International Antarctic Expedition 2014 to set out on March 8

Written by FE Online | Mumbai | Updated: Feb 5 2014, 21:29pm hrs
TravelFive Indians to Explore Antarctic with 2041
In a bid to propagate environment sustainability, Robert Swan, OBEfirst person in history to walk both the North and South poles will continue his ten year old legacy of cognising young guns on Antarctica peninsula starting this March.

This year the team selected 80 members across the globe- including expedition leader, director, programme coordinator, photographers, writers, and film maker. Among this, five Indians too got the opportunity to be the part of this expedition. The team is expected to gain firsthand knowledge of the continents fragile ecosystem, experience its unique wildlife and observe the magnificent landscape of Antarctica, all while learning about climate change and ways to protect the last great wilderness on Earth.

One of the team members from India, Sarita Singh, an IT Specialist and PADI (Professional Association of Dive Instructors) certified National Geographic deep sea diver, said, The idea of a journey to the very end of the earth, a place which is frozen in time, which belongs to no nation or tribe with people who struggle through extreme conditions- still united by a common cause to stand as one and do their bit to protect the earth inspired me to file an application for IAE. I have lived and breathed Antarctica in the last few months and the feeling that am actually going and will be on board the sea spirit and cross the Drake Passage in a few days has still not sunk in.

Along with his company 2041, Swan will flag off two weeks International Antarctic Expedition 2014(IAE) from Ushuaia, Argentina. The company was so- named on the deadline of a treaty prohibiting drilling and mining until this date in Antarctica as in the year 2041 the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty could potentially be modified or amended. The company aims to work towards the continuing protection of the Antarctic Treaty so that the last great wilderness on earth is never exploited.

2041 led the first corporate expedition to Antarctica in 2003, during which 42 people from 18 nations joined Robert on his Leadership on the Edge programme. Since then, over 700 corporate leaders, educators, students and entrepreneurs from around the world have experienced Antarctica with the 2041 team.

Robert Swan, OBE, who has dedicated his life to the preservation of Antarctica by the promotion of recycling, renewable energy and sustainability to combat the effects of climate change said, As the last unspoilt wilderness on earth, Antarctica is currently protected by a treaty prohibiting drilling and mining until 2041. Decision made by todays youth will impact our entire planets ecosystem and future of the life on earth.

He further added, It is our mission to build on this by informing, engaging and inspiring the next generation of leaders to take responsibility, be sustainable, and know that now is the time for action in policy development, sustainable business generation and future technologies.

The Antarctic continent is one of the most remote, inhospitable environments on earth. Harsh and inaccessible, covered by over five million square miles of solid ice, it is the worlds highest, driest coldest and windswept continent. The lowest recorded temperature in Antarctica was -89 Celsius. No place on earth provides a more demanding environment to face the ultimate leadership challenge. Here the Inspire Antarctic Expedition (IAE) programme focuses on leadership, teamwork and personal development.

The team would cruise through the historic Drake Passage which has stimulated the imagination of mankind since Sir Francis Drake inadvertently circumnavigated it in 1580. Sometimes misty and grey, other times calm and clear, crossing the legendary Drake Passage is unforgettable - a milestone in any adventurers personal travel history.

Other islands the team would visit are; Cuverville Island, Neko Harbour, Paradise Harbour, The Lemaire Channel, Camping in the Antarctic, King George Island.