Polar explorer traveled Arctic wilds by foot, dogsled

Ben Lippert

Ben Lippert

Explorer and traveler Will Steger, whose polar expeditions have been recognized on a global level, will speak at SDSU on April 19 about climate change and global warming.

Kayla Miller, president of the Sierra Club and senior microbiology major, said it is important for students to take an interest in the environment and how it is changing.

“I think that climate change is an important topic for SDSU students on campus because it’s going to be a challenge our generation will have to face, and education is the first step in solving a problem,” Miller said.

Steger will speak in the Rotunda D at 7 p.m. The presentation is free for everyone.

Steger has spent his lifetime exploring the North and South Pole on foot and by dogsled. He observed many changes in the earth’s ecosystems and will discuss how climate change is literally altering the face of our planet.

“What I have witnessed in the Arctic over 45 years, and more importantly, in the past 10 years, is alarming,” Steger said in a recent press release. “I have seen firsthand dramatic signs of global climate change on our polar regions, from rising thaw levels, to disappearing glaciers, to ice shelves disintegrating entirely or calving and re-locating to new locations.”

Steger will come to SDSU to share his experiences with students and the Brookings community.

Peter Carrels is the regional representative for the SDSU Sierra Club’s Campus Beyond Coal campaign. Carrels said this will be an educational opportunity unlike any other.

He urges all students and Brookings residents to attend.

“The Sierra Club is interested in educating people about the impacts of climate change and reducing our carbon footprint,” Carrels said.

W. Carter Johnson, SDSU ecology professor and researcher, will speak with Steger. He has been studying climate change on natural ecosystems for 40 years. He will be talking about the research he and his team have concluded on climate change and its effects on the ecosystem.

His research team’s findings were recently published in the February issue of BioScience. These finding have gained attention from national and international news media. However, this is the first time Johnson will publicly present this information and data.

Carrels said the speakers have an incredible amount of knowledge about climate change. He said attending the presentation will be an eye-opening experience.

“I’m really excited for both presentations,” Miller said. “I think they will both have enlightening stories about climate change here and around the world.”