Concerned over drastic climate change in Shimla and others parts of Himachal Pradesh, a software engineer from Shimla is on her way to Antarctica to gain leadership skills in environment conservation. Shivangini Singh, an application developer in Bengaluru, will participate in the 13-day Antarctica Expedition hosted by Robert Swan, ClimateForce and The Explorer’s Passage.

But fund crunch is coming in her way and she has now crowd funding on webpage to collect `14 lakh to fulfill her mission.

“As I grew up in Shimla, I observed the constant degradation of hills landscape and significant decline in snowfall and rains over the years,” Shivangini told The Statesman.

“The expedition from 27 February to 12 March would be a journey to the last great wilderness on earth with Robert Swan, one of the world’s greatest living explorers, and the first person to walk on both the North and South Poles. It would provide me knowledge about climate change, renewable energy, sustainability and how it affects our present and future worldwide,” she said.

“It would also help in better understanding of Antarctica’s fragile ecosystem, experience its unique wildlife and magnificent landscape,” Singh said.She said joining the expedition was a must for her as it would enable her to protect the very fragile ecosystem of her native place from the repercussions of climate change. “In addition, I would be able to contribute in preserving the mighty Himalayas, which I hold in great reverence,” she said.

Singh aspires to be at the vanguard in the fight for sustainable future at the workplace and community. ‘I’m from Shimla and have a lot of love for the city. Though it pains me to see it getting affected by climate change, be it the erratic rainfall and snowfall, that has now started taking a toll on agriculture sector as well,” she said.

Proud of being a participant from Himachal at the global platform, Shivangini is confident of gaining firsthand exposure in combating the changing environmental scenario. “It could lead to devising real scientific solutions to combat the problem rather than paying lip service only to life threatening phenomena,” she said.

The expedition is a journey to the bottom of the world as one follows in the footsteps of some of the bravest explorers in history and cross the Antarctic Circle for a once-in-a-lifetime achievement.

The participants get the chance to observe the massive icebergs and glaciers while viewing the abundance of Antarctic wildlife including whales, penguins, and seals as we cruise through the icy waters in zodiac boats.