Matt Bell, a Marine Biology and Oceanography student studying at Plymouth University, will embark on the challenge to reach the last significant place on Earth yet to be achieved by humankind, all in the name of environmental research.
Matt has teamed up with a group of explorers trained and led by Jim McNeill – one of the World’s most respected and experienced explorers – to set out on the expedition to The “Northern Pole of Inaccessibility”.
The ‘Northern Pole of Inaccessibility’ is defined as the furthest point from land on the Arctic Ocean (the very centre) and 270 miles from the Geographic North Pole.
In February 2024, along with Jim, Matt and the team plan to embark on the record-setting challenge to gather crucial datasets to help benchmark the condition of the ocean and the reality of climate change for the NASA funded National Snow and Ice Data Centre (NSIDC) scientists, led by Nobel Prize winning scientist, Walt Meier.
Matt Bell said:
“The expedition is not only record-setting, but will enable a vital understanding of weather conditions, measurements of pollution, oceanographic data and the number of polar bears that may be encountered along the way. There is a global significance to everything we are doing, and the polar regions are the alarm bells for climate change.
The ‘Last Pole’ expedition has enormous importance – it’s all about prediction and preparation – and will ultimately deliver the true reality of climate change on the planet. That is what drove me to join the expedition and the reason why I’m proud to be part of the team.”
With the help of sponsorship, Matt has completed his gruelling training programme in Svalbard, a Norwegian archipelago situated between mainland Norway and the North Pole, battling severe weather conditions of -24°C alongside 70 mph winds during the polar night.
During the training, and whilst on polar bear duty, Matt witnessed the magnificent Northern Lights in all its glory!
Kevin Mashford, Sales Director, Paramount commented:
“We are privileged to sponsor an inspirational individual in his record-setting expedition. Matt has taken courageous steps and pushed the boundaries in the name of environmental welfare.
Preparations have taken Matt over a year to achieve, and his sheer determination, commitment and passion to the training programme has given him the tools to live, survive and thrive in extreme polar regions.
We wish Matt and the team all the success in the expedition next year.”
The ‘Last Pole’ expedition will take place in February 2024.
Details of the expedition can be seen here: https://www.ice-warrior.com/the-last-pole
Photography credits: Ice Warrior and Zak Walters.