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Environmental Film Festival: Oceans at Risk Triple Feature

1) THE LAST OCEAN (New Zealand, 2012, 85 min.) - starts at 12 noon
Washington DC Premiere
Introduced by Andrea Kavanagh, Director, Southern Ocean Sanctuaries Campaign, Pew Environment Group.

Do we fish the last ocean or do we protect it? The most pristine marine ecosystem on Earth, the Ross Sea has remained free from widespread pollution, invasive species, mining and over-fishing. Home to high concentrations of wildlife and an incredible array of animals, many found nowhere else on the planet, it is teeming with large predatory fish, whales, seals and penguins that collectively comprise the last intact marine ecosystem on Earth. It is a living laboratory providing scientists with the last chance to understand how a healthy marine ecosystem functions. Facing depleted fisheries everywhere else, the fishing industry has found its way south in pursuit of the Antarctic toothfish (sold as Chilean sea bass). Fishers plan to remove 50 percent of the adult toothfish from the Ross Sea and in so doing will destroy the natural balance of Earth’s last untouched ocean. Featuring beautiful Antarctic footage, this film presents the conservationist case and the campaign to counteract the fishing lobby. Directed and produced by Peter Young.

2) OCEAN FRONTIERS: THE DAWN OF A NEW ERA IN OCEAN STEWARDSHIP (USA, 2011, 80 min.) - starts at 1:45 pm
Introduced by Daniel J. Basta, Director, Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, NOAA.

Tainted waters, dying reefs and failing fisheries, the myth of the boundless ocean is no more. But from the troubled waters now rises a new wave of hope, of prosperity through preservation, playing out in communities across the country and intimately captured in the new film, Ocean Frontiers. From the busy shipping lanes of Boston Harbor to an obscure little fishing community in the Pacific Northwest; from America’s coral reef playground in the Florida Keys to the nation’s premier seafood nursery in the Mississippi Delta, this film takes us on an inspiring voyage to seaports and watersheds across the country. Here we meet an intermingling of unlikely allies, of industrial shippers and whale biologists, pig farmers and wetland ecologists, sport fishers and reef snorkelers, all of them pioneers in ocean management, embarking on a new course of stewardship, in defense of the seas that sustain them. Directed by Karen Anspacher-Meyer and Ralf Meyer. Produced by Green Fire Productions.

3) PLANET OCEAN (France, 2012, 90 min.) - starts at 3:15pm
Washington, D.C. Premiere
Introduced by Dr. Karen Osborn, Research Zoologist, Department of Invertebrate Zoology, Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History.

Can a film change the way people look at the ocean? Can we explain the greatest natural mystery of our planet? Can we help our children believe in a better and more sustainable world tomorrow? This is the triple challenge of Yann Arthus-Bertrand’s new cinema adventure that highlights the scientific missions of TARA expeditions, a unique pool of international researchers, oceanographers and biologists. Through astonishing photography, the film takes us on a magnificent journey into the heart of the least-known regions of our planet. Filmed in extreme geographical conditions all over the globe, the film follows the modern odyssey of people who go out to discover their blue planet. Directed by Yann Arthus-Bertrand and Michael Pitiot. Produced by Hope Productions.

Location: National Museum of Natural History, Baird Auditorium
10th & Constitution Ave, NW
Washington DC
(Metro: Federal Triangle or Smithsonian)
Ticket Info: FREE. No reservations required.

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