The plot begins in the year 1847, when the Franklin Expedition becomes stranded trying to find the Northwest Passage. They experience a harsh winter. The men are seemingly going mad. Their stranded boats (Erebus and Terror) are loaded with a mysterious, unidentified silvery metal. The story switches to the present day. There is an ongoing quest to save the earth from Global Warming. All of the world's scientists are looking for a solution. Some people are trying to thwart these efforts. The NUMA team, headed by Dirk Pitt, Al Giordino and Dirk Pitt's children, Dirk Junior and Summer, are trying to find a way to stop Global Warming. Their quest leads them to investigate a series of mysterious asphyxiations. They soon realize that the solution they are looking for is hidden in the heart of the Arctic; in an old forgotten ship. They will need to solve a centuries old mystery to save the earth.