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IOWA — Algona native, David Thoreson is sharing the ways he was awakened to the threats of climate change.

Thoreson is a photographer who gained a lot of sailing experience on Lake Okoboji growing up. The cold and windy weather he felt on the lake prepared him for sailing through the polar regions of the Earth. “I always say, if you’ve spent a winter in northwest Iowa, you’re pretty much prepared for anything,” said Thoreson.

Thoreson originally started sailing to see more of the world and to take pictures, but he started to notice some alarming details. “I really got into the local ecology of what was going on in the polar areas and studying weather and climate patterns, and seeing these changes that scientists were talking about,” he says.

Scientists have been warning the public that the Earth is warming at an alarming rate due to the fossil fuels humans have burned for over 100 years.

In the Arctic, temperatures are warming 2-3 times faster than the rest of the world. Thoreson said because of this, Indigenous People are losing their traditional way of life. What the elders typically taught the next generations about hunting patterns is no longer accurate. “Because the climate is changing so quickly, where they predicted animals to be in the past, with the migrations, the animals are showing up at different times. Marine life, the fish, you know, certain times the season is all upside down now so that it’s unpredictable,” said Thoreson

This Sunday at 1:30 PM, David Thoreson will be presenting at Plymouth Church at 42nd Street and Ingersoll Avenue in Des Moines, but his gallery at the church is open to the public from 9 AM-4 PM through the end of this week.

“I just hope to inspire people to get outside, enjoy their backyards, get out in nature. help be a better steward of this planet, of our country of the state of Iowa by getting out there and being a part of nature and a little more understanding and caring about this gift that we’ve been given,” said Thoreson.