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Dhaka in Antarctic climate change expedition


Mar 21, 2011
Russian Federation
Bangladesh is taking part in a climate change expedition to Antarctica to explore and highlight the pace and alarming impacts of greenhouse pollution unfolding even in the world's most remote frozen continent.

Al Gore, a Nobel Peace Prize winner and former US vice president, is leading the 116-member expedition, “A Voyage to the Bottom of the Earth”, to see firsthand and let the world know how fast the climate bell is ticking.

Bangladesh's representative, Environment and Forests Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud, left for Earth's extreme southern part from Ushuaia, Argentina, generally regarded as being the most southerly city in the world, on Sunday afternoon.

He is scheduled to return on February 5, said a press release from the ministry yesterday.

The expedition team, arranged by Gore's “Climate Reality Project”, comprises Virgin Group Founder Sir Richard Branson, United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres, Icelandic President Ôlafur Ragnar Grîmsson and CNN founder Ted Turner.

Other members include ministers of countries vulnerable to climate change, leading climate scientists, politicians, business leaders, green campaigners, filmmakers and journalists from across the globe.

In invitation letters to the expedition members, Al Gore wrote, “This prediction has proven true. Today the West Antarctic Peninsula is warming about four times faster than the global average.”

On their activities, he said, “Ashore in Antarctica, we will explore its many natural wonders and observe, firsthand, the dramatic impacts of climate change on the continent, and learn about what they mean for the world as a whole.”

Al Gore visited Antarctica in 1988 when scientists began predicting that it could warm more rapidly than the global average.

Despite being a remote continent, Antarctica is witnessing a rapid melting of ice sheets due to global warming. This is contributing to a rise in sea level, resulting in drastic impacts on Earth dwellers, including Bangladeshis.

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