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PDX 2 Gulf Coast Documentary and Curriculum Use

Through the hard work of the Northwest Earth Institute (NWEI) and generous grants from the Juan Young Trust and the East Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District both our documentary, “Beyond the Spill” and our curriculum, “Just Below Surface:  Perspectives on the Gulf Coast Oil Spill” have been distributed to over 20 Portland area high schools and 1 in Clark and Benton counties.  Three Portland colleges and universities have obtained copies as well.  Several high schools have already used the curriculum and so has Portland State University.  In addition, NWEI has also distributed the curriculum to the Intel Corporation for use with their employees interested in sustainability issues. And in early October, at the Northwest Teaching for Social Justice Conference, Steve Duin and I presented a workshop on use of the curriculum, documentary and “Oil and Water” by community groups and high schools interested in further inquiry and action.

On it’s own, “Beyond the Spill” is beginning to travel throughout the Northwest and hopefully the US for screenings.  John Waller (Uncage the Soul Productions), the documentary filmmaker who created “Beyond the Spill,” has entered it in numerous environmental film festivals.  The film has been shown several times in Portland (including at Wordstock) and has already been shown at the Salem Film Festival 2011 and the Eugene International Film Festival 2011.  In Eugene the documentary won the award for “Most Socially Engaging Feature.”  The more “Beyond the Spill” is picked up by film festivals, the more it will be distributed and shown.

“Just Below the Surface” and “Beyond the Spill” are two important and effective tools that PDX 2 Gulf Coast has created to encourage continued conversation about the short- and long-term impacts of the BP oil spill and, how our daily decisions can prevent a catastrophe of this magnitude from occurring again.  If you, your community group or school would like to continue the conversation you can purchase “Beyond the Spill” online and/or purchase “Just Below the Surface” through the Northwest Earth Institute.

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