The Moral Imagination to Combat Climate Change
April 16, 2016 by
Anna Occhuizzo in
Recently, AIEK sponsored, along with Oceana, a screening of the new Josh Fox documentary, How to Let Go of the World and Love All the Things Climate Can’t Change. The evening with the Let Go and Love Tour at the Sun-Ray Cinema, an important gem in Jacksonville, was a night of insights beginning with feeling we are doomed and ending with dancing in front of the stage. Sound strange? Fox’s How to Let Go film was an eye-opener for this writer and many of those in the audience.
The film starts out with Fox dancing to the Beatle’s Obla Di Obla Da tune in celebration of the victory in the Delaware Basin and New York where he was part of movement to stop fracking. Shortly after that, he finds a tree he planted as a child is dying from a certain beetle attack. Researching, he finds that specific type of tree is being ravaged from South to North – due to less hard frosts, allowing the parasitic insect to flourish. So begins his quest to find an answer to climate change.
Beginning with coverage of Hurricane Sandy’s devastation, Fox interviews environmentalists, climatologists and geophysicists, presenting a pretty depressing picture regarding the next 50 years and beyond. Fox admits to being completely depressed and paralyzed at this point, until he harkens back to his win in NY. He realizes that he needs to find the things climate can’t change: “civic virtues, courage, democracy, love, human rights, resilience, creativity, innovation” in his words. Then he packs up and seeks out people all over the globe to explain the actions they are taking to prevent the endangerment of their lands. From the American West, to Amazonian Rain Forest, to Zambia, Samoa and China, he finds people who are coming together to fight the behemoths threatening their way of life. He presents everything from standing (or sitting in canoes) in front of heavy earthmoving equipment to giving up our consumerism way of life.
One of the last interviews takes place on the Great Wall of China with environmentalist Ella Chou of National Renewable Energy Labs, who is an envoy to China advising on community solar. This was perhaps the most powerful part of the film for me personally as she states, “I believe there is something called the moral imagination.” She goes on to explain that this requires thinking out of the box and viewing success the ability to apply a “moral value about what you want as a person, as an individual, what you want out of your own humanity… what do you want for the world.”
For more information on the film and tour, go to http://www.howtoletgomovie.com/ and if you’re truly inspired visit Kickstarter to help finance the tour and it’s important message.