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April 23rd, 2010
09:30 AM ET

Arctic explorer arrives at North Pole on Earth Day

Editor’s note: Arctic explorer Eric Larsen is trying to make it to the North and South Poles and the summit of Mount Everest in 365 days as part of an effort to raise awareness about climate change. Larsen joined us on American Morning before he set out on his Save the Poles expedition. On Earth Day, he arrived at the North Pole, the second destination in his global expedition. Below is an excerpt from his online journal.

Antony Jinman, Eric Larsen and Darcy St-Laurent standing at the Geographic North Pole.

Antony Jinman, Eric Larsen and Darcy St-Laurent standing at the Geographic North Pole.

By Eric Larsen
From EricLarsenExplore.com

Achieving the North Pole on Earth Day is not only the realization of a dream but also a reinforcement of a basic philosophy. The quality of our lives is directly linked to the air we breathe and the water we drink. At the North Pole, lines of longitude begin, grow and extend until they reach everyone one the entire planet. In spite of its remoteness, this is the one place that connects us all.

Nearly four months ago, I was at the opposite end of the world, the South Pole (another of Earth's connecting points). Today, the North Pole. In another four months, the summit of Mt. Everest. Standing here now is the culmination of three and a half years of preparation and planning as well as the efforts of many people. While I may be personally involved in these adventures, the Save the Poles expedition is not about me. My importance in any of this stems only in my ability to share my experiences with others.

On this expedition, we often traveled within a narrow margin of safety. We had limited resources and had to conserve and meter food and fuel. There is no question that now, the 21st century, we need to use resources to ensure our health and survival. But which resources we use, how we use them (and in what quantities) and if they are renewable are cornerstone to preserving our planet for future generations. Ultimately, when we view ourselves part of a whole, we can begin to understand how our actions affect other people and the planet.

After all, we are all explorers in one fashion or another, but the job of explorers in the 21st century is not to conquer but to protect. Read more

Audio podcast: Larsen and his team describe their journey to the North Pole


Filed under: Environment • Eric Larsen
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