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Tuesday TED Talk: "My Wish: Manufactured Landscapes And Green Education" By Edward Burtynsky

This weeks TED Talk Tuesday is brought to you by Edward Burtynsky a photographer dedicating his pieces to exposing humanity’s impact on the earth, and inspiring the conversation and movement towards sustainable living. Mr. Burtynsky has won multiple awards for his work, such as the 2016 Governor General’s Award in Arts and Media and the 2005 TED Prize. These images are meant as metaphors to the tragedy and the beauty of our modern existence, and it shows the dilemma at how the world is suffering at the hand of human successes.

TED Talk Tuesday | Powell Law Group | Edward Burtynsky 1.png
TED Talk Tuesday | Powell Law Group | Edward Burtynsky 2.png
  • “Be challenged by the photos -- to say, ‘Wow, this is beautiful,’ on one level, but on the other level, "This is scary. I shouldn't be enjoying it."”

  • “There's something that we're not seeing there. And it's a scary thing as well. Because when we start looking at the collective appetite for our lifestyles, and what we're doing to that landscape -- that, to me, is something that is a very sobering moment for me to contemplate.”

  • “This is a need for power, and they're willing to go through this massive transformation, on this scale, to get that power.”

  • “I photographed this woman in China- she’s been through Mao, and she's been through the Great Leap Forward, and the Cultural Revolution, and now she's sitting on her porch with this e-waste beside her. It's quite something. This is a road where it's been shored up by computer boards in one of the biggest towns, and recycling is nonexistent.”

  • “I want to use my images to persuade millions of people to join in the global conversation on sustainability. And it is through communications today that I believe that that is not an unreal idea.”


Wayne Powell is a passionate advocate for the environment as well. From investing in clean energy, reducing our dependence on oil, and reducing our carbon footprint, there is no end to the list of ways to adapt to sustainable living. If you live in Virginia, check out Virginia Energy Sense sponsored by the State Corporation Commission.

I have represented a few Workers’ Compensation cases where those individuals worked in coal mines or mining jobs. As a business owner, I value advances in technology and innovation, and I understand the need to adapt to modernization. I believe we must never take the individual workers for granted, and recognize that when we talk about renewable energy, the men and women who work to build and maintain our energy structure in the Commonwealth are the human stakeholders alongside business and the environment. I hope we continue to think of advances in technology and energy that move away from conditions that hurt individuals and that hurt our environment.
— Wayne Powell

Check out some Edward Burtynsky’s website for his projects, photography portfolio, films, and books. And if you or someone you love has been injured on the job, contact the Powell Law Group to learn how our experience in helping people get justice might be right for you.