As the UN’s global climate change conference—COP26—approaches, ever-more-extreme weather has shown us climate change is here. Yet COVID-19 and the actions taken to control it have also shown us that cooperation can prompt dramatic global change.
Sometimes, all it takes is one photo to spark that action. Sometimes, it's a collection of vignettes that show us what is at stake, and more importantly, inspire ideas of what we can do about it. In short, pictures can change the world. And as our world comes to terms with the reality of climate change, never has that been more needed.
Some of these images offer an instant visual punch to the gut: a dying coral outcrop on the Great Barrier Reef, for instance, juxtaposed with an older photo of how vibrant coral can be. Some of the images inspire in their ability to show that change is not only possible, it is happening—and that we have the ingenuity and the skill to make a real difference.
But amidst these odds, there is hope. Nature is resilient, and given the chance, it can recover, if we have the courage to make it happen.