Posts

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The 3000km Trespass / Geographical

It takes some careful pitching of ideas and an understanding editor to let you write about a 3000km trespass.

Since late 2017 I’ve been on the trail of this story – both on the ground in the Andes and in the halls of government as Chile prepares to pass a new “right to roam” styled access law. 

The Greater Patagonian Trail – as its creator Jan Dudeck calls it – is a 3000km network of animal tracks, arriero cowboy paths, indigenous peoples’ trails as well good ol’ deep-backcountry bushwacking linking Santago with the climbing mecca of Fitz Roy in deepest Patagonia.

This is the first publication from my year of adventures on the GPT, and includes conversations with Jan Dudeck about the trail’s creation and future development.

There’s a lot at stake with this project. And the trail’s character (somewhere between the Revenant and Reese Witherspoon’s Wild) is not for everyone. 

But if done right – the GPT could have far reaching consequences of environmental protection; promoting sustainable lifestyles and improving economic prosperity in the Andes.

Here’s a taster…

Continuing reading by subscribing at Geographical magazine.

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Juliana vs US / Geographical

PH. Robin Loznak/Our Children’s Trust

For the last year I have been following the story of 21 youths who are suing the US government.

Despite 50 years of awareness about the dangerous effects of green house gas emissions, the plaintiffs claim the government have affirmatively supported the fossil fuel industry and compromised their Constitutional rights to life, liberty and property.

On Oct 29th they were finally due to have their day in court. The court spectacle of diverse youths including musicians, indigenous communities and climate ambassadors who have marched across the nation and spoke in the UN was billed to be the “trial of the century.” A last minute intervention from the recently restructured Supreme Court delayed the trial – but the plaintiffs, their pro bono lawyers and citizens concerned about the impending climate crisis rallied outside court houses across the country.

In this article for Geographical magazine I interviewed other youth climate activists involved in direct action and litigation. I discovered that young people have an uncompromising vision for the drastic action needed to ensure intergenerational climate justice. And not just not their own long remaining lives, but for future generations too.

Read the article here

 

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Electric Cool / Geographical

 

For the October issue of Geographical magazine I investigated the proclaimed environmental and climate mitigating benefits of the electric racing series Formula E. 

The article includes interviews and comment from Paul Day from Aquafuel Research, Stephen Skippon from the Transport Research Laboratory and Julia Palle the sport’s Senior Sustainability Consultant .

The electric revolution that Formula E are showcasing will ameliorate inner city air pollution. In tackling climate change, however, I discovered the series have pinned their hopes for now on unabated, albeit-greener consumption. Instead, I argue that deep cuts in carbon emissions will require a deeper societal shift-of-gear towards more sustainable consumer as well as industry behaviour.

 

Geographical subscribers can continue reading. If you would like more information, please reach out.

 

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The Silent Giants of Pentland Firth / Geographical

Photo: SIMEC Atlantis

This August 2018 I investigated the burgeoning tidal energy sector for Geographical magazine, and interviewed the man in charge of the Scottish project that is now largest tidal stream array project anywhere in the world.

You can read it here (opens in a separate tab)

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Salmon Farming in Patagonia / Geographical

This May 2018 I got a tip-off that a Chilean salmon farming company was planning a controversial 72,000tonne processing plant at the heart of the Patagonian fiords in Puerto Natales. 

The deep dive research for Geographical magazine is a story of fishy politics, questionable farming practices and the changing geography of the salmon farming industry as they move into the near-pristine seas of the southernmost waters of the planet.

I would like to express my thanks for the interviews, comment and photography provided by the Citizen Education Council of Ultima EsperanzaGreenpeace Chile, National Geographic Pristine Seas scientist Alex Muñoz and Australis Seafoods.

Click here to read online in a new tab. 

The Greenpeace sign reads ‘This is what the salmon industry is hiding’ referring to the football-field sized space each concession occupies with depth of cages equivalent to a five-storey building. (Photo: Sergio Salazar/Greenpeace). Cover photo: Greenpeace Andino.