Video of the Week: Lil Dicky’s Animated Music Video, Earth

Rapper Lil Dicky released, just ahead of Earth Day, a celebrity-packed, animated music video for his NSFW single “Earth.”

The video opens with a view of the downtown Los Angeles skyline before cutting to news footage of recent wildfires in the western United States. A newscaster highlights the connection between rising temperatures and climate change. Next, a live-action scene depicts a group of kids kicking over a garbage-filled trash can and taunting Lil Dicky. As the rapper departs, he instructs the kids to pick up the garbage. “There’s an environmental crises right now, and you’re just going to litter on the street?” he says, adding, “Grow up.”

Among the garbage is a book, which one of kids picks up. Upon opening, it blooms into an animated trek around the world depicting a variety of animals threatened by ecological destruction and climate change.

Glaciers play a prominent role in the music video. Lil Dicky and pair of penguins slide down the face of an exit glacier. In one of the video’s closing scenes, Lil Dicky stands atop what appears to be Mount Everest, surrounded by the snow and ice-capped Himalayas.

Justin Bieber provides the voice for an animated baboon. Ariana Grande is a Zebra—Miley Cyrus, an elephant. Snoop Dog … a marijuana plant. Other celebrity performers include Halsey, Katy Perry, Ed Sheeran, Brendon Urie, Wiz Khalifa, Adam Levine, Shawn Mendes, and Leonardo DiCaprio.

The song’s chorus includes the simple lines: “We are the Earth. It is our planet. We are the Earth. It is our home.” While Lil Dicky’s video foregoes science or existential angst, it overflows with popular culture appeal. The video’s attracted 38 million views on YouTube and has been widely discussed in popular media, from Lil Dicky’s appearance on “Ellen” to coverage from NPR and the Jerusalem Post.

Proceeds from the song will go to the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, which supports projects that “build climate resiliency, protect vulnerable wildlife, and restore balance to threatened ecosystems and communities.”

Read More on GlacierHub:

Glaciers Account for More Sea Level Rise Than Previously Thought

Glaciers Get New Protections with Passage of Natural Resources Act

Drying Peatlands in the Bolivian Andes Threaten Indigenous Pastoral Communities

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Roundup: New Purple Bacteria, Chilean GLOFs, and Glacier Flow Rates

Emerging from Glacier Permafrost: New Purple Bacteria found in Tianshan

From International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology: “A Gram-stain-negative, motile and rod-shaped bacterium, designated strain B2T, which can synthesize purple pigments of violacein and dexyoviolacein, was isolated from Tianshan glacier in Xinjiang, China…. Based on genomic relatedness, physiological, biochemical and chemotaxonomic data, strain B2T […] is considered to represent a novel species.”

Find out more about the discovery here.

New bacteria discovered in melted glacier permafrost in the Tianshan Mountains in western China (Source: Wang et al.).

 

Understanding GLOF Dynamics in Arid Andes of Chile

From Natural Hazards: “We study a remarkable GLOF triggered by the failure of a subglacial lake in the Manflas Valley, Arid Andes of Chile, in 1985 providing insights into the lake’s origin, clarifying the failure mechanism and modeling the GLOF event-related dynamics… We show that the failed lake (4 × 106 m3) formed in a low-slope (≤ 10°) area and that extreme (≥ 90th percentile) annual precipitation before the GLOF contributed to the lake filling and probably to the dam collapse.”

Check out more about what scientists have learned from the 1985 GLOF event here.

Manflas Valley, where a 1985 outburst flood devastated the region and the setting of a recent study about understanding the event (Source: Ricardo Guler/Flickr).

 

Exploring the Factors Behind Flow Rates in Greenland’s Exit Glaciers

From Science: “The largest uncertainty in ice sheet models used to predict future sea-level rise originates from our limited understanding of processes at the ice-bed interface… We find that this sliding relation does not apply to the 140 Greenland glaciers that we analyzed.”

Read more about this groundbreaking study here.

An exit glacier in Greenland (Source: mharoldsewell/Flickr).

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