“Polar Cities” is an idea whose time I hope never comes

by | 18th March 2008

I’m not a regular blogger, even on my own blogs, as I use them mostly as files to store articles and file ideas away for future reference, so I thank this website for giving me a chance to be one of the guest bloggers here.

I want to say a few things about a year-long campaing I’ve been conducting on the Internet to help raise awareness of global warming issues using some visual images of so-called “polar cities” (where survivors of future global warming events are imagined to find refuge in). The entire project is basically a public relations campaign aimed at making those people who are still not aware of global warming a bit more aware of it, if only for a day or two, until the polar cities images fade and they go on with their daily lives, once again oblivious to the dangers that might lie ahead for all of humankind. The dangers? You know what I am talking about. I would think that most people are aware of global warming and the danger it poses for the future of civilization on planet Earth. But apparently, there are quite a few people, here and there, who still don’t get it, or aren’t paying attention, or are in deep denial. Whatever.

So, to make a long story short: I created the polar cities project as a PR campaign to help do my small part in helping to raise public awareness worldwide. Not a huge effort, not a big stamp; just a one-man blogging band using the Internet to spread the message that global warming is for real and we need to try to tackle it. I don’t have an agenda, political or scientific, but like many other people, I think we need to face the issue climate change head on. I read green blogs every day to check on the issues (and also am a regular reader of Dot Earth over at the New York Times).

I want to emphasize that in my project, I am not saying we will ever need polar cities for survivors of global warming in the far distant future. I hope we never need them, and it’s hard to conceive of a world where they would be needed. Right? Right.

But I asked an artist who lives in my neighborhood in Taiwan to make some computer-generated images of what a polar city might look like, and the operative word here is “might”. Deng Cheng-hong, who runs a small sign shop near by home, came up with a series of amazing images. They are from his own imagination. I asked him to make the images for me, I paid him for his work, and I suggested a rough sketch of what a polar city might look like. But the artwork is all his own, from an artist’s point of view.

The images are a visual wake-up call, I like to think. In what way? If we don’t sit down and tackle global warming, then the future might be very very problematical. That’s all my PR campaign is trying to say — using a scary visual image to help wake people up. Not those reading this blog today: you already know the score. But for those people in the world who still think the Earth is flat (and by that I mean “that global warming is hoax”), my PR campaign is for them.

Read my new press here and see more of the images here. Comments and feedback are very welcome, because I learn so much each time readers give me feedback, pro or con. This is an ongoing project, unfunded, my time, my dime.

Take a look.

= = = = = = = = =

Green blogger uses “polar cities” as educational tool to raise public awareness about global warming issues

NEW YORK — A lone blogger in Taiwan is using the Internet in a novel way to help raise awareness about global warming.

Green media activist Danny Bloom doesn’t believe humans will ever have to live in so-called “polar cities” (a term he coined in 2006), but he is using a series of computer-generated blueprints of a polar city as an educational tool to help raise help public awareness about the climate crisis.

Created by Taiwanese artist Cheng-hong Deng, the polar city images have appeared on hundreds of websites and blogs around the world — in English, Japanese, Korean, Spanish, French and Chinese, Bloom, a 1971 gradute of Tufts University in Boston, says.

The 58-year-old green activist says he is using the Internet in a novel way to get his message across.

The message? “If we don’t actively tackle the very serious problems that confront the world now, in terms of global warming, then there is a possibility that future generations might have to take refuge in such polar cities. I never want to see these polar cities become reality. So the images Deng has created for my project are meant to be a warning about global warming.”

Bloom says he has shown the images to internationally-acclaimed climate scientist James Lovelock in Britain, who is known for his pessimism and doomsaying about global warming. Lovelock told Bloom by email: “It may very well happen and soon.”

“I hope polar cities are never needed for survivors of global warming in the far distant future,” Bloom says. “These images are meant to be a wake-up call for those who are still sleepwalking through the climate crisis.”

Bloom emphasizes that he has no agenda, political or scientific, in terms of solutions to global warming, and says that he just wants to participate in the global discussion about climate change in his own personal way. “I am just using Deng’s images to sound the alarm, a visual alarm.”

He says that his Internet campaign, which began a year ago with a letter to the editor of several newspapers in North America and Europe, has had the result he is looking for.

A young blogger in Tahiti saw the images, blogged about them in French, and said that while he found the polar city blueprints to be fascinating, they made him just want to work harder in his daily life “to help fight the climate crisis so that the worst case scenarios never happen.”

POLAR CITIES BLUEPRINTS CAN BE SEEN HERE, at the newly opned “James E Lovelock Virtual Museum of Polar Cities”: http://pcillu101.blogspot.com

EMAIL: danbloom (GMAIL)










Comments are closed.



previous post: Scientists work to help coral by introducing warming-resistant algae
next post: Towards a safe-climate future with safe-climate lifestyles