Truth to Power:

The “inconvenient” voices taking on climate change

The numbers alone are urgent and haunting: By 2030, there may be no more summer ice in the Arctic Ocean. Just last year, Antarctic sea ice was at its lowest extent in the recorded past. And while soaring record temperatures continue to be the order of the day, the number of climate-related extreme events—droughts, forest fires, floods, major storm surges—has doubled since 1990.

Perhaps you’re not experiencing the downstream effects of climate change firsthand. Maybe you don’t live in a state like Arizona or Oklahoma, where temperatures may reach 100 degrees more than 120 days every year from now on, according to the National Centers for Environmental Information. Perhaps you’ve never suffered from air-based allergies or asthma, conditions expected to affect even more people as climate change depletes the ozone, leading to exposure shown by research to reduce lung function. But you are nonetheless aware that climate change is an altogether present and imminent threat, and concerned with preserving a planet that’s beautiful, clean and, most importantly, livable for future generations.

In 2006, former Vice President Al Gore’s fight against climate change was the focus of the documentary “An Inconvenient Truth.” Audiences were inspired by one of the nation’s most respected leaders working relentlessly on an issue that meant so much to so many. His work is again the focus of the upcoming follow-up, “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power,” but an important shift has taken place in the movement.

You can do more on climate change—learn how

Are you aware of the many simple ways to help? Take this quiz and find out.

No matter what you do, you end up throwing out groceries. You’ve heard that if food wastage were a country, it would be the third largest emitting country in the world (right behind the U.S. and China). You want to get a grip on your contribution to the problem. How do you make the most of your efforts?

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More people are realizing that while contributions can be made on a grand scale, like organizing a march, there is also power in smaller acts, like foregoing use of a single plastic bag. And now that the President of the United States has declared his willingness to pull the U.S. out of the historic Paris climate change agreement, it’s important to remember that all efforts—big and small—still count. Even as the outlook darkens and the news becomes more foreboding, action is crucial.

You can do more on climate change—learn how

Are you aware of the many simple ways to help? Take this quiz and find out.

No matter what you do, you end up throwing out groceries. You’ve heard that if food wastage were a country, it would be the third largest emitting country in the world (right behind the U.S. and China). You want to get a grip on your contribution to the problem. How do you make the most of your efforts?

answer

submit

“Don’t just get me upset about an issue.
Give me something to do about it.”

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power is all but required watching for those who want to safeguard the beauty and longevity of earth.

In select theaters July 28 and everywhere August 4

Get tickets now >

Everyday people are the concerned citizens building bridges

Bart Myers is the founder and chief executive officer of Countable and Countable Campaigns, a San Francisco-area based startup that helps individual citizens follow current legislation and connect with policymakers. Myers is committed to uniting the Countable community around their shared climate concerns.

“The reason Countable exists in the first place is because you’d read a news story, and it would get your blood boiling, but there was nothing to do, there’s no button to press, no place to go,” Myers said. “Countable is that place to go. It gives you a bridge between that news story…and an opportunity to now do something about it.”

The issue of climate change has been an important one for the Countable community, and users have been empowered to reach out to their representatives and advocate for progress. “Over the last few years, as legislation has come up—there have been a lot of energy-related bills, like those related to solar power—[and] this is an area where there’s a rallying cry, and anytime there’s legislation, a news story, or a calamitous event happening, they will jump on it.”

Thanks to Countable, more concerned Americans’ voices are being heard and Myers says the app just crossed the threshold of sending 10 million messages to Congress. This ability to take immediate and positive action has drawn wide interest, but seems particularly appealing to a new generation of activists. “It’s really resonating with our users,” said Myers. “[Especially] millennials, who are saying, ‘Don’t just get me upset about an issue. Give me something to do about it.’”

You can do more on climate change—learn how

Are you aware of the many simple ways to help? Take this quiz and find out.

Over the course of the year, between commuting and travel, you realize you’re going to put nearly 18,000 miles on your car and fly roughly 20,000 miles for business and pleasure. You feel your carbon footprint is big, but what can you do to make a noticeable dent in your emissions?

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Like Myers, Joylette Portlock has brought her passion for communication to the climate fight. Based in Pittsburgh, Portlock is currently president of Communitopia, an organization committed to using new media and project-based campaigns to slow climate change and create healthier communities. It identifies, researches and advocates for individual, community, and federal solutions to reduce greenhouse gas pollution and improve community resilience.

Portlock says her “feeling of responsibility” for the environment is rooted in her childhood when her father, a science teacher, would take her out in the yard and put worms in her hand to teach her about the earth. “I got my family recycling when I was in middle school,” Portlock said. “That was way back when curbside recycling [didn’t exist], and you had to save up the stuff and convince your parents to take it to the igloo.”

She acknowledges that people often feel isolated and feel climate change is too big an issue to be changed by the actions of individuals. Through a web video series called “Don't Just Sit There - Do Something!,” her organization is trying to talk about climate change in a way that’s accessible, engaging, and even funny. “Climate change is not a lighthearted topic,” Portlock said. “It’s clearly a very heavy topic and the consequences of what we are doing to our environment are dire. But we realize that we’re not going to depress people into action.” Instead, Portlock hopes to inspire in people a vision of climate change as a chance to create a better, more sustainable future.

You can do more on climate change—learn how

Are you aware of the many simple ways to help? Take this quiz and find out.

Over the course of the year, between commuting and travel, you realize you’re going to put nearly 18,000 miles on your car and fly roughly 20,000 miles for business and pleasure. You feel your carbon footprint is big, but what can you do to make a noticeable dent in your emissions?

answer

submit

Former Vice President Al Gore is devoted to alleviating the climate change crisis. His work is the focus of the upcoming documentary film, “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power.”

The trailer previewing “An Inconvenient sequel: Truth to Power”

Sign the pledge to #BeInconvenient here and discover the actions you can take today to be an agent of change in your community. Join the movement and start now.

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5 Ways to Take Action Even for those who care deeply about climate change and protecting the environment, finding actions that are quick, effective and close to home can seem daunting. Here’s a list of ways to get involved. They may seem small, but they can add up to powerful change. There’s no reason to delay. You can make a difference now. Click on an icon or scroll to explore below.

Change really can start at home

While giving speeches, making online videos or creating technology that inspires action and activism are strong ways to get involved, citizens also are making a difference in smaller communities and in their own backyards.

Kathleen Watchorn, for instance, is focused on taking everyday action within the community of Garden City, New York, where she works at Adelphi University as a coordinator of special projects and a member of the Campus Sustainability Committee. Through her work, she organizes site visits to a local carting company to show students where trash goes once it leaves campus and how it can become recycled material. She also has focused her efforts on reducing plastic bottle waste.

“For over five years, I have tracked the number of bottles filled at the bottle filtration system sites on campus and at two of our satellite campuses,” she said. “[As of] November 2016, one million bottles had been filled, removing that number of empty plastic water bottles from streams, roadways, beaches and landfills. As of January 2017, that number grew to over 1.4 million. Keeping track of these numbers establishes a growth in interest and usage and has provided an impetus for adding additional systems.”

Meanwhile, Brian Surguine, a marketing specialist for a medical device company in Ann Arbor, Mich. made significant lifestyle shifts after reading Naomi Klein’s book “This Changes Everything.” The title was chosen by a local bookstore for their first environmentally-focused book club meeting. Surguine said he and his wife have been attending the club ever since, and feel that choices they make in their everyday life have a positive impact.

You can do more on climate change—learn how

Are you aware of the many simple ways to help? Take this quiz and find out.

It’s mid-summer, and temperatures are soaring. You’re throwing an outdoor party and picking up last-minute supplies and drinks. You are mindful of the environmental impact of using plastic bottles, so you:

answer

submit

The Surguines both drive hybrid cars, but also have chosen to live in a place that makes it easy for them to bike and walk around town. “As light bulbs have burnt out, we've replaced them with LEDs,” he said. “Instead of heating or cooling our entire apartment, we dress for the weather and only heat or cool the room we're in. My wife is a pescatarian, and I have re-configured the balance between meat and plant-based foods in my diet.”

He also believes in voting with his wallet. “If I'm considering buying something that contributes to climate change through things like deforestation, long shipping distances, or manufacturing methods that produce a lot of greenhouse gases, I try to find alternatives or skip buying it altogether.”

These simple lifestyle moves, which Surguine sees primarily as an effort to cut down his household’s greenhouse gas emissions, also have raised the awareness of his peers. “We know for sure that some of our friends and family have noticed our actions and have taken their own steps to cut down on their emissions,” he said. “While we may not have direct influence on public policy or regulations, we do have control over some significant contributors, at least in our own lives, to reverse climate change.”

While no single person can confront the challenges that lie ahead, inspired perspectives and concrete actions can ultimately turn the tide and solve the climate crisis. No more time can be lost. No effort can be spared. Human activity and disregard for the environment have driven the severity of the climate change issue. But collective action—from the world’s power brokers down to concerned citizens effecting change in their neighborhoods and backyards—can make the difference that saves us all.

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power is all but required watching for those who want to safeguard the beauty and longevity of earth.

In Select Theaters July 28
Everywhere August 4

Get tickets now >

You can do more on climate change—learn how

Are you aware of the many simple ways to help? Take this quiz and find out.

It’s mid-summer, and temperatures are soaring. You’re throwing an outdoor party and picking up last-minute supplies and drinks. You are mindful of the environmental impact of using plastic bottles, so you:

answer

submit