HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco speaks with Jean Lemire, head of the SEDNA IV mission, via videoconference, live from the Antarctic

It was with a great deal of emotion on last November 9th evening that a videoconference via satellite direct from the Antarctic was held, bringing together HRH Prince Albert II of Monaco and the head of the SEDNA IV mission, biologist and filmmaker Jean Lemire. The two men chatted for nearly half an hour on the subject of the environment and climate change, two subjects that are of deep concern to both of them. The Antarctic Mission head presented the Prince with a summary of the environmental situation around the Antarctic Peninsula, the area of the earth that has experienced the most warming over the last 50 years. This region has undergone an average rise in temperature of up to 2.5?C in some sectors, which is five times greater than the world average. The biologist also spoke of the acceleration in the retreat of the big glaciers, of the significant warming of the sea water in the western sector of the peninsula and of the major reduction in ice cover in winter that is disrupting the entire Antarctic environment. He also spoke of the research work being carried out on board the SEDNA IV by scientists from the Institut des sciences de la mer de Rimouski (ISMER - UQAR) and the National Antarctic Directorate of Argentina (DNA) into the effect of the hole in the ozone layer on the Antarctic’s plankton community. We should note that, in April of this year, HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco participated in an expedition to the North Pole, where he embedded the flag of Monaco so that he could draw the attention of as many people as possible to the consequences of the warming of the planet’s climate, especially that of the Antarctic. His Highness also spoke about the creation of the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation for the protection of the environment and sustainable development. Climate change, biodiversity and water are the three action areas for this foundation. The SEDNA IV mission chief took advantage of the virtual meeting to reveal one aspect of his next awareness campaign, “The problem of drinking water and its equitable distribution among the countries of the world will be one of the great environmental challenges of tomorrow. In pursuing our objectives, we now hope that we can add a human side to the environmental cause of the SEDNA IV, as we are convinced that climate change will have a direct impact on the world’s resources of drinking water and that people will fight over the blue gold of the future.” The two men raised the idea of a grand unifying project, through which they could pursue their common objective of a new society, one that has greater respect for the environment. The mission chief thanked HRH Prince Albert II of Monaco for his actions and his generosity for the environmental cause, emphasizing how important it is that great men of influence become involved to make a difference on the international scene. The Prince underlined the Antarctic Mission team for their impressive awareness work in the schools. Throughout the year, the Antarctic Mission’s school program has allowed thousands of students to be sensitized to the environmental cause through satellite conferences. His Highness noted how important it is to prepare future generations well for the planet’s great environmental challenge. 

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