2009 Pirelli Calendar with video

2 December 2008
, Herald Sun

And it's not just about the girls.

This time the Pirelli Calendar has been planned, photographed and printed as reminder of the many challenges to the world's ecology.

There are still girls with minimal clothing, but photographer Peter Beard says he went to Botswana - and the Okavango River delta and Kalahari Desert - to give people a reminder of what is happening in the world.

"My real concern is the destruction of nature on a global scale. We've totally lost track of what evolution is based on, and how important diversity is in nature," says Beard.

"This concept is the very foundation of survival."

The calendar has been printed for the first time on natural, lead-free paper to minimise its environmental impact and, as well, Pirelli says it is contributing to the creation and protection of a forested area in Costa Rica. The plan, in conjunction with a group called LifeGate, is to offset the C02 generated by the production and printing of the calendar.

The models for the 2009 Pirelli Calendar are as beautiful as always, for a day chart produced since the 1960s, with Daria Werbowy of Canada, Emanuela de Paula and Isabeli Fontana from Brazil, Lara Stone and Rianne Ten Haken from Holland, Malgosia Bela of Poland and Italy's Mariacarla Boscono posing for the pictures.

Even so, Beard has managed to shoot them with animals and landscapes to give a very natural feel.

The Pirelli Calendar is so exclusive because only 10,000 copies are printed each year - with only 238 being shipped to Australia this year - and it cannot be bought.

The calendar is only ever given away, with the mailing list held as a closely-guarded secret.