Mountainfilm

Moving Mountains Symposium: Morning Session: The Challenge, The Opportunity

Date: May 26, 2017
Start Time: 9:00 a.m.

Climate change looms over us, an existential specter, omnipresent and unyielding. Scourges abound, such as the decimation of Western forests by the pine beetle, coral bleaching in the oceans and widespread global disruption. This is The New Normal.

But at Mountainfilm, we want The New Normal to be something else. We want The New Normal to be an engaged, committed community (such as, say, the good people reading this), setting a new direction toward carbon neutrality.

Our ambitious symposium will delve into the current and future implications of climate change. We’re also going to look closely at solutions, provided by an impressive array of people working assiduously to avert calamity. 

To that end, we’re particularly excited about guest Garry Charnock, who hails from the British village
of Ashton Hayes. In 2006, he spearheaded an audacious initiative for his small town to go carbon neutral. Ashton Hayes has been successful in notably reducing its CO2 while simultaneously increasing the sense of community as everyone works toward this common goal.

There’s an enormous opportunity for the Telluride region (and beyond!) to work toward carbon neutrality, but it won’t be easy here because our carbon footprint is twice the national average. This is the time to embrace Telluride’s rich history in innovation and come together around this crucial issue.

The 2017 Moving Mountains Symposium will explore how this could happen, but please know that it involves asking the Mountainfilm community — our audience, guests, sponsors and, of course, ourselves — to do more to combat climate change. Let’s rethink the way we live our lives to be more climate friendly. Together, we can have a real and tangible impact on the seminal challenge facing the planet and its people.

After all, what do you want The New Normal to be?

John Holdren

Symposium

After serving as President Obama’s senior science and technology adviser for eight years, John Holdren, who holds a Ph.D. in aerospace engineering and theoretical plasma physics from Stanford, continues to work on key climate issues from the perches of Harvard and Woods Hole Science Center. Holdren will present the latest science on climate change and what that portends for the planet’s future.

In Person:
  • John Holdren
  • Joanie Kleypas

    Symposium

    Joanie Kleypas is an oceanographer from the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder who focuses on coral reefs and is featured in the film Chasing Coral (page 21). She’ll talk about what she calls “the big trifecta” — warming, ocean acidification and the loss of oxygen — which are major chemical and physical changes that will affect organisms everywhere.

    In Person:
  • Joanie Kleypas
  • Andrew Jones

    Symposium

    An expert on international climate and energy issues, Andrew Jones is a system dynamics modeler, keynote speaker and designer of simulation-based learning environments. As the co-director of Climate Interactive, he focuses on developing energy and impact models that will provide a sensible path forward. His dynamic presentations provide hope for a New Normal that is sustainable and livable.

    In Person:
  • Andrew Jones
  • Meghan Kallman

    Symposium

    Meghan Kallman is founder of Conceivable Future, an organization that looks at the climate crisis as a reproductive justice issue. Her group poses this question: How do you decide to have a baby when opportunities to lead a healthy and productive life are increasingly jeopardized?

    In Person:
  • Meghan Kallman
  • Julia Olson & Avery McRae

    Symposium

    Our Children’s Trust is a coalition of bold young people who are suing the federal government over climate change. Julia Olson is the lead attorney and 11-year-old Avery McRae is one of the plaintiffs in this landmark case, which is, so far, working its way through the courts successfully.

    In Person:
  • Julia Olson
  • Avery McRae
  • Alizé Carérre

    Symposium

    Alizé Carérre, a former National Geographic Young Explorer, has researched and reported on innovations in adaptation along the frontlines of the climate crisis in such places as Bangladesh and Nepal.

    In Person:
  • Alizé Carrére
  • James Balog

    Symposium

    James Balog, a photographer and the star of the essential climate change documentary Chasing Ice, will discuss what he calls “human tectonics.” He’ll share his experiences photographing glacier melt, forest fires and other massive geological forces caused by climate change and explain how what he sees in the field will impact less extreme locations.

    In Person:
  • James Balog