My theme of deforestation is the next one in my environmental series Footprints.
With my previous photo “Leaving the Grid Behind”,
I discussed an individual’s carbon footprint. I wasn’t trying to be preachy, just trying to make someone stop and think twice even for a moment.
Well, the same goes for this topic. I sometimes just feel so sad as I drive along a familiar route to oneday find it has been clearcut in preparation for a new subdivision. Urban sprawl has been happening for hundreds of years for varying reasons but again with our exploding population we are at an alltime high. The effects of it are devastating to our planet. Imagine, 36 football fields of forest are lost to us every minute around the globe. That is a staggering number!
It’s not just development that has our forests being destroyed. It’s agriculture, unsustainable logging and degradation due to climate change. There is something called carbon sink which is basically the forest soaking up the carbon dioxide that would normally stay in our atmosphere and cause further climate change. They estimate that 15% of greenhouse gas emissions are the result of deforestation.
In addition to this, there is a disruption of water cycles, increased soil erosion and disrupted biodiversity and livelihoods.
If you’d like to read more you can check out http://www.worldwildlife.org/threats/deforestation
On a creative note, I loved shooting this photo. I had found this field that had recently been clearcut and I knew I had to get back there quickly to get the shot. I have an amazing new model that I have been working with, Sarah Ruest, and she was more than willing to get really muddy with me. Thanks Sarah!
Take the time to do something green today no matter how big or little!
How big is your carbon footprint?
It’s a question that gets thrown around pretty flippantly these days but the fact remains it is an important one.
Our carbon footprint is the net amount of carbon dioxide that an individual emits into the environment over the course of a year. Many of us don’t even come close to a low number.
When I created this photograph I had to take a really good look at what I was doing as a participant of the human race. My answer …. I can do better. Much better.
Sure my family and I do make efforts – we recycle, we eat organically, I’d say 90% vegetarian (my husband will stray from time to time), low flush toilets, energy efficient lightbulbs and appliances, (some) bamboo flooring, linens and clothing, phosphate free detergents, we plant trees and we try to buy locally. Not bad but room for improvement.
I don’t drive a Prius or any energy efficient car for that matter, I drive my daughter to school more often than I should, my water heater is probably set higher than it should be, I don’t always shut my computer off at night, I don’t frequent second hand stores for myself, I keep putting off that garden I always mean to grow every year and although I try not to, I do buy things that come from foreign manufacturers (hard to buy camera equipment made in Canada!).
I’m sure my list could extend several pages if I really took a hard look but what matters is that I’m going to try a little bit harder every day to make my footprint a little bit smaller.
I had read somewhere that many people believe “the grid” won’t always be around and in truth it won’t be. Maybe not in my lifetime but our fossil fuels are being depleted at a rapid pace while we try to keep up with our bursting population. It’s an enormous problem to solve and we’re all apart of the equation.
So again I ask, how big is your carbon footprint?
This site has some great tips –