‘Before the Flood’ puts a spotlight on climate change

Green Campus Project hosts annual documentary showing relating to sustainability


This past week students, staff and community members attended a showing of the documentary Before the Flood hosted by the Green Campus Project at the University  of Wisconsin-Platteville.

According to IMDb, the film is “a look at how climate change affects our environment and what society can do to prevent the demise of endangered species, ecosystems and native communities across the planet.”

The main purpose of the showing was “to educate people about the reality of climate change. We wanted to educate the campus and community that action needs to be taken to stop climate change,” sophomore soil and crop science and environmental horticulture major and president of the Green Campus Project Valerie McGoldrick said. “We wanted everyone to leave feeling inspired to take action and that they had the knowledge and tools to help.”

Freshman engineering major James Paradise said that he attended the documentary because it sounded interesting and because it was a great opportunity to learn more. He also said that the documentary reminded him of why he was interested in climate change in the first place.

The overall reaction to the documentary was very positive. Many different students, staff and community members contributed to the discussion that was held directly after the documentary ended. During the discussion people voiced their opinions or concerns about climate change, the influence of big money on climate change, politics and climate change and topics from the film. After the discussion ended, about 20 people stayed behind to discuss the documentary/climate change amongst each other.

This specific film was shown because some members of the Green Campus Project had seen it previously and recommended it. “We thought it did a great job showing both the future that we are heading towards and how we can help prevent it. We also liked that it was newly released and had a famous actor in it to help with publicity,” said McGoldrick.

According to the Green Campus Project’s Pioneerlink page, the “Green Campus Project is a student based organization founded on the philosophical and scientific evidence linking human activities with environmental impact.” One of the main objectives of the Green Campus Project is to “incorporate green philosophies and operational strategies that can reduce or eliminate UWP’s environmental impact.” One of the ways they raise awareness is through the yearly documentary they show relating to sustainability.

Before the Flood was directed by producer Fisher Stevens and produced by the Oscar-winning actor Leonardo DiCaprio and Oscar-winning director Martin Scorsese. Apart from producing the film, DiCaprio also stars in it as the United Nations Messenger of Peace. As the U.N. Messenger of Peace he travels and speaks around the world to raise awareness for climate change. The film adds credibility with appearances from some of the top scientists in the world and cameos from former Secretary of State John Kerry, Tesla founder Elon Musk, Pope Francis and Former President of the United States Barack Obama-some of the most powerful innovators and leaders in the world.