Marcle man leads Arctic trip

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ADAM Munthe of Hellens manor house, Much Marcle, is planning to lead a second scientific expedition to the Arctic, to study climate change and its effects on nomadic peoples who live there.

Mr Munthe returned from a dog-sled expedition to the Arctic in April 2007 and he recently presented his report to the Royal Geographic Society.

The “Finnmark 2007” expedition took Mr Munthe and his team over 1,000 miles of snow in Finland, Sweden and Russia.

Mr Munthe talked to the reindeer herders of the Sami to find out how global warming might be affecting them.

The team heard that patterns of reindeer migration had changed because areas of the Arctic are actually getting warmer, more snow in falling, and the reindeers often have trouble foraging for lichens, their natural food.

Now Mr Munthe plans to drive deeper into the Arctic, to understand in greater details how climate pollution and change is threatening a once-pristine wilderness.

He said: “We are now starting to prepare for the return journey in the spring of 2009, travelling west to east across the top of Scandinavia but, on this occasion, much further into both Finland and Russia.

“Leaving from the Narvik area on the West coast of Norway and deep within the Arctic, we will aim to complete the journey on the Barents Sea, having spent some time on the sea ice with our Russian Sami contacts.”

Mr Munthe continued: “The expedition will take up to eight weeks.

“In this way, we hope to complete our research on how the last indigenous nomads of Europe, front line victims, are facing climate change.”

“On this occasion we will be using reindeer as well as dogs to pull the sledges, especially in Russia.

“If fit, I shall continue as expedition leader.”

Source: Ledbury Reporter

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