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Global Ideas

Through the lens

This week took our reporter to Ghana where she met a man with a passion for frogs, while elsewhere in the world, a range of events underscore the myriad ways in which nature speaks to us. Or tries to.

If ever there is a time to celebrate all creatures great and small, it is early October during celebrations of the feast of Saint Francis of Assisi, patron of animals. Pet owners are often invited to take their furry, feathery or indeed scaly beloved to church to mark the occassion.

 

This whale was a feature of the Ocean Festival held in Jakarta by Greenpeace Indonesia. The event was staged to highlight the issues of plastic in the sea, a particular problem in the waters around the archipelago of more than 17,000 islands. It also drew attention to shark finning, a practice that renders the animals unable to swim and condems them to an often slow and always painful death.

 

In Ghana, our reporter caught up with a man who has a particular passion for frogs, or to be more specific the Giant Squeaker Frog. They spent days looking for the elusive amphibian. Ultimately in vain, but they came across several other species in need of targeted conservation efforts. 

 

The aftermath of the Durga Puja festival in the Indian city of Bangalore. On the final day of the almost week-long event, Ganesh sculptures made from materials such as plaster and painted in bright colors that contain pollutants including mercury and lead are submerged in rivers, lakes and the sea. Environmentalists have long pointed out the harmful impact of this tradition and call for the use of eco-friendly materials.

 

After several years of low rainfall and high temperatures, water levels in Utah's Great Salt Lake are hovering dangerously close to a record low. Cracked and dry, the shores of the Antelope Island causeway over the iconic body of water are indicative of shrinkage, which scientists attribute to human activity, such as rediverting rivers and streams for their own use.