Mountaineering With a Purpose
Cordillera Blanca 2011 Environmental Expedition (CBEE 2011)
June 26, 2011 through the week of July 24, 2011.
In June and July 2011, the Deep South Section of The American Alpine Club is spearheading an environmental mountaineering expedition to Peru’s highest mountain range. The Cordillera Blanca contains the highest concentration of mountains higher than 6,000 meters (19,685 ft.) in the Western Hemisphere, as well as the highest mountains in the Tropics.
Section mountaineers and other AAC mountaineering scientists will be spending 2-4 weeks in Peru’s Cordillera Blanca, where the group will team with local climbers. The team will collect valuable environmental samples from elevations too high and remote for most scientists to be able to visit. The data collected by members will assist local land managers and scientists to determine the environmental impacts of local and global air pollution and global climate-change impacts on the Andes Mountains.
AAC_Peru_CBEE2011_Application_20110214.pdf (.PDF) to apply for the expedition, or keep reading for more details. Donations to the project (or to submit your application fee by credit card) can be made by selecting the "Cordillera Blanca Expedition 2011" option in the "Allocate my donation too:" box on the AAC's Donate page. Please direct questions about applications to:
Frank A. Nederhand
CBEE2011 Expedition Science Director
— Fundraising Event in Georgia: Ryan Waters Speech—
Due to the ever-increasing global impacts on alpine environments, The American Alpine Club has become more proactive in its conservation efforts in alpine areas across the globe. The AAC currently is developing an air-pollution-impact environmental monitoring program that can be performed by mountaineers on high peaks. This trip to the Cordillera Blanca is the first of its kind: a mountaineering expedition with the purpose of assisting the local indigenous people in monitoring the health of their fragile, important, and beautiful alpine environment.
That the AAC and indigenous peoples work as partners to maintain the pristine nature of their mountainous alpine environment in which they live and rely on. To use the latest and most cost-effective methods to monitor and document any and all environmental impacts on these environments. To work as an advocate for local land managers in documenting and maintaining their high alpine environments. And to discover solutions to reduce impacts on the ecosystems and populations that depend on these environments.
The AAC is planning a humanitarian expedition to the Cordillera Blanca because of its unique environment: the highest tropical mountain range in the world. The AAC will work with local and national Governments, NGOs, and Academia Environmental Experts to develop and institute a mountain air pollution impacts monitoring program.
The AAC's member mountaineers will work with local climbers from the Mountaineering School of Marcara, the region's eminent mountaineering institution. Key mountains near the continental divide of South America will have their environment sampled and documented for air pollution impacts. Mountaineers will scale the complete vertical aspect of these key mountains to obtain these samples and data. It is expected that snow and ice will be sampled from 4,500 to over 6,300 meters in 500-meter increments to obtain a vertical and horizontal profile of impacts on the range.
The First AAC Environmental Expedition to Peru is planned for June 26, 2011 through the week of July 24, 2011.