EcoWatch is chronicling the International Antarctic Expedition 2015  led by Robert Swan, a polar explorer and environmentalist. The trip began March 13 and will end March 25.

Robert Swan was the first man ever to walk unsupported to both the South Pole (in 1984) and the North Pole (in 1989). Since then he has become a leading advocate for the preservation of the Antarctic. His concern is 2041 when the world moratorium on mining and drilling will expire. He is leading this present expedition with people from around the world to inspire them to help protect this last great wilderness.

The expedition participants will “debate, discuss and determine firsthand the effects of climate change .” The team will assess the effects of temperature rise on Antarctica and, upon return, the team plans to educate the public and hopefully spur action on climate change. The 2041 team explained how climate change is drastically impacting the icy continent  (This shows flooding of U.S. coastal areas as the West Antarctic ice sheet melts, raising global sea level an expected 4 feet in the next two centuries.)   The implications are huge for the entire globe.

“Antarctica holds 90 percent of the world’s ice and 70 percent of its freshwater,” says VICE Media founder Shane Smith. “So if even a small fraction of the ice sheet in Antarctica melts, the resulting sea level rise will completely remap the world as we know it. And it is already happening: In the last decade, some of the most significant glaciers [in Antarctica] have tripled their melt rate.”

Curious readers can follow the expedition here on a map here
and read blogs here .