Tiens Group has financially supported the first phase of a scientific expedition in the Pakistan segment of the “Third Pole” in collaboration with the National Polar Highlands Health Program (NPHP), the International Arctic Science Center (IASC), the International Everest Climbing Organization (IECO), and the Antarctic and Arctic International Forum (AAIF). The initiative has been generously supported by organizations such as Dr. Wasim Sajjad, former President of Pakistan, and the Rural Development Foundation of Pakistan. The team is set to embark on work in the “Fourth Pole”, the Andes, as well as Longyearbyen in the Arctic and Spitsbergen Island.
Around the 5th century BCE, Greek philosophers proposed the concept of a spherical Earth that includes the Arctic and Antarctic regions. This idea appeared in the writings of Greek philosophers, as noted in “Early Greek Astronomy to Aristotle” (Cornell University Press, pp. 72–198, ISBN 978-0-8014-0561-7). In 1472, Didrik Pining and Hans Pothorst embarked on mapping expeditions to Greenland. In 1496, Grigoriy Istoma ventured from the White Sea, traveling along the Murman coast and the northern coast of Norway. Dutch scientist Gerardus Mercator introduced the Mercator projection theorem in 1569, creating world and Arctic maps, a technique still used in nautical charts today. In 1898, Norwegian/British explorer Carsten Borchgrevink led the British Antarctic Expedition to Cape Adare, establishing the first Antarctic base there, marking 125 years since the event. The University of Copenhagen Arctic Station, located about 300 meters northeast of Qeqertarsuaq in western Greenland, was established by botanist Morten Pedersen Porsild in 1906 and has been owned by the Faculty of Science at the University of Copenhagen since 1953, marking its 117th year.
In recent decades, significant advancements have been made in academic research in the Antarctic and Arctic regions, leading to a focus on the “Third Pole”, the Hindukush-Karakoram-Himalaya (HKKH) system in the western and southern parts of the Tibetan Plateau. The concept of the “Fourth Pole”, the Andes glacier region, has been introduced by experts from the NPHP, pointing to its lagging scientific research. The Andes, the world’s longest mountain range, stretches 8,900 kilometers, from Trinidad Island in the northeast to Tierra del Fuego in the south, passing through Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Chile, and Argentina. Its unique geography hosts a variety of ecosystems, housing countless plant and animal species, many of which are unique to the region. The Andes also serve as a vital water source, with glaciers and snowlines playing crucial roles in climate balance, biodiversity maintenance, and water resource provision. Studies on the Andes are essential for understanding global changes, predicting and combating climate change, protecting the environment, and ensuring water security. For example, long-term observations and research on Andean glaciers can enhance our understanding of global climate change impacts. Similarly, the melting rate of the Patagonian ice fields is a critical indicator of climate change, influencing downstream water supplies and ecological stability.
Modern polar scientific expeditions originated in the First International Polar Year of 1882-1883, advancing further in subsequent International Polar Years. As we approach the Fifth International Polar Year in 2032-33, in eight years, it’s believed that there will be a surge of interest in the Antarctic, Arctic, Third Pole, and Fourth Pole. While the polar regions are theoretically for all of humanity, in reality, only those who establish research stations and work in these regions have a say in polar affairs. The International Arctic Science Center (IASC) is keen on facilitating Arctic scientific expeditions.