India and China can provide solutions to the energy resource problem by tapping solar and wind energy as alternative, said polar explorer Robert Swan here on Monday.

Addressing an interactive session organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Mr. Swan said use of these alternative, renewable energy sources would help reduce pollution. However, both countries should not merely stop with the use of solar and wind power; they should also explore possibilities of alternative to these two sources.

Sharing his experiences with school and college students, Mr. Swan said the South and North Pole were the real wilderness on earth and needed to be protected. Owing to depletion of the ozone layer, the polar glaciers were melting at a faster phase. The polar bears, used to walking on frozen surface, were forced to swim a lot, risking their lives. “Twenty years ago there was a lot of ice there.”

On the dumping of waste in the Antarctica region, Mr. Swan said the erstwhile USSR dumped 1,500 tonnes of twisted metal there. He and his team raised $12 million over a period of seven years and cleared the place of the waste. Now, the place was attracting more and more penguins.

Mr. Swan and his team were the first ones to take up a polar expedition without using fossil fuel. Using available natural energy, he was able to set up a tent, browse the Internet and interact with students several thousand miles away.

He plans to stay in India for a few months and interact with school and college students, industry representatives and environmentalists.

“If solar energy or other form of natural energy can work/function in Antarctica why not in other places?” Elders should teach the youth on how to use the renewable energy sources, he said.