We do love numbers.

I’ve recently gotten in contact with Ben Weber, part of a team planning an incredible expedition around the world. One normally pictures the 360 degrees of longitude when thinking of going around the globe, but then, Ben is engaged in 360 Extremes. He and his team are traveling the polar axis – that is, south to north and back again. Ben’s basic route?

“The journey will begin in São Paulo, trekking through the mountains and the rainforests, tundra and deserts of the Americas; moving across the Arctic ice cap and the North Pole; then back down south, through Siberia and Mongolia, the Himalayas, ascending Mount Everest and going down to the southern hemisphere before crossing Australia, New Zealand and the Antarctic.”

Ben and I connected on two fronts. The first was in hearing how the 360 Extremes team plans to use their expedition to drive public interest and concern in the world’s changing climate. They will cross some of the landscapes most dramatically impacted by the effects of climate change. Crossing the Poles, about a third of the way through their journey, is now a lesson in history and how quickly things thought untouched by humankind have been influenced by steadily pumping more and more carbon into the atmosphere. The deserts of Australia, roughly two thirds in, will provide a stark contrast, having suffered record droughts throughout the past decade. From Ben again:

“One of the key goals of the 360 Extremes Expedition team is to raise awareness of how climate change is affecting the world, in even the most extreme environments. Indeed, it is more often than not that these extreme environments and the inhabitants of these environments, whether people or animals, are the worst affected by global warming.”

The second connection made was a wonderful offshoot of this team’s audacious plans. Ben wrote to let us know that he and the team have chosen 350.org as one of two nonprofits to which they will ask supporters to donate. To which all we can say is a big hearty, Thanks! It’s a pleasure of doing this work that we can be supported by people who also dream big, care deeply, and (in case you were wondering), work hard to do things right – closing out with one more quote from Ben:

“We aim to complete this epic journey through going through the Americas, over the North Pole, down through Russia, Asia and over the South Pole by entirely carbon-neutral means – a manner which fits in perfectly with the goals of 350.org.”

 

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