Copenhagen

Arctic elder tells of how oil drilling, climate change threaten her people's survival

Editor's note: Sarah James is an elder of the Gwich'in native people of northern Alaska, inside the Arctic Circle. In Copenhagen for the United Nations climate negotiations, she spoke with InvestigateWest correspondent Alexander Kelly and videographer Blair Kelly, stressing the need to protect the caribou that her people depend on for their very existence.

Arctic photographer, one-time Seattle resident Subhankar Banerjee attends climate talks

Editor's note: Subhankar Banerjee caused quite  a stir when an exhibit of his photography of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge was pulled at the last minute from a prominent spot at the Smithsonian Institution. The exhibit was moved instead to the basement at the same time debate over drilling in the refuge was raging in D.C. Smithsonian officials denied that they were censoring the exhibit for political reasons, but legions of critics don't believe that.

Banerjee once lived in Seattle, where he was helped by the Blue Earth Alliance, an organization co-founded by Seattle photographer Natalie Fobes. The group's motto: "Photography that makes a difference." (Banerjee serves on the group's advisory board.)

InvestigateWest correspondent Alexander Kelly and videographer Blair Kelly caught up with Banerjee in Copenhagen, where the Indian-born artist traveled to call attention to the plight of the Arctic during the United Nations negotiations on a global climate treaty (for more information, see www.artport-project.org):

Protests like Seattle's WTO coming to climate talks in Copenhagen? Stay tuned...

Editor's note: We keep hearing that big street protests are coming outside the United Nations' talks on a climate treaty in Copenhagen, protests perhaps as attention-getting as those that rocked Seattle when the World Trade Organization met there a decade ago this month.

Today InvestigateWest photographer Mark Malijan caught this image of Danish National Guard troops on the move in the streets of Copenhagen:

[caption id="attachment_7065" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="InvestigateWest photo by Mark Malijan"]InvestigateWest photo by Mark Malijan[/caption]

Students in their undies take to chilly Copenhagen streets to support climate treaty

Editor's note: InvestigateWest photographers Christopher Crow and Mark Malijan both caught interesting images of a protest in the streets of Copenhagen today featuring young people who braved the chilly Scandinavian air in their undies. They were trying try to get through to negotiators at the United Nations' talks to reach a global climate treaty.
The 350 in one sign is a reference to what scientists say is a safe level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere -- 350 parts CO2 per million parts of air. We're now at about 389 parts per million -- and headed much higher.
The demonstrators are from Youth of the World. Their message: Don't leave us out in the cold!

[caption id="attachment_7054" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="InvestigateWest photo by Christopher Crow"]InvestigateWest photo by Christopher Crow[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_7056" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="InvestigateWest photo by Mark Malijan"]InvestigateWest photo by Mark Malijan[/caption]

Push for strong climate treaty still underway, says Seattle climate activist in Copenhagen

By Alexander Kelly and Blair Kelly

In the final installment of InvestigateWest’s conversation with KC Golden, policy director of Seattle-based Climate Solutions, we ask for Golden's impression of how the talks have unfolded so far and what he expects for the coming week.

Also, hear Golen discuss the Northwest’s role in overcoming the stigma of indifference to climate change that has plagued the United States in recent years and a comment on the African delegations’ responses to the proceedings so far.

Seattle climate activist KC Golden discusses how Copenhagen talks can affect NW economic growth

By Alexander Kelly and Blair Kelly

In the second installment of InvestigateWest’s interview with KC Golden of Seattle-based Climate Solutions, we ask how Pacific Northwesterners can get involved in the global effort to arrest climate change and how a deal in Copenhagen may affect the Northwest’s emerging green economy.

Seattle climate activist KC Golden in Copenhagen to push for ambitious global climate treaty

By Alexander Kelly and Blair Kelly

InvestigateWest caught up with KC Golden, policy director for Seattle-based Climate Solutions, who is in Copenhagen for the United Nations climate talks. He is attempting to let foreign delegates and world leaders know that the United States is getting serious about climate change. Hear more:

Counting the ways we could be screwed by abrupt climate swings. Avoiding them? It's not all about CO2

We interrupt Dateline Earth's relentless search for the 100 one-percent solutions to global warming for a special report on a sweeping new look at how we can give ourselves a lot more time to find those solutions.

rm iwest mugA collection of papers just published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences highlights a series of steps that would forestall the worst effects of climate change by years or even decades. That gives us a lot more time to develop the technology it's going to take to get us out of this mess. (Although, as we've pointed out before, we already have the know-how to cut emissions 80 percent by 2020.)

The research is aimed at avoiding the "tipping points" that scientists fear could make the fight unwinnable -- abrupt, irreversible climate change. You know, stuff like permafrost melting, changes in the African winds that bring nutrients to the Amazon and methane bubbling up from the ocean bottom in world-changing quantities. (See the summary.)

Most of this series of scientific papers is devoted to this laundry list of Things That Could Go Really Wrong Really Fast. But there's hope! Read on. 

Now, the funny thing about this collections of papers is the proposed solutions, the ones to forfend sudden and dramatic climate change, do not target the most prolific greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide.