Help Nat Geo Pick A Young Explorer To Fund

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As if getting funding for an expedition isn’t hard enough, National Geographic is making two young explorers compete against one another for the cash, and they’re asking us to help decide who should get the dough.

The two contenders include former professional kayaker Trip Jennings and adventurer Ben Horton. Jennings is planning on going to the Republic of Congo to help combat the illegal poaching of Elephants for ivory, while Horton hopes to create an expanded marine preserve off the coast of Costa Rica, by tagging and tracking two bull sharks, and watching their travel patterns.

Both of these expeditions are worthy of funding, but only one can win, and to that end, Nat Geo has set up a page allowing us to vote on who we think is most deserving. To read more about both expeditions and the two men involved, and of course, to cast your vote, click here.

At the moment, Trip and his elephant expedition are holding a fairly substantial lead, 68% to 32%. I can’t help but wonder if that isn’t, at least in some part, due to the fact that we look on elephants, and their familial structure, with a lot more sympathy than we do with sharks, which can’t help but conjure images of Jaws. Maybe Ben should have substituted sharks for cute sea otters or something.

The contest is actually part of Expedition Week, on the National Geographic Channel, which kicks off on Sunday, Nov. 15th, and ushers in a week of exploration and adventure.

Kraig Becker

3 thoughts on “Help Nat Geo Pick A Young Explorer To Fund”

  1. Both expeditions should be funded. It's incredible NatGeo is asking us to decide in their place. Are they not capable to decide ? or fear to make only one of their previous "explorers" win and deceive the other one? Just give them half the money each.
    They'll spend now more time/money for this contest why they could invest their time to be in places to get money (organize events, parties, show their movies, …)

    If they have less money than expected, and if they really want their expedition, they'll cut-off expenses on what not really needed.
    I just hope the 2 expeditions are really usefull and will have serious capable scientific people on board with the passion to help/save these animals.

    What I really hope is that the money will not help to fund the new camera or videographer team-production for a documentary. The money should help only for the research. Both explorers/filmmakers/photographers will make their money on the documentary anyway afterwards as they'll have it certainly sold to NatGeo.

    But don't take my opinion wrong, a good documentary after the expedition is necessary to make people aware of the cause. I just have a concern about where is the money put in expedition. I have seen it too much give to the explorer (who often is not scientific person but an athlete or sportsman) for the documentary. And after he got his documentary made, he makes his money and continue to other projects. While scientific people who do the research are lacking money and are left without funding to continue their work. Studying animals to protect them take years, not 1 or 2 but 10 or 20. Explorers should continue helping the cause they defend in the documentaries they make after the expedition. Possibly giving back part of the DVDV sales for science.

    But it's a long debate. If explorers (icons) don't have enough money, they won't continue to do their job as well:
    explore and do awareness.

    I hope both these projects will go asap. make the votes 50/50 🙂

  2. Competition is human nature. I think the contest is great. As the Rolling Stones sang, "You can't always get what you want." There is no such thing as universal funding for ANYTHING, nor there should be.

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