WHY WE DO WHAT WE DO
We believe that media and culture and public policy are ultimately inseparable. And although it may often be impossible to draw precise relationships of cause and effect, media is instrumental in laying the groundwork for broad-based public policy and cultural change.
Since its inception the environmental movement has concentrated on problems that confront us all and worked to stop the most egregious forms of global degradation. Over the years that dialog has broadened from local issues to global concerns and moved from identifying general problems to suggesting specific solutions. Due to these efforts and new legislation, business and industry have slowly found themselves changing their perception of environmental issues from something that they must begrudgingly deal with to something that they must incorporate into every aspect of their activities in order to retain a competitive advantage. And now, after decades, being "green" is a must.
It's our belief that solutions to environmental, human health, economic, human rights and social justice problems are inextricably linked and have reached an opportune inflection point for broad-based change. Nothing less than our collective future is at stake. But in order to succeed solutions will require a concerted effort on the part of governments backed by the resolve of an informed electorate and grassroots activism, and media is the most effective method available to stimulate that public debate in an interactive and participatory way.
Documentaries are one of the best means available to disseminate timely information about important issues and engage the public to inspired action. Their stories convey powerful messages about human accomplishment and human folly and increase our shared knowledge. Films speak to our hearts and minds and ultimately, through the stories they tell, bring us together. And though the outcomes of media may not always be "measurable" in the traditional sense, the power of media is indisputable.
Documentaries about issues of significant public interest are becoming increasingly important component of grassroots advocacy and social change. We expect this trend to continue. In his landmark books, ECO-ECONOMY, Lester R. Brown, President of the Earth Policy Institute, discusses the immediate need for new initiatives by media to fill the "information gap" that exists regarding environmental, cultural and related economic issues. In a compelling chapter on "The New Role of Media" he laments that "only the media have the capacity to disseminate the needed information in the time available".
The Environmental Media Fund's goal is to positively effect this situation by assisting films and programming dedicated to increasing public awareness and providing empowering actions that address our shared environmental, human health and social justice concerns.