Environmental Justice Documentaries

Environmental Justice Documentaries

Environmental justice documentaries are a powerful tool for raising awareness about the damage done to our environment and the people affected by it. Through films, these stories are brought to life in a way that can be difficult to achieve through other mediums.

Environmental Justice documentaries offer an intimate look into how climate change is impacting communities around the world and inspiring viewers to take action. They also provide a platform for those whose voices have been silenced or ignored by their governments or institutions.

Environmental Justice Documentaries

In this article, we will explore some of the most influential environmental justice documentaries today and what they bring to the conversation.

The Age Of Consequences

The Age of Consequences is a documentary that examines the world’s most pressing environmental issues, and how they are impacting humanity in an unprecedented way.

The film follows a number of compelling stories from around the globe, from India to Syria, and how these stories are linked together by climate change and environmental degradation.

It showcases how environmental injustice is connected to global security, food production, human health, and even economic inequality.

Through interviews with individuals on the ground in various countries affected by climate change and other environmental injustices, the documentary reveals the daily impacts of these issues on ordinary people’s lives.

It also highlights cases where governments have acted too slowly or not at all to address these issues, leading to devastating consequences for innocent people.

The film then takes us to areas where innovative solutions have been implemented, showing how communities can take action themselves when their governments cannot or will not help them.

The Age of Consequences showcases both the tragedy and hope which accompany this new era in human history.

As we see more extreme weather events around the world due to climate change, it becomes clear that something must be done if we are to protect our planet and its inhabitants.

This section sets up an important discussion about what steps can be taken next—a conversation which continues with our next topic: plastic pollution in China.

Plastic China

The Age of Consequences paints a bleak picture of humanity’s future and warns of the immense consequences of climate change. The documentary focuses on environmental destruction, extreme weather, military conflict and migration that could result from unchecked emissions. It is an important reminder that we must take action now to protect our planet.

Plastic China puts a spotlight on the global issue of plastic waste disposal, particularly in China. The documentary follows a family who works at a plastic recycling plant in rural China, providing viewers with an intimate look into their struggles with poverty and health issues related to living in close proximity to so much plastic waste. It serves as a stark warning against our current levels of plastic consumption and the careless disposal practices that allow for it.

The third film in this collection is Chasing Coral. This documentary looks at the effects of ocean acidification and coral bleaching caused by warming waters due to climate change. It follows underwater photographers as they document the rapid decline of coral reefs around the world, offering a sobering glimpse into how human activities may have already pushed parts of our planet beyond its tipping point.

As we continue to confront these realities, it becomes increasingly clear that we must address climate change now or risk irreversible damage to our environment and ourselves.

Chasing Coral

Chasing Coral is a 2017 documentary that follows a team of divers, photographers and scientists as they document the disappearance of coral reefs in the ocean. It was produced by Jeff Orlowski and Larissa Rhodes, and executive produced by Richard Yelland, Adam Leipzig, and Olivia Ahnemann. The film won several awards, including an Emmy for Outstanding Nature Documentary.

The film focuses on the effects of climate change on coral reefs around the world. With stunning visuals and heartbreaking stories from scientists who are witnessing the destruction firsthand, it paints a vivid picture of what’s happening beneath the ocean’s surface:

  • The rapid bleaching of coral due to warming oceans
  • The acidification caused by increased levels of carbon dioxide in seawater
  • The devastating effects these changes have on marine wildlife

The documentary also highlights the solutions proposed by scientists to protect coral reefs from further damage. From protecting coastal areas to developing new technologies that can help restore damaged reefs, Chasing Coral provides viewers with an honest look at both the challenges and solutions surrounding climate change.

By presenting this information in an accessible way, it serves as a wake-up call about how we must act now if we hope to avoid further destruction to our planet’s ocean ecosystems. Without further action, we may be left with only memories of what once was – a haunting reminder of our collective responsibility to protect our oceans for future generations.

This brings us to ‘What Lies Upstream’, another powerful documentary about environmental justice that examines how corporate greed affects communities living along rivers and streams across the United States.

What Lies Upstream

From the vibrant coral reefs of Chasing Coral to the murky waters of What Lies Upstream, our journey for environmental justice continues. To make sense of this new landscape, we must first look beyond what lies on the surface.

As a symbolic representation, imagine a tree. Its trunk stands tall and proud, rooted deep in the ground but its branches reach high towards the sky. We can think of its trunk as representing everything that lies upstream- from causes to effects- while its branches symbolize everything downstream that is affected by these causes and effects.


These three columns are just a glimpse into what lies upstream – industry, politics, and laws can all directly or indirectly influence the environment and those living within it. By examining this table we can begin to uncover why environmental justice is so important and how it connects to What Lies Upstream. There’s much more that lies beneath the surface, waiting to be explored; our next destination takes us beyond the flood.

Beyond The Flood

The documentary Beyond the Flood reveals the devastating effects of climate change on Bangladesh. It follows a group of filmmakers to Bangladesh, where they are exposed to the worsening effects of floods, storms and sea level rise as they interview locals about how they have been impacted by rising temperatures. The documentary serves to provide an understanding of what it is like to live in a country that is already feeling the impacts of climate change.

Here are three ways that Beyond the Flood has shifted public opinion:

  • It has highlighted how farmers in Bangladesh must now cope with frequent high water levels and saltwater intrusion into their land, making it impossible for them to grow crops.
  • It has shed light on how many communities are facing displacement due to sudden and extreme weather events such as floods or cyclones.
  • It has revealed the economic damage this can cause, particularly in terms of loss of livelihoods and increased poverty for those affected by climate change.

Beyond the Flood brings attention to a situation that is often overlooked – one that demands immediate action from world leaders and global citizens alike. With its powerful message, it encourages viewers to take meaningful steps towards reducing our emissions and reversing climate change. This serves as an important reminder that we all have a role to play in protecting our planet for future generations.

Moving forward, Gasland offers another perspective on environmental justice issues; one focused on fracking and its consequences on local ecosystems and communities across North America.


Gasland is one of the most prominent environmental justice documentaries of our time. Directed by Josh Fox, this film provides an in-depth look into the effects of hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking. This controversial practice has been used to extract natural gas from deep within the Earth’s surface, but it has come at a great cost to the environment and those who live nearby.

The documentary follows Fox as he travels throughout communities that have been affected by fracking to uncover the truth behind its consequences. The documentary exposes how fracking has caused numerous issues such as pollution and health risks for these communities. Air quality is compromised due to hazardous chemicals being released into the atmosphere through fracking operations.

In addition, residents living near these sites are exposed to water contamination that affects their ability to drink clean water or even bathe in it. These same people are also at risk of developing various diseases from pollutants found in their water and soil. Gasland provides an eye-opening look into how these communities are struggling against big corporations that prioritize profit over protecting their environment and citizens’ wellbeing.

The documentary offers a unique perspective on the issue of environmental justice and highlights how much more needs to be done in order for us to create a safer world for all its inhabitants. It’s clear that we need stronger regulations in place so that companies cannot continue unchecked with activities like fracking that put entire communities at risk.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are The Primary Topics Explored In Each Of These Documentaries?

The primary topics explored in environmental justice documentaries are nothing short of mind-blowing! From the disproportionate impacts of climate change to the unequal access to clean air and water, these films take viewers on an incredible journey through some of the most pressing issues facing our planet today.

From exploring corporate greed and its effects on vulnerable communities to examining how racism has shaped environmental policy, these documentaries provide a comprehensive look at an incredibly complex issue.

Whether you’re looking for an inspiring story about how individuals are fighting for justice, or simply want to learn more about what’s happening around the world, environmental justice documentaries have something for everyone.

What Themes Of Environmental Justice Are Highlighted In These Films?

Environmental justice is a complex topic that covers a wide range of issues related to the environment and its impact on communities.

The themes explored in environmental justice documentaries are varied, but generally focus on topics such as poverty, unequal access to resources, pollution, health risks, and social inequalities.

These films often also demonstrate how marginalized communities have been disproportionately affected by policies designed to benefit corporate interests while disregarding the rights of those living in impoverished areas.

What Is The Overall Message Of Each Documentary?

The overall message of these documentaries is quite clear: environmental justice is a critical issue. Through the use of powerful imagery and personal stories, they emphasize the need for action to protect our planet and its inhabitants.

By highlighting the injustice faced by marginalized communities, these films inspire viewers to take a stand against environmental destruction and demand justice for all. With a sense of urgency in their tone, these documentaries leave us with the thought-provoking reminder that it’s up to us to ensure our planet has a bright future.

How Long Are These Films And What Platforms Are They Available On?

The length and platforms of documentaries vary greatly. Many can be found online for free or as part of streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime Video. Others may require a rental fee or purchase to watch from a website like Vimeo or iTunes. The running time of these films range from about 15 minutes to several hours, depending on the subject matter.

What Are Some Of The Key Takeaways From Each Of These Documentaries?

When watching documentaries, it is important to know the key takeaways that you will get from the film. It’s not enough just to watch a movie without considering the implications and understanding what message they are trying to convey.

Each environmental justice documentary has its own unique perspective and set of insights, and it is essential to consider these points when deciding which films to watch. By doing so, viewers can understand the various angles that come with each story and gain an appreciation for the hard work filmmakers put into making these pieces of art.


In conclusion, environmental justice documentaries provide an eye-opening experience into the world of environmental injustice. They explore topics such as climate change, pollution, and corporate greed in a way that is both powerful and impactful.

The films highlight themes such as inequality, exploitation of vulnerable populations, and the need for collective action to bring about positive change. Each documentary has its own unique message, but they all send a clear message that we must take responsibility for our actions and make changes to protect our environment before it’s too late. Many artists bring the real issues through environmental justice artwork; you can learn more about it.

It’s safe to say that these documentaries are a must-see; they will leave viewers feeling enlightened and motivated with a newfound appreciation for the natural world around them – so much so that it can be said watching them is like having an out-of-body experience!

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