“Chasing Ice” OVEE: Must-see excerpts from our online screening & chat

Earlier this month, Media Impact Funders hosted an OVEE screening featuring clips and conversation from Chasing Ice, a powerful documentary that uses time-lapse video to tell the story of our planet’s changing climate. If you missed the screening but want to be a part of thought-provoking discussion around climate change and the film’s impact, here are some excerpts of the discussions between Vince Stehle, executive director of Media Impact Funders, James Balog, the subject of the film, and Jeff Orlowski, the film’s director. (For those who are unfamiliar, OVEE is an online screening platform from Independent Television Service (ITVS) that allows viewers to watch and chat live together in a virtual theater.)

Chasing Ice follows Balog, the acclaimed environmental photographer who in 2005 headed to the Arctic on a tricky assignment for National Geographic: to capture images to help tell the story of the earth’s changing climate. Even with a scientific background, Balog had been a skeptic about climate change. But that first trip north opened his eyes to the biggest story in human history and sparked a challenge within him that would put his career and his very well-being at risk.

Watch the trailer:

Balog, who has spent his entire career documenting how human impact is changing the planet, discusses the Extreme Ice Survey, a long-term photographic program intended to give “visual voice” to the earth’s changing climate.

“I had no idea what the rate of the glaciers’ change was going to be,” Balog tells Stehle. “…Suddenly, we were having these gigantic changes in landscapes.”

On Glacier Watching Day 17, Balog’s team captured the largest glacier calving event ever filmed. Calving occurs when massive chunks of ice suddenly break away from the glacier. “If you imagine Manhattan,” the team says in the film, “and all of a sudden those buildings start to rumble and quake…and fall over…this whole massive city just breaking apart before your eyes.”

Watch the (jaw-dropping) clip:

The OVEE concluded with input from Orlowski, who spoke to Stehle about Balog’s physical struggles and the film’s overall impact. “The biggest problem is denialism in the American Congress,” Orlowski says. “We’re basically the only country in the world at this point that has a political party that denies the reality of the science. How do you shift that?”

“Chasing Ice” was one of the five powerful films selected for our 2015 Media Impact Festival, which celebrates the social impact of media, and its capacity to transform society.