6 Must Watch Environment Documentaries For Earth Day

By Sarah Masters

Most Americans believe that the environment will be worse for future generations and almost a quarter of the population give the United States a failing grade on how we are addressing it.  Part of the problem is the confusion and chaos that is spread by the climate change deniers, including our climate change denier-in-chief. To help spread some much needed narratives and facts about the environment, I’ve put together this list of documentary films that help highlight the crisis on this Earth Day and ask that you will watch them and share them with all of your family and friends.  The only way we will save ourselves from the future that is worse is if we do something now.

I want to offer you this quote compliments of David Leonhardt who sent this out in his newsletter:

Today is Earth Day. To mark it, this morning’s newsletter will be shorter than usual, consisting simply of the most powerful paragraph I’ve read recently, which is also the final paragraph of Nathaniel Rich’s new book, “Losing Earth”:
“Everything is changing about the natural world and everything must change about the way we conduct our lives. It is easy to complain that the problem is too vast, and each of us is too small. But there is one thing that each of us can do ourselves, in our homes, at our own pace — something easier than taking out the recycling or turning down the thermostat, and something more valuable. We can call the threats to our future what they are. We can call the villains villains, the heroes heroes, the victims victims and ourselves complicit. We can realize that all this talk about the fate of Earth has nothing to do with the planet’s tolerance for higher temperatures and everything to do with our species’ tolerance for self-delusion. And we can understand that when we speak about things like fuel-efficiency standards or gasoline taxes or methane flaring, we are speaking about nothing less than all we love and all we are.”

Film: Chasing Ice
Contact:   Netflix Director: Jeff Orlowski
Info: Chasing Ice is the  story of one man’s mission to change the tide of history by gathering undeniable evidence of our changing planet.  Within months of that first trip to Iceland, the photographer conceived the boldest expedition of his life: The Extreme Ice Survery.  With a band of young adventurers in tow, he began deploying time-lapse cameras across the brutal Arctic to capture a multiyear record of the world’s changing glaciers.

Film: Chasing Coral
Contact: Netflix  Director: Jeff Orlowski
Info: A team of divers, photographers and scientists set out on a thrilling adventure to document the disappearance of the world’s coral reefs.

Film: Before the Flood
Contact: Participant Media.  Director: Fisher Stevens
Info: Leo DiCaprio travels the world: NASA, Pope, Arctic, Astronaut (1:15:00 – amazing interactive charts at NASA).  VOTE. We know the truth. Final UN speech by DiCaprio. Written advice before credits.

Film: An Ocean Mystery: The Missing Catch
Contact: Smithsonian Channel Director: Alison Barratt
Info: World renowned fisheries expert, Dr Daniel Pauly, suspects that we are dangerously overfishing the world’s fish supply. He believes that bad data mask how close we are to running out of fish, to prove it he and his team have conducted the most ambitious fishing investigation the world has ever seen.

Film: Gasland
HBO Director: Josh Fox
Info: An exploration of the fracking petroleum extraction industry and the serious environmental consequences involved.

Film: Food, Inc.
Contact: Dogwoof Pictures. Distributed by Magnolia Pictures Durector: Robert Kenner
Info: Food, Inc. examines corporate farming in the United States, concluding that agribusiness produces food that is unhealthy, in a way that is environmentally harmful and abusive of both animals and employees.

Sarah Masters is Director of Hartley Media Impact Initiative at Auburn designed to ensure that leaders of moral courage are equipped with films and videos that support and enhance their messages with the power of storytelling.

Find out more about Auburn’s Hartley Media Impact Initiative with Documentary Film.



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