Earth Day shows how climate change impacts humans

The organization's Quebec chapter tries to convey that no species will be spared if climate change continues unabated.

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Today’s Earth Day, and if history is any guide, much attention will be brought to the impact climate change will have on the world’s plants and wildlife.

But this year, the organization behind the worldwide event wanted to raise awareness of another species in the crosshairs of environmental change: humans. In particular, it has looked to emphasize the need to act now in order to protect future generations.

Working again with agency Lg2, Earth Day’s Quebec division developed a campaign that shows no species will be spared if climate change continues unabated.

One spot runs through a series of photographs of animals in their natural habitats. At the sound of a clock ticking progressively faster, the animals are removed from the imagery, drawing attention to their fates. The video ends with a picture of a concerned little girl alongside the words, “Climate change endangers every species.”

The final frame takes on greater urgency when seen next to the campaigns’ other assets, including display ads showing young children in animal costumes posed in environments that have been devastated by climate change.

François Sauvé, VP and creative director at Lg2, said the campaign concept emerged in response to the fact that a lot of organizations use Earth Day to highlight the negative impacts climate change has on living things that are not human.

“Many people still don’t realize how seriously climate change will affect future generations,” he said. “We wanted to place humans at the heart of this campaign in order to encourage deeper discussions and urge people to act now.”

In addition, Earth Day has released a video featuring U.S. president Donald Trump, whose policies are widely considered to be weakening environmental protections and undermining current global warming efforts. The spot runs through clips of the president expressing skepticism of the issue and describing climate change as a “hoax.” An image of a calendar is superimposed, so that April 22 frame his lips as he speaks these words. Finally, the video ends with his words being silenced, giving way to the natural sounds of the environment.

The campaign is running in Canada and France and includes placements on TV, digital, radio and display.

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