The importance of being inconvenient

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Karen Kunawicz

On very rare occasions, I get to both write this pop culture column and address real world issues in one go.

Ayala Cinemas at Trinoma and Glorietta 4 screened the sequel to the 2006 film, “An Inconvenient Truth” starting on Wednesday. The landmark film focused on former US Vice President Al Gore’s slide show designed to help the world become more aware of and act on the threat of global warming—now more commonly referred to as climate change.

This new film, “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power,” now directed by Bonni Cohen and Jon Shenk, checks in on the planet, and mankind and our world leaders 10 years later, to see how we continue to be affected by and how we are responding.

Released in late July, the film puts some of the spotlight on places like Tacloban, Houston, Miami and India. Eerily enough, just last week, I was glued to the news on large scale weather-related catastrophes.

Harvey dumped 15 to 20 trillions of water across Texas, towns went under water—including parts of Houston. It left some areas with 50 inches of rain, breaking storm records.

At the same time, monsoons in Nepal, India and Bangladesh left over 1,000 dead and devastated so much farmland, food supply is now threatened.

As of this writing, Florida governor Rick Scott has declared a state of emergency as they brace for Hurricane Irma.

Scott has been friendlier toward business lobbies than climate change advocates. Despite all that is going on—with climate change practically staring the world in the face and Mother Nature sending strong, wrathful messages, there are still those who would deny it or de-prioritize our need to address the situation!

How to move now when floodwaters are swallowing up homes, cars and people, and yet those in a position to do the biggest things for their constituents simply look for short term stop gap measures and worse, even try to derail efforts toward sustainable energy and initiatives to control the carbon footprint?

The film works its way to the Paris Agreement meetings, which happened at the end of 2015. You get to see all a few of things going on behind the scenes at Camp Gore—trying to broker negotiations with India, getting their hearts broken when they get news of a terror attack, and that short appearance of Justin Trudeau for a quick and warm greeting.

You also see how the clueless continue to undermine and set back a lot of the good work that has been done for the planet.

However, you also see the tenacity and devotion Al Gore and climate change advocates share, and you see there are also leaders who believe in lowering carbon emissions and in sustainability.

Despair will paralyze us, hope is what we need to make the everyday choices to look after the planet and make our leaders accountable to us and our future.

“An Inconvenient Sequel” departs from the slideshow storytelling of its predecessor and it leaves so much for us to think about and act on. I don’t know how much longer it runs for but see it if you can.

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