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The Great Bear Wild: A Photographer’s Battle for One of the “Last Conservation Frontiers on Planet Earth”

None have captured the unique beauty and wildlife of British Columbia’s Great Bear Rainforest like acclaimed photographer Ian McAllister.

A resident and long-time conservationist of the unique coastal wilderness, McAllister has intimately documented the region and its iconic species, like the spirit bear, for over 25 years. Much of the landscape — renowned for its biodiversity, including intricate networks of salmon, bears and wolves — is now endangered as energy projects threaten to transform the very existence of the ecosystem, McAllister explains.

“Canada supports the longest coastline in the world and yet we have only protected one per cent of its marine waters,” McAllister said. “And now we have oil and gas projects being proposed that have the ability to destroy everything here in a single event.”

“There is no question that the battle to protect our oceans remains among the last conservation frontiers on planet earth. And our very survival depends on how successful we are in the coming years.”

Great Bear Wild – Dispatches from a Northern Rainforest from Pacific Wild on Vimeo.

That battle is precisely what McAllister is now on the road to highlight through his new book, Great Bear Wild.

A mixture of photographs and personal narrative, Great Bear Wild celebrates the legendary beauty of the region at a time when political tensions around the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline and expansion of the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline are at an all-time high.

Image from Great Bear Wild – Dispatches from a Northern Rainforest from Pacific Wild on Vimeo.

Image from Great Bear Wild – Dispatches from a Northern Rainforest from Pacific Wild on Vimeo.

Image from Great Bear Wild – Dispatches from a Northern Rainforest from Pacific Wild on Vimeo.

“Everything is at stake here: our climate, our coastline, our communities,” McAllister said. “And it is our hope that these images and these stories continue to remind us of its fragile beauty while also ensuring it remains as wild and fully functioning as it has for so many thousands of years.”

Image from Great Bear Wild – Dispatches from a Northern Rainforest from Pacific Wild on Vimeo.

McAllister will be speaking in Victoria on Wednesday, November 12 at the Alix Goolden Hall.

Upcoming Great Bear Wild Book Tour Dates:

 

Wednesday, November 12 at 7:30pm

Alix Goolden Hall, Victoria – $12

 

Thursday, November 13 at 7pm

Quw’utsun Centre, Duncan – By Donation

 

Friday, November 14 at 7pm

Charlie White Theatre, Sidney – $12

 

Tuesday, November 18 at 7pm

South End Hall, Galiano – By Donation

 

Wednesday, November 19 at 7:30pm

Tidemark Theatre, Campbell River – $12

 

Thursday, November 20 at 7:30pm

Sid Williams Theatre, Courtenay – $12

 

Friday, November 21

Powell River – Details TBD

Carol Linnitt is a journalist, editor, illustrator and co-founder of The Narwhal. Carol has been reporting on energy and environmental…

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