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Tijdens het lounge event van de Altran Foundation
(6 maart 2008) gaf Tseard een presentatie over kli-maatverandering in Alaska.

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Zo kan niemand om klimaatverandering heen.

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The BIG THAW, a climate change expedition to Alaska

Native responses on climate change

Climate change is really an 'inconvenient truth' (to quote Al Gore's docusoap). It is happening. And in a faster rate we have ever imagined. Especially in the arctic region where temperatures have risen more than twice to three times the global average. Nowhere this can be seen more obvious than in Alaska, the 'last frontier'. The state is not only birthplace of climate change, it's also the biggest hot spot in the world where the greatest variety of change has become visible to the first inhabitants.

During autumn 2006 and Spring 2007 we have spoken to numerous Inupiaq, the first people along the coasts of the Bering Strait and Chukchi sea for over 4000 years. In barely a lifetime they have seen and experienced what global warming can do to their culture, their villages and their way of life.

Due to retreating sea-ice, fishing grounds have changed beyond imagination. And in the interior, higher temperatures have profound effects upon the vulnerability and burning of boreal forests. Meanwhile, rising sea levels and storms threatens villages like Kivalina. It's just a matter of time - one year, a season, maybe next month? - before Kivalina will disappear into the waves. Environmental lawyers recently have started a law suit on oil companies whom the people of Kivalina blame of having caused global warming. It's unsure if they will win but for sure it'll draw more attention to their precarious state.

But the most striking effect is hidden in the ground: the thawing of the permafrost, once eternal frozen soil. South of Kotzebue we saw cliffs falling into the sea. Could it be this melting is just a prelude of the release of more methane, a far more potent greenhouse gas? Therefore we've called our climate expedition 'The Big Thaw'. And therefore we are working on a terrible beautiful coffee table book about it. Since it's not too late to show you the traditional Inupiaq ways of living and their intimate relationship with the environment. It's not too late yet…

order photos from:
first expedition
Jan van der Woning
second expedition
Daan Zuiderwijk
 

fullscreen Quicktime VR movie Kivalina

   
     
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2006-2008 Jan van der Woning
Tseard Zoethout