Lorde Pens Essay About Trip to 'Melting' Antarctica and Climate Change: 'I'm Permanently Changed'

Lorde is sharing details about her eye-opening trip to Antarctica last year.

In a new essay for Rolling Stone, the "Royals" songstress, 24, reflected on her five-day stay in Antarctica in February 2019, where she learned more about the ongoing climate crisis.

"Antarctica's high drama compelled me," she wrote. "I had to see it before it was too late. And because I'm a pop star, and the world is extremely unfair, I made a few calls, got several dozen booster shots, and I was off in search of the end of the world."

Lorde said that Antarctica is "very, very white, everywhere you look." She also mentioned the continent's high population of penguins, the rocky beaches, the freezing saltwater and having to wear sunglasses "every day."

"I stayed for five days, pitching a tent and camping outside, belaying on an ancient glacier, cruising in a helicopter looking for whales with a terse German scientist named Regina," the singer wrote. "I made a handful of calls home on an old landline — that was the closest I got to my phone. It's an incredible place. I used to think the Met Gala was cool, or the VMAs. But there's literally nothing cooler than Antarctica."

"While parts of the continent seem OK, largely due to its unique climate systems, some areas, particularly the western Antarctic Peninsula, are warming faster than anywhere on Earth," she explained. "Scientists I met down there who had been making the trip south for 40 years pointed out parts of the Ross ice shelf they witness melting faster and farther every year. But to the uninitiated, it's all white, everything frozen, a blinding world I'm permanently changed from getting to experience."

Lorde explained that "protecting our most precious natural resources can feel abstract" but that her generation is trying to "pay off our predecessors' environmental debts" hoping to help the next generation.

"It's a lot to ask of a species hungry for faster and brighter gratification, less and less distance. But I understand it now, and I hope you find ways to as well," she wrote. "Great wonders like this are what's at stake."

Lorde, who has been largely inactive on social media since mid-2018, spoke to Cazzie David for Interview magazine last month and said that climate change was among several outside factors that have prompted her to limit her public presence.

"Part of what made me peace out on social media, apart from feeling like I was losing my free will, was the massive amounts of stress I was feeling about our planet, about systemic racism, and about police brutality in this country," she said.

Lorde has not released new music since 2017, when she dropped her critically acclaimed sophomore album, Melodrama. In May, the New Zealand artist sent out an email newsletter informing fans that new music is on its way.

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