Original article by NYERERE HAYNES  |  GUARDIAN Trinidad
Published on Monday, October 26, 2015
22050889099_ffd05775f8_kCarver Bacchus would like more corporate support for Green Screen as he believes films are an excellent method of sending the message of environmental sustainability. The films screened by Sustain T&T are free to the public.

Green Screen—the Environmental Film Series, now in its fifth year, will run from November 2 to 13, with free screenings of movies at Medulla Art gallery, De Nu Pub, San Fernando Hill and other venues.

The launch, taking place at the Digicel Imax theatre on November 2 from 6 pm, will feature the world premiere of A Better Place.

The film tells the inspirational stories of five environmental projects in T&T. The programmes, all funded by the Global Environment Fund (GEF) Small Grants Programme, show the commitment and dedication of diverse groups working from where they are to make T&T a better place.

Directed by award-winning filmmaker Miquel Galofré and produced by Sustain T&T’s own Carver Bacchus, A Better Place tells the story of five community-based organisations through the work that they do and how their experiences in diverse communities and areas impacts their view of the world. Infused with local music, stunning visuals complement stories of hope, resilience and survival.

“The film has been created from a personal, social and environmental heroism perspective. It is a visually sumptuous film supported by relateable stories. It shines a light on projects that would normally fly very low on the radar in terms of mainstream media coverage but it’s definitely something people need to know about,” said Bacchus. 

Since its inception in 2011, the Green Screen—The Environmental Film Series has sought to raise awareness of environmental issues by screening local and international films. So far the project has served to spark conversations about environmental issues that affect everyone. These have led to the development of several eco-driven projects, mostly in secondary schools. This year’s theme, Together, highlights the need, now more than ever, for not just a passive collective awareness but also an actively unified drive towards restoring and preserving the environment.

“Everyone knows that climate change is eventually going to impact severely on smaller countries, ourselves included. But what are we as a people doing? What are we as a country doing together to fix this problem? So that is the theme this year because everything that we want to do, the positive changes that we want to see, everything that we hope will happen in the next 20 years depends on what we do now together as a people,” said Bacchus.

Funding has always been a challenge for the Green Screen Project. Fortunately, the German Embassy set out to help them develop the project from the start and has been one of the main partners of the initiative. The European Union has also played their part in terms of sponsorship. However, the lack of interest from corporate T&T is a major concern for Bacchus.

“I think that this is a very attractive project not only from a branding and corporate social responsibility perspective. Over the years we have grown and have brought on supporters; Atlantic LNG has been a part of the project for the last three years. We still look forward to more support in getting the message of awareness out via film because it’s an exciting project and the screenings are free to the public,” he said. 

Green Screen is a Sustain T&T project and was created as a platform to engage people through films about environmental conservation, climate change, green energy and sustainable development.

“Sustainability is something that is connected to development and our development is connected to diversification and from my perspective the creative industries are an important component of diversification. So we are sitting at the crossroads between the creative sector, sustainability and design, we are right in that sweet spot in the middle there. We decided to show films because they connect with people emotionally,” said Bacchus. 

Ultimately, Bacchus hopes that the film series will illustrate to audiences their impact on the environment and also make them aware of what they can do as individuals to curb negative behaviours and reinforce positive ones.

“We want people to come and look at films but we also want them to change their behaviour. Some people are doing all the right things, but most of T&T is not. There is still a lot of improper disposal of waste, still a lot of overuse of energy, destruction of natural habitats—and a host of things that continue to happen. We want to start changing people’s mind about this by making connections between our long term prosperity versus our current scenario,” said Bacchus. 

• MORE INFO: GREEN SCREEN—The Environmental Film Series will host its Benefit Launch & Cocktail Reception at the Digicel Imax on November 2. • Tickets are $150. To purchase visit the DIGICEL IMAX box office (Cash Only) or call 745-6017. • Please visit: facebook.com/Greenscreentt.