Earth Day Documentary

In honor of the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, Mason County District Library will show a series of documentaries focusing on the environment and climate change beginning with “Inside the Megafire” Monday, January 27th at 6:00 pm.

On Monday, February 24th at 6:00 pm, the film will be the Frontline documentary, “War on the EPA.” How did Scott Pruitt go from fighting the EPA to running the agency and rolling back years of policy? In this gripping documentary, FRONTLINE investigates the conservative political forces and causes, like climate change skepticism, that propelled Pruitt’s takeover of the EPA. With access to key players on all sides of the issue, the film traces how the fossil fuel industry fought back against Obama-era regulations with the help of a “strike force” of industry-funded state attorneys general, led by Pruitt. It also explores how Pruitt – a former state senator and minor league baseball team owner – came to political prominence first in Oklahoma and then in Washington, D.C. by pledging to fight federal environmental regulations, and defend the oil and gas industries. With Pruitt now leading the federal agency he sued 14 times as Oklahoma’s attorney general, War on the EPA is an inside look at the triumphant ascent of the anti-regulatory movement in America.

On Monday, March 30th, 6:00 pm, the film will be the NOVA documentary “Poisoned Water.” Water. Turn on the faucet and it’s always there. Without it we perish. But how safe is our tap water? In this special report, NOVA investigates what happened in Flint, Michigan when local officials changed the city’s water source to save money, but overlooked a critical treatment process. As the water pipes corroded, lead leached into the system, exposing the community – including thousands of children – to dangerous levels of poison. NOVA uncovers the science behind this manmade disaster – from the intricacies of water chemistry, to the biology of lead poisoning, to the misuse of science itself. NOVA follows ordinary citizens and independent scientists who exposed the danger lurking in Flint’s water and confronted those who turned a blind eye. Still, there’s a disturbing truth that reaches far beyond Flint – Water systems across the country are vulnerable to a similar fate. How can we protect ourselves from poisoned water?

On April 6th at 6:00 pm is Frontline’s documentary, “Flint’s Deadly Water.” The Flint water crisis has become known for the lead poisoning of thousands of children. But an exclusive new FRONTLINE investigation reveals the story of another, deadly problem with the water unfolding at the same time – that few people know about. Based on two years of enterprise reporting by a FRONTLINE team in Flint, Flint’s Deadly Water documents an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease during the water crisis that has continued to claim lives in the city five years later. FRONTLINE’s investigation shows how people were getting sick and dying from the severe form of pneumonia caused by waterborne bacteria for more than a year before the public was notified. Officially, twelve people in Flint died from the outbreak – but the FRONTLINE investigation has found that the death toll was likely far higher. With exclusive interviews, internal state emails and documents obtained by FRONTLINE, and a sweeping analysis of every death in the county since the start of the water crisis, Flint’s Deadly Water is a comprehensive, richly detailed investigation that expands public understanding of the Flint water crisis – and asks whether anyone will ever be held accountable.

On April 27th at 6:00 pm, the film is American Experience: “The Poison Squad.” By the close of the Industrial Revolution, the American food supply was tainted with frauds, fakes and legions of new and untested chemicals, dangerously threatening the health of consumers. Based on the book by Deborah Blum, The Poison Squad tells the story of government chemist Dr. Harvey Wiley who, determined to banish these dangerous substances from dinner tables, took on the powerful food manufacturers and their allies. Wiley embarked upon a series of bold and controversial trials on 12 human subjects who would become known as the “Poison Squad.” Following Wiley’s unusual experiments and tireless advocacy, the film charts the path of the forgotten man who laid the groundwork for U.S. consumer protection laws, and ultimately the creation of the FDA.

All Mason County District Library programs are free.