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SOS Thule

The people of Thule in northern Greenland are the last vestige of the Inuit culture, the only survivors of an ancient way of life that has disappeared in Canada and Alaska. Avoiding their extinction is the goal of SOS Thule, a project led by Ramon Larramendi (manager of Tasermiut South Greenland Expeditions), which will take shape through the Inuit Climate Change Patrol.

sos Thule project

In Thule today sled dogs are still used and the inhabitants go in search of their livelihood in skin-lined kayaks, but these people are between 45 and 50 years old and the next generation aren’t continuing in these traditions… Are we witnessing  the last dynasty of the Kings of Thule? This fear, not to mention alarm, which Larramendi glimpsed during the Three Years Across the Arctic Expedition between 1990 and 1993, is the germ of the current SOS Thule Project: “Young people are going to work in Denmark. In Thule there are only administrative jobs available and these pioneers, who are somehow the soul of Greenland, are in danger of extinction”.

kayak in Greenland. Inuit Climate Change Patrol, Thule

  •  Inuit Climate Change Patrol… Is a circuit of 3,000 km by dog sled, driven by the Thule Inuit themselves in the company of a team of scientists who, year after year during the spring, will tour northern Greenland doing checks on the state of the ice sheet and other effects of climate change (fauna and biological) that is more dramatic in this region of the world than any other. The patrol will depart from Thule to cross the ice to Cape Morris Jesup, the northernmost point of the Americas. The return will be direct via the Inlandis or inland ice of Greenland.
  • Obviously, the Inuit Climate Change Patrol will use ancient techniques still used today in Thule to travel and keep warm, a true “living museum” which could become a focus of global attention. The aim is that the project, authentic in form and objectives, is to communicate through the social networks and to raise the awareness of climate change and place this area and these people on the world map.
  • As a result of its operation, the Inuit Climate Change Patrol will involve a number of people in jobs related to traditional techniques, but the goal is to generate a new type of tourism: that the people of Thule, using this as a basis, will organize trips in the area, longer or shorter, but with very marked principles that preserve this traditional spirit and involving growing numbers of local people, allowing young people to take over.

    “My idea is that under the auspices of this Inuit Patrol a very specific type of tourism can be generated, fully aimed at maintaining their traditional lifestyle, in allowing this place, from where all the epic expeditions to the North Pole in the past set out, to be a small outpost of Inuit culture and have a future, which they have’t got at the moment. Only the past and the present, but no view of the future”.
    Ramón Larramendi


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