Photographer Daniel Beltrá specializes in aerial photography documenting humanity’s effect on our planet:

“Photography became a tool to expose what’s happening in the planet, and all the aggressions that the natural world was suffering from us—even though we are supposedly the world’s most intelligent species.”

Because of our excessive population and the power of our technology, we humans have an enormous impact on the planet, and aerial photography is one of the few ways we can see the scale of that impact. Huge projects like the Brazilian dams and massive industrial agricultural land that is daily being carved out of the Amazon rainforest, the Indonesian palm oil plantations, the meltwater runoff from glaciers in Greenland and Iceland are all subjects that Beltrá has photographed to attempt to help us understand what we are doing this planet we call home.

The photographs are often beautiful and abstract, showing the forms, shapes, and colors of the impact, so the shock comes as we read the explanation of photograph and we realize the scale, and often the horror, of what we are seeing.

“The important part is to make people understand that we’re all in this together. At the end of the day, we all still live on the same planet—we all drink the same water, breathe the same air. I don’t think there’s anybody that wouldn’t want to keep that healthy.”

To see more of Daniel Beltrá’s work, check out his web site at danielbeltra.photoshelter.com.