Author Archives: Emy

Environmental Film Fest 2018

By Kathryn Allen

2018 marks the 13th year of the Environmental Film Fest.  This year the first movie in our line up,  revisits Al Gore with his second movie on Climate Change – Truth to Power: An Inconvenient Sequel – which was released in 2017, eleven years after his first movie An Inconvenient Truth.  

Eagle View Group began the Environmental Film fest that same year, and Gores movie was in one of our first film fests.  In over the decade since then, Gore has championed the understanding of climate change and its impact on the Earth: and with his Climate Project training sessions held numerous times each year around the world, he has prepared hundreds of leaders for outreach to thousands of people.

An Inconvenient Sequel brings us updated information on climate change and also tells the story of this remarkable man who has faithfully championed this planetary message.

This past summer, I had the opportunity to meet a National Geographic underwater photographer, Brian Skerry, who filmed our next movie, one we Hope you will Sea!  (Due to the Terms and Conditions of the distributor, I must refer you to the EFF website at this point for specific information.

This movie captures the profound beauty of Earths oceans, and inspires us with the words and work of Sylvia Earle (aka Her Deepnessand a founding member of OceanElders), and a group of young underwater explorers who come from inner city neighborhoods. We are drawn into the wonders of Earths watery world, the perils caused by human behaviors, and the hope that  if we act in time, there is much we can do to care for the vast marine part of our planet.

Next comes a video montage of the best, most moving, and funniest short films on the environment that the EFF planning committee found after hours of searching the web. We have put them all together for you, and trust that you will thoroughly enjoy them!

Rounding out EFF 2018 is Before the Flood from actor, environmental activist, and UN messenger of peace, Leonardo DiCaprio, and filmmaker Fisher Stevens. DiCaprio opens the movie with a work of 16th Century art he saw as a child – The Garden of Earthly Delights by Hieronymous Bosch.  This ancient piece was one of the first works of art to see Earth as a sphere, and both the beauty and destruction that could define it.  DiCaprio launches his narrative with this to explore the dramatic planetary alterations occurring due to a changing climate.  He uses many of his own personal experiences to illustrate the story and promotes actions we as individuals and a society can take to prevent further disruption to life on earth.  He urges viewers to push elected representatives of the people to hold the interests of the planet and its inhabitants ahead of the interests of corporate greed and destruction.  

Environmental Film Fest 2018 will be held in the Olin Center at Augustana College, 733 35th St., Rock Island.  Doors open at 10:30, the movies will run from 11 am – 5 pm.   The Fest is open to the public and admission is free.  Snacks, coffee and tea will be available throughout the day. Details are available at:

Please join us!



February Book Club: Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil de Grasse Tyson

By Emily Clever

Astrophysics is a branch of science that can both amaze and intimidate many people. Even though I consider myself a bit of a science lover, I too am intimidated by astrophysics and the vastness of our universe. I have found biology, chemistry and ecology to be easier because they can be tangible.  I can examine animals and plants. I can see changes of color or state of chemicals. I can see the interactions of species in a food web.

The universe, however, is not tangible in the same way. We can see the faint glow of stars and other planets, but we can’t touch them. We can see photos of other planets from satellites that have been sent to collect information, but we can’t set foot on them. We cannot visit a neighboring universe on a weekend getaway.

Astrophysics for People in a Hurry makes this challenging branch of science more accessible to those of us who may be intimidated by the topic. Neil deGrasse Tyson explains the field, its history and future, without using complex equations or jargon.

I hope you enjoy it too and join the discussion on February 27th at 7PM at River Action in Davenport.