Review: An Inconvenient Truth 2

When An Inconvenient Truth was released, the majority of the world finally woke up to the fact that global warming was real and was coming to strangle you in your bed - at least, that was the kind of wakeup call America needed and that Al Gore provided.

However, for us Europeans, we were already convinced that global warming and climate change were real, and were already implementing - or, were at least in the early stages of implementing - green measures. Unfortunately, this has not been well publicised: until this British response to An Inconvenient Truth. This production follows the journey of the director Jack Guest as he travels around Sweden, probably the greenest of the EU nations and the forefront of carbon cutting technologies. He investigates the big four parts of our lives that generate the most waste and CO2.

  1. Travel
  2. Industry/Power
  3. Housing
  4. Food

He shows that there is easy and simple way to reduce greenhouse gases on a local scale, from the direct effects of recycling, all the way to how the car industry - notably Volvo - have started making cars that run on bioethanol and methane. An astonishing fact the film unveils is that Sweden has planned to cut its dependence on oil by 2020 - better than that, they are damn well on track!

This film really plays up that fact that this has to be a community effort. As an almost fully fledged scientist, I have been reminded by my department on a daily basis that climate change isn’t getting any better. I mean, I do my part - I reduce the temperature of my washing machine and recycle weekly, but when you see the CO2 outputs of the US and China, it feels like I have turned up to a forest fire with a teacup of water. The core message that I feel Jack is bringing across is that if 62 million of us have a teacup full of water, we can put out the fire in no time.

Another thing which I love is how quintessentially British this film is - production started in 2006, just after Al Gore released his film. It’s as if Jack said, "Hang on - it’s not all doom and gloom!" This was developed more in the question and answer session shown afterward the screening. He explained how his aim was to show that environmental changes are achievable in our lifetime to motivate a younger audience, but also that the change starts now, not with the next generation - a core message for the green movement.

Interestingly, in the audience of the cinema were members of the York Council who expressed their wishes to be more eco-friendly, but because of the current financial climate, there were limitations, which, combined with this government, is a major issue for change. Hopefully, enough people will get behind Jack so that he can tour universities; I really recommend that you see this film - you can rent it from his website ( for £2, especially if you are feeling the end of the world blues.

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