Friday, October 1, 2010

Environmental Threat Facing Great Bear Is A Global Problem

© Jack Dykinga, iLCP

This summer, the iLCP, a group of internationally renowned photographers are taking part in a RAVE (Rapid Assessment Visual Expedition) in British Columbia's Great Bear Rainforest. Home to white spirit bears, ancient forests, and stunning marine biodiversity, it is one of the planet's most priceless treasures, but overseas oil interests wanting access to western Canada's tar sands, the second largest known oil reserves in the world, have put the region in threat, prompting the action of conservation groups and the iLCP. Throughout the expedition we'll be bringing you profiles, stories, statistics and photos to learn more about the region and why it's so crucial that we all work to protect it. Please follow along here on the iLCP blog, on Facebook and Twitter.


"Oil has a long history of not producing wealth or prosperity, exactly the opposite. What oil brings is poverty, social disease and environmental degradation. This is something that this coastline does not need," iLCP founder and president Cristina Mittermeier said. "

This is an environmental threat facing British Columbia and the coast… This is an environmental threat that would be facing planet Earth. This would have global impact."

Last month, Cristina and a troop of some of the best conservation photographers in the world journeyed to Great Bear to capture the wildlife, ecosystems and First Nations communities that thrive in the region, and expose the threat that they face.

"When you're working with 100 of the best photographers in the world, you need to deploy them. So we came up with the idea of a SWAT team… to capture images and bring back stories," Cristina said.

The goal of a RAVE

(Rapid Assessment Visual Expedition): engage the media, nationally and internationally, and create tipping points for conservation issues.

"In global terms, when you think about the Alberta tar sands, it will be doubling its potential output if this pipeline goes through. It's not just the impact it will have on the coastline. It's the impact it will have in Athabasca. This is one of the most toxic projects on the planet and I think as a civilized society, we need to ask ourselves: 'Do we need this oil?' And maybe the answer is 'no, not anymore.'"

Great Bear Rainforest RAVE from iLCP on Vimeo.

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