Wordsworth….and climate change?

Britain’s most prominent environmental photographer is to lead a discussion in the Lake District about Wordsworth and climate change.

Ashley Cooper, whose book Images from a Warming Planet captures a 13 year journey around the world photographing the impact of climate change, will be the guest at the special event at Rydal Mount, the home of the poet William Wordsworth.

Wordsworth, who died in 1850, was an early environmentalist, as evidenced in his writing, and in his plans for the naturalistic garden at Rydal Mount, near Ambleside.

RM natural garden today

Ashely has been invited by the curator at Rydal Mount, Peter Elkington, who believes that the poet would have been a green campaigner today.

“It seems appropriate that Ashley should come here to lead this discussion and promote his book,” said Peter.

Images from a Warming Planet has won acclaim around the world since it was published last year, and launched nearby at the Heaton Cooper Studio in Grasmere where an exhibition of original photographs was staged.

Leading environmental campaigners have welcomed his message, among them Britain’s best-known environmentalist and writer Jonathon Porritt, and the actress Emma Thompson.

Ashley Cooper travelled the globe for 13 years taking photographs in key locations which illustrate the havoc which is being brought upon the natural world. He has amassed the world’s largest collection of pictures documenting climate change on every continent, from the Inuit communities of the Arctic to the coral atoll islands of the Pacific Ocean, showing the damage caused by dependence on fossil fuels:  flooding, glacial erosion, and deforestation.

ash with the book

Wordsworth warned in The Prelude about the dangers of damaging the natural world:

Ye motions of delight, that haunt the sides

Of green hills; ye breezes and soft airs,

Whose subtle intercourse with breathing flowers,

Feeling watched, might teach Man’s haughty race

How without injury to take, to give

Without offence.

“Wordsworth and climate change” is on Tuesday August 15 at 7pm. Admission is free but tickets must be reserved by emailing info@rydalmount.co.uk