Convenient Resources for "An Inconvenient Truth"

By Stoss, Frederick | Electronic Green Journal, January 1, 2007 | Go to article overview

Convenient Resources for "An Inconvenient Truth"


Stoss, Frederick, Electronic Green Journal


Editor's Note: Before Al Gore's film An Inconvenient Truth won an Oscar for best documentary film, a member of the Electronic Green Journal's Editorial Board, Fred Stoss, traveled to Nashville, Tennessee. Fred was taught by former Vice President Al Gore and a group of scientists, educators, and communication specialists from The Climate Project to become "climate change messengers" and help spread the word about global warming across the United States. He was selected from thousands of applicants to participate in training sessions sponsored by The Climate Project. Attendees received presentation skills training and educational resources for sharing with others. They also received an intensive overview of the science of global warming. This training provides Stoss with the resources to conduct special versions of Gore's famous global warming slide show that is the basis for An Inconvenient Truth. As a librarian, he is frequently asked for resources to support the data and information described in the slide show.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences on February 25, 2007 awarded film director, Davis Guggenheim, and the production team of Lawrence Bender and Laurie David the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature for the film, An Inconvenient Truth. The Academy also awarded songwriter and lyricist, Melissa Etheridge the Academy Award for Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Song) that accompanied the film. This documentary hit, An Inconvenient Truth, evolved from the popular slide show presented over decades of lectures, presentations, hearings, and other public venues by Al Gore, Jr., Vice President of the United States (1993-2001). The film is a gripping account of the battles undertaken to understand and combat one of the most scientific and technically complex, politically complicated, and strenuously controversial environmental issues with which humankind has had to deal: Global Warming. (1) The Climate Project was responsible for coordinating the initial training of the 1,000 presenters of Mr. Gore's slide show, and is coordinating presentations around the country and compiling useful resources.

With the potential to affect biological, chemical, and climate cycles in the Earth's atmosphere, in its oceans, and on its lands, global warming demands worldwide attention and resolve. Gore wrote a book of the same title, as a companion to the movie. (2) Michiko Kakutani, book reviewer for The New York Times, cited An Inconvenient Truth, " ...as a user-friendly introduction to global warming and a succinct summary of many of the central arguments laid out in those other volumes, An Inconvenient Truth is lucid, harrowing and bluntly effective." (3)

It is possible to look at this endeavor of former Vice President Gore as an epilogue to his 1992 best selling Earth in the Balance: Ecology and the Human Spirit (Houghton Mifflin). An Inconvenient Truth presents a scientific perspective of the issue of global warming, known also as a component of global climate change, and represents a slide show and lecture Gore has been delivering to lecture halls around the world over the past several years. Much like Gore's earlier best-selling book, An Inconvenient Truth does not pick up a political tone, but rather a tone of addressing global warming as a moral or ethical imperative.

Needless to say, global warming and An Inconvenient Truth was 2006's hot environmental topic (according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 2006 was actually the hottest year ever recorded in the U.S. and December 2006 to February 2007 was the warmest meteorological winter ever recorded). (4) In mid-July, The Discovery Channel began airing a documentary, Global Warming: What You Need to Know, with Tom Brokaw, now available in DVD format with enhanced features. Later in the autumn, Stonehaven Productions of Canada released a completely revised and condensed version of its critically acclaimed three-part Discovery series, The Great Warming, as a major theatrical release on November 3, 2006. …

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