How 1,000 moving images will boost climate action


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#everydayclimatecrisis is a 1000 photo visual petition that will be presented to the Australian government in Canberra ahead of the next federal election.

It will also be viewable online at hwp.com.au/documentary/everydayclimatecrisis. So far, I have 350 amazing submissions – a few of which are featured here – and I hope to receive many more!

This project is a call to all women and non-binary people in Australia to create imagery about the Australian climate crisis, in your region and across the country.

I started #everydayclimatecrisis because, instead of feeling powerless in the face of climate change, we have a voice (in this case, in the form of a camera). And we can use it to make changes.

“Blah blah blah” is Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg’s rallying cry to the leaders of our world who have apparently put self-interest and big business ahead of humanity and the planet.

Yes. The School Strike 4 Climate dialogue that children use is angry and mocking. In Australia, it seems our federal leaders are playing politics as we grapple with what the next decade holds.

In a patriarchal world, our governments and colonial systems have exacerbated inequalities globally and we have come to a tipping point. We need a reboot. An egalitarian world is healthier, more peaceful and more productive. We must also include women, First Nations people and other vulnerable communities in decision-making. Indigenous peoples see culture, climate and nature as inseparable.

The remains of a property destroyed by bushfires in Sarsfield, Victoria, Australia on Tuesday January 7, 2020. Photo: Christina Simons.

Recently, at COP26, there was a lot of talk about the existential climate crisis facing humanity and the need to set goals. It is shortsighted to let captains of industry and politicians make decisions. Targets should encompass all parts of society.

Research and collaboration between science, humanities and the arts are all important to achieve an ethical path that enables a just transition to a sustainable future and justice for all humanity.

When considering the climate crisis we are facing, it is hard to imagine what will happen in the future – just as it may have been hard to imagine what a pandemic could do on our planet. way of life. That’s until it actually happens!

The majority of women hold fewer permanent and / or part-time jobs. Women are also responsible for the majority of unpaid work, care and volunteering. Australia’s political response to the pandemic has shown us that women are more vulnerable to the economic effects of crises than men. The pandemic has also shown us that it was the care economy, which is often made up of women’s roles, that kept our country running – roles like childcare, health care, elderly care and cleaning.

Murray Darling water delivery. Photo: Louise Whelan.

The pandemic was the opening act. The climate emergency we face is the main event.

As the global environment falters towards catastrophic failure, it is more important than ever to take a holistic approach to solutions embracing the women and peoples, culture and wisdom of our First Nations.

The Women’s Climate Congress declares that “the maintenance of life in the natural world and the care of the Earth must be at the center of all government policy decisions.” That’s why I created the #everydayclimatecrisis visual petition to the Australian Parliament.

The petition does not require any signatures or words, just photos. This is a petition launched by women and non-binary people to photograph the effects of climate change in their region and share what they think. Inspired by the old adage that “a picture is worth 1,000 words”, the goal is to get 1,000 pictures, which equals 1,000,000 words.

Collectively, 1,000 images responding to the climate crisis from women across Australia are a powerful feminist document.

Photographic images can be created using a phone camera, DSLR or film camera and there is no age limit or need to be a photographer or a professional artist. Creators will always retain their own copyright and all images submitted will be used only for petition and promotion.

It is important to include phone photos because most people have a cell phone and it is often the only camera we have with us most of the time, which makes the petition as democratic as possible. The petition aims to give voice to people who would not necessarily have a say, including those most vulnerable to the effects of climate change.

Therefore, the petition is an egalitarian approach to the creation and use of the image. The petition calls for personal images to be used in protest for the greater good. I call it photo activism.

Wind farm. Photo: Melissa Stewart.

The word “every day” means “encountered or used routinely or typically: ORDINARY

In the title of the petition, the word “every day” is used. It is not the intention that the images be photographically or contextually ordinary, but it does mean that images depicting the effects of climate change are seen “every day” or more importantly that many of us think about this crisis. climate “every day”. Ironically, it’s not everyday that we have a climate crisis. This is a unique case; our only chance.

By submitting only images to women, we challenge the industrial, capitalist and economic systems that have brought us to this point. We need to be seen, heard and considered.

We want to represent what the climate crisis makes us feel and also know that by submitting our images to this petition we will have been represented because the representation of women in the arts is even lower than that of men. The document will commemorate this moment in time and in the hope that it will become part of the national collection of the National Library of Australia.

Context is important. The climate crisis we face is existential and can be all-consuming, but there are dangers of tales of doom and despair.

Initially, the petition was only looking for pictures that illustrate the effects of this crisis, but with some timely advice, I realized that 1000 pictures of desperation and failure would be too negative.

So with that in mind, I’m now looking for a variety of images, including those that illustrate the beauty of the earth we live on and the hope generated by illustrating humans doing great things to repair the damage.

I want women to answer the call literally but also emotionally, personally and creatively.

It is necessary to show the wonderful power of nature to restore and regenerate. Too much negativity and our problems are seemingly overwhelming, so adding a little positivity and hope can inspire and help and change our behaviors.

The first goal of the #everydayclimatecrisis visual petition is to have a tangible printed and digital recording of this moment in time, as documented by women and shared by women across Australia.

The second goal of the #everydayclimatecrisis visual petition is to uplift women. Each woman who responds to the theme and submits to the petition will be represented in several ways as can be seen on our website.

Finally, as with any petition, there will be demands. Requests are to be collected from photographers submitting at the same time as they are submitting their images.

Dr Emma Dawson from Per capita says “We need a new social pact for Australia, centered on the concept of care: care for each other, care for our communities, care for our environment, care for each other, care for our communities, care for our environment, care for our future. “

Women Deliver has a set of ideas which include: involving women, First Nations and local organizations in the decision-making process, including policies that help women’s resources and capacities to function and care after emergencies, manage financial and recovery programs that include women and the care economy. A truly humanitarian future requires community, an ethic of care and diversity.

The #everydayclimatecrisis visual petition must be more than a symbolic handing over of 1000 various images. It will come with the requests of individuals and will be made public. If our Prime Minister could wave our petition on Question Time instead of a lump of coal and this action was recorded in Hansard, there might be no more blah blah blah!

Learn more about #everydayclimatecrisis and submit photos to womenphotographersaustralia.com.au/about

Hilary Wardhaugh is a professional career photographer, based in Canberra and Queanbeyan.

HerCanberra is proud to support BroadAgenda, Australia’s leading research-based and gender equality media platform based at the University of Canberra’s 50/50 by 2030 Foundation.

Featured Image: Kangaroos at Queanbeyan Cemetery, NSW, during the fires. Photo: Lib Ferreira


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