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Climate Change: In Focus

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Published Oct 24, 2016 | View the Assignment | Features Photos From 25 Contributors

    26 photos selected by

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    The first subject that came across my mind about climate change was the massive scale of fossil f...

    #globalwarming #abstract #people #climatechange

    Thanks to the thousands of people who participated in this assignment! What better way to understand the real impact of climate change than to ask a global community of photographers to share their stories about it. Our hope was to harness the power of collaborative storytelling and have a real impact on both policy and public perception. 

    The images published in this story were exhibited at the Conference of the Parties (COP) 22 Climate Summit in Marrakech, Morocco in November 2016. The exhibit was seen by some of the world’s top thought-leaders and policy-makers on the subject of climate change. Here at National Geographic, we believe that together we can inspire people to care about the planet.

    Special Exhibit: Congratulations! Every photographer selected for the final story was included in the exhibit. A big thank you to our partners at the Lucie Foundation!

    A solitary bear sits on the edge of one of the Barter Islands. There is no snow, when at this tim...

    #polar_bear #wildlife #climate_change_and_animals #barter_island #follow_me_assignment

    Editor's Note

    This photo reminds me of a Mark Rothko painting with its strong horizontal swaths of color. What’s worth noting is that the brown rectangle in the middle should actually be white with snow by this ... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    Due to sea level rise, many islands in the gangetic delta region of West Bengal, India are facing...

    #climate_change #sealevelrise

    Editor's Note

    This is an incredibly strong image that shows the undeniable impact of climate change. The lone, faceless figure is hauntingly beautiful standing against the rising sea as it erodes the land around... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    Our Icelandic guide, Hanna Pètursdóttir, admiring and ice cave we hiked to inside the Svínafellsj...

    #landscape #ice #globalwarming #icecaves #glaciers_iceland #iceland

    Editor's Note

    I like how this image plays tricks with my eyes. Is it a long tunnel with a light at the end? Are we looking down into an icy crater with someone stuck at the bottom? It makes me feel anxious as if... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    On a recent trip to Indonesia we were saddened to see the huge number of bleached anemones. We ex...

    #ocean #warmingoceans #risingtemperature #anemone #protecttheocean #climatechange #bleaching

    Editor's Note

    When it comes to photos of climate change, one often thinks of melting glaciers and large dramatic altered landscapes. I like how this image goes micro and shows how even slight changes can have a ... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    Angani, Inuit of Kulusuk in East Greenland, survives and feeds his family with hunting. As the ic...

    #climate_change #tradition #extreme_climate #inuit #inuit_culture_1 #inuit_culture

    Editor's Note

    There is a lot to look at in this layered image—from the foreground anchored with the Inuit hunte... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    I was in expedition exploring Franz Josef Land archipelago. There was a polar station where peopl...

    #polar_bear #climate_change #polar_bear_and_dogs #ecology #aggression #dogs #arctic

    Editor's Note

    A surprising photo that shows how the impact of our changing climate has some unexpected outcomes. The polar bear is outnumbered, but also appears not much bigger than the dogs.

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    In San Francisco's East Bay, Mount Diablo rises above the landscape. In the extreme drought condi...

    #landscape #wildfire #drought #sanfrancisco #fire #climate_change_assignment #longexposure

    Editor's Note

    Can a photo of a wildfire be called beautiful? Should it be? This is an amazing shot that shows not only how close these fires are to the town, but how powerful and terrifying it must have been to ... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    In recent years Masai Mara Kenya has had extreme flooding sweeping tented camps that have been po...

    #masai #wildebeest #wildlife #kenya #safari #africa #migration #animal #mara #color #dust

    Editor's Note

    I like that the photographer chose to focus on one wildebeest rather than the herd. It adds to the feeling of helplessness and insecurity that these extreme weather patterns have brought to this ar... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    These animals have found the secret stash of the orange farmer who dumps the oranges that have fa...

    #night #baboon #elephant #feeding #oranges #warthog #travel #climatechange

    Editor's Note

    I’ve never seen anything quite like this scene. Everything about it is strange—from the unusual b... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    Aerial view of the Chong Kneas floating village on Tonle Sap lake, Cambodia. The seasonal cycles ...

    #cambodia #floating_village #aerial

    Editor's Note

    One of the things I love about aerial photos is that they often make me question what it is I’m a... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    Lack of water in Israel leads to this. Fish farmers draining pounds due to water expense.

    #climagechange #climat #lake #dry #toxic_mud #climachange

    The pic was taken in Puruliya District of West Bengal. This is a draught prone area and in summer...

    #climate #village #summer #rural #draught #water #puruliya #india #sunset

    These polar bear remains have been discovered at one of the islands of Northern Svalbard. Unfortu...

    #landscape #norway #globalwarming #wilderness #seascape #polabear #svalbard #arctic

    Editor's Note

    An epic photo showing the circle of life and death. The polar bear remains look as if they are being absorbed back into the earth. The bear’s skeleton mirrors the outline of the mountains in the ba... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    A snow covered seal lies near massive cracks in the sea ice near Ross Island, Antarctica

    #climate #winter #seal #ice #cold #snow #change #antarctica #cracking #travel #melting

    Editor's Note

    I like how this huge seal gets lost amongst the even bigger chunks of cracked ice. The composition reinforces this—as your eye travels from left to right along the middle crack, suddenly the seal p... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    A man moving tree trunks. over 30% of Zagros jungles are getting destroyed by human.

    #trunks #tree #humen #zagros #hamedan

    Editor's Note

    The gathering storm clouds give this photo a somber and moody feeling. Everything in this image seems to be from the same color palette, which allows the man to practically disappear against the ma... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    About 30% of Earth's land surface is covered by forests. About 10 percent of wilderness worldwid...

    #minimalism #blackandwhite #tree #tellyourpollutionstory #climatechange #myclimateaction

    Editor's Note

    There is a lot of symbolism in this simple image. The tree rings signify how long it lived befor... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    A group of emperor penguins faces a crack in the sea ice, near McMurdo Station, Antarctica

    #climate #emperor #crack #ice #blue #cold #antarctica #change #water #penguins #melting

    Editor's Note

    How long has this group of penguins been standing there pondering their next move? Why has this crack stopped them in their tracks? Sometimes a little humor can make the viewer stop long enough to ... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    This glacier outside of Anchorage, Alaska has been receding more and more each year.

    #ice #alaska #glacier #anchorage #cliamte_change

    Editor's Note

    Think about what’s in the frame before you click the shutter—a well thought-out composition can turn a good photo into a great one. I like how this photographer decided to focus on the details and ... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    The dramatic transformation of the shrinking water and the severe drought at Folsom Lake, Califor...

    #environmentalissues #earth #dry #ngmadvances #climatechange #ngmh2o

    Editor's Note

    This is a creative way to illustrate how climate change can affect us in ways we may not have eve... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    Desert expedition leader, Hamid Boreiri tests the bed of a dying salt river in central Iran to bu...

    #semnan #river #mud #terrain #hamidboreiri #desert #semnanrood #iran #expedition

    A man fishes in a lake in the Sierra Nevada Mountains in California. The lake outside of Yosemit...

    #landscape #climate_change #california #water #fishing #mountains #travel #environment #nature

    A flood affected woman on a raft searches for somewhere dry to take shelter in Jamalpur district,...

    #bangladesh #climate_change #flood_affected_area #flood_damage #climachange

    Editor's Note

    This photo has an epic quality about it—as if it speaks to something larger than the actual moment we are witnessing. A woman steers her raft into the dark flood water, determined and undaunted des... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    Landfills release the greenhouse gas methane, which may lead to global warming, increasing the oz...

    #pollution #rubbish #enveronment #tellyourpollutionstory #climatechange #myclimateaction

    Editor's Note

    This photo captures a spontaneous moment that surprises the viewer on multiple levels. Why is thi... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    Release of gases into the atmosphere by factories off the coast of Singapore

    #climatic #factories #tellyourpollutionstory

    Editor's Note

    The bottom half of this photo is so packed with information that just when you think you’ve reached the horizon another row of smokestacks appears. It was smart of the photographer to shoot the por... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    Cloudy day at brick field.

    #climate #crow #smoke #cloud #brick #tellyourpollutionstory

    Editor's Note

    Great choice by the photographer to shoot this in black and white! The details really pop—I can feel the texture of the bricks and smell the thick smoke. A lone crow circles overhead adding the fin... More

    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot

    Thanks again Your Shot! I learned a lot about the current state of our planet by looking at the thousands of photos you shared in this assignment. I know I'm preaching to the choir when I say... climate change is here. Record heat, melting ice, and rising seas are just some of the indicators that climate change is affecting us. But there’s new hope we can cool the planet. Here’s how.

    Learn how you can help in our special report on climate change: http://www.nationalgeographic.com/climate-change/special-issue/

    Let's explore AND leave no trace! —Monica

    About the Editor
    Monica C. Corcoran
    Director, Your Shot
    Monica C. Corcoran is an award-winning photography producer with 20 years experience in visual storytelling. She is a director at National Geographic managing the Your Shot photo community.

    Photographers Published In the Story