Monday, October 19, 2009
The recent climate change media event organized by the government of the Maldives reminded us of an exhibition mounted by a group of architects, designers and artists for EXPO.02 in Switzerland. Working under the collective name Waterproof, they imagined a(n) (im)possible scenario in which the water level in Switzerland has risen to 1400 meters (4600 feet), turning the landlocked, Alpine country into an island nation, its rocky peaks rising above a vast ocean.
Waterproof's imaginative, sometimes hilarious, but always thought provoking images reflect something we've always been interested in: how countries might adapt to a climate changed world.
If in the unlikely event that everyone becomes carbon negative, not just carbon neutral, tomorrow, climate change isn't likely to be reversed anytime soon. Before whatever historical climatic condition that was codified as the international goal is reached, countries will experience water and food shortages, hotter and wetter weather, habitat loss, perhaps even extinction. During this interim, how will countries cope logistically? They will be geographically transformed, but will they also (intentionally) mutate culturally, even biologically?
Waterproof were Alexandre Bettler, Sara Bochicchio, Manuel Borruat, Cédric Decroux, Eric Emery, Yves Fidalgo, Axel Jaccard, Sébastien Rappaz and Frédéric Seydoux.