EcoWatch's Best of Summer Photo Contest Winners Announced
Summer has officially come to an end. Luckily, EcoWatch is here to keep its memory alive by sharing the winners of our "Best of Summer" photo contest.
For our third ever photo contest, we at EcoWatch broke the competition into two parts: one Judges' Choice, selected by a talented team of activists, photographers, adventurers and influencers, and one EcoWatchers' Choice, selected by readers like you!
The winner of the "Best of Summer" Judges' Choice award is ... Raymond Paul Freitas, for his Late Summer View of the Milky Way over Bodega Head, California.
Late Summer view of the Milky Way over Bodega Head, California.
"I love Milky Way images," Freitas said of the piece, "so I am always searching for stunning locations to photograph. I thought this coastal setting would be a perfect backdrop."
Freitas' photo was chosen by an accomplished team of judges: activists and filmmakers Gary and Sam Bencheghib, wildlife photographer Anthony Bucci, award-winning photographer and expedition leader Amos Nachoum and zoologist, activist and social media Influencer Margarita Samsonova.
Samsonova called the winning picture "stunning."
"I know how hard it is to shoot stars and edit pictures like that. The colors and clarity here are amazing. Winner shot!" she said.
Bucci, meanwhile, praised Freitas' technique.
"The photographer didn't over edit this image while post processing it. I like the crop used in the post processing," he said. "The colours and overall composition of this image keeps pulling me back to view it. I think overall the photographer spent some time to properly setup his camera and chose a decent foreground to break up the Milky Way."
Freitas is retired and lives in Santa Rosa, California. His favorite summer activities are landscape photography, pickleball and hiking.
And now the photograph voted for by you, our readers. The winner of the "Best of Summer" EcoWatchers' Choice award is … Michael Pizzi, for this majestic photograph of Yosemite Valley.
"Spirit of the Valley" at Yosemite National Park, California.
Michael Pizzi / Vibes and Horizons
"This was my very first time at Yosemite Valley, and it did not disappoint! The rock formations completely blew me away, the sunsets filled up the entire sky, and the wildlife seemed indifferent to my presence," Pizzi told EcoWatch of the moment he took the photo. He has since been back to the iconic national park several times.
But even before that first visit, Pizzi had long been drawn to the valley by the writings of John Muir and the photographs of Ansel Adams. He hopes to inspire other nature lovers in the same way.
"My goal here, and in every photo, is to bring the beauty of a location to people who have not yet had the privilege of experiencing it themselves," Pizzi said. "Hopefully viewers are motivated to make the trip to Yosemite, and join the fight to protect these places for future generations."
Pizzi lives in Los Angeles, where he runs Vibes and Horizons LLC, a scuba-diving travel agency, underwater photography sales platform and environmental blog. His favorite summer activities are scuba diving and exploring the ocean.
"On the weekends, you can usually find me out in The Channel Islands and occasionally down in Baja Mexico," he said. "Feel free to shoot me a message to go diving!"
piyaset / iStock / Getty Images Plus
- No Country Is Protecting Children's Health, Major Study Finds ... ›
- 'Every Child Born Today Will Be Profoundly Affected by Climate ... ›
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Jeff Masters, Ph.D.
Earth had its second-warmest year on record in 2020, just 0.02 degrees Celsius (0.04°F) behind the record set in 2016, and 0.98 degrees Celsius (1.76°F) above the 20th-century average, NOAA reported January 14.
Figure 1. Departure of temperature from average for 2020, the second-warmest year the globe has seen since record-keeping began in 1880, according to NOAA. Record-high annual temperatures over land and ocean surfaces were measured across parts of Europe, Asia, southern North America, South America, and across parts of the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific oceans. No land or ocean areas were record cold for the year. NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information
Figure 2. Total ocean heat content (OHC) in the top 2000 meters from 1958-2020. Cheng et al., Upper Ocean Temperatures Hit Record High in 2020, Advances in Atmospheric Sciences
Figure 3. Departure of sea surface temperature from average in the benchmark Niño 3.4 region of the eastern tropical Pacific (5°N-5°S, 170°W-120°W). Sea surface temperature were approximately one degree Celsius below average over the past month, characteristic of moderate La Niña conditions. Tropical Tidbits
- NASA and NOAA: Last Decade Was the Hottest on Record - EcoWatch ›
- Earth Just Had Its Hottest September Ever Recorded, NOAA Says ... ›
In December of 1924, the heads of all the major lightbulb manufacturers across the world met in Geneva to concoct a sinister plan. Their talks outlined limits on how long all of their lightbulbs would last. The idea is that if their bulbs failed quickly customers would have to buy more of their product. In this video, we're going to unpack this idea of purposefully creating inferior products to drive sales, a symptom of late-stage capitalism that has since been coined planned obsolescence. And as we'll see, this obsolescence can have drastic consequences on our wallets, waste streams, and even our climate.
- Consumer Society No Longer Serves Our Needs - EcoWatch ›
- Electronic Waste: New EU Rules Target Throwaway Culture ... ›
At least 42 people are confirmed dead and more than 600 injured after a 6.2 magnitude earthquake struck the Indonesian island of Sulawesi early Friday morning.
- At Least 27 Dead as Landslides Strike Indonesia, Including Village ... ›
- 1,400 Dead, 70,000 Homeless After Earthquake and Tsunami in ... ›
By Jessica Corbett
Water protectors were arrested Thursday after halting construction at a Minnesota worksite for Enbridge's Line 3 project by locking themselves together inside a pipe segment.
- Indigenous-Led Water Protectors Take Direct Action Against ... ›
- Indigenous and Climate Leaders Outraged Over Minnesota Permits ... ›