Cast: Al Gore, Narendra Modi, Piyush Goyal, Prakash Javdekar, Philip Levine
Directors: Bonni Cohen & Jon Shenk
Somewhere in this riveting and timely reminder of what looms ahead for embattled planet earth, the USA’s former Vice Prez, born-again eco-warrior and vegan Al Gore deplores the fact that climate change doesn’t get the coverage in media that it should. The film, a sequel to 2006’s “An Inconvenient Truth” begins with shots of an icy expanse that could have been straight out of Game of Thrones. Then, we see the ice slabs melt…
Ten years have gone by and Mr Gore is still waxing eloquent about the need for environmental protection/alternative fuels etc. The film is strong on facts and dire alerts which should be taken seriously: 14 out of 15 hottest years have been from 2001. On April 13, 2016, a glacier in Greenland exploded from high temperatures. Sea levels are rising.
Cohen and Shenk show him conducting climate leadership training sessions. One program attracts participants from 33 countries, the most recent one is attended by delegates from 58 countries. We see footage of the first one held at his farm in Tennessee with 50 trainees.Also old photos of his family, I liked the one of him playing with his three daughters.
From all the countries that figure in the film (example: Chile, Spain, Philippines) India, interestingly, gets the maximum footage, There’s our PM Modi naturally, but I thought Prakash Javdekar cut a fine figure in a well cut (Western) suit representing the environment ministry. Union Minister Piyush Goyal doesn’t mince words. Nor does environmental activist Sunita Narain at a global conference who should have been identified, but isn’t. They are vocal about the double standards that hold developing countries accountable while ignoring the developed world, led by the US of A which paints the Third World as the main culprits in CO2 emissions.
Footage of flooding in Latin America, southern Europe, the Philippines, Chennai as well as Houston, Miami, New Orleans, NYC and fires in Australia is underscored by the dismal analysis that global warming played an important role in the Syrian disaster – 1.5m Syrians migrated from the rural areas to cities to escape drought caused by global warming (which eventually led to anti-Assad sentiment and the rise of ISIS).
At the Climate Conference in 2015 in Paris, 150 world leaders agreed climate change is crucial, but not Trump who said “the idea that global warming is the biggest problem facing this country is insane.” Closer home, the VHP is angry with the Defence Ministry’s announcement of the closure of its cow farms, but the World Bank holds animal agriculture responsible for almost 90 percent of Amazon rainforest destruction.
Mr Gore even goes to the extent of making apocalyptic references in his mission, travelling across his native country and around the world striving to make an impact.