Celebrate Earth Day with Documentaries

Sunday, April 22 marks the 41st Earth Day. Whether it is learning about the number of bags American use every minute or journeying across the earth or learning about the demise of the electric car, I am a fan of documentaries. Grab your library card so you can place holds on the following list of Earth Day-related documentaries!

Bag It – Americans use 60,000 plastic bags every five minutes that we then throw away. But where is ‘away?’ Where do the bags and other plastics end up, and at what cost to our environment, marine life and human health? Follows ‘everyman’ Jeb Berrier as he navigates our plastic world. Jeb is not a radical environmentalist, but an average American who decides to take a closer look at our cultural love affair with plastics.

Earth – A remarkable story of three animal families on a journey across our planet – polar bears, elephants, and humpback whales. An astonishing and heartwarming film filled with adventure, suspense, and humor as it captures rare footage of nature’s wildest and most elusive animals.

Dive! – Inspired by a curiosity about society’s careless habit of sending food straight to landfills, the multi award-winning documentary Dive! follows filmmaker Jeremy Seifert and friends as they dumpster dive in the back alleys and gated garbage receptacles of Los Angeles’ supermarkets. In the process, they salvage thousands of dollars worth of good, edible food, resulting in an eye-opening documentary that is equal parts entertainment, guerrilla journalism, and call to action.

Fresh – Celebrates the farmers, thinkers, and businesspeople across America who are reinventing our food system. Each has witnessed the rapid transformation of our agriculture into an industrial model, and confronted the consequences: food contamination, environmental pollution, depletion of natural resources and morbid obesity. Forging healthier, sustainable alternatives, they offer a practical vision for the future of our food and our planet.

Frozen Planet – The Arctic and Antarctic remain the greatest wildernesses on Earth. The scale and beauty of the scenery and the sheer power of the elements, the weather, the rough ocean, and the ice is unmatched anywhere else on our planet. tells the compelling story of animals such as the wandering albatross, the adelie penguin, and the polar bear, and paints a portrait that will take your breath away, at a moment when, melting fast, the frozen regions of our planet may soon be changed forever.

Human planet – Following in the footsteps of Planet Earth and Life, this epic eight-part blockbuster is a breathtaking celebration of the amazing, complex, profound, and sometimes challenging relationship between humankind and nature. Humans are the ultimate animals – the most successful species on the planet. Each episode focuses on a particular habitat and reveals how its people have created astonishing solutions in the face of extreme adversity.

The last mountain – The fight for the last great mountain in America’s Appalachian heartland pits the mining giant that wants to explode it to extract the coal within, against the community fighting to preserve the mountain and build a wind farm on its ridges instead. Robert Kennedy Jr. joins the fight to preserve the mountain

Plastic Planet – The effects of plastics and their manufacturing on human health and the environment are discussed by scientists, manufacturers, consumers and government officials.

Revenge of the electric car – By 2006, as many as 5,000 electric cars were destroyed by the major car companies that built them. Today, the electric car is back with a vengeance. Without using a single drop of foreign oil, this new generation of car is America’s future: fast, furious, and cleaner than ever. It’s not just the next generation of green cars that’s on the line, it’s the future of the automobile itself.

Solartaxi – The story of an epic, 18-month adventure that spans the globe in a homemade car powered exclusively by the sun. Louis Palmer and Solartaxi meet princes, movie stars, politicians, and scientists, but most importantly they encounter ordinary people and show them that locomotion using only the power of the sun is possible.

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