In 2008, Tim DeChristopher was a college student studying economics at the University of Utah, but then he walked into a BLM auction and bid $1.8 million on drilling rights to pristine public lands near Utah’s iconic national parks for which he never intended to pay. That bold act of disobedience catapulted DeChristopher into the spotlight, where he was celebrated by many as a new leader in climate change activism. Over the next several years, DeChristopher inspired rallies and rose in prominence as he railed against destruction of wild places. He was also prosecuted by the federal government and ultimately served 21 months in prison, earning him international media presence as an activist and political prisoner of the United States government. DeChristopher, who is the subject of the documentary Bidder 70 (Mountainfilm 2012), has used both his prosecution and media attention as an opportunity to defend a livable future. He formed the climate justice organization Peaceful Uprising in Salt Lake City and, more recently, the Climate Disobedience Center.
- 2017 — Speaker
- 2015 —
Symposium SpeakerDoes this even work?
- 2014 — Special Guest, Film Subject
- 2013 — Speaker, Special Guest
- 2011 —
Speaker, Special GuestTim was recently convicted by a federal court of making false bids on energy leases. His presence at Mountainfilm this May, a month before his scheduled sentencing, will certainly help galvanize festival audiences. Tim will speak not only about the urgency of addressing global climate change, but also about why non-violent civil disobedience is essential in these troubled times.
- 2010 —
Speaker, Special Guest, Film SubjectIn 2008, 27 year-old Tim DeChristopher went to a government auction intended for oil and gas companies to lease federal land for extraction. Asked if he was there to bid he said yes and he was handed a paddle for Bidder 70. This set off a chain of events that led to one of the most significant acts of civil disobedience on behalf of conservation and has left DeChristopher facing a federal trial on November 5.
- 2009 — Speaker, Film Subject