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A Fierce Green Fire

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Monday April 29, 2013. The first big-picture exploration of the environmental movement, spanning fifty years, unfolds in five acts, each with a key story and a compelling character including: David Brower and the Sierra Club, Lois Gibbs and the Love Canal residents and Bill McKibben of Following the film, local activists will speak and lead the discussion.  USA, 2012, 101min. Directed/written/produced by Mark Kitchell.

Kid protesting the Love Canal project. A still from the movie 'A Fierce Green Fire".

A FIERCE GREEN FIRE: The Battle for a Living Planet is the first big picture exploration of the environmental movement  grassroots and global activism spanning fifty years from conservation to climate change. Directed and written by Mark Kitchell, Academy Award-nominated director of Berkeley in the Sixties, and narrated by Robert Redford, Ashley Judd, Van Jones, Isabel Allende and Meryl Streep, the film premiered at Sundance Film Festival 2012, won acclaim at festivals around the world, and in 2013 begins theatrical release as well as educational distribution and use by environmental groups.

Inspired by the book of the same name by Philip Shabecoff and informed by advisors like E.O.Wilson and Tom Lovejoy, A FIERCE GREEN FIRE chronicles the largest movement of the 20th century and one of the keys to the 21st. It brings together all the major parts ofenvironmentalism and connects them. It focuses on activism, people fighting to save their homes, their lives, the future  and succeeding against all odds.

The film unfolds in five acts, each with a central story and character: 

  • David Brower and the Sierra Club's battle to halt dams in the Grand Canyon
  • Lois Gibbs and Love Canal residents' struggle against 20,000 tons of toxic chemicals
  • Paul Watson and Greenpeace's campaign to save whales and baby harp sealss
  • Chico Mendes and Brazillian rubbertrappers' fights to save the Amazon rainforest
  • Bill McKibben and the 25-year effort to addres the impossible issue - climate change

Surrounding these main stories are strands like environmental justice, going back to the land, and movements of the global south such as Wangari Maathai in Kenya. Vivid archival film brings it all back and insightful interviews with activists shed light on what it all means. The film offers a deeper view of environmentalism as civilizational change, bringing our industrial society into sustainable balance with nature. It's the battle for a living planet.