Ice-cold com­mit­ment

The Week - Junior - - People -

When he was 17 years old, Lewis Pugh swam the 4.3 miles be­tween South Africa’s Robben Is­land and Blou­berg Beach. He’d only been train­ing for a month, and the crew aboard his sup­port boat were tak­ing bets, cer­tain that he’d never make it.

Yet make it he did, ar­riv­ing three hours af­ter setting off. He now swims the world’s oceans in some of the least hos­pitable cli­mates imag­in­able, to draw at­ten­tion to the dam­age be­ing done to the Earth’s frag­ile ecosys­tems. He’s pad­dled his way through sub-zero tem­per­a­tures and nar­rowly es­caped sea lions. Last year, his ef­forts paid off when a pro­tected marine area six times the size of the UK was in­tro­duced in the Antarc­tic. Now he’s head­ing to the Antarc­tic again, to high­light the threat that fish­ing poses to lo­cal wildlife.

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