By: Our Shores
Microplastics Adventure Scientists
Our Shores: Ultrarun for the Love of the Lake was a self-supported ultrarunning expedition undertaken by Allissa Stutte, Evan Flom and Andy Butter. The trio took 86 days to run a total of 1,352 miles around Lake Superior, the world’s largest body of freshwater, collecting water samples and the stories of people they met along the way.
As we undertook our expedition of circumnavigating Lake Superior on foot we not only aimed to collect water samples for Adventure Scientists Global Microplastics Initiative, we also sat down and collected the stories of people who dared to carve out a living on Lake Superior. The word "dared" speaks to how challenging it can be to make a living in some of these places, especially through the winter. We spoke with authors, farmers, brothers, mothers, doctors, activists, and skateboarders, who all share a common love for this Great Lake. Below are five quotes that showcase the nuanced and intimate relationship people have with this environment.
“Wilderness is civilization - meaning wilderness needs a constant act of restraint for it to exist because if you don’t protect it, it gets developed.”
So says Dr. Rob Gorski, owner of Rabbit Island, which hosts an international artist residency program on a small island in Lake Superior. Together with his brother, Rob has been buying property to “unsubdivide” the land and put conservation easements on large tracts within Michigan. Because of these efforts, Rob believed that, “When you guys test for microplastics, there won’t be a single piece of plastic in the lake that came from this island.” And he was right.
By Victoria Ortiz
The snow started falling outside our Bozeman office windows this week, signaling the beginning of a much-anticipated winter season. Many organizations reach out to donors this time of year, but we decided to do something a little different. In addition to asking you to give, we want to say thank you for your support by giving back to you. Hence, we’ve launched this year’s #GratefulGiveBack.
The Depth of our Plastic Problem: Microplastics Researcher Abby Barrows’ firsthand account from the Oceanic Society Expedition
By Victoria Ortiz and Abby Barrows
The Oceanic Society Expedition recently spent 10 days traveling by boat from Bali to Komodo to explore the impact of plastic pollution in this region. They invited Adventure Scientist’s Microplastics Researcher and College of the Atlantic Master's student Abby Barrows to join a curated group of activists, artists, NGO directors, philanthropists and media from around the world to witness and document the extent of plastic pollution firsthand.
“I’m acutely aware of the plastic problem from a scientific standpoint,” says Abby. “But it’s different when you see gorgeous beaches filled with candy wrappers or plastic bottles, and realize that we haven’t seen a village in two days.”
By Adventure Scientists Staff
Vertical Nepal, a team of elite mountaineers and seasoned Adventure Scientists, recently sent us some photos and an update from their expedition, which has included collecting scat samples for our Global Microbe Study and water samples for our Worldwide Microplastics Initiative. The team, led by mountaineer and polar explorer Lonnie Dupre, just attempted a first ascent of Langju (20,885). The team scrapped their summit attempt because of dangerous avalanche conditions, but they were still thrilled to be the first humans to ever explore this untouched peak.
We're looking forward to hearing (and seeing) more from Vertical Nepal. In the meantime, enjoy a few photos they took while sampling for microplastic pollution just below the Tibetan Plateau.
To read more about Vertical Nepal and get periodic updates, go to their blog.
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