Category Archives: Film Series

November Film: DIVIDE IN CONCORD

November Film: DIVIDE IN CONCORD
When: November 14 at 7 pm   Where:  Peacock Theater

In this documentary, Patriot Jean Hill (84) took her battle to ban plastic bottles in Concord, Mass, and teaches us what the combination of science along with the charm, courage, and determination of a concerned grandmother can accomplish.

In 1775, Concord patriots fired the ‘shot heard round the world’ that began the Revolution.

Jean Hill

Over 200 years later, Jean Hill is ready to fire the next shot, and it’s directly at the bottled water industry. 84 year old Jean has spent three years trying to get her town to ban single serve bottled water, and this is looking like her last attempt. With strong opposition from local merchants, and a town that has already voted against her three years in a row, will it ever be possible for Jean to win?

“A fascinating, entertaining look at how persistence and citizen action still mean something in a corporate-controlled society.” Michael Moore

Inspired by learning about the amount of garbage that these single serving bottles create, Jean actually tries to do something about it, which is something that we could all learn a lesson from. Divide In Concord follows her efforts to finally ban bottled water in her town, even after her previous attempts have failed.

She’s feisty, and doesn’t let her age slow her down, standing up to anybody who would go against her. Many of us wouldn’t even think of banning bottled water, but the effects of those empty plastic containers are drastic, and Jean won’t stand for it any longer.

The real highlight of the film, besides Jean and her frequently foul mouth, are the arguments against her bottle ban. Complete ignorance of the damage these bottles cause, and the kind of extreme reasons her opponents come up with, are hilarious to listen to, mainly because of how ridiculous they are.

Trailer: https://youtu.be/TCve9xVj_yg

82 minutes. SDH captions.

October Film: Oil and Water

When:  October 10, 7:00 pm    Where:  Peacock Hall

Oil and Water, a multiple award-winning documentary film, is an intimate portrait of two young people finding their voices and trying to beat incredible odds as they confront one of the world’s worst toxic pollution disasters in Ecuador and the Amazon Rainforest.

For decades U.S. oil companies colluded with a corrupt Ecuadorian government to recklessly pollute the land and waters of the Amazon Rainforest.  Native tribes were displaced, much of the local culture destroyed, and cancer and other disease rates increased.

But two teenage heroes emerge among the many that have been fighting throughout the destruction and since.  As the title implies, oil and water do not mix well.  Eight years in the making, this documentary follows Hugo and David on a journey that leads them to explore a more just future for people around the world born with oil beneath their feet.

The film is 72 min. long with captions.

Oil and Water reveals the social and ecological trauma of our global fossil fuel culture and how it shapes the lives of an indigenous population in Ecuador. The film also demonstrates the collaborative, visionary creativity that can also emerge from that space of pain, urgency, and love for humanity and our life support systems. I have followed the struggle of the Cofan people for decades and just when I thought all hope was lost, this film gives me reason for renewing my conviction in the power of struggle, the power of the people hit hardest by environmental injustice – and their allies – to imagine and forge new possibilities.” David Naguib Pellow, Professor of Sociology, University of Minnesota, Author, Resisting Global Toxics: Transnational Movements for Environmental Justice.

“Great film…arresting…Oil and Water is the most complete portrait of how societies might move beyond ‘the oil curse’ to use resources from crude development to benefit the local communities from which it is found. Or, possibly, as a launching point to standardize and regulate best practices in the entire industry…It is a story of recovery but also of the need for aggressive assistance and understanding. Oil and Water puts a very human face on the ground-level of the extraction that is fueled by distant consumers.” Dr. Brian Black, Professor, History and Environmental Studies, Penn State Altoona, Author, Crude Reality: Petroleum in World History.

“An important film–it puts a human face on the very real and severe consequences of our thirst for oil. Yet it also gives viewers hope in the way it shows how two young adults can make meaningful changes to the world around them.” Dr. Benjamin Sovacool, Director of Danish Center for Energy Technology, AU-Herning, Associate Professor of Law, Founding Director of the Energy Security and Justice Program, Vermont Law School, Author, Energy and Ethics: Justice and the Global Energy Challenge.

Official Website and trailer: To see a trailer, go to http://www.oilandwaterdocumentary.com/ and click on the documentary’s lead photo.

September Film: NO IMPACT MAN

September Film: NO IMPACT MAN

When:  September 12, 7:00 pm

Where:  Peacock Hall

This award-winning documentary tells the story of author Colin Beavan, who went completely “green” in NYC, giving up virtually all of the comforts of modern living — electricity, gas-powered transportation, non-local food and landfill waste disposal — in a drastic effort to curb his environmental impact. 
The camera captures many joyful moments, such as stomping on laundry in the bathtub and shopping at a dairy farm, as well as the toll this well-intentioned, year-long project takes on Beavan’s wife and 2-year old baby daughter. Ultimately, it saves them over $1,000/month and brings this family closer together. 

In November 2006 author Colin Beavan, started a research project for his next book ‘No Impact Project’. Intending to actualize some of his Zen Buddhist beliefs, this newly self-proclaimed environmentalist asked himself:
“Why do I have to wait for congress to do something? Why do I have to wait for big business to do something? Why don’t I do something?! “

He could no longer avoid pointing the finger at himself. He left behind his liberal complacency for a vow to make as little environmental impact as possible for one year.
No more automated transportation, no more electricity, no more non-local food, no more material consumption… no problem. That is, until his espresso-guzzling, retail-worshipping wife Michelle and their two year-old daughter are dragged into the fray.

The documentary shares the highs and lows of the families journey to sustainable living, including Michelle’s year off from consuming fashion. From ditching meat and shopping from bulk food bins and farmers markets.

Michelle called him a “1900’s house wife” as he cooked, composted, and cleaned for the family all without relying on most 21st century conveniences. Colin made all of their cleaning products with borax, baking soda (the box was compostable) and vinegar.

The film transitions to reality-tv territory at times when the couple have heartfelt discussions about the possibility of adding another member to their family, and Michelle’s ‘eco-slips’ in regards to coffee and ‘camping at home’ despite a hate of camping. While these hurdles can be dealt with from the family unit, some of the biggest challenges that the household faced was both positive and negative media coverage.

After the experiment was over, Colin and Michelle did bring back the the electricity and their fridge but still don’t use the freezer, a dishwasher, an AC, or have a TV. They also traveled by air to see family. They remain very conscious of their trash output. They continue to try and not buy anything new, preferring to source from secondhand places. They’ve lost weight, sleep better, have more energy, and save over $1,000/month.

Trailer: https://youtu.be/D58kZfqTrjY

 

 

Civil DISOBEDIENCE, fighting for Our Environment

Civil Disobedience, fighting for OUR Environment

When:  August 8, 7:00 pm
Where:  Peacock Hall

DISOBEDIENCE is a persuasive and handsomely produced documentary from the activist organization 350.org. Disobedience tells the David vs. Goliath tale of front line leaders battling for a livable world. Filmed in the Philippines, Turkey, Germany, Canada, Cambodia and the United States, it weaves together these riveting stories with insights from the most renowned voices on social justice and climate. Disobedience is personal, passionate and powerful — the stakes could not be higher, nor the mission more critical.

A panel discussion will follow this 41 minute film — See Discussants List Below

Residents who’ve been brave enough to step up and risk being arrested will share their stories. We’ll ask the questions: When is it justified? Does it help or hurt a cause? Does it have a lasting benefit?

The future of the planet is under attack. In just the past few years, we’ve witnessed unprecedented waves of brutal storms, massive oil spills engulfing our oceans and sea life, and the hottest temperatures ever recorded in human history. Climate change is real, and it’s up to the will of the people to reverse its adverse effects. This is the argument that drives the film.

The film begins with a critical eye on the actions undertaken at the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Summit in Paris. While each world leader seemed satisfied by the outcomes of their conference, the film contends that their final agreement does little to change the tide of global warming in the years to come. Believing that the call for real and lasting change cannot be answered by often impotent politicians, the film showcases a diverse group of activists throughout the globe who have taken the fight into their own hands.

Lidy Nacpil, a spokesperson for the Philippine Movement for Climate Justice, works to galvanize a citizen force against a proposed coal plant in Batangas. The plant would produce over 7 million metric tons of CO2 emissions every year, and therefore poses a severe environmental threat. The country knows from experience how the voice of its people can inspire wide sweeping change. In 1986, urgent protests led to the ousting of dictator Ferdinand Marcos. A growing community of like-minded citizens hope to spark the same level of passion and outcry against the region’s blossoming fossil fuel industries.

In Canada, a rapidly expanding pipeline is gradually polluting the purity of the ocean water and other natural resources. Area residents refuse to take a payout from big corporations in exchange for their complacency. They choose to fight.

In one profile after another, DISOBEDIENCE introduces us to inspiring groups of people who are advocating for a better way of life for their families, their communities and their planet. In the process, scientists and scholars educate viewers on the role of civil disobedience in affecting reform, the economic impact of environmental catastrophe, and the myriad of social issues which are worsening in the midst of climate change.

Trailer:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lmynS5zkbQM

PANEL DISCUSSION

When Is Civil Disobedience warranted? Add your voice to those of the three panelists discussing non-violent direct action in defense of the environment on Wednesday, August 8th after the movie sponsored by Sustainable Rossmoor. The film DISOBEDIENCE starts at 7:00 pm in Peacock Hall, the panel discussion follows at 7:45 pm. Information about the film is in the movie section.
The panelists will share their stories and rationale for occasions when they veered from their professional lives to lead or join with others to defy authority. They include Steve Nadel, Janice Kirsch, and Rossmoor resident Bob Hanson; the moderator will be Marcia McLean, President of Sustainable Rossmoor. There will be time for your questions and comments.

PANELISTS

STEVE NADEL states that the essential message of non-violent civil disobedience is “It is time to end Business as Usual. When our institutions fail to protect or actively endanger our health, environment and climate we must step in to say the harm must end now.” Steve started his political organizing at the height of the Viet Nam war, and the first Earth Day in 1970. Later in the 1980’s, he took direct action at the Port Chicago Naval Weapons station to stop arms shipments to Central America. Recently, he helped organize a blockade by Sunflower Alliance at the Kinder Morgan rail lines in Richmond, when they attempted to sneak in fracked Baaken Crude to the Chevron refinery. Steve has testified multiple times at the Bay Area Air Quality Management District but also is ready to lead a protest at the Phillips 66 marine terminal in Rodeo to prevent expansion designed to accommodate Alberta tar sands.

JANICE KIRSCH, MD, MPH, is a physician who has been deeply concerned about climate disruption since her Berkeley pre-med days in the 1970’s. She has also been an activist with Physicians for Social Responsibility and been arrested for peaceful direct action on two occasions. She serves on the steering committee for 350 Bay Area, on the Board of Directors of The Climate Mobilization, and as a presenter for The Climate Reality Project.
Since climate chaos is the greatest public health threat that humankind has ever faced, she sees civil disobedience as a medical as well as a moral calling.
BOB HANSON, a Rossmoor resident, is an anti-war and anti-nuclear weapons activist who plans on being arrested Monday, Aug. 6th for the 4th time. This will happen at the annual Livermore Labs protest on Hiroshima Day. Bob was a founding member of both the Rossmoor Peace & Justice Club and Sustainable Rossmoor. Bob is very passionate about the environment, but has yet to be arrested for any actions in this area. But he says: “I won’t rule it out.”

To The Ends of the Earth – July Film

July Film:  To the Ends of the Earth

When: Wednesday, July 11, 7:00-8:30 pm   Where: Peacock Hall 

(2016), 82 minutes

Sustainable Rossmoor will show TO THE ENDS OF THE EARTH — a new film about extreme oil extraction deep under the Arctic, from the Alberta tar sands, and from oil shale under at the Colorado River headwaters. This award-winning film is narrated by Emma Thompson and details the environmental problems resulting from the use of extreme oil extraction technologies.  It also reveals the struggles of concerned citizens living at the destructive frontiers beyond traditional energy, and interviews those who fight for a different future with environmentally sensitive energy solutions.

In 2005, something unexpected happened, the growth of the traditional fossil fuel energy market stopped. The age of extreme energy was born. Unconventional energy extraction is defined by both the geology and the geography of a resource. All forms are technically difficult, energy intensive (requiring more energy to harvest than traditional methods), expensive, and pose serious environmental risks.

What do you do when the river catches fire?

The film bears witness to humanity’s descent further down the “resource pyramid.” At the top of the pyramid, energy is easy to find and cheap, and it requires minimal labor and has the highest capital and energy return on investment (EROI), as in the case of Saudi oil. In the middle of the pyramid, resources are more difficult and costly to extract, as is the case for mining the Alberta tar sands or hydraulic fracturing for natural gas. “Drill, baby, drill” has become “mine, baby, mine,” “steam, baby, steam,” and “frack, baby, frack.” At the bottom of the pyramid, there are energy resources such as Utah’s and Colorado’s oil shale, the economic feasibility of which, despite billions in investments, remains uncertain. Extreme energy is much less profitable, and there are diminishing returns on investment.

After 10 years of rather intensive global development,

unconventional resources now comprise 42% of the planet’s energy mix.

In the words of interviewee and author Richard Heinberg, “Given that 95% of all economic transactions in our globalized economy bear the footprint of fossil fuels, does this spell the end of economic growth for our civilization?”  We meet the people uniquely positioned to watch this global crossroads unfold, and who are fighting for something different.

The first site of extreme extraction revealed in the film is under the ice . . . at the ends of the earth – the Arctic Sea. The United States Geological Survey has given a 50% probability that there are 90 billion barrels of oil under the Arctic; that’s about 3 years of global energy consumption. With the decline in the price of oil, there has been a decrease in commercial interest, except for those nearby countries whose economies are heavily oil-dependent: Russia, Norway, and Canada. International companies including Chevron and Exxon-Mobile have multiple contracts in the Arctic with these countries.

In Arctic waters, oil exploration starts with seismic testing; large air guns send blasts aimed at the bottom of the ocean to determine the presence of oil. “Aside from nuclear explosions, these are the loudest man-made sounds. These shocks that happen every 12 seconds around the clock for months at a time, can be heard from 3,000 km away —basically over 1/2 of the Atlantic,” reports marine biologist Lindy Weilgart. She has been studying the effects of underwater sounds on whales, dolphins, narwalls, and other sea-life.

We meet the mayor of an Inuit village in Canada’s high Arctic (on Baffin Island) who is concerned that seismic testing for oil in the ocean is blowing out the eardrums of the seals and narwhals that the Inuit hunt to survive. There have been significant die-offs of these animals who are unable to find air holes in the ice or hunt for food when their own sonar systems are compromised. The Inuit people have taken the Canadian government to court for granting permits for seismic testing.

Next, the film tells the story of bitumen and the Albert tar sands oil industry. The Canadian film director, David Lavallee, has experienced first-hand the tragedies of Tar Sands mining. The production of oil there, consumes huge amounts of water and power – more than exists in Alberta. They must frack for natural gas and dam rivers in neighboring provinces for the resources needed to process the dirty tar sands, polluting the territories multi-fold and changing river life forever.  It has halted economic growth in the provinces. A new nuclear power plant is planned in Saskatchewan to keep up the pace.

The Alberta Tar Sands are the major source of oil used in the US and is the second largest source of energy production worldwide.  It is economically unsustainable.

We learn more about EROI, energy return on investment, by following the money and doing the math. The cost of energy investment to harvest oil more than doubled between 2005 to 2013 at the Tar Sands. This does not include the cost of water, or the dumping of tailings, the destruction of farmland, and so on.

We also learn that the world economy is built on investments dependent on expanding economies. As energy becomes more expensive, an economy built on fossil fuel energies will grind to a halt at some point. It cannot continue expanding. This will happen while there’s plenty of oil still in the ground, but much of the world’s earth, air, and water is fouled beyond repair. We learn about the concept of Degrowth — the slowing of the consumer society that will happen either by design or by disaster.

Burning oil shale, a rock that ignites, is an even more expensive source of energy. It is the resource that exists under the Grand Canyon and similar sites. It’s earned the label “extremely unconventional energy.” It has never shown a net profit.

As is true of every form of extreme extraction, environmental damage is necessary.

As of 2013, 15 million people in the United States lived within 1 mile of a frack well. The number has increased markedly since then.  Many million children attend school near frack wells. Typically, after 2 years, the well’s natural gas (methane) production decreases and it is no longer profitable. New wells are then drilled. All wells invariably leak. The methane can be seen from outer space, with the US fracking operations being the worst. Fracking is also extremely thirsty for water, and highly polluting of it. First Nations have been joined by others to fight pipelines, water permits, and port expansions. Natural gas was once heralded as a cleaner source of energy than coal.

The greenhouse footprint of natural gas is two to three times worse the coal

due to methane release into the atmosphere.

Switching to 100% renewable energy will not be enough. For the world to become sustainable, we’ll need to consume less. The film clarifies the economic effects — not just of energy and its extraction, but of growth and also degrowth. We might want to consider slowing of the consumer society by design rather than by disaster.

Watch the 2 minute trailer:  http://endsofearthfilm.com/

SRmovie: FOOD FOR CHANGE

FOOD FOR CHANGE

Wednesday, May 2, 7:00-8:30 pm,  Where: Peacock Hall

The Vegan Club and Sustainable Rossmoor are cosponsoring the documentary film FOOD FOR CHANGE.

In a time when ‘local,’ ‘organic,’ and ‘sustainable’ are terms regularly used by large grocery chains to create an illusion of a healthy food delivery scheme, it’s worth looking at a contrasting economy that truly delivers on the promise  – the American food cooperative – and the role that co-ops have played for generations connecting consumers to farmers with democracy, honesty, and transparency. FOOD FOR CHANGE examines the role food co-ops played in their pioneering quest for organic foods, and their current efforts to create regional food systems. It shows cooperatives’ focus on local economies and issues of food security.

We take a look back at a time in America when food cooperatives were commonplace during the Great Depression but were threatened by the post-WWII consumerism and large agri-businesses. Industrial farms grew bigger in size and smaller in number, relying on synthetic chemicals and mechanization to grow cheap food and reap maximal profits. Two million family farms were driven out of business.

But during the tumultuous events of the 1960s, food co-ops re-emerged as an alternative to factory farms and corporate-owned grocery chains. Food co-ops were seen as a force for dynamic social and economic change in American culture. What began as an obscure stance from a counterculture has resulted in a market for natural and organic foods valued at over $100 billion annually. Today they are turning to a new cause and niche market: locally sourced food.

The film profiles several food co-ops that have revived neighborhoods and communities – right in the shadows of corporate agribusinesses and supermarket chains. It’s an inspiring example of community-centered economies thriving in an age of globalization.

This 82 minute film has SDH Captions and will be followed by a discussion and a raffle. The film was made possible by a donation from the Rossmoor Farmers Market. The Market celebrates its re-opening on Friday, May 20th from 9 am until 1 pm.

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/98561491

This is an uplifting but honest film about the relationships between the environment, food, economics, democracy, and government. It’s an opportunity to understand the role of politics and policy in our own lives and what we can do about it where we live. In many cities and towns, the Farmers Market offers some of these same choices.

“This film should inspire anyone interested in creating socially just, community supported, and economically viable enterprises.”

Marion Nestle, Professor of Nutrition, Food Studies, and Public Health, New York University, Author, Food Politics

“Food for Change is just the kind of nourishment our minds and hearts need right now! The documentary explains key historical moments and trends, traces the multiple roots of the cooperative food movement, and illustrates how groups and communities are taking charge of their food futures. This is an indispensable resource for people who want to understand how a cooperative vision can guide one of the most important domains of the economy and our lives.”

George Cheney, Professor of Communication, University of Colorado-Colorado Springs, Author, Values at Work

“I felt energized by the movie. I loved all of the historical background and couldn’t help feel that what we’re doing will be historic someday too. The movie made me believe that we can do anything!”

Linda Balek, Steering Committee Member, Food Shed Co-op, Woodstock, IL (start-up co-op)

Film Schedule Earth Awareness Week 2018

FILM SCHEDULE:  EARTH AWARENESS WEEK 2018

All films shown in Peacock Theater

Mon, 4/16, 1:00-3:00 pm, BECOMING CALIFORNIA (116 min)

An epic story of environmental change on America’s western edge. From geologic origins hundreds of millions of years ago to present day and beyond, Becoming California takes a look at change on a grand scale. It reveals how humans’ approach toward the environment dictates the nature of change, and how a shift in attitudes can foster healthy, functioning ecosystems amidst vibrant economies, sustaining not just nature, but people, too. Watch the Trailer:

 

 

Tues, 4/17, 10:00am – 12:00, OVER TROUBLED WATERS (45 min)

This award-winning documentary produced by Restore the Delta and narrated by Ed Begley, Jr. details the dangers to the largest estuary on the west coast as it becomes more salty, more shallow, and warmer with its wildlife dying off as a result of the peripheral canal taking northern CA water to the Los Angeles. The new threat — the delta tunnel project — is avoidable with other ways to create a sustainable water supply. Click to view the trailer: .

NB:  After the showing, Sustainable Rossmoor President, Marcia McLean, will interview JOAN BUCHANAN who served as our Assemblywoman, representing AD16 in Sacramento from 2008-2014. Joan is currently President of the Board of Restore the Delta.

 

Wed, 4/18. 8:30-10:00 am, Peacock REVENGE OF THE ELECTRIC CAR (90 min)

Director of Who Killed the Electric Car? comes back with an inspiring and entertaining account of a revolutionary moment in human transportation as he follows developments at General Motors, Nissan, and Tesla, where these auto makers race each other to create the first, best, and most popular in the new EV market. Watch theTrailer

 

Wed, 4/18. 10:45 am -12:00 pm, Peacock JUST EAT IT: A FOOD WASTE STORY (85 min)

A fun film that follows filmmakers and food lovers Jen and Grant who dive into the issue of waste from farm, through retail, all the way to the back of their own fridge. After catching a glimpse of the billions of dollars of good food that is tossed each year in North America, they pledge to quit grocery shopping cold turkey and survive only on foods that would otherwise become landfill. But, as Grant’s addictive personality turns full tilt towards food rescue, the ‘thrill of the find’ has unexpected consequences. Watch the Trailer:

 

Also on Wed, 4/18, 1:00-2:30 pm, Repeat Showing: REVENGE OF THE ELECTRIC CAR

Director of Who Killed the Electric Car? comes back with an inspiring and entertaining account of a revolutionary moment in human transportation as he follows developments at General Motors, Nissan, and Tesla, where these auto makers race each other to create the first, best, and most popular in the new EV market. Watch the Trailer: .

 

 

For more information, on the films please feel free to contact the event Chair, Carol Weed, carol4ofa@gmail.com.

FOR COMPLETE EARTH AWARENESS WEEK’S EVENT CALENDAR: CLICK HERE

The Nuclear Option by NOVA (2017)

When: Wednesday April 11, 7:00-8:30 pm  Title: The Nuclear Option by NOVA (2017)

Where: Peacock Hall

Five years after the earthquake and tsunami that triggered the unprecedented meltdown of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, scientists  wonder: what’s next for Fukushima? What’s next for Japan? What’s next for a world that seems determined to jettison one of our most important carbon-free sources of energy? Despite the catastrophe, a new generation of nuclear power seems poised to emerge phoenix-like from the ashes. NOVA investigates how the realities of climate change, the inherent limitation of renewable energy resources, and the optimism and enthusiasm of a new generation of nuclear engineers is seeding a Renaissance in nuclear technology. What are the lessons from Fukushima and how might we be able to build a safe nuclear future?  (One hour film with optional discussion after.)

Trailer:  http://youtu.be/u1wKpZsU2-o

Q&A Afterwards:  Nuclear energy engineer, Vicki Swisher will be the film’s discussant. She has over 40 years experience in the commercial nuclear industry, and has worked in almost every area of nuclear development including design, construction, plant startup, licensing, and project management during her career. Vicki is a Rossmoor resident and a director in Fourth Mutual.

Recent SR opinion articles regarding concerns about utilizing the Nuclear Power option:

Nuclear Power Is Not Green Energy

Nuclear Power: Salvation or Catastrophe?

This Month’s Featured Films: TIDEWATER and THE BURDEN

WHEN: Wednesday, March 14, 7:00-9:00 pm WHERE: Peacock Hall

There are two short documentaries co-featured for March, Presented by Sustainable Rossmoor and Cosponsored by Informed Rossmoor Voices.  Both documentaries focus to varying degrees on the impacts on military preparedness and national security resulting from fossil fuel dependence and climate change driving rising waters. They highlight how our military is responding to climate change and is at the forefront of innovation and providing leadership to our government. These films have been screened at the White House, the Pentagon, the US War College, NATO Headquarters in Belgium, and are in the Annapolis Naval Academy curriculum. Our special invited discussant, U.S. Marine Major Jonathan Morgenstein (more information below), will be at the showing to respond to your questions. This event is free of charge and open to invited quests.

TIDEWATER won the 1st juried prize as the best environmental film at last year’s San Francisco Green Film Festival. It’s a personal story of a community accustomed to hardship and sacrifice through its military service. Hampton Roads, Virginia, a region relatively unknown nationwide, is especially vulnerable to sea level rise and its effects on military readiness and our overall national security. With 14 military installations spread across 17 local jurisdictions, it has our highest concentration of military assets in the country, where 1 in 6 residents are connected to the military. Their homes, schools, hospitals, and families are increasingly struggling to keep up with the effects of rising waters, and the military and all the surrounding municipalities are working toward solutions.  They are coming together to create a new approach to building a resilient America, ready for the environmental realities of the 21st century. If Hampton Roads succeeds, it will strengthen national security, enhance economic prosperity, and create a powerful template for success — a model other regions can use to prepare for the inevitable.

The second film, THE BURDEN,

has been called the most effective communications tool ever made for shifting the debate on clean energy as one of urgent national security. It is the first documentary to tell the story of our dependence on fossil fuels as the greatest long-term national security threat confronting the U.S., and how the military is leading our transition away from oil. Renewables are redefining the meaning of energy independence. The troops are crying out to unleash us from the tether of fossil fuel. But is Congress listening?

Our special invited discussant, U.S. Marine Major Jonathan Morgenstein

will speak about the issues raised in these films and answer audience questions. He is a specialist in national security policy and conflict-resolution training and has focused on Security Sector Reform, Clean Energy, and Human Rights — particularly in the developing world including the Middle East, North Africa, and Latin America. He has appeared on ABC, Al Jazeera, BBC Arabic, CNN, MSNBC, and PBS. He has been published in the New York Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Politico, The Hill, and other publications.

Film trailers:

https://www.amresproject.org/tidewater-film/

https://www.amresproject.org/the-burden/

More about the film discussant:

Major Morgenstein has served over 25 years in the US Marine Reserves, including two tours in Iraq and one in Bosnia. He served as the senior policy adviser for Veterans, Intelligence, Foreign, Armed Services, Homeland Security and Foreign Policy for Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI). He helped to establish the first Office of Global Strategic Engagement and also the Office of Rule of Law and International Humanitarian Policy. He served as a human rights advocate for Refugees International in Darfur, and as a High School Social Studies Teacher in both New Hampshire and San Francisco.

He is a member of Operation Free – a coalition of veterans and national security experts who believe oil dependence and climate change pose threats to our national security. They advocate for securing America with clean energy. http://operationfree.net/

Major Morgenstein is the founding President and CEO of Empowerment Solar. Over the past three years, his company has designed and installed distributed, commercial-scale solar electric systems for Palestinian businesses on the West Bank.

Major Morgenstein has been a fellow with the Truman National Security Project since 2006, and served from 2011-2014 as co-Director of Truman’s Middle East/North Africa Experts Group. The Truman National Security Project is a nationwide organization of frontline civilians, veterans, political professionals, and policy experts who conduct education and advocacy work on national security and foreign policy issues in the United States. It’s in this education and advocacy role that he comes to Rossmoor.

IMPORTANT facts FROM “THE BURDEN” FILM (based on 2014 data)

  • The US consumes 1/5 of global oil.
  • 1/5 of US Oil imports pass through the Strait of Hormuz in the Persian Sea
  • The price of gas might be $3.40/gal but the true cost is $7-8/gal if cost of US military protection of the world’s “life blood” were factored in.
  • $85 billion is spent by the Pentagon annually to protect vulnerable chokepoints (narrow passes in water ways).
  • For every $1 the price of a barrel of oil goes up, it costs the military $130 million.
  • The Department of Defense consumes 20% of federal budget.
  • “That fuel resupply mission [of oil] came to dominate everything we did.” (quote from the film).
  • The military is the best source of first responders in the world to address global natural disasters: emergency & rescue to recovery every 2 weeks on average.
  • Subsidies (in million dollars annually):  $ 70 Fossil Fuels; $ 17 Ethanol; $12 Renewables
  • “What’s holding us back is that so many of the conservatives, of which I am one, do not see our consumption of oil as a national security issue. If you’ve been in war in the Middle East, as I have, you might see that differently.”  Mayor Greg Ballard, Indianapolis, Lt Col (Ret) from the US Marine Corps.
  • Veterans in Congress:  65% in 1973 vs 19% in 2013
  • “Change is coming. You can either anticipated manage it and shape it, or let it just control you.”  Bob Ingles, (R) Congressman S Carolina (2005-2011) launched the Energy and Enterprise Initiative in 2012 — a nationwide public engagement campaign promoting conservative and free-enterprise solutions to energy and climate challenges.