COP15: day 2

12/08/2009

Ghost Forest w/ Angela & Lucy

What a day!  The energy is quite wild here!  On one hand, the tension is high, on the other, there is allot of excitement in the air!  And then the city rolls on w/ every day life, many seemingly oblivious to what is going on in their home town, strolling right past massive unearthed trees, uninterested, like it was totally normal.  Maybe we should light them on fire!  To be fair, most people were totally blown away by Angela’s amazing work.  Sadly, the danish princess is hosting a state dinner right behind the trees on the 18th and they have to clear the place out by then.  Really sad!  I think Obama’s security detail is worried there are snipers that could hide in the trees, or something!  If anyone knows the danish princess, would you please ring her up and letter know her dinner guests really need to see this!  Maybe this will get them to go back to the Bella Center and sign a powerful deal combating climate change!

Today was intense for sure!  I started off at the Klimaforum09 for some amazing music, talks and exhibitions.  Klimaforum is the global civil societies counterpart to the official UN conference.  It is an open space where people and organizations from all over the world can meet, discuss, and develop a constructive response to the climate crisis.  As they say, ‘where politicians fail the people must take over.’  Needless to say this is an interesting place to spend some time!  The highlight was interacting with the meshmork they have developed to facilitate connecting people to projects and resources, a topic I explore often.  A bit disorganized from my experience, but full of interesting content and people!

After I got word of the the mess going on over at the Bella Center (COP15 headquarters), I decided I needed to take a stroll and absorb some fresh air and climate-infused creativity!  If you did not hear, some documents were leaked to the Guardian essentally destabalizing the entire agreement.  Full details here.

I started off by connecting with my new friend Angela Palmer to check out her mind-blowing Ghost Forest exhibition.  I cannot say enough good things about this piece!  I did a short interview for the press and had a nice dialog about the importance of presenting such work, even in the light of the magnificent and largely unsustainable methods of producing such a project/installation.  It surly is one to chew on!

I then meandered through the city a bit more stumbling upon some little surprises, like Greenpeace’s ice-breaker ship from Amsterdam.  I finally made it over to the ultra-cool and interesting alternative community infamously know as Christiania.  I wanted to take some pictures for you all but unfortunately pictures are not allowed.  Normally that would not stop me, but just as I was contemplating my journalistic strategy, some news of cops spread through the small village of 850 people.  The entire place was in shock and the energy was quite strange, so I opted to depart without your pictures.  Next time!  I did actually get a few shots as I re-entered the European Union.  Seriously, check the pictures!  These guys don’t pay taxes, last time I checked.

On my way back, I picked up some cash from the bank to repay the cafe that was so nice to let me come back another time to pay my bill.  I have been using credit the past few days, not having time to check the exchange rate in the past 3 days.  Thankfully, the Danish are some of the kindest people.  I just don’t get it, as the sun is only out from 8:30-3:30!  I would go mad!

I stumbled upon some beautiful instalations on my way back to the train station, derailing me for at least 2 hours.  This town is chock full of activity.  Check out Re_acciona, a spanish bread project to help supply water, energy, and infrastructure for a sustainable future.  They had a wonderful concert tonight and I took there survey.  The WWF Artic Tent was also fabulous!  It was Indigenous Peoples’ Day, so there was a mix of people, some clearly native of the Arctic Circle.  I did not know there are 4 million people living within the Arctic Circle.  Out front, my polar bear was melting away.  Global warming at work!  I don’t think he will make it to the party of Friday night!

Last stop, Hopenhagen Live, a city of futuristic ideas, inspiration, and eco-entertainment!  Loved the peddle-powered x-mas tree!  My highlight was my run-in w/ the Climate Debt Agents!  Cool cats for sure!  Their job; to get rich, industrialized countries to pay off their climate ‘debt’ to the developing world.  As they say, ‘it’s not aid, it’s a debt industrialized nations owe to the developing world.’  Check them out!

Time to head home to my lovely oasis on the forested beach in Sweeden!  Looking forward to a swim tomorrow!  Must join the Polar Bear Club!  On my way home, I had one final dream of Tivoli.  It is a beautiful amusement park in the center of town.  One of the oldest in Europe I hear.

Some pictures of today’s journeys here.  Enjoy and more tomorrow!

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