I’m Carol Devine, I grew up in Northern Ontario, Canada. There I fell in love with snow and cold. I studied English Literature at McGill University, then realized I’m interested in political systems and did a Master of Science at the University of London, UK.
One of my first jobs was leading a small environmental education Foundation, The VIEW Foundation and through that, taking groups of civilian volunteers to the Antarctic Peninsula in the mid 1990s to do environmental cleanups with a pilot at Henryk Arctowski, the Polish Antarctic station, then the next season to Bellingshausen, a Russian Antarctic Research stations. Our work was humble but symbolic- we aimed to bring the Environmental Protocol of the Antarctic Treaty to life. In Antarctica I saw how interwoven things and peoples are, the fragility of polar environments and the importance of international collaboration.
I also started mapping stories of Antarctic Women through place names. My main work has been in the humanitarian field. I worked a lot on access to medicines and advocacy for people living with HIV/AIDS. I started to become more involved in climate change and environmental degradation issues as they impact human health and species and planetary health. I’ve been lucky to join a cleanup expedition in Svalbard, Norway. From that experience I brought home samples of marine plastic collecting on these remote Arctic shores and they’ve become an exhibit at the Canada Science and Technology Museum in Ottawa. Photos from that collection part of group show at the New York Hall of Science and at 2017 American Geophysical Union Conference.
Since I returned to Antarctica in 2016 and 2018, I collected plastic at the bottom of the world too. Polar regions are harbingers. How we treat the planet and its precious and limited resources is so related to our wellbeing and that of future generations. I work for Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders Canada because I believe all people should be able to receive medical care. If we care for the health of others, we also have to speak out about what we see happening to vulnerable people and adapt how we operate in a climate-impacted world, at the same time mitigate our footprint. We know about solutions and can create more of them together.
To learn more about me, please check out:
Twitter : @caroldevine
My publications and other outputs include:
Trusler, Wendy and Carol Devine. (1996). The Antarctic Book of Cooking and Cleaning. Vauve Press. ISBN: 978-0-9696938-3-3.
Devine, Carol. (2016). “Antarctic circle: living with Russian scientists at the edge of the world.” The Calvert Journal.