Featured image: Kiteezi Municipal Waste Site - Kampala, Uganda by Lena Dobrowolska & Teo Ormond-Skeaping (2018)

Ruben Ortega

The End of Rite (2019)

Ruben Ortega is a photographer and visual creator based in Mexico City. His work focuses on the relationship between humans, nature, experience and the construction of reality. He utilises infrared photography, a full spectrum camera and IR bandpass filters to capture this and other electromagnetic phenomena.

"The legend said that if there was a new dawn, it meant that the gods had given them time to live again, but if the sun did not rise, it would be the end of men."

The image depicts a forest fire in the south of the city, one of many burning throughout the city that day due to high temperatures. The national park and the mountain, Cerro de la Estrella, is archaeologically and culturally significant, and where the native Aztec cultures once performed the New Fire Ceremony, a ritual of purification and renewal conducted every 52 years. It is also currently home to a weather radar.

 

 

Christian Åslund

Penguin Scientists in Antarctica (2020)

Christian Åslund is a Swedish photographer and filmmaker based in Stockholm. He has a background as a photojournalist working for newspapers, magazines and NGOs, documenting a variety of armed conflicts, environmental and social issues. He was commissioned by Greenpeace to go to Antarctica in 2020 to document the climate breakdown that is transforming parts of the Antarctic faster than anywhere else on Earth, placing acute pressures on its wildlife and impacting the entire planet.

This image is of penguin scientist, Noah Strycker, conducting a census of Chinstrap Penguin populations on Elephant Island and finding the numbers has dropped almost 60% since the last survey in 1971. The penguins' main source of food is krill and the warming waters have reduced these and the phytoplankton that krill depend upon.

 

 

Jacopo Pasotti

A Resilient Innovation (2018)

Jacopo Pasotti is a freelance journalist, photographer and writer, specialising in environmental and social reporting from the field. His work presents innovative climate-smart agricultural solutions to decreasing land productivity, telling stories of resilient farmers coping with environmental change.

Forty percent of agricultural land in Bangladesh will be lost by 2080 due to sea level rise. Soil salinisation and changes to inland monsoon patterns which increase flooding mean deltaic communities feel squeezed between rising waters, watching their once productive agricultural land reducing year on year. One major innovation in response to these changes are floating vegetable gardens where crops are grown in beautiful, flourishing soilless platforms constructed of locally available materials.

Aquatic plants and straw are woven together to create a platform on which crops are planted. Leafy vegetables, okra, gourd, eggplant, pumpkin and onions thrive on the floating gardens. Out on the water, they are less vulnerable to pests and don't require chemical fertilizers. Each raft lasts around three months. Then, it's hauled ashore, broken down, and used to fertilize crops on land. Choosing the best hyacinths for building a floating garden is key to success. Instead of soil, the vegetables grow in water, using a hydroponic method. The raft system is extremely adaptable. When a flood comes, it will rise, when it retreats, the raft will follow. The approach is an adaptation to the increasing impacts of floods and tides. Some farmers are now teaching this method to others in the region.

 

 

<i>Glove </i> (from the series <i>Seasick</i>) by Aindreas Scholz (2020)

Glove (from the series Seasick) by Aindreas Scholz (2020)

<i>Mask </i> (from the series <i>Seasick</i>) by Aindreas Scholz (2020)

Mask (from the series Seasick) by Aindreas Scholz (2020)

Aindreas Scholz

Mask (2020) & Glove (2020) (from the series Seasick)

During a recent visit to the Middle East, the visible disposal of plastic in the region was highlighted to Scholz.

In the Seasick series, he documents the impact of plastic on climate change using cyanotype, an alternative and eco-friendly photographic process that produces dark-blue prints. Cyanotypes allow him to directly work with plastic and low-tech methods of mass reproduction in response to our throwaway culture. To encourage further conceptual links, he uses seawater for developing prints, raising further awareness and concern between climate and oceans, and allowing him to photographically develop a range of ghostly absences seemingly floating in a vast open sea.

Will the surge in the use of personal protective equipment due to the COVID-19 pandemic result in further plastic in our oceans?

 

 

Lar Boland

Sea Weed Cultivation & Cultivation in Zanzibar (2019)

Lar Boland is an Irish photojournalist whose main area of work is focused on development programmes in African countries and India. His current project documents smallholder farming communities building resilience in Sub Saharan Africa.

Smallholder farmers are the backbone of the rural economy - but they are bearing the brunt of climate change. Worldwide, there are 500 million smallholder farms supporting 2 billion people. These farms inhabit some of the most at risk landscapes,including hillsides, deserts, and floodplains. Climate change multiplies the threats facing smallholders, endangering the natural assets they depend on and accelerating environmental degradation.

In Zanzibar, a significant rise in sea temperatures is killing seaweed. Not only does that jeopardize business - it threatens the sociopolitical achievements women have made. The Zanzibar Institute of Marine Sciences attribute the problem of seaweed mortality partly to the rising sea temperatures and more extreme weather.

 

 

Joe Habben

In Moleca (2019)

Joe Habben is a Glasgow-based photographer whose work focuses on human intervention, exploring globalisation, public space, global warming and social behaviour. He has become more socially and politically motivated in recent years as a natural response to the climate crisis. Conveying the human condition through a sense of unfamiliarity, he reveals new interpretations of ‘truth’.

His series, entitled In Moleca, documents documents the events and effects of the ‘Acqua Alta’ (high-water) which transpires annually in the city of Venice, Italy. This tidal activity is a natural occurrence, however in recent decades it has been exacerbated by the effects of human activity. Mass-tourism, global warming, urban expansion and industrialisation are damaging factors which have influenced the deterioration of the Venetian lagoon, leading to increasing tide and subsidence of the ‘floating city’. Exploring issues caused by human intervention, this image highlights the tender balance between urban inhabitants and the environment and questions how cities like Venice can  adapt in an increasingly globalised world.

 

 

Tamara Stubbs

Crabeater Seals Napping (2019)

© Atlantic Productions

Tamara Stubbs is a photographer, aerial cinematographer and documentary sound recordist. Recently she has travelled with expeditions to every ocean and has been to both 80 degrees north and south of the Earth’s equator.

She sees landscape as a complete story, with all its inhabitants and layers. She has a passion for social and environmental documentary image making to enable positive change. She feels it’s important to document wildlife in its natural habitat, seeing an urgency in doing so with the current acceleration of climate change. 

These Crabeater seals rely on the sea ice to feed, rest and escape predators. They sleep blissfully unaware of the human factors that determine their future.

 

 

Evgeny Makarov

BR-319: Highway to the Tipping Point (2019)

Evgeny Makarov is a documentary photographer based in Brazil. Together with journalist Fabian Federl they drove for 10 days on highway BR-319, the only road connecting Manaus, the capital of the Amazon Basin, with the rest of Brazil. Built by the military in the 60s to 'colonise' the Amazon, it quickly degraded until the forest took back its land. By the late 80s BR-319 was impassable, but at the end of July 2019, during a short window of reasonable conditions, Makarov and Federl travelled along it from from Manaus to Realidade to tell the story of the inhabitants living along the route.

"The destruction of BR-319 was the best thing that could happen to the rainforest", says Philip Fearnside, a US environmental scientist who has been living in Manaus for 40 years. "The road is the only way into the heart of Amazonia and 95% percent of the deforestation takes place within four kilometers of a road". The 'Arc of Deforestation' starts here and is a glimpse into the future of the Amazon. At the end of July 2019, President Bolsonaro announced that he wants to have BR-319 repaved.

The first image is of Erika Casto de Santos (15), on the lookout for the pink Amazon river dolphins (Boto), who sometimes swim to the dock and are fed with fish. The rainbow shimmer on the water is caused by a boat that is leaking oil or gasoline nearby.

The second image is of Igapó-Açu. The inhabitants of this community are descendants of the indigenous called 'Amazonenses'. The reservation protects their lifestyle and they protect the reserve: they fell trees only when needed and fish only what they eat. Everyone who drives down the road has to use the ferry, which the villagers operate.

 

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