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The mountains are calling and I must go, and I will work on while I can, studying incessantly.

- John Muir

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Events

Oct 04, 2018

Adventure Uncovered Live Returns: October 13, 2018 at The Crystal, London.

Igniting the Passion for Social and Environmental Action. Bringing the adventure community together for an inspirational day of talks, panels, activities, film and photography.

WRITTEN BY

The Outdoor Journal

This year’s Adventure Uncovered Live includes a packed schedule from the industry’s leading and most progressive speakers, activists and brands including a National Geographic explorer, the co-founder of The Do-Lectures, plus The Thames ProjectGlobal Warming Images and Sail Britain. It’s an opportunity to learn from the trailblazers who are paving the way to a more sustainable future, the challenges they’ve faced and the victories they’ve achieved.

“Our event provides an inspirational platform to catalyse change,” says James Wight, Founder of Adventure Uncovered. “We encourage new narratives, thought provoking and difficult conversations, because only through breaking down barriers can real progress happen. That’s why we exist and we hope attendees leave feeling as passionate about the world we live in, as we do.”

HOW INNOVATIVE PRODUCTS AND NEW BUSINESS MODELS ARE TRANSFORMING THE OUTDOOR SECTOR.

In a keynote session, Andy Middleton, co-founder of TYF Adventure and Do-Lectures, will host a panel that discusses the latest steps being taken by the adventure industry to embed environmentally and socially sustainable practices across their organisations and products. This enables us to make the most sustainable choices when planning our next adventure.

“Experienced outdoor enthusiasts and explorers are smart about researching, caring for and knowing how to use the gear that their lives depend on” writes Middleton. “In the same way that a rope, axe or buoyancy aid protect us when we stumble, nature protects us where we stand and live. Never before has there been a need to protect our environment for the long term with the same diligence that we protect ourselves when exploring, learning and playing in wild places.” 

HOW ADVENTURE AND PHOTOGRAPHY ON THE FRONTLINE CAN CREATE CATALYSTS FOR CHANGE.

Environmental Photographer Ashley Cooper will also be speaking at the event, and showcasing his powerful images (including the cover photo of this article). Ashley has travelled to the remotest reaches of every continent to document the impacts of climate change and the rise of renewable energy. This epic, thirteen-year journey set out to gather evidence of our changing climate and what humanity must do to save itself from destruction. Ashley moves from evidence gathering and documentation through to motivating climate action amongst global leaders (including Pope Francis, Al Gore and Chris Packham) via his award-winning book, “Images From a Warming Planet”.

Other talks and topics include ‘The Role of Film in Communicating Adventures with a Purpose’, ‘How Adventure and Photography on the Frontline Can Create a Catalyst for Change’, and ‘‘The Future of Adventure: What Trends Lie Behind the Corner?’.

The official charity partner for the event is The Running Charity, an organisation that uses running to improve the lives of 16-25 year-olds who are homeless or at risk of homelessness across the UK.

HOW YOU CAN TAKE PART.

Adventure Uncovered Live takes place on October 13, 2018 at The Crystal, London one of the world’s most sustainable events venues and home to the largest exhibition on the future of cities and sustainable development. (Complimentary access to the exhibition is also included for all attendees).

Standard tickets start from £30 and there is an option to join in a stand up paddleboard adventure and clean-up of the Thames the morning of the event. You can purchase you tickets here.

A drinks reception will also close the event giving attendees the opportunity to meet with the day’s speakers and connect with like-minded, adventurous people who care about making a positive difference to world we live in.

For more information, visit www.adventureuncoveredlive.com.

Cover Photo: Ashley Cooper

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Environment

Sep 04, 2019

The Great Barrier Reef outlook is ‘very poor’. We have one last chance to save it.

It’s official. The outlook for the Great Barrier Reef has been downgraded from “poor” to “very poor” by the Australian government’s own experts.

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WRITTEN BY

Terry Hughes

That’s the conclusion of the latest five-yearly report from the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, released on Friday. The report assessed literally hundreds of scientific studies published on the reef’s declining condition since the last report was published in 2014.

The past five years were a game-changer. Unprecedented back-to-back coral bleaching episodes in 2016 and 2017, triggered by record-breaking warm sea temperatures, severely damaged two-thirds of the reef. Recovery since then has been slow and patchy.

Fish swimming among coral on the Great Barrier Reef.
AAP

Looking to the future, the report said “the current rate of global warming will not allow the maintenance of a healthy reef for future generations […] the window of opportunity to improve the reef’s long-term future is now”.

But that window of opportunity is being squandered so long as Australia’s and the world’s greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise.

The evidence on the reef’s condition is unequivocal

A logical national response to the outlook report would be a pledge to curb activity that contributes to global warming and damages the reef. Such action would include a ban on the new extraction of fossil fuels, phasing out coal-fired electricity generation, transitioning to electrified transport, controlling land clearing and reducing local stressors on the reef such as land-based runoff from agriculture.

But federal Environment Minister Sussan Ley’s response to the outlook report suggested she saw no need to take dramatic action on emissions, when she declared: “it’s the best managed reef in the world”.

Major coral bleaching events in 2016 and 2017 have devastated the reef.

The federal government’s lack of climate action was underscored by another dire report card on Friday. Official quarterly greenhouse gas figures showed Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions have risen to the highest annual levels since the 2012-13 financial year.

But rather than meaningfully tackle Australia’s contribution to climate change, the federal government has focused its efforts on fixing the damage wrought on the reef. For example as part of a A$444 million grant to the Great Barrier Reef Foundation, the government has allocated $100 million for reef restoration and adaptation projects over the next five years or so.

Solutions being supported by the foundation include a sunscreen-like film to float on the water to prevent light penetration, and gathering and reseeding coral spawn Separately, Commonwealth funds are also being spent on projects such as giant underwater fans to bring cooler water to the surface.

But the scale of the problem is much, much larger than these tiny interventions.


Climate change is not the only threat to the reef

The second biggest impact on the Great Barrier Reef’s health is poor water quality, due to nutrient and sediment runoff into coastal habitats. Efforts to address that problem are also going badly.

This was confirmed in a confronting annual report card on the reef’s water quality, also released by the Commonwealth and Queensland governments on Friday.

The Great Barrier Reef attained world heritage status in the 1980s.
AAP

It showed authorities have failed to reach water quality targets set under the Reef 2050 Plan – Australia’s long-term plan for improving the condition of the reef.

For example the plan sets a target that by 2025, 90% of sugarcane land in reef catchments should have adopted improved farming practices. However the report showed the adoption had occurred on just 9.8% of land, earning the sugarcane sector a grade of “E”.

So yes, the reef is definitely in danger

The 2019 outlook report and other submissions from Australia will be assessed next year when the UNESCO World Heritage Committee meets to determine if the Great Barrier Reef should be listed as “in danger” – an outcome the federal government will fight hard to avoid.

An in-danger listing would signal to the world that the reef was in peril, and put the federal government under greater pressure to urgently prevent further damage. Such a listing would be embarrassing for Australia, which presents itself as a world’s-best manager of its natural assets.

Environment activists engaged in a protest action to bring attention to the dangers facing the Great Barrier Reef.
AAP

The outlook report maintains that the attributes of the Great Barrier Reef
that led to its inscription as a world heritage area in 1981 are still intact, despite the loss of close to half of the corals in 2016 and 2017.

But by any rational assessment, the Great Barrier Reef is in danger. Most of the pressures on the reef are ongoing, and some are escalating – notably anthropogenic heating, also known as human-induced climate change.

Read more:
Great Barrier Reef Foundation chief scientist: science will lie at the heart of our decisions

And current efforts to protect the reef are demonstrably failing. For example despite an ongoing “control” program, outbreaks of the damaging crown-of-thorns starfish – triggered by poor water quality – have spread throughout the reef.

The federal government has recently argued that climate change should not form the basis for an in-danger listing, because rising emissions are not the responsibility of individual countries. The argument comes despite Australia having one of the highest per capita emissions rates in the world.

But as Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise – an outcome supported by government policy – the continued downward trajectory of the Great Barrier Reef is inevitable.The Conversation

Terry Hughes, Distinguished Professor, James Cook University

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Cover photo: A supplied image obtained Thursday, June 6, 2013 of holiday makers in the Great Barrier Reef, Tropical North Queensland, October 2008. ReefLive, a live 12-hour interactive online show about the reef, will be broadcast on YouTube from 10am (AEST) on Friday to coincide with World Ocean Day on Saturday. (AAP Image/Supplied by Tourism and Events Queensland, Richard Fitzpatrick) NO ARCHIVING, EDITORIAL USE ONLY

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