Green Matters: Wildlife, Burial, Community (2007)
Ordinary people are unwittingly encouraging the illegal wildlife trade, unaware that some of the trinkets and souvenirs they buy are made from endangered species. Mexican farmers, who have struggled to make a living, are happy to increase their crop yields to alleviate a shortage of corn brought on by greater demand for ethanol. In a traditional ceremony, 23 endangered baby mountain gorillas were given names, celebrating their addition to a population that now stands at a mere 700. With space at a premium and pollution a growing problem in Hong Kong, an exhibition showcased some greener solutions for one’s final departure. In London, fear of a city slowed to gridlock led to a “Congestion Charge” on car entering the city’s central zones. The head zoo-keeper at Jakarta’s Ragunan Zoo has cared for animals for almost 25 years, and, like many hard workers, his job spills into his home life. When the quiet Swedish city of Vaxjo decided to get rid of fossil fuels back in 1996, most outsiders thought it was just a quirky local initiative – but the world is finally waking up to climate change, and Vaxjo is now a model for community action.