, , ,

Global South Solutions / Geographical

Citizens of the global south have done the least to cause global climate change, but are at the greatest risk from its bad tail effects.

This August and September I had the honour of speaking to seven leaders, scientists and activists from Bolivia, Brazil, Easter Island (Chile), the Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar, East Timor and Indonesia.

Each of them told their own countries story of how climate change is biting, but there was an underlying theme to all the interviews I carried out. Developing nations are being called on by the global north to preserve their forests to help reduce global emissions and develop on a different pathway to the denuded and exploited landscapes of the global north. But the developed nations are not willing to foot the bill for this mitigation of their own pollution.

The 4000 word story ran in the special COP26 November issue of Geographical magazine. You can read a full online version here.

, , , ,

Fireflies Patagonia / Men’s Fitness

This March I shot a big Patagonian bike tale from the remotest Cochamó region and wrapped it up in 1500 words for Men’s Fitness magazine. I hauled an electric Specialized gravel bike 400km through virgin forests and charging glacial rivers to get the story. Hope you can taste the blood, sweat and beers that went into it.

 

056-061_MF_JUNE21_patagonia

, , , , ,

Taking the ego out of adventure / Geographical

I wrote this feature story for @geographical_magazine recently, asking what expectation we should have of modern explorers in the wake of the climate and environmental crisis.

I got to interview both Ernest Shakelton’s and Neil Armstrong’s biographers about what role historical explorers of land, sea and space felt they had to report on its problems as well as its beauty on their return to civilisation.

I then turned to today’s explorers with the help of my friends at @shefadvfilmfest to ask if modern explorers are bringing back stories about our troubled planet as much as selfies.

The conclusion was that planetary advocacy by today’s adventurers is still in a nascent state, but the public appetite is growing. I think we are going to see a lot more expeditions into the world’s wild places in the coming years that put the planet rather than the self at the centre of the story.

GEOEXPLOREJUNE2021_GT 12.14.07 pm


#adventureactivism #enviroadventures#adventure #adventureforourplanet#enviornmentalism #freelancewriter

, , , , ,

Queremos Parque / Runner’s World

Runner’s World doubled-down with this double-page spread from our clandestine October 2020 expedition into the Río Colorado Basin this March. Over the last two years I have been working to help draw international attention to the Queremos Parque (We Want a Park) campaign that seeks to create a high-quality national park for Santiago’s  disenfranchised and concrete-crowded citizens. The possible imminent success of the campaign has been described as potentially the biggest conservation story in Chilean history.

 

, , , , , ,

Democratise the mountains / Thomson Reuters Foundation

A feature story and photo package for Thompson Reuters Foundation today about the Chilean grassroots campaign Queremos Parque that is on the brink of convincing the government to create a 1,420km2 national park on the doorstep of the capital. 

The campaign’s plan is to create recreational opportunities in this rampantly unequal country for the majority who are geographically and economically excluded from accessing the national park system. Also Queremos Parque believes the park creation will protect the glaciers and Santiago’s water supply from the advance of the mining industry. 

You can read the article here

Storytelling and photography from an Earth Rise Productions expedition. 

, , , ,

A Park for the People / Geographical

We’ve come in the blue light of dawn, hoping to catch the private security personnel off guard. Tomás idles the truck over the Rio Colorado towards the mountain hamlet of Alfalfal. The once- sleepy settlement of herdsmen and homesteaders is today obscured behind the great orange wall of the monstrous 531MW Alto Maipo hydropower construction project.

Our cab is stuffed with Chilean mountain guides, conservationists and activists. The bed is packed with ice axes, crampons, five days’ mountain food, camera equipment and an inflatable kayak. ‘Over there,’ says Tomás pointing to a stadium-sized concrete paved pool. ‘That’s where I use to play football in the grass.’ We sink low in our seats, bracing against the cold shadow of the cliffs above us as much as to remain out of sight of the checkpoint. Tomás, Vivi, Felipe and I have spent the past ten years trespassing in the central Chilean Andes to gain access to its privatised and prohibited mountains. But the plan for this expedition is by far the most outrageous.

Extract from the eight page feature story and photo set I created from our October 2020 clandestine expedition into the Río Colorado Estate. I put together a team of mountain guides, conservationists, activists and hired a mule herder to take us for five days into this 142,000 hectare territory on the outskirts of Santiago. Our aim was to explore the citizen led Queremos Parque (We Want a A Park) campaign that has gained majority support in the parliament and senate to declare an accessible national park for the capital’s 7million that would potentially be the biggest conservation story in Chilean history. Along the way our team made the first ever recorded ascent of Cerro El Barco and the highest known descent of the Rio Colorado. 

Many thanks to supporting comment from Senator Alfonso de Urresti, Kristine Tompkins, James Hardcastle from the IUCN, Viviana Callahan, Tomás Gonzales and Felipe Cancino; as well as expedition logistical support from Alpacka rafts and Patagonia Chile. 

Subscribers can read the full story in the February 2021 edition of the magazine. Out today.