1500 Scouts gather for 10:10 Climate Aerial Photo

This past Saturday, in the little town of Vlaardingen near Rotterdam, an estimated 1500 Scouts gathered to create this aerial image of 10:10. The event was organized by JMA (Jongeren Milieu Actief) in Amsterdam. This is arguably the largest 10:10 image ever recorded and was a lot of fun to create, (at 20 meters in the air). The image reminds us of the goal to stop climate change by reducing emissions by 10% in 2010. It is important that we to get to work during and after the Global Work Party on October 10, 2010.

What are you planning for 10:10? If you are in the Netherlands, check out this site.

In Amsterdam on October 10 a series of workshops will be held at the Dok Huis Gallery @ Plantage Doklaan 8 Amsterdam. Currently the prospective line up is below. If you want to get involved in helping plan either of these workshops or just want to come along, contact me.

  • In the POWER workshops, participants will gain practical skills in how to create electric power off the grid.
  • In the ART workshops, participants will utilise recycled/waste/sustainable materials to create quality art works.
  • In the MUSIC workshops, participants will create instruments with recycled/waste materials.
  • In the LIFE workshops, participants will learn how to create sustainable urban gardens and do some shared vegetarian cooking.

10:10 the netherlands aerial image

Portrait of a Climate Change Activist – Anna Keenan

I find Amsterdam, the Netherlands, to be an ideal base; it is a central point for international work, it is a hot bed of photography (the World Press, FOAM etc.), it is on the right track for a sustainable lifestyle, and last but not least, the friends and community are amazing.

One of these dear persons is Anna Keenan, an Australian climate activist whose work within the International Youth Climate Movement has been invaluable to the explosion of climate movements across the globe. She is a uber passionate individual who holds the need for climate justice and stopping the impacts of climate change dear to her heart (and on her neck). Without her skills in organizing, her intelligence and her drive, the climate change movement would be a step back. I recently got the opportunity to photograph Anna here in her adopted town of Amsterdam. Enjoy

Activism, Coal and Arizona

“Just seeing the future for us and knowing that they [our parents] wanted a better future for us, fern benallyI have the same feeling for, not myself, but the kids and for my relatives and that something better will be in the future for them, that keeps me going. Knowing that we have succeeded in one step and maybe we can continue on and see a better future for all of us.

[One of] the other things that keeps me going is knowing that one of my great aunts and my great uncles [had] respiratory problems. Their breath was taken away slowly inch by inch, feeling like they were being suffocated. When they died, thinking about them and thinking that how much better it would be for the rest of the people here. I don’t want them to die that way anymore, I want them to be able to breathe.” Fern Benally, Navajo Activist.

Shadia Fayne Wood from Project Survival Media and I just finished an assignment in Arizona, covering an incredible group of activists that are working hard to stop dirty energy on the Navajo Reservation and pushing the envelope on clean energy development. We are focusing on the closing of one of the coal mines in the area, the tactics that were used and what this means to the people affected by the closure.

The former coalmine is in the Benally’s backyard, land that has been the families for thousands of years. For the last 30 years, 24 hours a day, the large coal trucks would rumble by the house and the coal crusher would drown out nature. Now, thanks to incredible co-operation and dedication amongst groups like the Black Mesa Water Coalition, Grand Canyon Trust and the Sierra Club, the life of mine permit was revoked in January. Now, the Benally’s can hear the birds sing and watch the stars like their ancestors did long before Europeans came here.

There are still many examples of environmental racism here in Arizona and across our planet. But, it is important to celebrate victories and share the knowledge so that we can all move towards a sustainable future. More to come on this project in the future.

Climate Change 2009 – Explosion of a social movement

In 2009, millions of people came together around the world to pressure leaders to sign a legally binding and ambitious deal in Copenhagen. Although the final result in Copenhagen was a failure, 2009 was the year that the climate movement exploded. This energy will carry forward and we will continue to build in numbers until sustainability is achieved.

This multimedia piece looks at the growth of this movement throughout 2009. Take a moment and watch hundreds of those around the world taking action and inspiring others in the fight for climate justice.

All images (unless provided by 350.org) ©Robert van Waarden
Music: Open Road Kisses by The Small Affairs.

Powershift UK – London, England

The UKYCC PowerShift Conference, held on Oct. 9-12, 2009, brought together over 250 young people from across the United Kingdom and the world to discuss climate change. The conference taught them how to organize, build a social movement and take creative and intelligent action to tackle the climate crisis. The following collection of photographs documents this climate conference and the incredible youth that are taking the fight to politicians and leaders around the UK. To license, click an image or here.

PowerShift 2009 – Washington D.C.

Photographs of PowerShift 09 in Washington. During the last weekend of February, over 10,000 young people descended on Washington D.C for the largest ever conference on climate change and clean energy in the USA.


PowerShift 2009 – Washington D.C – The Full Collection of Images – Images by climate photographer Robert van Waarden.

Climate Camp in the City, G20 Protests

A portfolio of images of the Climate Camp at BishopsGate, London during the G20 meetings in 2009. The members of climate camp took over the street and set up a tent city in front of the Carbon Exchange in London. The campers were protesting the current carbon trading schemes that the UN is incorporating in the global climate deals. They feel that these policies will not solve the current climate crisis. The campers spent the day playing games, cooking, dancing and generally having a good time. However, despite the camps strong policy of non-violence, the campers were violently attacked by members of the British police force. The tactics used by the police during the G20 resulted in one death and many complaints. The police actions have been condemned by review boards and many activists hope that they will be changed.


Climate Camp in the City – G20 – Images by Robert van Waarden

Best of 2009 – 20 Images of Climate Change Activism


The Rise of a Climate Change Movement – 20 Images from 2009 – I spent the majority of 2009 focusing on the climate change social movement and working closely with the international youth climate movement, ngo’s and the TckTckTck campaign.