Two degrees. That’s the generally accepted target for maximum global warming, to avoid huge sea level rises, mass species extinctions and human catastrophes. If you haven’t got the message about rising sea levels yet, the Surging Seas mapping website, launched this week, gives a chilling picture of future scenarios.
It’s easy to feel paralysed by predictions like these, putting a shaky trust in the negotiators at the UN Climate Conference and hoping, somehow that things will turn out better than they might. That’s why filmmaker Cyril Dion and actress Mélanie Laurent made Demain Le Film.
Whatever the outcomes of the COP21 conference, keeping within the two degree target will demand radical change from millions of people. We can wait until governments tell us what to do, or we can get on with making a difference, starting from where we are.
In different places, all around the world, people are finding solutions to local problems that, by design or by happy accident, help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, to conserve resources and to build communities.
Demain tell the story of some of these projects, ranging from urban farming in Detroit to local trading in Totnes and from village democracy in India to sustainable transport in Denmark. None of the projects featured offer perfect solutions (because human beings are as complicated as climate science), but the film shows that tackling the challenges of sustainable living locally can be exciting, rewarding and, ultimately, liberating.
The film, (English title Tomorrow), is on general release, in cinemas from this weekend. It’s bilingual, in French and English, with subtitles as necessary. See it if you can and be inspired.