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UNEP International Photographic Competition

MEDIA RELEASE
9 August 2004

Canon encourages photographers to enter UNEP International Photographic Competition

Canon New Zealand urges professional and amateur photographers alike to load up their cameras and participate in the world’s biggest environmental photo competition.

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has launched its fourth International Photographic Competition on the Environment, which is sponsored once again by Canon Inc.

The competition will run until 24 October, 2004 and is open to all nationalities and ages.

A gold prize of US$20,000 will be awarded to the winner of the General category, which is open to applicants aged 25 years or over. There are also separate categories and cash prizes for youth (15 – 24 years) and for children (aged 14 and younger) with Gold, Silver and Bronze prizes awarded in each of the three categories.

In launching the competition, Klaus Toepfer, UNEP’s Executive Director, said that since primitive times, images have been sources of inspiration and contemplation able to reveal the joy and tragedy of humans’ place in the world.

“I hope the pictures submitted for the fourth competition will, like those from previous years, help catalyze the political and social changes needed to reach our goals and targets on issues from water and sanitation to wildlife, waste and poverty reduction. I hope they will also delight and illuminate, while bringing to the notice of the global public new names and a new generation of talented photographers.”

Last year’s winning image, ‘floating kids at Manila Bay’ was captured by a German photographer and showed Filipino children floating on the water salvaging rubbish from the copious amounts that surrounded them. New Zealander Kurt Adams won silver in the children’s category in 1991/1992 with his compelling image titled ‘abuse of our oceans’.

Photos such as these generate huge interest within the photographic world and importantly, they generate significant public awareness of environmental issues globally.

Fujio Mitarai, president and CEO of Canon Inc., said that the sponsorship was a perfect fit with Canon’s corporate philosophy of kyosei which means living and working together for the common good.

“In accordance with this philosophy, we believe that a harmonious coexistence with nature and the environment is essential for society to achieve sustainable development,” said Mr Mitarai. “I hope that photographers participating in this competition, through the images they have captured, will be able to share the kyosei philosophy ideal with the world.”

Analogue and digital submissions will be judged side by side by a panel of world famous photographers from Japan, Brazil, India, the USA and Indonesia.

Full details of the competition’s rules and regulations; information on how to submit photographs in both hard and electronic formats and an application form can be read and downloaded at www.unep-photo.com.

Ends.

Released on behalf of Canon New Zealand Ltd., by Donovan Boyd Communications Ltd.

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