Brief report of NUJ/Greenpeace public meeting
Friday, 6 December 2013
Greenpeace staff member Paul Morozzo and Hebden Bridge photographer Steve Morgan spoke to a well attended meeting at Hebden Bridge Town Hall Thursday evening about Greenpeace and the work they do for it.
Paul spoke first and said that the Arctic 30 were still in a hotel in St Petersburg. The crew of the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise took part in a peaceful protest at Gazprom's oil rig to call attention to the threat of oil drilling and climate change in the Arctic. They are now facing charges of hooliganism, similar to the charges used against Pussy Riot. The message the Russians seem to want to give is, “If you come here, we'll hit you hard.”
Paul said that the Arctic contains one third of potential new oil. If we burn more than one fifth of existing oil, the temperature rise will exceed the crucial two degrees. Russia is very much an oil state and the Arctic is where climate change is the most obvious. One third of the Summer sea ice has now gone. The rest could go within a few years. Instead of white ice reflecting the sun’s heat away from Earth, the darkness would do the reverse.
Steve Morgan showed some of his stunning photos and told the audience that he had worked on and off as a Greenpeace photographer since the 1980s. He explained that Greenpeace always understood the power of the photo; the message is in the photo. So they needed someone who knew how to take a newspaper photo.
Steve's slides of photos illustrated a very wide variety of Greenpeace actions. In fact, some in the audience were astonished as just how many places Steve had been photographing for Greenpeace: anti-nuclear actions in the French Pacific (ship boarded by the French), Menwith Hill, anti-Star Wars actions in the US (8 days in maximum security wondering if he would ever be released), the Arctic and so many more actions from all over the UK and the world.
Back in the 80s, photos still had to be processed, and taken by hand to the newsroom. Every Greenpeace ship would have a darkroom. By the 90s, photos could be transmitted over the wires but it could take up to three hours for one photos. Today, with digital photography and social media, the whole team would take video and photos, not just the press photographer.
NUJ/Greenpeace public meeting
Tuesday, 26 November 2013
Hebden Bridge photographer Steve Morgan and Greenpeace staff member Paul Morozzo will give a talk on 'Reporting Environmental Protest: Journalists and the Greenpeace Arctic 30' at a public meeting in the Terrace Room, Hebden Bridge Town Hall, on Thursday, 5 December at 7.30pm.
The meeting has been organised by the Calderdale branch of the National Union of Journalists.
Steve, a branch member, has covered protests against environmental destruction from Antarctica to the Amazon - including previous Greenpeace Arctic oil protests.
He will show slides of some of the Greenpeace campaigns he has covered.
Paul Morozzo works on Greenpeace energy and climate change campaigns.
It is hoped there will be a lot of interest in this free talk. All welcome.