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An Oceans 8 Film, the 2016 documentary, Dear President Obama was written and directed by Jon Bowermaster and narrated by Mark Ruffalo.
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A cross-country look at drilling, highlighting its variety of contaminations, the stories of its victims, the false promise of an economic boom, with a focus on clean energy solutions that would allow us to proceed towards a future that does not rely on yet another dirty fossil fuel extraction process.

Interviews with scientists, economists, health professionals, geologists and whistle-blowers provide the core information we think will convince the current President and those that will follow to join the “anti-drilling” majority growing across the United States and call for fossil fuels to be left where they belong, in the ground.

Storyline

This film is a direct appeal to the President, and to all elected officials, to carefully consider the growing evidence proving that hydraulic fracturing for oil and gas is hardly the path to energy independence that many promote. We take a cross-country look at fracking, highlighting its variety of contaminations, the stories of its victims, the false promise of an economic boom, with a focus on energy solutions that would allow us to proceed towards an energy future that does not rely on yet another dirty fossil fuel extraction process. Interviews with scientists, economists, geologists and whistle-blowers will provide the core information we hope will convince the current President and those that will follow to join the "anti-fracking" majority that is growing across the United States. Written by Jon Bowermaster

The film takes a cross-country look at drilling, highlighting its variety of contaminations, the stories of its victims, the false promise of an economic boom, with a focus on clean energy solutions that would allow us to proceed towards a future that does not rely on yet another dirty fossil fuel extraction process. Interviews with scientists, economists, health professionals, geologists and whistle-blowers provide the core information we think will convince the current President and those that will follow to join the “anti-drilling” majority growing across the United States and call for fossil fuels to be left where they belong, in the ground.

 

Mark Ruffalo to Produce Documentary Challenging Obama on Climate Change

11/24/2015 by Degen Pener | www.hollywoodreporter.com/

The 'Spotlight' actor says President Obama "is almost worse than climate-change deniers" by pursuing an "all of the above energy policy" that includes oil drilling.

Actor Mark Ruffalo — part of a new group of entertainment leaders called Hollywood United for a Healthy California that is pushing Governor Jerry Brown to move the state away from fossil fuels — is now setting his sights on President Obama.

The Spotlight star, in the midst of kicking off an awards campaign, has signed on to narrate and executive produce the documentary Dear President Obama, a film about the administration’s energy and climate change policies due out next year. The movie’s director is Jon Bowermaster, who’s helmed films documenting his own eco-adventures for National Geographic and whose most recent project, After the Spill, focuses on post-Katrina Louisiana.

Ruffalo — a longtime environmental activist opposing the process of hydrofracking to extract natural gas — signed on to Dear President Obama because he finds Obama’s approach to climate change “insane.”

“When you have the president saying that climate change is absolutely for real and we must do something about it, and then in the next breath he says we must start drilling in the Arctic circle even, there’s a huge disconnect, a cognitive dissonance. His own scientists are telling him we have to keep that carbon in the ground otherwise we are doomed,” says Ruffalo.

The film, says the actor, will “implore President Obama to stop this drill, baby, drill, all of the above energy policy that he has taken our country on. You can’t have it both ways. You can’t keep pushing to take all the carbon out of the earth, which will be burned, while at the same time saying you believe in climate science.”

The documentary will look at the health impacts of hydrofracking, scientific research on global warming and what can be done to move the U.S. to renewable sources of energy. “Jon has been shooting all over the United States talking with scientists, talking with technologists, talking with folks who are living in the shadow of these extreme energy lands where hydrofracking, cyclic steam, deep-sea drilling and all of these things are going on.”

Ruffalo and Bowermaster, who both have homes in upstate New York, met a few years back when they were both engaged in a fight to ban hydrofracking in the state and while the director was putting together Dear Governor Cuomo, a short documentary plea to New York State’s Andrew Cuomo to ban fracking there. Cuomo did so in late 2014 over health concerns. People affected in New York, says Ruffalo, “didn’t have any water to drink from their taps because it was polluted. The air in their houses was polluted.”

Ruffalo isn’t just fighting the problems. In 2011, he formed a group called The Solutions Project with Gasland director Josh Fox, banker Marco Krapels (now a solar power executive) and Stanford professor Mark Jacobson, the head of the university’s Atmosphere/Energy Program. The organization has put forth a plan for all 50 states showing how each can move toward 100 percent renewable energy sources with a mix of solar, geothermal, hydroelectric, wind, wave and tidal power.

“The oil and gas corporations have poured a lot of money into misinformation on renewable energy,” says Ruffalo. “They tell us that it’s impossible. But the fact is that possibilities for moving beyond the oil and gas corporate energy structure are completely available. They are economic. They are clean. They are sustainable. We don’t have to burn anything anymore. There’s an endless supply of energy if we are just willing to harvest it. It’s an elegant, graceful plan which fits very well with people’s modern ideas of how they should be living their lives. The only thing standing in the way is political will.”

Ruffalo places Obama and Brown among the ranks of political forces obstructing progress on climate change. The two politicians, he says, “are almost worse than climate change deniers. They are not honest in another way that’s much more harmful to us. They are taking the political will that we need to make these changes and they are dulling the knife edge of it. They are making people go to sleep. They are making people think that dealing with climate change is being taken care of. In fact, renewable energy is going to be useless if we pull all of this carbon out of the ground and burn it.”

 

 

 

Social Action Committee presents 'Dear President Obama' on March 24, 2016.

Central Unitarian Church hosts a screening of a new film "Dear President Obama: Americans Against Fracking in One Voice" on Thursday evening, March 24, at 6:30 in the Assembly Room. The film’s director Jon Bowermaster and Matt Smith of Food and Water Watch will attend the film and lead the discussion. Doors open at 6. The film screening is free, but donations are gratefully accepted.

 Filmmakers and journalists have been working on "Dear President Obama" for nearly three years, filming in more than 20 states and conducting more than 120 interviews. Narrated and produced by actor and activist Mark Ruffalo, the film is a direct appeal to President Obama as he shapes his environmental legacy, but it is also a very loud shout-out to every elected
official in the country to consider carefully the growing evidence that proves that leaving fossil fuels in the ground is the only reasonable energy path forward.

 Bowermaster is the filmmaker of influential music-protest film "Dear Governor Cuomo," which played a role in moving Governor Andrew Cuomo to act against fracking in New York State. In his new film, Bowermaster addresses President Barack Obama with a national look at the issue of fracking. The film profiles the victims of fracking across the U.S., speaks with experts on the topic, and takes a look at alternative energy sources gaining traction around the globe. Visit dearpresidentobamafilm.com for more details.

This special Social Justice Film Series event is sponsored by 350NJ, Coalition to Ban Unsafe Oil Trains, Ethical Culture Society of Bergen County, Social Responsibilities Council of The Unitarian Society of Ridgewood, GreenFaith, and the Central Unitarian Church Social Action Committee.

 

 

Basu: Iowan's film at Fleur warns of fracking fallout

May 3, 2016 Rekha Basu | www.desmoinesregister.com/

A documentary by a native Iowan to be screened Wednesday night at Fleur Cinema is provocatively titled “Dear President Obama, the energy revolution is now.” But the film's objective is less to get the president’s ear than to get the American public's, and sound an alarm.

Our energy policies, it says, are making our nation sick.

Even if you already care about climate change, this is a film worth seeing. It discusses our reliance on fossil fuels from a health, economic and political standpoint. And, according to filmmaker and journalist Jon Bowermaster in a phone interview from New York, it shows no state is immune.

Seventeen million Americans live within a mile of a new gas or oil well, the movie says. But even those who don’t are affected, for example, by pipelines that transport natural gas across the country. Exposure to contaminated water and methane gas-poisoned air are even afflicting people in suburban and coastal communities and in working-class neighborhoods of Los Angeles, the film shows.

The film criticizes California Gov. Jerry Brown for refusing to slow drilling for oil and gas in his state, even after 7,000 residents were forced to flee one suburb due to leaks of contaminated water, with no relocation help. In another area, the oil company said  toxins had been filtered out of waste water used to irrigate crops, but tests revealed there were still contaminants, according to the documentary. Bowermaster, a Drake graduate, chided Brown for lecturing other nations to get rid of fossil fuels, but never mentioning it at home.

Neighbors of oil and gas wells being drilled in Colorado also report headaches, nausea and breathing problems, according to the film. Yet Colorado has 50,000 such wells active in the vicinity of schools, hospitals, churches, homes and child-care centers. And when some towns have responded by passing referenda opposing fracking, Gov. John Hickenlooper has sued them.

Both Brown and Hickenlooper, incidentally, are Democrats.

Ground water contamination caused by fracking has been verified in Pennsylvania, Wyoming and Texas. Oklahoma had 140 earthquakes in one year, which the film suggests were connected to the underground wells.

This is Bowermaster’s 20th documentary. He has also written a dozen books. “Dear President Obama” is as much a film about democratic processes being thwarted as it is about toxic chemicals. One observer compares what’s happening in America to parts of the Third World, where companies exploited the resources without warning of the consequences.

There is talk of U.S. employees in oil and gas extraction being pressured by bonuses not to talk about their ailments. One West Virginia worker who developed cancer said when he went to see the doctor, the company sent a nurse, who wouldn’t allow his blood to be drawn. Another worker showed pictures of large welts on his body, saying he’d been in the emergency room 20 times in the last couple of years from burns. He said the company never coached workers on safety measures.

Industry spokespeople say fracking has been done for 60 years. But the technology today is different, Bowermaster said. New chemicals are employed several miles below the Earth’s surface to blow things up. And though it can takes many years of study to conclusively prove the health risks, health experts say there’s enough concern to warrant slowing down fracking.

A 2005 energy law under President George W. Bush exempts fracking companies from liability and allows them to keep private which chemicals are seeping into the land, the film says. Also in that period, members of the oil and gas industries were allowed to help shape the laws that regulate them.

The film opens with Obama giving a speech to Congress in which he boasts of the nation's oil and gas reserves and calls for an "all of the above” strategy to meet energy needs, including fossil fuels and renewable energy.

Actor Mark Ruffalo, a climate change activist who narrates "Dear President Obama," says Obama has stood up to climate-change deniers and reined in CO2 emissions from coal plants. But under his watch, fossil fuel extraction has grown, and accidents are more frequent, Ruffalo says. And despite the president's prediction that the nation had enough gas reserves to power nearly a century, Ruffalo says 60 to 70 percent of new wells will be exhausted in their first three years.

But Obama “has learned a lot in his two terms,” Bowermaster said. He said the president has backed off his earlier support for "all of the above."



Jon Bowermaster (Photo: Special to the Register)

The film showcases defiant officials such as the mayor of Abita Springs, La., challenging the oil and gas industry over zoning laws. It also shows a 2014 demonstration in New York, where up to 400,000 marchers demanded a ban on fracking in that state. Gov. Andrew Cuomo subsequently passed one. The film promotes a clean energy revolution, including wind, solar, geothermal and hydropower. Iowa gets a positive mention for getting more than a quarter of its energy from wind.

Some observers believe the U.S. could be using entirely renewable energy by 2050. But we are still 85 percent dependent on fossil fuels, Ruffalo says. So the film calls for more government investment in renewable energy sources. And Bowermaster calls on all Americans to cut back our energy consumption.

There’s a presidential election coming up, but polls say climate change ranks low on people’s priorities. That could change after seeing this film. Go see it.

Fleur screening

"Dear President Obama,"which runs 96 minutes,will air at Fleur Cinema Wednesday at 7 p.m. Former Democratic state Sen. Jack Hatch will moderate a panel discussion later. Filmmaker Jon Bowermaster will be there.

 

 

 

DIRECTOR JON BOWERMASTER ATTENDING

An Oceans 8 Film, Written and Directed by Jon Bowermaster and Narrated by Mark Ruffalo. Presented in Partnership with Climate Generation: A Will Steger Legacy and Food and Water Watch..

Narrated by actor and activist Mark Ruffalo, Dear President Obama, The Clean Energy Revolution Is Now is a direct appeal to President Obama as he shapes his environmental legacy, and it is also a very loud shout-out to every elected official in the country to carefully consider the growing evidence that proves that leaving fossil fuels in the ground is the only reasonable energy path forward.

Since 2008, under President Obama’s watch, the drilling and fracking industries have boomed across the United States. Today more than twenty million people live within a mile of at least one oil or gas well. Pro-drillers contended this rush would create a newfound “energy independence” in the U.S. In fact, as oil and gas prices have plummeted in the past year forcing industry to shut down rigs and lay off workers, in fact all the boom did was slow progress towards investing in new renewable energy sources.

The film takes a cross-country look at drilling, highlighting its variety of contaminations, the stories of its victims, the false promise of an economic boom, with a focus on clean energy solutions that would allow us to proceed towards a future that does not rely on yet another dirty fossil fuel extraction process. Interviews with scientists, economists, health professionals, geologists and whistle-blowers provide the core information we think will convince the current President and those that will follow to join the “anti-drilling” majority growing across the United States and call for fossil fuels to be left where they belong, in the ground.

 

 

Dear President Obama, The Clean Energy Revolution is Now

Mar 17, 2016 in Rhinebeck | /upstatefilms.org

For the past three years, Jon Bowermaster’s team has been filming in more than twenty states while conducting more than 120 interviews. Narrated by actor and activist Mark Ruffalo, the film is a direct appeal to President Obama, but it is also a very loud shout-out to every elected official in the country to carefully consider the growing evidence that proves that leaving fossil fuels in the ground is the only reasonable energy path forward.
IN PERSON: Jon Bowermaster

The film takes a cross-country look at drilling, highlighting its variety of contaminations, the stories of its victims, the false promise of an economic boom, with a focus on clean energy solutions that would allow us to proceed towards a future that does not rely on yet another dirty fossil fuel extraction process. Interviews with scientists, economists, health professionals, geologists and whistle-blowers provide the core information we think will convince the current President and those that will follow to join the “anti-drilling” majority growing across the United States and call for fossil fuels to be left where they belong, in the ground..

(US/ 2016 / Directed by Jon Bowermaster)
unrated/ 100 mins.

 

 

DearPresidentObamaFilm.com