by Chris Linder
The Fraser is unique—it escaped the flurry of dam building that has altered nearly every other large river on the planet.
by Chris Linder
The Fraser River watershed, located in the Canadian province of British Columbia, includes the rain-soaked peaks of the Coast Range, the Canadian Rockies, and the dry sagebrush prairie ecosystem in between. The Fraser is unique—it escaped the flurry of dam building that has altered nearly every other large river on the planet. Yet, the Fraser faces other threats. The mountain pine beetle epidemic, which is raging unchecked due to a string of mild winters, may eliminate up to 80% of the native pine forest. As these dead trees are harvested, the exposed soil will receive more of the sun's heat, which will increase the temperature of the river water. If the water temperature exceeds 20 degrees C, salmon will no longer return to the Fraser—dubbed "the World's Greatest Salmon River"—to breed. Pollution from logging and pulp mills and excess nutrient input and contamination from mining operations also impact the health of the river.
In May 2011, when the Fraser swelled to overflowing with meltwater and rain, Dr. Bernhard Peucker-Ehrenbrink and graduate students Britta Voss and Sarah Rosengard traveled the length of the river, from the delta to the headwaters, taking samples from both the main stem and critical tributaries along the way. Their data, supplemented by more frequent measurements made by students from the University of the Fraser Valley, will be used to assess how the river and its watershed are changing—for better or worse—over the coming years.
I am grateful for aerial support provided by LightHawk for this assignment. This project has been featured as a Tripods in the Sky initiative by the International League of Conservation Photographers.
Patagonia Sin Represas - Bridget Besaw
by Bridget Besaw
A first hand account from Bridget Besaw on the Patagonia RAVE and efforts to stop the proposed dams on the Baker and Pascua Rivers.
Patagonia clothing company asked me to make a slide show of my Sin Represas exhibit images for the video section of their catalog site. Instead I decided to make this video about my experience of following the story of the proposed dams on the Baker and Pascua Rivers in Patagonia.For more information about the mega-dam proposal please visit Patagonia Sin Represas, NRDC or Conservacion Patagonica.
Great Bear TIS- Jasmine Thomas Interview
by Neil Ever Osborne
Jasmine Thomas of the Saikuz nationAs part of the Great Bear Rainforest Tripods in the Sky (TIS) with Neil Ever Osborne.
About the TIS
The IssuesEnbridge Inc. has a long history of pipeline oil spills throughout Canada and the US, including a ruptured pipeline in Michigan less than a year ago that spewed one million gallons of crude oil into the Kalamazoo river system. The Northern Gateway pipelines would cross sensitive salmon spawning habitat, bisecting more than 1,000 rivers and streams. Once the oil reached Kitimat, it would be loaded into super oil tankers and transported through the difficult-to-navigate routes, whose channels cross the Great Bear Rainforest, the largest temperate rainforest in the world. After reaching the coast, the oil would continue on to international markets, contributing to our global dependence on fossil fuels and the climate change crisis. The pipeline project has been called the defining environmental battle of our time; one that will define Canada's international reputation.
The AssignmentIn order to fully appreciate what is at risk, it is important to take stock of the ecosystems and people who will be affected by the pipelines. ForestEthics has enlisted LightHawk and the International League of Conservation Photographers to fly over the proposed pipeline route, taking aerial photographs and video footage to document the land and communities that would be impacted. By conveying the dramatic beauty of the landscapes and the tenacity of the people, this visual communication project will assist the campaign to stop the pipeline project from becoming a reality.
Chesapeake Bay RAVE multimedia
by iLCP, Jenny Nichols
Produced in partnership with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation with imagery from the Chesapeake Bay RAVE.
Last December, EPA issued a science-based diet that—if achieved—would reduce pollution to our waterways. Just as progress is underway, powerful forces are working to derail the recovery effort. All of us who love the Bay and its rivers and streams must make our voices heard.
Watch this video, visit cbf.org/getinvolved, and write your state representatives. Tell them you care about clean water!
Chesapeake Bay RAVE
The Chesapeake Bay watershed covers approximately 64,000 square miles (164,000 km2) and comprises one of the most important estuaries in the North Atlantic. With rapid development along its shores destroying vast swaths of wetlands and buffering forest, and polluted with a steady increase in agrochemical runoff from the 1950s on, this once thriving estuarine ecosystem was headed toward collapse.
A forty-year campaign by The Chesapeake Bay Foundation and other stakeholders has gradually turned the tide, with current political will at the point of tipping toward long-term restoration and protection of the Bay. The Chesapeake Clean Water and Ecosystem Act (H.R. 3852/S. 1816) was introduced to both chambers of the United States Congress last October, on its way to mark-up at the end of this year. These two bills seek to amend the Federal Clean Water Act (Section 117) to ensure that the six states of the Bay watershed, plus the District of Columbia, develop and implement detailed plans to reduce pollution sufficiently to achieve Bay-wide pollution reduction targets for nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment by 2025.
The Chesapeake Bay RAVE, a project of the International League of Conservation Photographers (iLCP) and the Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF), is a collaborative effort to highlight the importance of this legislation through photographs, video, and stories from across the Chesapeake Bay and its watershed. iLCP and CBF will use the collected media from the RAVE to document issues facing the Bay and to produce an exhibit of thirty photographs to premiere in September 2010 on Capitol Hill. The compelling visual media displayed will help facilitate news coverage on the urgency of the Chesapeake Clean Water and Ecosystem Act, advocating for the restoration of the Bay’s health and its protection in the long term. The expedition team is composed of iLCP photographers from across North America, including several who live within the Chesapeake Bay watershed.