CONSEQUENCES BY NOOR | PROJECT LAUNCH IN COPENHAGEN

Posted by admin | COP15,Consequences by NOOR Project,Exhibits,Videos | Monday 22 February 2010 4:12 pm

Consequences by NOOR was launched with a series of events and public initiatives during the Climate Summit in Copenhagen in December 2009. Video by Ivan Abreu.

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Pep Bonet | Blackfield’s | POLAND’S COAL INDUSTRY | PORTFOLIO

Posted by admin | Pep Bonet,Videos | Thursday 3 December 2009 1:26 pm

Poland is one of the largest producers of coal in Europe and not coincidentally, also one of the continent’s most polluted countries. The Upper Silesian Coal Basin in Poland, where coal has been mined for more than 150 years, is thick with mines, steel mills, coke ovens and chemical plants.

Waste from these industries fills hundreds of dumps across the region. Smoke from coal-fired plants pollutes the air. Runoff from the mines has contaminated the groundwater, streams and lakes. Underground exploration has caused irreparable damage to the landscape. In Poland, 93 percent of the energy comes from burning coal?a major producer of greenhouse gases. Despite the reforms of the last decade, coal mining remains a dangerous and dirty business.

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Yuri Kozyrev | Russian Legacy and Loss | Karabash and the Yamal Peninsula PORTFOLIO

Posted by admin | Consequences by NOOR Project,Videos,Yuri Kozyrev | Wednesday 2 December 2009 5:43 pm

Karabash One of the most polluted cities in the world, Karabash in the Chelyabinskaya region of the southern Ural Mountains in Russia, is burdened with the dirty legacy of copper mining, chemical and heavy metal emissions and radiation leaks. The smokestack of the Karabash Copper Smelting Works has been spewing a thick soup of toxic fumes and metal particulates into the air for almost a century. Closed in 1987 when Soviet officials proclaimed it an “environmental disaster zone,” the plant was reopened 11 years later because the region needed jobs.

Black heaps of industrial waste tower 45 feet high around homes and apartments. Recently, the new owner of the smelter, the Russian Copper Company, has modernized the plant and installed filters to greatly reduce plant emissions. But for the residents of Karabash, the contamination of the past remains ever present. The Yamal Peninsula In the language of the indigenous Nenet, “Yamal” means “world’s end.” This 435-mile long peninsula in northwestern Siberia is home to both 42,000 Nenet and the largest natural gas reserve in the world. For a thousand years, the Nenet have herded their domesticated reindeer to summer pastures above the Arctic Circle.

But now, the Nenet’s traditional way of life is threatened by warming temperatures that turn the tundra into a boggy swamp and by the world’s rapacious appetite for natural gas. With the gas wells have come railroad tracks and natural gas pipelines that bisect herding routes and cause reindeers to break legs. Fish, once an abundant dietary staple, also have diminished; the Nenet blame offshore drilling. The Ob River, which the Nenet must cross to return to their southern pastures, freezes later than ever before, forcing reindeer to forage longer in depleted winter pastures.

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Francesco Zizola | Maldives | A Paradise in Peril PORTFOLIO

Posted by admin | Consequences by NOOR Project,Francesco Zizola,Videos | Tuesday 1 December 2009 6:23 pm

The island nation of Maldives is the lowest lying country in the world. As the oceans fill with water from melting glaciers, this tropical paradise will be the first country on the planet to slip below the waves. Experts predict that within the next 15 years, rising sea levels will force the island’s 396,000 to migrate elsewhere. Other islands and coastal regions around the world face similar threats.

Migrations forced by rising sea levels will disproportionately affect poor nations and the developing word as climate refugees overwhelm neighboring countries. In the Maldives, a nation dependent upon tourism and fishing, economic development has worsened the problem. Protective coral reefs are mined for building materials, refuse piles up, fresh water supplies are threatened. In October, Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed and his cabinet donned scuba gear and held a meeting 20 feet underwater to publicize the island’s plight and call on developed nations to curb carbon emissions .”We do not want to leave the Maldives,” Nasheed said, “but we also do not want to be climate refugees living in tents for decades.”

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Philip Blenkinsop | India | The Fires Within: The burning coalfields of Jharia, India PORTFOLIO

Posted by admin | Consequences by NOOR Project,Philip Blenkinsop,Videos | Monday 30 November 2009 11:34 pm

Under Jharia’s crust, lies one of the largest coal deposits in India. But for the people who live above an inferno, Jharia is a condemned place. For almost a century, fires have burned uncontrolled in the mines beneath Jharia, polluting the air with poisonous fumes and splitting the ground with dangerous fissures.

For the impoverished residents of Jharia, stealing coal to sell and picking through collapsed buildings for salvageable material is a dangerous way of life. And now, with the earth literally collapsing beneath their feet, they face an ecological disaster.

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Jon Lowenstein | Canada | In the Oil Sands PORTFOLIO

Posted by admin | Consequences by NOOR Project,Jon Lowenstein,Videos | Monday 30 November 2009 4:23 pm

The oil sands of Alberta, Canada, represent the second largest source of crude oil in the world, behind Saudi Arabia. Beneath an area the size of Greece are an estimated 170.4 billion barrels of crude oil. Unlike conventional crude oil, which is pumped from deep within the earth, oil sands are a mixture of sand, clay, water and bitumen, found near the surface.

Mining and refining the oil sands is an expensive process, but with the rise in the price per barrel of oil, it has become profitable?very profitable indeed. The small town of Fort McMurray, known to its residents as Fort McMoney, has exploded with the influx of oil patch workers from around the globe, and Canada’s coffers have swelled with billions in royalties. But there is a downside. Oil sand mining degrades the landscape, pollutes the water and with its associated refining industries accounts for 5 percent of Canada’s total greenhouse gas emissions.

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Stanley Greene | Greenland | Shadows of Change PORTFOLIO

Posted by admin | Consequences by NOOR Project,Stanley Greene,Videos | Monday 30 November 2009 2:46 am

“This weather does not belong to us. It belongs to someone else. If we don’t have ice, we are going to die.” With this prediction, an Inuit hunter sums up the dire situation for the indigenous peoples who live in northern and eastern Greenland. Nowhere on Earth, perhaps, is the evidence of climate change more apparent.

The ice that covers 80 percent of the world’s largest island is disappearing at the rate of 7 percent a year, a rate that has accelerated substantially in recent years. In some places, the ice shelf is already too thin to permit the Inuit to travel to traditional hunting grounds. The permafrost is also melting, producing a land that is boggy, unstable for buildings and difficult to cross by the traditional sleds. Worst-case scenarios predict that the carbon released by the melting permafrost could equal all the carbon already in the Earth’s atmosphere. The Inuit, who survived for centuries by hunting seals and whales, are watching their way of life disappear before their very eyes.

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Jan Grarup | Darfur | And Then There Was Silence PORTFOLIO

Posted by admin | Consequences by NOOR Project,Jan Grarup,Videos | Sunday 29 November 2009 1:12 am

Since 2004 at least 300,000 people have died in Darfur, Sudan, the victims of fighting, slaughter, starvation, malnutrition and disease. Two to three million people have been forced from their homes to wander a landscape withered by drought. Widely seen as a genocide perpetrated by the Janjaweed, armed partisans from the mostly Afro-Arab herding tribes in the north, upon the non-Muslim Fur, Zaghawa and Masalit farmers, the fighting in Darfur is about scarcity as much as ethnicity. As U.N. Secretary General Ban-Ki Moon told The Washington Post, the conflict in Darfur “grew at least in part from desertification, ecological degradation and a scarcity of resources, foremost among them water.”

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Kadir van Lohuizen | Brazil | Brazil’s Range War: Assault on the Amazon PORTFOLIO

Posted by admin | Consequences by NOOR Project,Kadir van Lohuizen,Videos | Tuesday 24 November 2009 7:23 pm

The rainforests of the Brazilian Amazon, the most biologically diverse place on Earth, are shrinking by tens of thousands of square kilometers a year. About 60 to 70 percent of that deforestation occurs as rancher cut, burn and bulldoze trees, often illegally, to create pastures for the country’s burgeoning cattle industry. In recent years, Brazil has become the largest exporter of beef and, not coincidentally, one of the largest polluters in the world.

Fires from the burning forests and the ovens that heat the wood into charcoal fill the skies. The cattle, too, are responsible for methane gases. “Every year in the dry season, the rainforest is burning. If it’s not the rainforest, it’s the pastures,” says Lohuizen. Even nature preserves, such as Terra do Meio, are not safe from the illegal deforestation.

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