Green Corner: Green film starts climate science conversation

Going to the movies during the school year is always a thrill, and now you can watch one on campus. This month’s Green Film is “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power.” 

Al Gore’s 2006 prequel, “An Inconvenient Truth,” swept across the country and generated conversation about climate science. Following the release of the film, Gore founded the Climate Reality Project (CRP) to move “the conversation forward and turn awareness into action.” Since then, he has created an army of thousands of educated individuals ready to support the fight for renewable energies, sustainable practices and the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. 

The CRP unites people who continue the push toward a better and brighter future. Some of Rider’s own faculty, staff and students have become Climate Reality Leaders. 

Sustainability manager Melissa Greenberg became a Climate Reality Leader in 2016 and said, “It’s not just about the facts, but also about the stories of people who have been directly affected by climate change. At the training, we needed to identify our own story, our own aha! moment that drove us to learn more and reinforce a desire to educate others. That reflection was helpful. The stories are what truly inspire me to act and drive me to battle climate change and its effects.”  

Lexi Reynolds, graduate assistant for the Office of Sustainability, said, “Becoming a Climate Reality Leader has helped me mobilize my peers at Rider by training me in effective storytelling and helping me to be more comfortable with the science behind climate change. I always say that learning more about the issue is the first step in being able to inspire people around you to make a change. Becoming a Climate Reality Leader has helped me remember that, even in times when the issues seem out of control, there are always things we can be doing to act as individuals and to inspire even one other person in our lives because we can’t wait any longer to be making these changes.”

April’s Green Film is the sequel to “An Inconvenient Truth.” More than a decade after the release of his film, Gore came back with another stunning installment, “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power,” which follows his travels to educate individuals around the world. Throughout the motion picture, he uses powerful stories to showcase the impacts and despairs of climate change, but it’s not all about the negatives.

Gore explores the green movement and what people need to do in order to prevail in the face of denial. 

When asked about the upcoming Green Film, Climate Reality Leader and Adjunct Assistant Professor of Information Systems Howard Rees said, “I’ve seen ‘An Inconvenient Sequel,’ and it’s what inspired me to take the Climate Reality Project training course — something I enthusiastically recommend to everyone if they have the time and if the location of the training is convenient.”

Becoming a Climate Reality Leader is easy. The CRP offers a free training session taught by Gore, which focuses on how to bring the truth to all people, even climate change deniers. 

Rees said, “An important aspect of the CRP training was that simply throwing out the scientific facts will not often change people’s minds. You must relate the vital issues to them personally, and you need to give them concrete reasons to believe and act on what they themselves are seeing is happening both nearby and globally.”

But rest assured, you don’t have to be an official Climate Reality Leader to care about the planet. You can participate in the green initiatives that Rider has implemented. 

Registering to vote and supporting candidates that make the environment a priority is also a great way to become active in your community. Gore is pushing for action, so by participating in Rider’s initiatives and registering to vote, you will be working toward an even greater change.

Join the Office of Sustainability for a screening of “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power” on April 10 and 11 at 7 p.m. in Sweigart 115. There will be a brief discussion after the film led by Climate Reality Leaders.

— Lauren Margel

Lawrenceville Eco Rep

Printed in the 4/11/18 issue. 

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