During the 2014 fall semester, senior Rachael Blum added a honors component to the International Environmental Issues course. She chose to host a short-film film festival with discussions between each film. The project came to fruition through the course, after instructor Brennan Lagasse and Blum were discussing how the rest of the SNC community does not have access to the Sustainability curriculum. This idea was also acknowledged at a Justice Club meeting with current and former students at the time. The students agreed that a discussion-based space must be made accessible to the entire campus.
The Holistic Sustainability Film Night was created, featuring a variety of short films highlighting biodiversity, desertification, capitalism, and welfare with discussions between each. Faculty Brennan Lagasse, Samantha Bankston, and Bob King were present as experts in the topics and aided in facilitating the discussions.
Approximately 23 people attended, and the event was cut short after 3.5 hours spent viewing and discussing the films. Those in attendance were happy to have a space made available to ask questions, express views, and learn about these issues. Snacks were provided by Uncommon Kitchen and the Justice Club. This also benefitted Kelly Benson’s coat drive for Project Mana. Overall, the event was successful.
Films that were shown include: Forest Man, Freegans: Living Outside of Capitalism, Love and Capitalism, How Welfare Does Not Work the Way You Think. All movies can be found on Films For Action.
Engage, Educate and Activate Sustainability Awareness
By Beth Portesi
SNC kicked off the 2nd annual Sustainability Film Festival earlier this week. The aroma of popcorn permeated the TCES lobby Thursday evening as students and members of the community filled TCES 139 for a screening of the film “Chasing Ice.”
The turn out was a huge success, with viewers sitting along the back walls of the room. The documentary film followed James Balog and his Extreme Ice Survey team as they set up time-lapse cameras in the most severe conditions, to document the effects of our changing climate on glaciers. Balog is aware that people are bombarded with contradicting arguments, predictions, and statistics regarding the crisis of our planet. He sets out to send a message to people through his photography of what is happening right now, in our lifetime, due to carbon dioxide emissions. The Denver Post review of the film puts the film’s impression in perspective, “The scale of the glaciers, and the almost hallucinogenic clarity of the images, make the resulting footage, based on three years’ shooting, most impressive. One piece of ice we see breaking off is said to be the size of lower Manhattan.”
The Festival continued on Friday and Saturday with food, drinks, raffles, and prizes donated from businesses in the Tahoe area. The other featured films of the weekend included The Garden. Bidder 70, and Pipe Dreams.
James Balog’s TED talk on the Extreme Ice Survey project with the results of his study.
By Rachael Blum
My role in the Sustainability Club is as co-president with Marina McCoy. We like to give club members opportunities to explore and learn how to be more sustainable in their daily practices while also exploring and providing opportunities to attend neat events pertaining to sustainable matters.
Sustainability Club has had a slow start in regards to recruiting members. We are working on changing a few things, but plan to begin implementing projects including improved recycling on campus, food improvements in the bookstore, student bus passes, fill stations etc. Meetings are Mondays at 6 pm in TCES lounge.
For the Sustainability Film Festival on Nov. 6-9, we have made efforts to make it a Zero Waste Event by teaming up with IVGID’s Waste Not program. There will be recycling and composting bins available on site to help reduce the waste we generate.