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Weekly New Releases - Environment & Sustainability

Weekly New Releases - Environment & Sustainability


By David Vassar and Sally Kaplan

California Forever is a two-part series that tells the history and legacy of California's magnificent state parks, from Yosemite in 1864 to the present day. It is also the story of how the 'park idea' first started in California and led to the creation of the national park system. Together, the two one-hour episodes illustrate the importance of California's state parks for preserving the state's history, culture, and environment, as well as for public enjoyment. Many of the state's parks, now national icons, are facing a variety of challenges today.

Episode One - California Forever: The History of California State Parks

Highlights the discovery and creation of California's state parks system and profiles the individuals and groups whose passion helped preserve and protect them for future generations, including John Muir. The episode takes viewers on a scenic, cultural and historical tour of California's state parks, highlighting key events and historic places that are crucial chapters of the California story, including Spanish colonists at Old Monterey, fortune seekers in Gold Country, the ill-fated Donner Party, and native tribes on the North Coast.

Episode Two - California Forever: Parks for the Future

Presents the very real challenges that state parks currently face in California today, including habitat destruction by overuse; protection of native species at the expense of recreation; climate change; encroachment of private industry; and park closures due to state budget cuts. Episode two also profiles the diverse cultures that made California home, commemorated in many parks, and the challenge of making state parks more accessible to people of all backgrounds.

  • "California Forever offers educators an invaluable classroom tool for heightening interest in and understanding of American history. Through its vivid exploration of the Golden State's rich heritage of cultural and natural landscapes, this two-part program makes clear how the building blocks of history-people, ideas, events-are tempered by the natural environment that envelops them." - Jeffrey K. Stine; Curator of Environmental History, Smithsonian Institution

  • "Highly recommended. California Forever charts the movement to create state parks in California, which was an uphill battle for years due to many competing interests-squatters, farmers, timber companies-who tried to exploit these public lands for private purposes." - Video Librarian

  • "Beautifully shot...Begins by exploring the contributions of John Muir and Frederick Law Olmsted, both of whom recognized the need for maintaining natural lands and fighting industrialists eager to chop down forests for wood." - Booklist

  • Winner, Best Educational Program, International Wildlife Film Festival
  • Winner, Best Documentary, Yosemite Film Festival
  • Winner, Merit Award for Historical Perspective, Montana CINE in Missoula, MT
  • Winner, Excellence in Feature Documentary, Accolades Film and Video Awards

    DVD (Closed Captioned) / 2013 / (Grades 7 - Adult) / 100 minutes

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    By Amy Miller

    Narrated by Daryl Hannah

    THE CARBON RUSH travels across four continents to investigate the true cost of carbon emissions trading. Are carbon offset projects significantly reducing CO2 emissions, or are they distracting from what is really required to tackle the climate crisis?

    To date, there has been over $300 billion of carbon transactions worldwide through over 5,000 registered projects. Instead of focusing resources to move away from a fossil fuel economy, massive international trading ventures were established as the solution to climate change, nicknamed "green gold" by its beneficiaries.

    This ground-breaking documentary examines how carbon trading works as established through the United Nations' Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) as part of the Kyoto Protocol.

    The film tours a variety of carbon offset projects around the world, visiting people on the front lines of carbon trading. Their stories and voices have been little-heard as part of the multi-billion dollar carbon trading industry. In Panama, indigenous rain forest dwellers are losing their way of life. In India, waste pickers at landfills can no longer support themselves. And in Honduras, dozens of Campesinos have been assassinated.

    THE CARBON RUSH raises fundamental questions about what happens when we attempt to manipulate markets to solve the climate crisis, including who stands to gain and who stands to lose.

  • "The documentary is filled with shockingly corrupt examples ... and sheds light on the state of environmental concern on the corporate level, without being overly alarmist." - THE CONCORDIAN

  • "This one will get you boiling. It shows again how we are shipping our climate change problems out of our sight. Big companies are buying carbon credits, which allow them to keep on emitting as much CO2 as always by supporting projects that reduce emissions in third world countries. Or so they say." - THE VANCOUVER OBSERVER

  • "The Carbon Rush, exposes the offset projects that are impacting developing countries and their communities so that other nations can continue their industries relatively unchecked.." - THE SOURCE

  • Award of Merit, The Indie Festival, USA

    DVD (Closed Captioned) / 2013 / (Grades 10-Adult) / 136 minutes

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    By Glenn Baker

    Easy Like Water profiles one man's resourceful quest to fight the effects of climate change in the developing world through the power of "design for good" - a growing global movement to encourage design-driven social change as a community-based response to the challenges brought on by the new climate reality.

    In Bangladesh, a country with 160 million people in an area the size of Iowa, water poses a relentless and growing threat to millions of people. Low-lying areas are flooded every year during the brutal monsoon season, upending entire villages and destroying hundreds of schools, preventing thousands of children from attending classes.

    In response, visionary architect Mohammed Rezwan is turning the front line of climate change into a community of learning by building floating schools from surplus boats. Outfitted with solar-powered Internet access, the boat schools are bringing education to young people, including girls who previously never had the opportunity because of cultural or religious norms.

    In a nation where 20% of the land may be washed away by mid-century, Rezwan is working to create a blueprint for his nation's survival, expanding his model to build floating health clinics, climate shelters, libraries and cinemas.

    By turns witty and heart-wrenching, Easy Like Water presents a different perspective on the developing world as it fights for climate justice, recognizing it as a source for innovative solutions that can help communities in the world's most-affected regions adapt to climate change.

  • "This is an incredible school redesign story. In Easy Like Water, filmmaker Glenn Baker shares the inspirational story of how a community came together to build solar-powered floating schools. Not only can students attend school year-round, they can take part in digital learning." - Anthony Jackson, Vice President of Education, Asia Society

  • "With a concept that is elegant and home-grown, Rezwan is helping his country adapt to the new climate reality-and cultivating the next generation of problem solvers. Bakers' film shows the human face of climate disaster and highlights one simple, affordable adaptation that is changing lives by building a future that floats." - The Sundance Institute

  • Winner, CINE Golden Eagle
  • Winner, Hilton LighStay Sustainabiltiy Award, Sundance Institute

    DVD (Closed Captioned) / 2013 / (Grades 9 - Adult) / 56 minutes

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    Last Call examines the predictions and impact of one of the most important and controversial environmental books of all time, The Limits to Growth, published four decades ago.

    In 1972, the publication of the book shook the world, selling 30 million copies in 30 languages, and marked a turning point in thinking about the environment. Prepared for the Club of Rome, the book was based on the work of a team of young scientists from MIT who created the first computer model to analyze the interaction over time of exponential growth with finite natural resources.

    Their primary message was that the human footprint, if unchecked, would grow beyond the carrying capacity of the planet on a sustainable basis. They concluded that humanity must adapt to the planet's limits or risk overshoot, which could result in the collapse of global support systems and human decline. Their conclusions stimulated broad interest and significant debate, but not much action on their scenario for avoiding overshoot.

    Four decades later, the surviving authors of The Limits to Growth and the book's mentors gathered to assess their earlier predictions, update where we stand today, and present what we need to do now to avoid global ecological collapse in the next few decades.

    Supported by archival footage and other materials, Last Call provides provocative insights into the fundamental reasons behind the ongoing global ecological and economic crises, and a vision of a more hopeful future, if we commit to appropriate measures before it's too late.

  • Jay Forrester, Professor Emeritus, MIT Sloan School of Management, pioneer of the modern computer age, founder of System Dynamics
  • Dennis Meadows, Professor Emeritus of Systems Management, University of New Hampshire; author, The Limits to Growth
  • Donella Meadows, biophysicist and systems analyst, Dartmouth; author, The Limits to Growth; Pew Scholar in Conservation and the Environment; MacArthur Fellow
  • Jorgen Randers, PhD, Professor of Climate Strategy, BI Norwegian Business School; co-author, The Limits to Growth; author, 2052: A Global Forecast for the Next 40 Years
  • William Behrens III, co-author, The Limits to Growth
  • Aurelio Peccei, Founder and President, Club of Rome

  • Best Documentary, The House of Tomorrow (international competition showcase), Cinemambiente Environmental Film Festival, Torino

    DVD (Closed Captioned) / 2013 / (Grades 11-Adult) / 90 minutes

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    By Peter Young

    With stunning footage of Antarctica's unique landscapes and wild life, The Last Ocean profiles the international battle over commercial fishing in the Ross Sea, the last pristine ocean ecosystem on earth.

    The Ross Sea is a vast, icy landscape that teems with life -- whales, seals and penguins carving out a place on the very edge of existence. This 'living laboratory' is one of the last places where the delicate balance of nature still prevails, largely untouched by humans. But an international fishing fleet has recently made its way to the Ross Sea, targeting the highly lucrative Antarctic Toothfish, sold as Chilean Sea Bass around the world.

    Californian ecologist Dr. David Ainley has studied the Ross Sea's unique ecosystem for more than forty years and knows that unless fishing is stopped, the natural balance will be lost forever. He rallies fellow scientists and builds a global campaign to protect this last pristine marine ecosystem.

    Featuring top scientists, including Dr. Sylvia Earle and Dr. Daniel Pauly, as well as international political leaders, the film examines both the science and politics behind the debate over preserving Earth's last truly wild ocean.

  • "Four Stars. The Last Ocean is a spectacular, informative and urgent piece of work... Through Peter Young's lens, the Antarctic looks wild and wonderful." - Graeme Tuckett, Dominion Post

  • "Four stars. Young's film is absorbing, politically and ecologically informative, nightmarish, and excellent, albeit disturbing, cinema." - Sam Edwards, Waikato Times

  • "Peter Young's ravishing footage lends emotive force to his detailed account of the case against fishing Antarctic waters." - Bill Gosden, New Zealand International Film Festival

  • Winner, Best Feature & Best Science Communication Film, Reel Earth Environmental Film Festival
  • Winner, Best Call2Action Film, Boulder International Film Festival ?
  • Winner, Royal Reel Award Documentary, Canada International Film Festival
  • Winner, Best Documentary, Real to Reel International Film Festival
  • Winner, Moving Mountains, Mountainfilm in Telluride
  • Winner, Independent Producer of the Year, New Zealand Screen Producer and Development Association

    DVD (Closed Captioned) / 2013 / (Grades 9 - Adult) / 143 minutes

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    By Spencer Bruttig, Nicholas DaSilva, Clinton Reynolds and Alexander Mark Romanov

    Sea Otters were once abundant from Russia's Kamchatka Peninsula all the way to Baja California, Mexico. High demand for their fur coats led to intense hunting that reduced their numbers to near-extinction levels

    The otter population is now coming back, thanks to the Endangered Species Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act, which provided refuge for the few remaining individual otters. But their return brings the potential for drastic change and conflict to the modern-day economics and ecology of Southern California.

    For more than a decade, sea otters were exiled from their historic home range in Southern California, out of fear by fishermen that their return would deplete the profitable shellfish industry. The entire southern coast of California - from Pt. Conception, north of Santa Barbara, to the Mexico border - was established as a No Otter Zone.

    The film presents the history and conflict over the otters, and illustrates the critical choice that must be made: whether to continue to protect some fisheries with a no otter zone, or allow this historic predator to repopulate throughout its natural range. The battle continues today in court.

    Featured in the Film
    Lilian Carswell, Southern Sea Otter Recovery Coordinator, US Fish & Wildlife Service
    Steve Rebuck, Commercial Abalone Divers of California
    Steve Shimek, Founder, The Otter Project
    Rick Rosenthal, Marine Biologist
    Michael Harrington, Executive Committee, California Abalone Association

  • "Looks at both sides of the issue whether otters should be allowed to populate the local waters around the Channel Islands where abalone and sea urchins have thrived since otters were removed." - Ojai Film Festival

    DVD (Closed Captioned) / 2013 / (Grades 6 - Adult) / 16 minutes

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    By Kevin White
    Narrated by Peter Coyote

    For millennia, the bald eagle was an important avian predator in the Channel Islands just off the coast of Southern California. Then in the early 1960's the bald eagles disappeared entirely due to egg collecting, hunting, and extensive DDT contamination.

    In 1980 a young graduate student, Dave Garcelon, decided to try and restore the bald eagle to the Channel Islands, often called North America's Galapagos for their unique, diverse species. Return Flight chronicles how Dave and his dedicated team of biologists worked tirelessly for decades to bring the bald eagle back in the face of DDT contamination, leading to some amazing results.

    The film also provides some history on DDT, a pesticide developed in WWII that was extensively used by consumers and agriculture - but not without serious consequences. Prior to the 1972 Congressional DDT ban, there were only 407 breeding pairs of bald eagles left in the continental U.S. - and none in Southern California.

    The story is told through interviews with hard-working biologists, visionary resource managers, and thoughtful environmental historians - supported with beautiful visuals of a unique landscape and the bald eagles themselves. Ultimately, the recovery of the bald eagle on the Channel Islands mirrors its larger recovery in the continental United States. What emerges is a positive story of how innovation and dedication can triumph in the face of one of the most pervasive environmental challenges of our time.

  • "Director White is able to take a story 20 years in the making and turn it into a narrative sure to inspire the next generation of biologists to take on epic projects of their own... And above all, he shows eagles in flight, making for a film that soars." - Malibu Times

  • "One of the more popular films on our 2012 tour. Audiences really respond to the compelling positive story." - Wild & Scenic Film Festival

  • "A testament to the very real possibilities of righting past human errors. Kevin White's film chronicles how years of determination and passion by a small group of dedicated individuals have created positive environmental change." - Valerie Landes, Executive Producer, Natural Heroes/PBS

    DVD (Closed Captioned) / 2013 / (Grades 5 - Adult) / 36 minutes

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    By Winnie Hoskyns-Abrahall, Bill Hennessy

    In plain language, master electrician and solar installer Bruce Hankins explains AC coupling, the combining of a grid-tied solar electric installation with an off-grid battery backup system.

    As the world turns to sustainability, solar enriches our lives. SAVING SUNSHINE takes a look at today's developments in solar electricity and its increasing role as power provider.

    Combining the best features of off-grid, stand-alone solar installations with grid-tied systems that provide distributed generation, photovoltaic systems have evolved into AC-coupled systems. They provide back-up, stand-alone electricity while also using renewable solar energy for our everyday electrical needs.

    This combination of renewable energy and energy storage connects multiple inverters with maintenance-free batteries and opens the door to energy independence in a sustainable, low-carbon future.

    Teachers, electricians, system installers, architects, owners of grid-tied systems and solar advocates will find the clear explanations in SAVING SUNSHINE helpful in learning the specifics of an AC-coupled system and how it forms a local distribution system to deliver electricity in a more reliable and environmentally friendly manner.

    DVD / 2013 / (Grades 10-12, College, Adults) / 34 minutes

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    By Mark London, Cidney Hue and Adrian Vasquez de Velasco

    Shark Loves the Amazon offers a fresh perspective on what it will take to protect the Amazon rainforest and support the millions of people who now live there.

    Many still think of the Amazon as a land populated primarily by indigenous people surrounded by exotic flora and fauna, all threatened by mining and farming. But that's no longer a fully accurate picture, since more than twenty million Brazilians migrated to the region over the last few decades and are themselves struggling to survive and prosper.

    Author and attorney Mark London, offers an updated analysis and approach in this documentary, based on his book The Last Forest: The Amazon in the Age of Globalization (Random House), written with journalist Brian Kelly. London developed a lifelong passion for the Amazon during his first visit 30 years ago, and has traveled extensively in the region in recent years. The film depicts the hard, contemporary realities of a region seeking a sustainable model of development that can provide both for its millions of inhabitants and preserve the Earth's last great forest, with its unparalleled biodiversity and global importance.

    As levels of deforestation rapidly approach the point of no return, London poses a provocative alternative to the simple mantra, "leave the forest untouched." One promising model the film profiles is the Juma Sustainable Development Reserve, which incentivizes people who live in the region to protect the forests.

    Shark Loves the Amazon begins with substantial historical context, tracing in detail the forces that transformed the Amazon since the 1960's, when it was a largely unexplored and untouched region, unlike today.

    TITLE NOTE: "Shark" refers to the fact Mark London is a lawyer.

  • Thomas Lovejoy, Biodiversity Chair, Heinz Center for Science, Economics and the Environment
  • Dr. Philip Fearnside, National Institute for Research of the Amazon
  • Charles Mann, Author, 1491 and 1493
  • Eduardo Braga, Senator & Former Governor of the State of Amazonas, Brazil
  • Virgilio Viana, CEO, Amazonas Sustainable Foundation (FAS)
  • Raquel Lunas, Amazonas Sustainable Foundation (FAS) Reviews
  • "Focuses on the history of occupation of the Amazon when the country was under a military regime, and the challenges and opportunities to build a sustainable model that preserves the world's last major rainforest and supports the livelihood of the inhabitants of the Brazilian Amazon. It offers a powerful example of the synergy between sustainability and conservation." - Brazil Institute, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
  • "Sets out to put a 'human face' on the issue of deforestation, suggesting there is a deeper moral conundrum than just saving flora and fauna. Instead, the world should consider the well-being of the people living in the Amazon rainforest...." - Jessica Perry, Hola Cultura

    DVD (Closed Captioned) / 2013 / (Grades 9-Adult) / 60 minutes

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    Directed by Harry Wiland and Dale Bell

    Hosted by author and national health expert Dr. Richard Jackson, MD, MPH

    The first episode investigates the connection between our nation's obesity and Type 2 Diabetes epidemic and suburban sprawl, fueled by dependency on the automobile. Communities profiled are seeking to combat the causes of diabetes by redesigning our car centric society.

    Boulder, CO, redesigns the city to make bicycles a safe alternative form of transportation. Two Denver suburbs transform dead malls into mixed use and public transit-centered communities. An abandoned mall in Georgia gains new life as a K-8 charter school. And two former grad students from Georgia Tech create visionary projects that are forever changing the face of Atlanta.

  • "Highlights changes being made in forward-thinking communities - changes that foster better physical and mental health by redesigning the built environment." - Jane Brody, New York Times

  • "A thoughtful series and book that illustrates how and why building healthy communities is the right prescription for America." - George C. Benjamin, MD, Executive Director, American Public Health Association

  • "Jackson inhabits the frontier between public health and urban planning, and offers us hopeful examples of innovative transformations." - Will Rogers, President/CEO, Trust for Public Land

    DVD (Closed Captioned) / 2012 / (Grades 10-Adult) / 56 minutes

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    Directed by Harry Wiland and Dale Bell

    Hosted by author and national health expert Dr. Richard Jackson, MD, MPH

    Many cities are struggling to resuscitate their dying downtowns and overcome a history of industrial pollution. Episode 2 looks at how families and young people seek to repair main street America by rebuilding places of the heart.

    When U.S. industry and manufacturing collapsed or went elsewhere, cities like Elgin, IL, and Syracuse, NY, were left with the task of redefining themselves for a new paradigm. Leading the way to a greener, more sustainable Elgin is a group of high school students. Despite many innovative programs to get Syracuse back on its feet, the city struggles with the larger problem of Lake Onondaga, the most polluted lake in our nation. Local Native American Onondaga tribal leader Oren Lyons serves as conscience in the movement to cleanup the industrially polluted lake. And in Riverside, CA, 16-year old science prodigy Otana Jakpor has a personal reason for her war against air pollution and takes her battle all the way to the White House.

  • "Highlights changes being made in forward-thinking communities - changes that foster better physical and mental health by redesigning the built environment." - Jane Brody, New York Times

  • "A thoughtful series and book that illustrates how and why building healthy communities is the right prescription for America." - George C. Benjamin, MD, Executive Director, American Public Health Association

  • "Jackson inhabits the frontier between public health and urban planning, and offers us hopeful examples of innovative transformations." - Will Rogers, President/CEO, Trust for Public Land

    DVD (Closed Captioned) / 2012 / (Grades 10-Adult) / 56 minutes

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    Directed by Harry Wiland and Dale Bell

    Hosted by author and national health expert Dr. Richard Jackson, MD, MPH

    Where you live is one predictor of how long you will live. This episode explores the deadly consequences of economically challenged neighborhoods located near highly polluted areas, and urban pioneers who seek to improve the health of their challenged communities.

    It should be every citizen's right to live in a clean, healthy, non-polluted environment. But that is not the case for many low-income neighborhoods in struggling industrial cities like Oakland, CA, and Detroit, MI. In Oakland, a morbidly obese grandmother struggles to raise seven grandchildren, all of whom have asthma. The city of Detroit resembles an abandoned war zone. Yet, hope blossoms in both cities. Health officials, community activists and a new breed of young Urban Pioneers are working to fix their cities by transforming urban wilderness and food deserts into inspirational new models for other troubled communities.

  • "Designing Healthy Communities directly addresses the 'soft underbelly' of our country's future, if one excuses this intentionally harsh pun; how we are building our communities is a major contributor to the obesity, diabetic and asthma epidemics, which may be the foremost threat to future of our country, its economy and quality of life." - Christopher Leinberger, ?President, LOCUS: Responsible Real Estate Developers and Investors

  • "Designing Healthy Communities is changing the way we think about the impacts of the built environment on public health. It is only a matter of time before Dr. Jackson teaches and inspires more people like myself to work towards improved public health through creative design for a better future for all." - George Maier, University of Georgia Master Program in Geography

    DVD (Closed Captioned) / 2012 / (Grades 10-Adult) / 56 minutes

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    By Alice Arnold

    New screen-based sign systems are putting TV-style advertising into the public domain in cities around the globe. These electronic signs are re-shaping urban environments and re-defining areas of public space by intensifying the commercialization of the public sphere.

    In addition to the explosion of screens in public spaces, screens are ubiquitous in work spaces and in people's daily life activities. These seamless, illuminated electronic surfaces are becoming the devices through which we frame our experiences. ELECTRIC SIGNS explores this new screen culture as it unfolds in the global city.

    The film's narrator, a city observer modeled on the critic Walter Benjamin, takes us on a journey through a variety of urban landscapes, examining public spaces and making connections between light, perception and the culture of attractions in today's consumer society.

    The film is structured as a documentary essay in the spirit of city symphony films, and features footage in Hong Kong, Los Angeles, New York, and other cities around the world. Also featured are interviews with prominent lighting designers; advertising and marketing professionals; urban sociologists and visual culture experts; and community activists.

    The filmmakers traveled around the world to collect footage of electronic signs and media facades from cities on four continents. The film captures the beauty and excitement of these illuminated signs while examining their messages, and looks at city life from many perspectives, so as to capture the intensification of urban life amidst the vast spaces beneath the skyscrapers.

  • "Electric Signs provides an incisive guide to the seductive blight of the increasingly ubiquitous intrusions of public space by blinding private media. This hallucinatory landscape is at once a terrible sublime and a numbingly coercive condition that affects us all in ways we only begin to understand. The film lucidly unpacks the the transformation of the city by this synesthetic tsumami and points to grave dangers ahead." - Michael Sorkin, Director of the Graduate Urban Design Program at the City College of New York

  • "Alice Arnold take us on a fascinating journey to urban screens around the world and asks us to see this dynamic electronic landscape through new eyes. The film mixes striking footage of screens large and small with the voices of diverse stakeholders - advertisers, artists, designers, citizens, consumers, activists - and invites us to rethink how we manage public space in contemporary media cities." - Scott McQuire, Associate Professor, School of Culture and Communication, University of Melbourne and author of "The Media City: Media, Architecture and Urban Space" (2008).

  • "The documentary is an ideal introduction for understanding the complexities for contemporary media architecture and media facades in global cities. Through showcasing various examples from cities around the world the viewer understands that large screens in the public domain are perceived by the public in very different ways. Age, cultural background play an important role here. Further the documentary also outlines the risks and challenges for cities, governance and citizens when transforming cities from the pre- and post-industrial age into 21st century cities through digital technology. Arnold captures all these aspects in the documentary and make this film a must for critics and campaigners for large screens in cities." - Dr. M. Hank Haeusler, Media Architecture Institute

    DVD (Color, Closed Captioned) / 2012 / 58 minutes

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    Directed by Alex Gabbay

    What's the best method of growing food for a hungry population of 9.5 billion people: Big, or small?

    In the USA alone there are approximately 5 million fewer farmers today than there were in the 1930s. Economies of scale suggests that bigger is better when it comes to feeding a hungry planet. But bigger often requires mechanization and compromise, such as new strains of E. coli bacteria and rising obesity. Often, big also requires growing the same crop varieties.

    Many countries are realizing there is a price to "big" that's not factored in at the checkout counter and, as a consequence, a "small farmer" revolution is unfolding in many rich countries including the US. What's the best method of growing food for a hungry population of 9.5 billion people? Big, or small?

  • "Ideal for any class exploring sustainability or environmental policy." - Mary Christina Wood, Director, Environmental and Natural Resources Law Program, University of Oregon

    DVD / 2012 / (Grades 7-12, College, Adults) / 29 minutes

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    Directed by Arjun Pandey

    The people of India are faced with a choice: indulge in a Western-style fast food diet, or embrace healthy and indigenous alternatives.

    Everyday, as India awakes, 1.2 billion people need to be fed. By 2050 it could be 1.7 billion. Half a billion small scale farmers supply most of India's food. Traditionally, Indians have eaten the healthy cuisine of India's 29 states, but as people move to the cities there's a growing demand for fast processed food, the so-called 'junk food' accused of causing obesity and chronic health problems.

    Now India is a country on the edge of two possible futures: a future that's well fed and healthy; or a future with Western diets and Western obesity. With so many hungry people to feed, is it possible to eat in ways that are nutritionally and environmentally sustainable? What role do governments have to play in creating economic incentives for sustainable diets?

  • "Takes a complex global issue and presents it in an engaging and accessible way." - Dr. Jonathan Deutsch, Program Director, Culinary Arts and Food Science, Drexel University

    DVD / 2012 / (Grades 7-12, College, Adults) / 29 minutes

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    Directed by Christine Kinyanjui

    Kenyan farmer Moses Shaha journeys through the Tana Delta, where farmers are starting to grow jatropha, a biofuel crop.

    While Africa is short of food, the world is running short of fuel. Until now the fuels that power prosperity have been mostly coal, oil and gas. But these fossil fuels can pollute, and are running short, whereas new technology means cars, even power grids, can run on fuels from crops like ethanol from corn or sugar cane. It's been estimated world demand for biofuels over 20 years will need an area one and a half times the size of Kenya.

    Kenyan Farmer and campaigner Moses Shaha is cynical about biofuels. He journeys through the Tana Delta, where farmers are starting to grow jatropha, a biofuel crop, to understand if is a threat to farming land and food security as he fears, or if biofuels can in fact inspire innovation and help the environment long-term.

  • "Gives a fresh perspective on a phenomenon that has an enormous impact at the global level. Interesting and effective." - Fabio Parasecoli, Coordinator, Food Studies, The New School

    DVD / 2012 / (Grades 7-12, College, Adults) / 29 minutes

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    Directed by Remi Vaughan Richards

    The Nigerian Minister for Agriculture wants to ensure Nigerians eat food grown in Nigeria.

    The proponents of globalization suggest we buy our food from the cheapest sources, no matter where in the world that might be. Now that food prices are rising again, countries rich and poor have begun to reconsider the price of imported food and many governments, from Brazil to Micronesia, are setting quotas in support of local food production.

    Nigeria, the world's seventh most populous country, is one of the world's largest food importers. The charismatic Akinwunmi Ayo Adesina, Nigerian Minister for Agriculture, believes it is his job to ensure Nigerians eat food grown in Nigeria. Experts say the Minister's plans could be a model for other African nations. But do people really want to eat only food grown at home? What impact do food policies have on the local economy and local diets? And in a globalized world, is self-sufficiency really the answer?

  • "Watch Near or Far? And see the model for accelerated African food production." - Per Pinstrup-Andersen, Professor Emeritus, Food, Nutrition and Public Policy, Cornell University,

    DVD / 2012 / (Grades 7-12, College, Adults) / 29 minutes

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    Directed by Ernesto Cabello

    In Lima, Peru, a new generation of top chefs are cooking with traditional ingredients and supporting traditional livelihoods.

    The very future of food -- and farming -- is being re-imagined in a city where nobody dined out 20 years ago, where there is no national tradition of gastronomy, and where there is considerable malnutrition. But in the capital of Peru, a city not so long ago wracked by Shining Path terrorist violence, the top chefs -- men and women like Gaston Acurio, Javier Wong and Pedro Miguel Schiaffino -- believe gastronomy can achieve social justice.

    Can this model really meet the challenge of providing enough food for 9.5 billion people by 2050? Scientists at Lima's agricultural university say we just can't afford to ignore the new models of industrial agriculture in favor of traditional methods. Is there room in the mix for the old and the new?

  • "Highlights the crucial issue of the contrast between local, sustainable, community-based agriculture and high-yield industrialized techniques." - Fabio Parasecoli, Coordinator, Food Studies, The New School,

    DVD / 2012 / (Grades 7-12, College, Adults) / 29 minutes

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    Directed by Alex Gabbay

    Who will grow China's food as young people leave the countryside for the cities?

    In many remote areas of China young people have little choice but to stay on the land, and yet they may face a destitute future, with millions of farmworkers in China earning less than two dollars a day. Although there are some exceptions, farming is not generally seen as a "sexy" career choice.

    The reality is that in China and around the world, young people are fleeing the countryside and moving to the big cities. Who will grow the food that feeds future generations? How can young people be convinced that farming is a good option? Californian-born Rand and his wife Sherry are the founders of Resonance China, a social media agency in Shanghai. They use the internet to create and identify trends and tricks that can create a buzz for global brands. FUTURE FOOD sets Resonance a task: can they make farming popular with young people?

  • "Takes a pressing global problem - the high average age of farmers - and explains it in a way that will connect with students." - Dr. Jonathan Deutsch, Program Director, Culinary Arts and Food Science, Drexel University

    DVD / 2012 / (Grades 7-12, College, Adults) / 29 minutes

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    By Caroline Bacle

    Nearly every major city was built near the convergence of many rivers. As cities grew with the Industrial Revolution, these rivers became conduits for disease and pollution. The 19th-century solution was to bury them underground and merge them with the sewer systems. These rivers still run through today's metropolises, but they do so out of sight.

    LOST RIVERS examines hidden waterways in cities around the world and introduces us to people dedicated to exploring and exposing them. In Montreal, urban explorer Danielle Plamondon and photographer Andrew Emond follow the stony underground tunnels that contain the Riviere Saint-Pierre. In Bresica, Italy, a group of urban explorers conduct popular, officially-sanctioned tours through the city's network of medieval rivers.

    More and more municipal governments are recognizing the wisdom of these explorers and making their once-buried waterways more accessible. Drawing inspiration from Seoul, whose Cheonggyecheon River was opened to the public in the early 2000s after 40 years of being hidden beneath a highway, Yonkers, New York has committed itself to "daylighting" its Saw Mill River, which has been buried under the city's downtown for the past 90 years. In London and Toronto, planners are rethinking the way they manage their rivers for environmental reasons, responding to structural problems that have to increasingly frequent flooding and sewer overflows.

    As climate changes forces us to reconsider the relationship between the built environment and our natural resources, LOST RIVERS brings to life an aspect of urban ecology that has long been kept secret.

  • "Important as well as inspiring" - Science Magazine

  • "A fascinating look at the natural river systems that have long been buried and disrupted by urban development and what these waterways can do to make our cities more livable." - Jason Anderson, Toronto Star

  • "Ultimately hopeful...LOST RIVERS reminds us of the value of the natural world, suggesting that that world is always just a few feet away, waiting to return." - NOW Toronto

    DVD (Color, Closed Captioned) / 2012 / 72 minutes

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    Large urban cities consume large amounts of resources and create vast amounts of waste that needs to be dealt with. For decades little or no concern was paid to this vital issue, but now there is a much greater emphasis being paid to urban sustainability. What is sustainability though and how can cities become more sustainable given that they are already thriving centres? This program examines ways in which policy makers and business introduce strategies that make a city run more efficiently, use less non-renewable resources and reduce their carbon footprint.

    Please contact us for primary and secondary schools pricing.

    Note : The above titles may have some territorial restrictions. Please feel free to send us an enquiry.

    DVD / 2010 / 24 minutes

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    CHINA: The 3 Gorges Dam - will be the largest in the world. It will involve the forced relocation of over 1 million people, and the destruction of hundreds of cultural artefacts and heritage sites. ISRAEL: water conflict - the situation between Israel and Jordan, conservation strategies employed in an arid land. AUSTRALIA - a unique wastewater treatment project poses one solution. Can we feed the world's growing population without irrigation?

    Please contact us for primary and secondary schools pricing.

    Note : The above titles may have some territorial restrictions. Please feel free to send us an enquiry.

    DVD / 2000 / 22 minutes

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