People, Art & Twitter come together for Copenhagen
7 December 2009 - Impact Hub

ThisPlace09 is a project that seeks to capture personal thoughts about climate change, to help the delegates, and regular people see the personal, local and immediate context of the Copenhagen Climate Conference. The contributions, from people all around the world, will be brought to life through artists and illustrators in a book that will be placed in the hands of delegates at COP15.
What's worth saving in this place?
The project, started by three friends, asked one simple question… “What’s worth saving in #thisplace?” Personal answers have been collected from places everywhere and compiled into a small book that will be distributed to as many as possible of the 15,000 delegates attending the conference. The team is hoping that simplifying the effects of climate change into just 140 characters, and bringing them together creatively, will appeal to the delegates in a more personal and emotional way to focus on the bigger picture.
Twitter users from all around the world have been tweeting their answers using the hashtag ‘#thisplace’ (the twitter way of tying a number of posts together) which have been captured for the project. For people who don’t use twitter, answers are being captured directly through the ThisPlace09 website – In less then one month, the team got hundreds of submissions from every continent in the world including, among others, tweets from notable eco activists like David De Rothschild.
What's worth saving in this place?
To make the content more emotive while staying true to the personal stories being shared, DIY WOMP, the people behind the ‘Arts & Things’ website and magazine, briefed the project out to a number of established and up and coming artists. The artists’ task was to impact upon the perception of people in regards to climate change by doing what they do best; sparking their imaginations. “Having a personal tweet from a complete stranger halfway around the world and then an artist bringing it to life is a really powerful combination that has surpassed our expectations.” said David Hawksworth one of the co-creators of ThisPlace09.
Getting the 5,000 books from London to Copenhagen is a challenge. The solution to this is an unusual one – they are going by taxi. After contacting the owners of greentomatocars (,) the green taxi company, they agreed that two Prius’ from their fleet can be used for the project. In fact the founders liked the idea so much they decided to drive the cars themselves.
The ‘grassroots’ nature of the idea follows through to distribution. In addition to leveraging the contacts of the global TckTckTck network, of which ThisPlace09 is an official partner, the book will be handed out through placing them in coffee shops, hotels where delegates are staying, and giving them one by one at the entrance to the Conference. Additionally the book idea is intended to be ‘viral’ and people are encouraged to pass it on once they have read it.
The team sees a future for the project post Copenhagen. This is important especially in light of recent events, as consensus is that a legally binding agreement is highly unlikely during the Copenhagen Climate Conference. In order to keep pressure on the delegates and keep the issue top of mind amongst the general population the team are also planning:
* A documentary of the team’s efforts to get to Copenhagen whilst expanding on the issues brought to light in the book.
* An art exhibit of the pieces that were inspired by the tweets.
Contact: Becky Willan on +44 7815147138 [email protected] or +44 20 7017 3989 for more information.