentary, ‘States’, from Tegan and Sara's release ‘Get Along’ was nominated for a Grammy in the category of Best Long Form Music Video. Danny made his mark in documentary television to work as a story producer where his work has aired on Netflix, Fox Sports One, and NBC. On Chef's Table, Danny is a key driving force behind the character-driven storytelling that is the show‘s signature. Danny and his directing partner Alex Rivest PhD, won the Alfred P Sloan development grant in 2017, which led to the creation of his first feature ‘Canary.’

our partners


Preserve The Cores

Make a donation to preserve existing ice cores and help pave the way for the much-needed renovation facility - which was built in 19xx. Your donation will also help make rooms for new ice cores and provide support for the ongoing study.


Ask questions and engage with peers

Ask questions and engage with peers to support the preservation of invaluable climate data stored in ice cores. Your active involvement not only safeguards our environmental heritage but also contributes to the collective effort to combat climate change and global warming.


See how Canaries are making a difference

Inspiration leads to action! We have created a home to highlight like-minded CANARIES around the world who are doing something, anything they can to combat climate change. Find inspiration through examples. Be the example and share your actions to become an inspiration for someone else.