Sitting within the comfort and convenience of home and waxing eloquent about the need to fight anthropogenic climate change was definitely not an option. Making the changes in day to day life to move toward a sustainable environmentally sound future, while absolutely necessary, was insufficient. Confronting a crisis of this magnitude requires traveling to the front lines.
So thought global adventurer extraordinaire Eric Larsen. In November of 2009 he launched an ambitious campaign called Save the Poles to raise awareness about how human actions impact the most remote regions of the planet. It is the world’s first expedition to the South Pole, North Pole and the summit of Mt. Everest in a continuous trip completed within a single year. Larsen seeks to document the drastic changes occurring on the front lines of global warming. “I’m trying to tell the story of the last great frozen places on earth, and the reality is that those places are disappearing,” says Larsen. Outside Magazine named him one of nine “Eco-All-Stars” in 2008.
These isolated, seldom seen areas of the planet remain little more than a name on a map for the vast majority of people, but they serve as indispensable components of the planet’s interconnected systems. “Seemingly desolate and vacant,” Larsen says, “these areas support vital ecosystems and are integral to regulating and maintaining world climate.” As they melt the balance may be tipped creating the potential for epochal environmental change with catastrophic consequences.
Data gathered on the expedition will be used to produce a documentary and educational lecture series about climate change and the global impact of regional actions. You can follow Larsen’s latest real-life tales of adventure and learn more at his website: savethepoles.com
Originally published online at Hippie Magazine.