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Our Unnoticed Background

2012 November 1

Have you ever exerienced a moment where an ordinary part of your life, suddenly catches your eye and takes hold of your focus?

Walking to work this morning, I was admiring the blue sky, it had been so dark and windy days earlier. As I looked along the street, to festive houses and the remaining leaves, I noticed a swooping power line and thought how calm it recently felt living by candlelight. Then, as a squirrel skillfully hopped down another, I saw another, and another. Suddenly so many power lines came into my focus that it was difficult to see the buildings behind as they crisscrossed the street, swooping every which way. It was odd. How had I never SEEN these before? Everyday I somehow looked past them, but there they were, as always.

So often our background goes unnoticed. The backdrop, the path before us, the side scenery all blends into a blur of the sights and sounds of our day. We see more when we take a moment to look. Photographs freeze time, they capture details that may have gone unnoticed, and backgrounds that could easily be forgotten.

This, is what State of the Environment is about. Forty years ago Documerica set the bar high. Giving us an incredible look back at our every day life and our environment that was in the background. Your enthusiasm and your photos now, can celebrate it’s original vision. Each ordinary moment of our lives and our environment today will create an extraordinary picture of change for the future.

Enjoy today’s featured photo. Consider taking a moment to share the background near you.

~Jeanethe Falvey, U.S. EPA State of the Environment project lead

July 9, 2012 Bathers at North Hempstead Beach Park. Glenwood Landing Power Plant in the background. Recently closed by the Long Isand Power Authority. Port Washington, NY by John Luniewski.

July 9, 2012 Bathers at North Hempstead Beach Park. Glenwood Landing Power Plant in the background. Recently closed by the Long Isand Power Authority. Port Washington, NY by John Luniewski.

 

Documerica: Olin Mathieson Chemical Plant on Far Side of Lake Charles, Louisiana. 07/1972 by Marc St. Gil.

Documerica: Olin Mathieson Chemical Plant on Far Side of Lake Charles, Louisiana. 07/1972 by Marc St. Gil.

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Editor's Note: The opinions expressed in Greenversations are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

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