On the 14th of November 2014 a crew of 14 women will set sail across the Atlantic in search of answers relating the health of our environment to the health of our bodies. I am collaborating with ocean advocate Emily Penn and we are looking for a powerful mix of skilled women to join this team – please click this link to apply.
Our aim is to assemble an all female crew on a scientific research mission across the Atlantic creating an inspiring narrative of female leadership, personal and environmental exploration, and cultural conversation space aboard Sea Dragon, a scientific exploration vessel.
Along the eXXpedition voyage we will sample the Atlantic oceans for plastic and pollutants, feeding in these samples to wider studies investigating the impacts of toxics and plastics pollutants linking this sampling to narratives of ecosystem health, personal health and the products we consume.
Our mission is also to explore the issue of chemicals, endocrine disrupters and carcinogens in our personal and global environment that can cause disease, in particular raising awareness of those linked to the rise in breast cancer rates. We are collaborating with UK cancer charity Coppafeel!
Our aim is to engage young women (ages 13-30), in particular, in scientific narratives relating to the consumer choices they make, and their long term health impacts on themselves and our environment.
As a crew of 14 women we hope to participate in biomonitoring to assess our personal exposure to known toxic substances. Through our personal exploration of our internal environment we hope to better understand the levels of toxic exposure in women. Through a shared mission to understand this invisible pollution we hope to create a conversation which sheds light on the science of ecotoxicology and inspires positive actions to tackle the root causes.
Why this? Why now?
Unseen disease – Breast cancer rates in young women are on the rise. Women’s specific disease research has a low public profile in the media and there is an imbalance in research funding directed towards gender specific diseases.
Unseen pollution – While there is no scientific consensus, there is an evidence base building that environmental exposure from chemicals is impacting women’s health. We would like to creatively explore this issue and take young women on this journey with us, to better understand the links between health of the environment and of our bodies.
Unseen women – There is also a lack of diversity in gender and role models in both STEM professions and in exploration / sports events. We would like to assemble a crew of inspiring female role models and help address the balance.
- create positive role models for young women
- create awareness for positive health monitoring – Coppafeel actions, biomonitoring (chemicals in the blood, genetic tests like 23andme).
- create narratives of awareness around toxics in environment and chemicals related to human disease, particularly those related to Breast cancer
- inspire the precautionary principle in consumer choice and highlight earth friendly / body friendly products