Kamloops photographer wins UN photo contest, lands on international stage | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Kamloops photographer wins UN photo contest, lands on international stage

Kamloops-based photographer, Matt Lazzarotto, is set to have his work featured at the COP26 UN climate conference in Glasgow in November 2021.
Image Credit: Submitted/Matthew Lazzarotto
April 25, 2021 - 3:30 PM

A Kamloops photographer's work is going to be displayed at the British High Commission in Ottawa, part of a campaign ahead of the UN climate conference in Glasgow.

When Matt Lazzarotto submitted five photos to the contest, he didn't expect to win an award for his work.

The British High Commission in Ottawa sought photos from Canadian photographers to exhibit what climate change looks like to them, as the UK government prepares for the COP26 UN climate conference in November 2021.

Out of hundreds of submissions, Lazzarotto is one of eight Canadian photographers to have their work highlighted by the UK government.

Lazzarotto's winning submission.
Lazzarotto's winning submission.
Image Credit: Submitted/Matt Lazzarotto

READ MORE: Why this fishing technique is a climate disaster

When Lazzaretto set out to frame the active effects of climate change on the local area, he captured the remains of burnt forests and dried timber.

He said he wanted to focus on the "drying earth" and wildfires in the Thompson-Okanagan and hopes his work in Kamloops can show there is a growing need for current energy industries to shift as climate change continues.

"Canada is warming at two-times the rate of the rest of the world," Lazzarotto said. "But you don't have to drive far in Kamloops to see that it's an industrial place. We still need fossil fuels for the soles of our shoes and our cars, but the world's industry needs to adjust their methods, and a carbon tax is not enough."

READ MORE: Risk experts say climate change to take big chunk of Canadian economy by 2050

For winning the contest, he will be receiving a book with a collection of the winning photos and a framed print of his own work. COP26 will also feature a Q-and-A forum with the winning photographers as part of their social media campaign leading up to the conference.

"You look around at the hillsides here and it's beautiful, but it's the future generations that will see the results. We don't have a clue what's coming," Lazzarotto said. "(Climate scientists) can do their models, but the models change so often because another glacier melted off or a volcano erupted around the world."

Lazzarotto usually focuses his photography on events and professional sports. In Kamloops, it's not uncommon to see him shooting at the Bike Ranch, but the COVID-19 pandemic left him with few events to attend.

Until things open up again, you may see him around the Kamloops area, camera in-hand, whether it's downtown or on a hike, the work never stops.

"Practice makes perfect," he said. "It's about getting out there and working on small passion projects."

Click here to see Matt's website.

Click here to see the other winning photos.


To contact a reporter for this story, email Levi Landry or call 250-819-3723 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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