Category Archives: Weather

There are Worse Things than Filming in the Park on a Sunday

(Because I study theater, it felt appropriate to begin with a Sondheim reference.)

That’s a wrap!!!

Today I finished the second and final day of shooting on The Sorry Project.       IMG_0049 (1) Although the weather was uncannily cold for April 10, it was a beautiful day and we got a lot of great footage. I had 5 incredible dancers : Benjamin Freemantle, Yvette Lu, Sydney Zusman, Lauren Soto, and myself.  all of whom were incredibly focused and committed. I am incredibly grateful for each of them

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We filmed in Riverside Park and at my DP/Producer, Justin Scholar’s apartment building in Morningside Heights.

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Today was more about the dancing. Last time we got a lot of b roll footage that will be great for getting the point across.  We did start the day getting a few more of the articles on film, including floating one in some rocks on the bank of the Hudson, but it was mostly about movement.

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I am especially proud of the work we did on some park steps. I was able to finesse a piece of complicated choreography onto the steps so that the dancers were essentially rolling and flipping down the concrete steps in unison.

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Now it will be time to edit. This will be a challenge mostly because 1) I’ve never edited a film before and 2) I will have to determine not only which shots showcase the choreography most cleanly, but which shots most clearly convey the meaning behind the choreography.

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I am very proud of what I have achieved so far and I am excited to put together a final cut. I am going to very seriously try to have a cut ready for the 4/22 Open Arts Showcase.

“A Climate System Spiraling Out of Control”: A Future We Choose not To See

The future is coming, and it’s coming fast.

The majority of people choose to either ignore it, or do not know the devastating consequences of that future. The statistic that the population in predicted to be 11 billion in 2100 probably doesn’t register for many because they can’t visualize such a large number or cannot see that far in the future. To assist people here is a website that counts, in realtime, the growth of our population, the exhaustion of our resources, the state of government, and the quality of our health.

It makes me feel like this :

Joking aside, the constant worry that we are running out of time is real one. The pattern of most environmental videos, articles and case studies is that we are causing irreversible damage, and we are running out of time and options to fix this damage. This was one of the closing messages of Naomi Oreskes herself in Merchants of Doubts. She emphasized that we don’t have the luxury of 50 years (the time it took the government to try and charge the tobacco industry) for us to start making a change to prevent natural disaster.

Backing up this idea of having a small window of time for change with science, is James Hansen’s Tedtalk, which we viewed in class. He compares our future with “a gigantic asteroid on a collision path for earth” that we are doing nothing to avoid. He explains the longer we wait the more difficult and expansive it becomes” and reveals that if we started in 2005 it would take a 3% reduction in total emissions to restore energy imbalance, if we started in 2013 (one year after the TedTalk was filmed) it would be 6%, and in 2022 it would be 15%, an incredibly expensive and most likely impossible change. Now in 2016, it seems like our window for change is shrinking and it’s showing.

Flood-affected local residents move to safer places on a boat next to their damaged huts after heavy rains at Jajimukh village in the northeastern Indian state of Assam June 27, 2012. Incessant heavy rains in northeast India have caused massive flooding and landslides, killing at least 10 people, local media reported on Wednesday. REUTERS/Stringer (INDIA - Tags: ENVIRONMENT DISASTER)

The disasters that Oreskes and Hansen predicted in their studies are coming to life and in the most horrible ways. In many cases, the most susceptible are the first to pay. Flooding and drought, are displacing thousands in places such as Syria, where water supplies have been exhausted and major drought has occurred, or in Bangladesh, with it’s coastline and Ganges river and Brahmaputra river, where extreme flooding has displaced thousands…and this is just the tip of the already melting iceberg.

Soon, if not already, we will see complications such as these regularly within our own country. The numbers say it all, and if you see the broad strokes of it all, or just the line moving in continuous upward direction, its clear to see that the things we are doing to pollute and destroy our environment are increasing, while are resources are decreasing. We are getting to the point, where Earth’s annual resources can no longer support a year of our current consumption. So where does that leave us?

It tells us that trying to figure out and predict how fast the seas will rise and how much do we now need to generate to support our growing need are the wrong questions. For when you see the numbers adding up before your eyes, and look at the trend of the graphs, and feel the unusual warmth of the winter wind, you realize the future is now, and there is no time left.

California Water Crisis: How Inequality and Antiquated Policy Come Into Play

We all have heard of the drought that California has been experiencing for sometime now. It’s so well known, it’s even becoming the butt of many people’s jokes about California.

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But jokes aside, what has caused this current crisis and what are the issues that have arrived out of it?

A drought of this duration and severity is caused by a handful of environmental issues working in tandem. As we’ve read, Earth’s aquifers have been shrinking at an alarming rate.  Add this to the fact that the demand on these aquifers are increasing, and the weather warming, and we have the crisis that is currently devastating the state. With an economic and environmental disaster on their hands, one would think water conservation would be of the utmost priority.

Not necessarily.

In the midst of this crisis, there has been great inequality of water rights that have allowed the already scarce water supply to be further strained. Much of the fault lies with the State and their reluctance to regulate the farming industry. The farming industry accounts for about 80% of the water consumption in the state of California and has been able to water thousands of acres without regulation.

On the other hand, residents’ water usage have been regularly monitored by water fines. This selected regulation has not only allowed the corporate farmers to deplete the water supply even further and leave little for residents, but also created an economic divide between those residents. Wealthier residents have had less of a need to change their water use, while lower income residents have needed to carefully manage and learn to live with less.

Thankfully, this economic inequality has sparked controversy and criticism. As of June 2015, the State has intervened and finally restricted water rights of corporate farmers with plans for further restriction if they deem it necessary. Still, it is troubling to think of the time wasted and the water spent since the beginning of the drought.