MEXICO CITY – Sandra Guzman, the first female Mexican scientist to travel to Antarctica, told EFE that her aim is to study the effects of climate change from various angles to be able to communicate the information to leaders and the public and develop strategies to deal with the growing problem.
Guzman, who also has been an environmental activist for more than 15 years, said that she is proud of her role as the only Mexican on the expedition of 78 women who are traveling to the frozen continent to study “what kind of action is necessary to deal with the problem on the global level.”
On Saturday, the women selected by the Homeward Bound program departed for Antarctica, where they will visit research stations operated by several countries to see what kind of progress is being made on climate change research.
One of the main problems, Guzman said, is the lack of expertise in communicating information being gathered at the Antarctic bases to governments and civil society.
“There’s a lot of information that is being gathered in Antarctica but not all of it is public,” said the founder and coordinator of the Climate Financing Group for Latin American and Caribbean (GFLAC).
Thus, she said that she wants to identify “the gaps” in the public information and bring it to international leaders, “starting with” Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto.
Antarctica’s surface is 90 percent covered with ice and the continent contains between 70-80 percent of the world’s fresh water reserves, thus “helping to regulate the climate” and providing a counterweight to global warming.
Unfortunately, in recent years, Antarctica’s ice cap has been melting faster than in the past, and Guzman said “if the temperature keeps rising, Antarctica is not going to be enough to balance the (planet’s) climate.”
Guzman said she also wants to study how the species of Antarctic fauna are being affected by global warming and how to protect them.