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Michelle Sailor. Review of Edward Burtynsky's Photographing the landscape of oil

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Published on February 21, 2014

Author: reyty1

Source: slideshare.net

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Michelle Sailor. Review of Edward Burtynsky's Photographing the landscape of oil
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Edward Burtynsky: Photographing the landscape of oil Michelle Sailor CAHA 760 Dr. Rey Ty 2/18/2014 Reference: Burtynsky, E. (2009 November 13). Edward Burtynsky photographs the landscape of oil. [YouTube]. Project: Report. Retrieval from: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BEsJI6Nxo4Q Summary This video is about Edward Burtynsky, a photographer, who wanted to portray landscape, and specifically, industrial landscapes focusing on oil. After photographing landscape for 17 years he realized that we go through our resources very quickly, and oil is one of the quickest resources we are using. He decided that he wanted to showcase his findings in three specific sections. The first section he focused on was extraction and refinement, the second on how we use oil, and the third on where the objects surrounding oil, such as cars, helicopters, planes, etc end up once they are done being used. He showed all of this through photography. He also looked into how long it takes the Earth to produce oil and how quickly we are going through that oil. He found out it takes 500 years of photosynthetic growth to produce the 30 billion barrels of oil we use per year and we only have about 45 years of reserves of oil on Earth. Therefore, he argues that we need to deal with the energy crisis issue that is quickly coming upon us by utilizing our talents. Critique While Edward brings up a valid point that we are quickly running out of oil, he did not give any suggestions as to alternative fuel sources. His speech was mainly to bring awareness to the issue, not to brainstorm or give advice on how to solve the issue. So even though the information that Edward brings forth is interesting and the photographs are eye opening, the content does not make me think of ways to fix the issue, instead, it makes me nervous that one day we will run out of oil and everything from production to cars will stop across the Earth. The video also mentions that Saudi Arabia and Canada are the two largest suppliers of oil, but it does not discuss the effects on those economies when the oil runs out. Will the loss of oil production have a profound effect on these countries or will it not? If it does, how will they recover from the loss of revenue? Recommendation In addition to looking into the problem of oil consumption, people should look into alternative resources that are longer lasting. They should also look into how to lower our oil consumption or possibly synthesize its production. This is an issue that is quickly becoming an emergency, and as of yet, I have no idea how it is going to be addressed.

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