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24 Hours of Reality: 24 Reasons for Hope

Climate

Be a part of the solution and tune into The Climate Reality Project’s 24 Hours of Reality: 24 Reasons for Hope broadcasted live from Brooklyn, New York on Sept. 16 - 17, starting at Noon. This year’s event celebrates innovation and progress in fighting climate change around the world.

24 Hours of Reality: 24 Reasons for Hope airs one week prior to the U.N. Climate Summit and People's Climate March in New York City, and will provide the solutions to climate change that are available today. Each hour will focus on a specific milestone in the fight against climate change with former U.S. Vice President and Climate Reality Project Chairman and Founder Al Gore sharing a new reason to be hopeful and invite viewers worldwide to join in the effort to help end the climate crisis.

“Carbon pollution is already having a profound impact on our climate, but the good news is that we have all the tools we need to overcome this challenge,” said Gore.

“It’s time our leaders stop asking ‘What do we do?’ and instead ask ‘How can we accelerate the shift to a sustainable future powered by cheap, clean renewable energy, with sustainable agriculture and forestry.’ This year’s 24 Hours of Reality will signal a transition in the global conversation on climate change where we highlight the solutions at hand and empower individuals to take simple actions to aid this global fight.”

In addition to Al Gore and Climate Reality Project President and CEO Ken Berlin, a variety of international celebrities, musicians, advocates and other special guests will join the broadcast, including: filmmaker Vanessa Black, singer-songwriter Colbie Caillat, activist Rodne Galicha, environmentalist Wanjira Mathai, singer-songwriter Jason Mraz, entreprenuer Patrick Ngowi, founder of the Barefoot College Bunker Roy, actor and activist Mark Ruffalo, actor and model Ian Somerhalder, Johan van der Berg and Daniela Velasco.

“24 Reasons for Hope will ask each of us to dedicate a day to make a difference,” said Berlin. “Climate change is big and complex, but that means there are hundreds of ways to contribute. Whether it’s a parent organizing a renewable energy fair at school, or a young professional pledging to become a Climate Reality Leader, or a student working to elect a clean energy candidate, we all have different ways and different days to contribute.”

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A volcano erupts on New Zealand's Whakaari/White Island on Dec. 9, 2019. Michael Schade / Twitter

A powerful volcano on Monday rocked an uninhabited island frequented by tourists about 30 miles off New Zealand's coast. Authorities have confirmed that five people died. They expect that number to rise as some are missing and police officials issued a statement that flights around the islands revealed "no signs of life had been seen at any point,", as The Guardian reported.

"Based on the information we have, we do not believe there are any survivors on the island," the police said in their official statement. "Police is working urgently to confirm the exact number of those who have died, further to the five confirmed deceased already."

The eruption happened on New Zealand's Whakaari/White Island, an islet jutting out of the Bay of Plenty, off the country's North Island. The island is privately owned and is typically visited for day-trips by thousands of tourists every year, according to The New York Times.

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At the time of the eruption on Monday, about 50 passengers from the Ovation of Seas were on the island, including more than 30 who were part of a Royal Caribbean cruise trip, according to CNN. Twenty-three people, including the five dead, were evacuated from the island.

The eruption occurred at 2:11 pm local time on Monday, as footage from a crater camera owned and operated by GeoNet, New Zealand's geological hazards agency, shows. The camera also shows dozens of people walking near the rim as white smoke billows just before the eruption, according to Reuters.

Police were unable to reach the island because searing white ash posed imminent danger to rescue workers, said John Tims, New Zealand's deputy police commissioner, as he stood next to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern in a press conference, as The New York Times reported. Tims said rescue workers would assess the safety of approaching the island on Tuesday morning. "We know the urgency to go back to the island," he told reporters.

"The physical environment is unsafe for us to return to the island," Tims added, as CNN reported. "It's important that we consider the health and safety of rescuers, so we're taking advice from experts going forward."

Authorities have had no communication with anyone on the island. They are frantically working to identify how many people remain and who they are, according to CNN.

Geologists said the eruption is not unexpected and some questioned why the island is open to tourism.

"The volcano has been restless for a few weeks, resulting in the raising of the alert level, so that this eruption is not really a surprise," said Bill McGuire, emeritus professor of geophysical and climate hazards at University College London, as The Guardian reported.

"White Island has been a disaster waiting to happen for many years," said Raymond Cas, emeritus professor at Monash University's school of earth, atmosphere and environment, as The Guardian reported. "Having visited it twice, I have always felt that it was too dangerous to allow the daily tour groups that visit the uninhabited island volcano by boat and helicopter."

The prime minister arrived Monday night in Whakatane, the town closest to the eruption, where day boats visiting the island are docked. Whakatane has a large Maori population.

Ardern met with local council leaders on Monday. She is scheduled to meet with search and rescue teams and will speak to the media at 7 a.m. local time (1 p.m. EST), after drones survey the island, as CNN reported.