€3,978.00raised of €16,000.00 goal goal
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Max to the South Pole: Antarctica Expedition
UPDATE: Expedition moved from November 2021 to March 2022
Help me in my personal mission to learn more about and protect the environment!
2041 ClimateForce: Antarctic Expedition!!!
Climate change is a huge threat to our planet as we know it. Temperatures are warming at an alarming rate, impacting the North and South poles even more rapidly than our local ecosystems. The Antarctic plays a major role in preserving the equilibrium of our planet, accumulating 70% of the world’s freshwater resources, and 90% of its ice.If even just some of this ice were to melt and flow into our oceans, it would cause irreversible damages within human time scales. This is why we need to act now!
My name is Maxime, and I am a Masters student in an Environmental Change and Global Sustainability program at the University of Helsinki, in Finland. I have been selected from among hundreds of applicants to join polar explorer Robert Swan on the 2041 ClimateForce Antarctic Expedition in November. This unique 12-day journey to the Antarctica will train inspirational participants from all over the world on up-to-date climate science, sustainability, and leadership skills. It will also equip participants with the tools to create meaningful change in their communities, institutions, companies, and governments in order to promote a more sustainable future. As Robert Swan, the leader of the expedition, once said “The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it”.
Believe me, this will not be a two-week vacation on a cruise ship. It is an intensive educational expedition to learn about Antarctica, to experience the environment, to meet and connect with fascinating people. When I return home, I will be better equipped to tackle the threat that is facing us and will be able to use this knowledge in future research. An important aspect of this expedition to me, is the capacity to raise awareness not only to friends and family, but to a greater circle, reaching everyone that will help me participate to this expedition. In the long term, my objective is to conduct a PhD and eventually start teaching environmental sciences in an academic setting. Joining this adventure will not only help me with professional growth but would also be helping me creating a solid foundation from which I can then help to teach following generations about the importance of protecting our environment. I am already planning on giving presentations about the expedition when I return, which would be an ideal way to train my public speaking skills.
By helping me, you’re investing in a new generation of leaders, willing to do everything to save OUR planet.
Some background about me:
I am Maxime, and I am 22 years old. I grew up in France, continuously moving throughout my childhood from central France, then to the west, before ending up spending 7 amazing years in Normandy. When I was about to enter grade 10, my father’s job that had led us to move around France for so many years led us to a completely new destination in the United States. We lived there for three years, traveling around the country, and discovering all the amazingly diverse landscape that North America had to offer. This experience motivated me more than ever to keep traveling and use that opportunity to discover more of the world.
In 2016, I decided to move alone to Canada in Calgary, Alberta where I obtained a Bachelor of Science in geography, studying environmental sciences. For 3 years in Canada, I learned so much about our planet and climate change. I conducted my first research project on the impacts of ice melt on mountain rivers. I travelled around the Canadian Rocky Mountains, embracing the wildlife and the nature. But I was also faced with the hard truth, seeing with my own eyes melting glaciers, retreating by a couple of meters between the time I first arrived in Canada and the time I graduated and left the country…
During my studies, I had amazing opportunities to travel, I took a field course on the sustainability of tourism in southeast Asia. I visited Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Sri Lanka, where I observed both the impacts of mass tourism and the aftermaths of the 2004 Indian earthquake and tsunami. This was an incredible experience that I will be forever grateful to have been a part of, and it motivated me even more to keep studying the environment.
More recently, I moved to Finland to obtain a master’s degree in environmental sciences and sustainability. I focused my studies on arctic sciences, conducting research for my masters’ thesis in Finnish Arctic Lapland. Going there was a very special experience, I had dreamed about it since I was a child. Going there for climate related research made it feel even more extraordinary, having the opportunity to observe the endless landscapes of the Tundra, the many pristine lakes, and the countless reindeers.
After realizing this was the furthest north I had ever been and being ready to open the next chapter of my life, this expedition seemed like the perfect opportunity to head south, keeping the same objective I have always had: to learn more about our environment and then be better equipped to help protect it.
Who is Robert Swan?
If you don’t know him already, he is the first man to have ever walked to both the North and South Poles. He is one of the most inspiring people I have been given the chance to hear. After these expeditions in the 1980s, he returned to Antarctica for other missions and he has personally witnessed severe environmental changes, which should not technically be observable in human lifespans.
30 years ago, French ocean explorer Jacques Cousteau gave Robert Swan a 50-year mission to save Antarctica from the encroachments of climate change and preserve the ‘Last Great Wilderness’ of Antarctica, a continent that belongs to no nations and which should remain that way. Robert Swan founded the 2041 ClimateForce foundation, with the objective to inspire the next generation of leaders to take responsibility for the future health of our planet.
This year is the 30-year anniversary of the 2041 expedition, marking only 20 years remaining on Robert’s goal to protect Antarctica.
In 2018, Robert Swan’s son Barney joined him on a new expedition to the South Pole, this time fully powered by renewable energies. The objective of this expedition was to prove that if they were able to survive in the most inhospitable place on earth only using renewable energies, then it must be possible anywhere else.
Barney, also part of the next generation, will be joining us on this year’s expedition. I can’t wait to meet both of these incredible personal heroes.
Why exactly do I need your help?
An expedition like this to such a remote part of the planet isn’t cheap and I really will not be able to be part of it without your help. Overall, to achieve this dream, I need to raise $19,000 USD (16,000€).
So, let me break down how your money will be used if you decide to help me:
-The largest portion of the cost goes towards the expedition itself. This takes into account things such as housing in Ushuaia, Argentina before the departure of the ship, a cabin in the ship in which I will stay for the 2 weeks of the expedition, and food costs.
-The next important cost is for transportation, including the plane tickets from France to Ushuaia, as well as the ship crossing from Ushuaia through the Drake Passage.
-The last bit would be used for any new gear that I will have to buy. Having lived in cold places in the past, I really want to avoid having to buy too much new equipment.
If you wish to follow me on my adventure, I invite you to follow me on social media where I will post frequent updates:
Facebook: Maxime au Pôle Sud
I'd like to thank the foundation 2041 ClimateForce for letting me use their pictures and logos
Expedition Website: https://explorerspassage.com/robert-swan-antarctica-expedition
2041 Foundation Website: https://2041foundation.org/
I'd also like to thank my friend Arthur Prévost for editing the presentation video
Thank you everyone!! With your help, the story made it to the newspaper!!
Remerciements 2022Update posted by Maxime Courroux at 11:44 am
Je tiens à tous vous souhaiter une tres belle année 2022 et à vous remercier une nouvelle fois pour votre soutien pour cette belle expédition. Le départ pour l'Argentine est maintenant prévu pour le 15 Mars avec une embarcation à bord du navire Ocean Victory le 17 Mars direction l'Antarctique!!Tout. . . . .
24h UpdateUpdate posted by Maxime Courroux at 08:43 pm
After only 24h, we have already achieved 10% of the global objective, congratulations and thank you very much for your trust and support!