The Daily sat down with Samper, who is in town to speak in Silicon Valley, to discuss his start as a botanist, the steps Stanford students can take to lead ecologically conscious lives and (one of) his favorite species the short-billed hummingbird.
The Woods Institute for the Environment awarded $833,000 in Environmental Venture Project (EVP) grants on June 25.
During his career, Dawson has worked on numerous projects dealing with the environment, many of which focused on affecting people’s perception of their environment. The use of photography as a form of communication and change is a concept he attempts to pass on to his students through teaching.
I find myself doing such hard thinking at odd intervals, usually when science is treating me either very poorly or very well, or when some environmental catastrophe rouses the media. Mostly, I ask myself, “Does this research matter? Am I doing enough?”
One Saturday morning this fall, a cluster of Stanford students stood, knelt and crouched with cameras strapped around their necks, exploring the California redwoods. They peered down into the grass and up the enormous trunks in search of the perfect photo — and for students enrolled in the sophomore seminar “Photographing Nature” fall quarter, this was just a typical day in the classroom.
We consider ourselves to be strongly supportive of environmental causes. We believe climate change to be one of the most important issues facing our generation and would gladly participate in advocacy efforts to change the current course of U.S. policy (or lack thereof). However, we do not view the Keystone XL pipeline as the right battle for the cause. After months of protests led by Bill McKibben and his environmentalist followers, thousands of civil disobedience arrests, and mountains of apocalyptic rhetoric, President Obama decided to delay the request for the pipeline that would bring tar sands oil down from Canada and hand a victory to environmentalists. We don’t see it as a victory worth winning.