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French man embarks on record journey to swim across Pacific on World Environment Day via Xinhua Net

TOKYO, June 6 (Xinhua) — A 51-year-old French swimmer set off Tuesday, World Environment Day, on a record journey to swim across the Pacific Ocean, media reported.

If Ben Lecomte, now living in Texas, succeeds, he will become the first person to accomplish the feat of swimming nearly 9,000 km from the city of Choshi on Japan’s central eastern coast to San Francisco on the U.S. West Coast.

Swimming for eight hours a day for six months straight, Lecomte, an associate director for sustainability services at a consulting firm, hopes that his efforts will raise people’s awareness of climate change and environmental protection, American news outlet CNN reported.

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Throughout his journey, Lecomte and his crew are expected to collect some 1,000 water samples.

He also wears a shark repellent bracelet, a heart monitor and an armband that collects data about contaminants from Japan’s Fukushima power plant explosion in 2011, according to “The Longest Swim,” a website set up for the record journey.

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