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UN Global Compact Russia


Diplomat in swimming costume. Icy reception by Lewis Pugh


I think the main things in life are justice and freedom. For me, the protection of nature is a matter of justice. We care about the preservation of international relations, but do not care about our attitude to nature. I am ready to do everything in my power to restore justice.

Stately, strong, healthy, extreme and record-holder — Briton Lewis Pugh — has amazed the world community with inhuman endurance for many years, thanks to which it won unofficial recognition as a walrus of international importance, and official as an ocean ambassador to the UN, environmental diplomat, international figure and many others. In order to gain such fame, he used not only will, character, talent, but also a rare method, beyond the control of many - to swim in, frankly, the very cold water of the Arctic and Antarctic, northern fjords and glacial lakes in the most eco-friendly way - without special equipment and protection from the cold. Only swimming trunks, cap and glasses. The warmth and beauty of the human body, which directly senses the extreme intimacy of nature, is powerful and defenseless ... It attracts, fascinates, amazes. It is for the sake of drawing attention to the most vulnerable today - despite the ontological plan after human intervention - water ecosystems, the problems of melting glaciers, climate change, pollution of protected waters, the destruction of marine species, barbaric fishing, ocean fate and indifference to its fate. Mr. Pugh makes his dangerous swims.

All parts of the world's oceans that are under threat are important to me. My main task is to preserve this miracle of nature for future generations. We just have to pay utmost attention to the protection of the natural world around us. If we do not, these problems will come to every home, will affect all who will be born after us. When we forget to protect the nature of the planet, we create the preconditions for conflict. I am absolutely sure: when we care about the environment, we care about the world - everywhere and for everyone.

I swim in order to draw attention to the problems of nature. If I were in a wetsuit, no one would have paid attention to me. Now everyone is discussing Ukraine, the financial crisis, the situation in Syria is not up to the ecology. And I decided: if I get undressed, I’ll get on the front page!

Each swim is special to me. Just imagine: you are swimming, and penguins are walking along the coast, whales are swimming. Cold water is refreshing. To cope with low temperatures, swimming training alone is not enough: you need to harden your spirit. Some journalists write that I like ice water. It is not true. I love warm water. Cold water is impossible to love. You can just learn how to tolerate cold. I learned. You need to tune in with your heart. You must have a goal, in the name of which you are making this swim. And it should sound very clear in your head.
If we talk about people, first of all I am inspired by the family. My parents are people of a different generation. My father participated in the Second World War. Shortly before his death, he told me: "For the sake of your noble goal, it is not a pity to die!" And they inspire the discoveries of great travelers. Bellingshausen, for example. By the way, in English schools do not talk about Russian travelers. I read about them myself. Russia is generally a pioneer country. I recently realized: “The East” is the ship Bellingshausen, it made its discoveries on it at the beginning of the XIX century. And the so-called spacecraft, which almost 150 years later Gagarin flew.

I have never practiced swimming professionally. Generally learned to swim late. Took the first lesson in 17 years. I then moved to Cape Town, and the windows of my school overlooked the Atlantic Ocean. Fr om my history class, I saw Robbenilend, an island wh ere Nelson Mandela was serving a sentence. Then I realized that I should go there.
The world is divided into pioneers and their students, followers. If you want to be first in something, you have to be different from everything, you need to think differently. If you do something for the first time, you never know whether you will succeed or not. I now do not know if I will survive next time. And I do not want to die. After all, what I do is for the sake of life! To stay alive, you need to prepare very carefully for every swim. You can not miss a single little thing. Firstly, I recruited a team of real professionals, and secondly, we found a powerful ship, and thirdly - months and months in icy water. Most of the time I train around the Norwegian fjords.

I think the main things in life are justice and freedom. For me, the protection of nature is a matter of justice. We care about the preservation of international relations, but do not care about our attitude to nature. I am ready to do everything in my power to restore justice.


Ross Sea, Whale Bay, Pacific Sector of the Southern Ocean. Almost the most "navel" of the Earth, home to killer whales, penguins and sea leopards. It was here in February 2015, the 45-year-old Pugh arrived to wear his most incredible swim in his glasses, swimming trunks and cap. Water temperature overboard - minus 1.7 degrees Celsius. Sea water begins to be covered with ice at –1.8. The cells of the human body - at –1.9. All this is more like the ninth lap of hell from Dante's Divine Comedy, than a place wh ere you can go swimming. And, nevertheless, the Englishman managed to overcome 350 meters in these conditions without dying from hypothermia and the teeth of predators. Remembering the swim a little later, I drink only said: "It was already beyond the cold." Having crossed this line, the brave Englishman set a record for the southernmost swim without a wet suit in the history of mankind. //

From the speech of Lewis Pugh at the special joint session of the Russian national network of the UN Global Compact and the UN - Environment in the framework of the II International exhibition-forum "Ecotech"
Obviously, our planet is slowly but surely falling ill. It is time to unite, begin its treatment. From the Baltic to the Black and Bering Seas, in large cities such as Moscow and St. Petersburg, in small villages whose names are not well known, all concerned people must mobilize their forces to save the Earth. In an inseparable partnership with the business, we must do what no state or army can do to save the planet from an environmental catastrophe. The UN urges business not to remain indifferent, to take an active part in solving important environmental problems for the whole world. There are examples of this, and there are plenty of them.

NORWAY. The company Hurtiruten, fully sharing and supporting the idea of ​​nature conservation, has developed technologies for building tourist cruise liners with solar batteries with a minimum carbon footprint. Thanks to this, tourists from all over the world can go through the water routes of the Viking times, see nature in its original form and do it in modern comfortable conditions. Such liners do not damage the environment, but at the same time they correspond to the level of world-class tourist vessels.

INDIA. One of the most polluted countries on the planet. A resident of Mumbai, a young lawyer Afroz Shah, in 2015, took the initiative to clean the beach from debris. He announced the start of the territory cleaning campaign and inspired many people, among whom were adults, children, ordinary people, businessmen, officials and representatives of the film industry. Then the best companies in India began to “adopt and adopt” beaches and work with the population, mobilizing their interest and potential. For his not indifferent attitude to the problem of conservation of ecology, for his work and activity, Afroz Shah received from the UN the title “Champion of the Earth”. His work was called the biggest beach cleaning in the world.

ARCTIC. Since 1996, the Arctic Council has been working - the central organization of cooperation in the Arctic in the field of environmental protection and sustainable development of the region. The Council was formed by the countries of the Arctic G8 (A8), which included Russia, Canada, the United States of America, Denmark (including Greenland and the Faroe Islands), Finland, Norway, Iceland, Sweden. Council countries with access to the Arctic Ocean (with the exception of Finland, Sweden, Iceland) are called the Arctic Five. All these countries are directly interested in the environmental protection of the Arctic territory, so they are actively allocating budget funds and attracting sponsorship. Thanks to the joint efforts of businesses and volunteers, large-scale cleaning of plastic, scrap metal and other debris has been carried out, which has a negative impact on the environment and is the cause of climate change.

There are many such examples, but it should be understood how important the role of the private sector is in solving such problems of each country. Representatives of business have a keen sense of the specificity of the regions in which they operate, and more than that, nobody understands the peculiarities of thinking, culture, and worldview of people. Business can and should invest in technologies that will contribute to the preservation of the environment. This can be expressed in the invention of new, environmentally friendly technologies for industries and the economy. This may be the mobilization of people, volunteers. Or sponsorship of projects that give impetus to civil initiatives to solve - at its level and on its territory - the most ambitious problems for the planet. We must promote the development of an economic ecology, or ecological economy. Such an approach will make it possible to improve sparing technologies, while developing the economy, to take a different look at the ecology and the future of each country and the entire planet, the fate of the next generations. Russia in its history has made many breakthroughs in science and technology. Modern efforts of Russian business, society and authorities in the field of ecology are a timely signal to the world that Russia is ready to become a leader in the field of environmentally sustainable technologies. It is time to act!

 The most famous swims of Lewis Pugh and their goals

2006. From the source to the mouth of the Thames 325 km. Let's fight global warming!
2007. Maldives in width. Just imagine - this lowest country in the world in the next three decades can go under water!
2007. Through the North Pole. Look at the consequences of global warming in the Arctic!
2010: Lake on the glacier Kumbu, the slope of Everest. The consequences of climate change are catastrophic!
2014. Marathon swims "Seven Seas" (Mediterranean, Adriatic, Aegean, Black, Red, Arabian, North Sea). To protect water resources is important for life!
2015. Antarctic Whale Cove. Let's save the Antarctic!

On the basis of the materials:,,,, AIF, RIA News

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