The youngest Emirati to step foot on Antarctica, Samia Al Mudharreb, as she shares her experience during the trek to promote sustainability to youth.
At the age of just 17, Samia Al Mudharreb became the youngest Emirati to reach the Antartica. And now she is urging young people to be more environmentally aware around Earth Hour 2017.
The young Emirati, now aged 19 and studying Electrical Engineering with a specialty in sustainability at Arizona State University, is a dedicated environmentalist and a UAE Earth Hour ambassador.
Initially aiming to go into medicine, Samia made a life-changing decision in 2014 when she signed up for a voyage to the seas of Antarctica on a two-week preservation expedition. She was part of a team accompanying environmental leader and famous polar explorer Robert Swan.
As an Earth Hour Ambassador, she thought that it was important to share her story during Earth Hour 2017 to inspire and encourage young people to take up sustainable initiates, however big the challenge.
Samia said: “I was pursuing a medical career, but after being exposed to first hand effects of climate change on the environment; I gained a new perspective in the field of environmental sustainability”
“The most challenging part of the trip was when we were going through the Drake Passage to get to Antarctica. It was two days of rough waves and seasickness, but it was all worth it. When it got there, it was the calmest seas you’ll ever witness.”
The voyage she joined is called the 2041 initiative. It is led by Robert Swan and is named after the final year of the Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty. This will result in exposing the untouched land to possible exploitation.
The program aims to reveal the long-term global consequences of melting icecaps and to encourage younger generations to continue to preserve Antarctica.
“I was able to see first hand the effects of climate change on the environment and it gave me a new perspective on sustainability. One of the major eye openers was seeing ice bergs melting and crashing right in front of me.”