Melting polar bear skeleton

Just nearing the end of my first 24 hours here and it already seems like I’ve been here a lot longer.  The first thing I saw in the airport when I got off the plane was this ad by Greenpeace exhorting President Obama to make something happen here at the United Nations Summit on Climate Change.

There’s a lot to do outside of the official Summit – talks, exhibitions, films and music.  There’s also thousands of people here who came to march in the street to bring attention to the issue.  This morning, I took this picture of a group of protestors chanting “Change Your Business, Not Your Climate.” All of Denmark’s police men and women are in town, which is causing the government to pay a lot of overtime.  I understand the result will be a large percentage of them will be taking vacation after the Summit is over, something that’s not making some of the locals very happy.  All the activity is keeping the police busy, and I frequently hear sirens punctuating the air. Continue Reading »


Thoughts on Copenhagen

Just a day before I travel to Copenhagen to observe the UN Summit on Climate Change and streams of diverse thoughts are rushing through my mind….The uncontrollable and incredibly inefficient steam heat in my sister’s apartment in New York City that makes her place unbearably hot even with the window open in December; the crowds of South Koreans I saw last month moving with industry and determination along the streets of one of the planet’s largest cities; and the mall in Washington DC, full of citizens visiting monuments that some scientists say could well be completely underwater in 100 years.  I’m also thinking about the people and places back home in Alaska, where temperatures have been rising faster than almost any place on earth over the last 50 years, as well as the billions of people living in the undeveloped world who haven’t even begun to use much energy in their daily lives and need clean energy solutions.  Riding the New York subway makes me wonder who in Copenhagen is going to represent the interests of all the people I see staring out the train windows just wondering how to put food on the table – not how much sea levels are going to rise ….Now as I eat a fish sandwich at Kennedy airport I’m wondering how much attention ocean acidification will get at the climate talks.

I’m starting my vacation in Denmark because I want to be around tens of thousands of people from around the world who are interested in what a growing number of people believe is becoming the signature issue of our lives here on this unique, tiny, blue planet.  I’m going so I can learn more about what others are doing around the world to raise awareness about renewable energy and energy efficiency, make connections for REAP’s work in Alaska and maybe even make some new friends…..More when I arrive…..

Denmark, here we come!

REAP Executive Director Chris Rose will be one of several Alaskans attending the climate conference in Copenhagen, Denmark next week. Stay tuned for updates. (Chris arrives in Denmark on Dec. 10)