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It’s Sunday afternoon and by now you have watched some incredible films, listened to inspiring people talk and taken in powerful images. Just walking down the Main Street, it’s impossible to not feel the buzz of energy, the slight unrest and the overwhelming inspiration.

So, now with all of that inspiration, what will you do to create positive change? How will you turn that inspiration into action?

© Joe Riis, iLCP

Last night, the International League of Conservation Photographers (iLCP) kicked off 12SHOTS at Mountainfilm. iLCP is also in the running for Mountainfilm’s Moving Mountains Award. So, what is 12SHOTS all about?

Stories are powerful because they become experiences shared. Images, though motionless, move; though silent, they speak, and we are all gifted with a larger vision of the world. Storytelling is an art and an ever more important part of conservation photography. Being able to introduce an issue, set the scene, bring ideas to light and inspire people to effect change in 12 shots is not an easy feat.

With Mountainfilm’s theme being “Extinction” last night’s visual stories were poignant, striking and motivating. So, what do you take from it? We hope everyone takes their inspiration from the festival and turns it into action.

Here are some of our favorite quotes from yesterday:

We want our kids to understand their capacity as philanthropists. — Christiane Leitinger of Pennies for Peace at Saturday’s breakfast talk.

If people see these images, they’re going to want to do the right thing. — iLCP in Flathead Wild

Do you have a favorite quote, or film, or maybe a favorite conversation that you’ll take with you from Mountainfilm? And what will you do with that inspiration? How will you turn it into action?

We want to know! Tell us over on our Twitter feed and our Facebook page!

“Although reefs cover only 0.2% of the world’s sea floor, they contain about 25% of marine species. Increases in sea surface temperatures and changes in water chemistry can cause large-scale coral bleaching, increasing the probability of coral death. Hence, the effects of climate change, added to other existing coral reef stressors, could lead to coral death. Australia’s great barrier reef could lose up to 95% of its living coral by 2050 due to changes in ocean temperature and chemistry.” -Convention on Biological Diversity

Although these statistics are shocking, issues of biodiversity aren’t just affecting our oceans. They’re affecting our forests, our mountains, our agriculture and our livelihoods. These are just some of the many things that we’ll be talking about at our Moving Mountains symposium this week, when we get together to tackle issues of extinction and biodiversity. If you can’t attend, keep an eye on our Twitter feed where we’ll be giving live updates.

At this year’s Moving Mountains Symposium, we’re focusing on the Extinction Crisis. Why? Because with a species dying off every 20 minutes, there is real cause for concern. Part of changing that problem is through education, so follow along each Wednesday as we bring you a little more information on extinction, endangered species and biodiversity.

What exactly is biodiversity? The International League of Conservation Photographers put together this great multimedia piece that showcases what biodiversity is and why it’s important. Watching it, you’ll quickly realize that biodiversity is something that affects all of us… and that’s why we have a duty to do something to ensure its protection.

Biodiversity is particularly on our minds this week as Friday, May 21st, is Endangered Species Day. Protecting endangered species is a key part of maintaining biodiversity. So how can you help? Here are a couple key endangered species causes that you can take action on right now.

Read the rest of this entry »

“We need a new vision for biological diversity for a healthy planet and a sustainable future for humankind,” -Secretary-General of the UN, Ban Ki-moon.

The Convention on Biological Diversity and the United Nations Environment Program released a report this week that takes an in-depth look on how biodiversity is changing around the world. The Global Biodiversity Outlook paints a grim picture, highlighting the severe issues of ecosystems around the world, including the effects of climate change and deforestation on the Amazon rainforest, the impact of overfishing on coral reefs and the threat to global waters on account of ocean acidification.

Ban Ki-Moon is calling on governments to consider biodiversity when taking action. The benefits of doing so are broad. The report notes that investing in policies that end biodiversity loss ultimately will help combat poverty and hunger, while also improving human health, security and wealth for future generations.

The report is “a wake-up call for humanity,” said Executive Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity, Ahmed Djoghlaf.

Want to take action? The Center for Biological Diversity does extensive work to protect endangered species and always needs help on promoting their latest actions. Visit their website for more info on taking part.

Photo: Luzabass

At this year’s Moving Mountains Symposium, we’re focusing on the Extinction Crisis. Why? Because with a species dying off every 20 minutes, there is real cause for concern. Part of changing that problem is through education, so follow along each Wednesday as we bring you a little more information on extinction, endangered species and biodiversity.

“Up to 10 per cent of coral reefs – among the richest ecosystems – have been destroyed, and one third of the remainder face collapse over the next 10 to 20 years.” – UNEP

The issue of biodiversity is so pressing that the United Nations has deemed 2010 the International Year of Biodiversity. Extinction is irreversible, and that’s why the UN is focusing on putting world attention to the issues of biodiversity and what we can all do to take action. You can learn more about the International Year of Biodiversity here.

At this year’s Moving Mountains Symposium, we’re focusing on the Extinction Crisis. Why? Because with a species dying off every 20 minutes, there is real cause for concern. Part of changing that problem is through education, so follow along each Wednesday as we bring you a little more information on extinction, endangered species and biodiversity.

Climate change is changing the world that we live in, and for ten species it’s having an effect in a very big way. The Endangered Species Coalition recently identified America’s “Hottest Endangered Species;” species severely affected by increased disease, diminished reproduction, lost habitat, reduced food supply and other impacts. What are they?

  • ‘Akikiki or Kaua’i Creeper
  • Elkhorn Coral
  • Bull Trout
  • Canada Lynx
  • Pacific Salmon
  • Leatherback Sea Turtle
  • Grizzly Bear
  • Bog Turtle
  • Western Prairie Fringed Orchid
  • Flatwoods Salamander

To learn more about each species and what you can do to help protect them, visit the Endangered Species Coalition.

Photo Credit: Brandon Cole

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