Lewis Pugh, a 36-year-old lawyer and dedicated endurance swimmer, set off on Monday to swim the 203-mile length of England's river Thames. But he had to begin his journey with a 19-mile run on the dry riverbed, as the river is just a trickle at its source in the Cotswolds.
The lawyer says he took up the challenge to draw attention to a campaign by the environmental organisation WWF to fight climate change.
Speaking before the challenge, he said: "It's impossible to spend time in the polar regions and not be captivated by their uniqueness and beauty.
"But things are changing: experts predict that by 2080, or possibly earlier, the ice in the Arctic Ocean will disappear completely during the summer months, unless we cut our carbon emissions considerably."
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