When I was 7 years old I used my own money to buy a book called something like 101 Ways to Save the Earth and proceeded to petition my family to make changes. I was so serious about doing my part to change the world that I even switched from baths to showers, which was a major deal. That passion to help save the world has stuck with me into adulthood.
However, having a desire to make a difference is meaningless if you don’t know how to take action, and that’s why I enjoyed Tomorrow so much. Unlike most environmental documentaries which focus on doom and gloom, Tomorrow is solution-focused and explores realistic actions every person can take to save the planet. It is upbeat and optimistic without making light of the challenges. Thank goodness because, I don’t know about you, but I’m so tired of all the denial, negativity, and defeatism when it comes to environmental issues!
The film is split into five chapters:
1 - Agriculture
2 - Energy
3 - Economy
4 - Democracy
5 - Education
While traveling to 10 different countries, Cyril Dion and Mélanie Laurent (Eternity, By the Sea) explored what it would look like if we all did our part. What they found were people and organizations who are successfully fighting climate change locally.
Detroit has a successful urban gardening program. In France, there are flourishing polyculture gardens that use natural forests as a model. Almost 70% of Copenhagen’s energy comes from non-fossil fuels. Bristol has created its own local currency that encourages local spending. One mayor in an Indian village has broken the caste system by creating a participative democracy in which everybody works together. Finland has no formalized/standardized testing; they focus on teaching in multiple ways, focusing on allowing kids to be kids and socializing.
Each community has banded together to work toward a common goal. They are just regular people doing their part. And it’s working.
As I was watching, I could feel my hope rising, and I left feeling empowered. I can actually do something to help and make a difference.
But exactly what and how? What can we do in our own homes and towns? Well, thankfully they have created a website that breaks down solutions for everybody into three categories: Individual, Collective, and Political. Not only do they list the actions you can take, they explain why and how. All of the actions are simple and really make a difference.
We only have one world. It’s about time we start taking care of it. As the saying goes, “Many hands make light the work.” If we all pitch in and do our part, we can make a difference before it’s too late. But we do have to act. Now.
So for all the little Jess’s out there, let’s band together and do our part to help save the Earth. Let’s figure out what tomorrow will look like. The next generation is counting on us.