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  • Photograph by Nick Bowers

Portrait of a Scared Scientist

The world is not acting fast enough about climate change and now scared scientists are starting to tell their stories. 

Photographer Nick Bowers invites us to look the truth in the eye through these portraits of climate scientists as they reveal their greatest fears about climate inaction. We know that our environment is a factor to our health, and that now is the time to act. 


Tim_Flannery_0007_Final_1200.jpgTIM FLANNERY
Mammologist, Palaeontologist 
University of New South Wales, 
Monash University, La Trobe University


FEAR: DISRUPTION OF GLOBAL CIVILISATION

Climate Science underestimated the pace of climate change, it was too conservative. We're now having far more rapid change than originally projected. Change that if not slowed, will undoubtedly affect my children and my grandchildren. 

There is genuine potential for a change in climate to disrupt our global civilisation. If that happens, we know human nature has a dark side, people will fight over an ever diminishing resource pool, and that is a future we want to avoid. 

This decade is critical, it is our last chance to prevent our children from that type of world. We have to make significant progress and get the global emissions trajectory turning downwards. That is the urgent task at hand.

ShaunaMurray_0059_Final_1200.jpgSHAUNA MURRAY
Biological Scientist
University of Technology Sydney, University of Tokyo, University of New South Wales


FEAR: REACHING THE FOUR DEGREES OF WARMING 

We've recorded all sorts of climate change shifts in multiple areas. However, the scientific process is consistent. Every single individual study that has been done, has gone through the same rigorous process, data collection, research analysis, and qualified peer review. At the moment, we've at least 10 000 different papers, completed over 20 years, each using different data sets, and they are all coming to the same climate change conclusions. We've a weight of evidence that the average person is simply not aware of - and this frightens me. 

I'd like to think that we're not going to reach the projected four degrees of warming this century; because I can't even imagine what that would look like. 80 years is not that long, and unless we act soon, my seven year old daughter will probably have to live through that. 



PeterMacreadie_0031_Final_1200.jpgPETER MACREADIE
Marine Ecologist
University of Technology Sydney, Deakin University


FEAR: GLOBAL CATASTROPHE 

IPCC predicts that the impacts of climate change will be catastrophic. This affects everybody. Nobody is safe. We're going to lose low lying countries, there will be a loss of live stock, potential wide spread famine and species extinction. 

One thing people need to remember, is that scientists are the biggest skeptics on Earth. We're constantly trying to disprove each other. This is the one thing we agree on. The evidence is endless. We're not making this up, this is really serious, we're very concerned and there's not enough being done about it. We really need to be pushing our governments. Let's not look back and regret what we've done. 

Read the rest of the interviews here.

 

Get involved in the fight against climate change

One way to get involved is to demand that our National Energy Board, those who review energy projects like the impending Energy East Pipeline, actually consider climate change and its effects in the"list of issues" considered in a review. 

Canadian Premiers are finally acknowledging that climate change ought to factor into our decisions about energy. If you think the National Energy Board review should also take climate change into serious account for future decisions, consider signing a letter of support by following the link below. 

 Write a letter to NEB Chair Peter Watson today and ask your Premier to conduct public consultations on the Energy East pipeline in your province. 

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