1. Time to Choose (2016) 

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qfnuS4c0wp4

Where to watch: Amazon, iTunes, Google Play

Description: “Oscar-winning documentary director Charles Ferguson captures the urgency and innovation of this critical moment in his new film, TIME TO CHOOSE which takes audiences on a journey from the threats we face to the remarkable stories of people changing our world for the better. TIME TO CHOOSE also delivers a clear message to audiences: we can take action to stop this global threat. It is the first major film to offer compelling stories of the innovators, leaders, and average people fighting on the front lines for a cleaner, more sustainable world. Its scope is truly global, with footage and interviews from five continents. The film’s investigation of the true costs of fossil fuels and industrialized agriculture takes audiences inside the drivers of these global phenomena. Audiences meet Appalachian residents suffering from coal-poisoned waters, descend into the dangerous coal pits of China, see the red night skies of Nigeria’s oil and gas lands, and hear from courageous officials fighting corruption and deforestation in Indonesia. Through these portraits and more, Ferguson shows the toll the status quo is taking on human lives and the world around us.”

2. Before the Flood (2016)

Trailer: https://youtu.be/D9xFFyUOpXo

Where to watch: Amazon, iTunes, Google Play

Description: “From Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Fisher Stevens and Academy Award®-winning actor, environmental activist and U.N. Messenger of Peace Leonardo DiCaprio, Before the Flood presents a riveting account of the dramatic changes now occurring around the world due to climate change, as well as the actions we as individuals and as a society can take to prevent the disruption of life on our planet. Beyond the steps we can take as individuals, the film urges viewers to push their elected officials in supporting the use of alternative energy sources such as solar and wind power. “We need everyone to demand bold action from their political leaders and to elect representatives who have their best interests at heart, not the interests of corporations to perpetuate a cycle of greed and destruction,” says DiCaprio. “This documentary shows how interconnected the fate of all humanity is — but also the power we all possess as individuals to build a better future for our planet.”

3. An Inconvenient Truth (2006)

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CH-qO9RRchc

Where to watch: Netflix, Amazon, Google Play, Paramount Plus

Description: “An audience and critical favorite, An Inconvenient Truth makes the compelling case that global warming is real, man-made, and its effects will be cataclysmic if we don’t act now. Gore presents a wide array of facts and information in a thoughtful and compelling way: often humorous, frequently emotional, and always fascinating. In the end, An Inconvenient Truth accomplishes what all great films should: it leaves the viewer shaken, involved, and inspired.”

4. Chasing Coral (2017)

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6fHA9R2cKI

Where to watch: Netflix, Amazon

Description: “Coral reefs around the world are vanishing at an unprecedented rate. A team of divers, photographers, and scientists set out on a thrilling ocean adventure to discover why and to reveal the underwater mystery to the world. The film took more than three years to shoot and is the result of 500+ hours of underwater footage, coral bleaching submissions from volunteers in 30 countries, as well as support from more than 500 people in various locations around the world.”

5. Chasing Ice (2012) 

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eIZTMVNBjc4&t=1s

Where to watch: Netflix, Amazon

Description: “In the spring of 2005, acclaimed environmental photographer James Balog headed to the Arctic on a tricky assignment for National Geographic: to capture images to help tell the story of the Earth’s changing climate. Even with a scientific upbringing, Balog had been a skeptic about climate change. But that first trip north opened his eyes to the biggest story in human history and sparked a challenge within him that would put his career and his very well-being at risk. Chasing Ice is the story of one man’s mission to change the tide of history by gathering undeniable evidence of our changing planet. Within months of that first trip to Iceland, the photographer conceived the boldest expedition of his life: The Extreme Ice Survey. With a band of young adventurers in tow, Balog began deploying revolutionary time-lapse cameras across the brutal Arctic to capture a multi-year record of the world’s changing glaciers. As the debate polarizes America and the intensity of natural disasters ramps up globally, Balog finds himself at the end of his tether. Battling untested technology in subzero conditions, he comes face to face with his own mortality. It takes years for Balog to see the fruits of his labor. His hauntingly beautiful videos compress years into seconds and capture ancient mountains of ice in motion as they disappear at a breathtaking rate. Chasing Ice depicts a photographer trying to deliver evidence and hope to our carbon-powered planet.”

6. A Plastic Ocean (2016)

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gd9ZFVgoQ68

Where to watch: Netflix, iTunes, Amazon 

Description: “In the center of the Pacific Ocean gyre researchers found more plastic than plankton. A Plastic Ocean documents the newest science, proving how plastics, once they enter the oceans, break up into small particulates that enter the food chain where they attract toxins like a magnet. These toxins are stored in seafood’s fatty tissues, and eventually consumed by us. Producer Jo Ruxton joined an expedition to the so-called Great Pacific Garbage Patch in the North Pacific Gyre, 1500 miles off the coast of San Francisco, to ascertain its impact. When the expedition discovered free-floating microplastics instead of an anticipated solid mass that could be contained, Jo knew she had to begin the film that would become A Plastic Ocean.

7. Merchants of Doubt (2014)

Trailer: https://www.sonyclassics.com/merchantsofdoubt/

Where to watch: Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, Youtube 

Description: “Inspired by the acclaimed book by Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway, MERCHANTS OF DOUBT takes audiences on a satirically comedic, yet illuminating ride into the heart of conjuring American spin. Filmmaker Robert Kenner lifts the curtain on a secretive group of highly charismatic, silver- tongued pundits-for-hire who present themselves in the media as scientific authorities – yet have the contrary aim of spreading maximum confusion about well-studied public threats ranging from toxic chemicals to pharmaceuticals to climate change.”

8. The 11th Hour (2007)

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rmm8vrOWGI0

Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video, Google Play, Apple TV

Description: “The 11th Hour is a 2007 documentary film, made, handled, and depicted by Leonardo Dicaprio, on the state of the earth. “The 11th Hour” is the last moment when change is possible. The film explores how we’ve arrived at this moment – how we live, how we impact the earth’s ecosystems, and what we can do to change our course.  Featuring ongoing dialogues of experts from all over the world, including former Soviet Prime Minister Mikhail Gorbachev, renowned scientist Stephen Hawking, former head of the CIA R. James Woolsey, and sustainable design experts William McDonough and Bruce Mau in addition to over 50 leading scientists, thinkers, and leaders who discuss the most important issues that face our planet and people.  Narrated by Leonardo DiCaprio, written and directed by Leila Conners Petersen and Nadia Conners.  The 11th Hour is produced by Chuck Castleberry, Brian Gerber, Conners Petersen, and DiCaprio.”

9. Jumbo Wild (2015)

A gripping, hour-long documentary film that tells the true story of the decades-long battle over the future of British Columbia’s iconic Jumbo Valley.

Where to watch: Crackle (free)

Description (IMDB): “A gripping, hour-long documentary film by Sweetgrass Productions that tells a true story of the decades-long battle over the future of British Columbia’s iconic Jumbo Valley—highlighting the tension between protection of the backcountry experience and ever-increasing development interests in the wilderness. A large-scale proposed ski resort threatens the rich wilderness of British Columbia’s Purcell Range—a revered backcountry ski and snowboarding destination with world-class terrain, sacred ground for local First Nations people, and part of one of North America’s most important grizzly bear corridors. Set against a backdrop of incredible backcountry ski and snowboard footage, Jumbo Wild documents all sides of a divisive issue bringing the passionate local fight to protect the Jumbo Valley to life for the first time.”

10. Ice on Fire (2019)

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Elf0RFBhr8I

Where to watch: HBO Max

Description: “Produced by Oscar-winner Leonardo DiCaprio, George DiCaprio and Mathew Schmid and directed by Leila Conners, Ice on Fire is an eye-opening documentary that focuses on many never-before-seen solutions designed to slow down our escalating environmental crisis. The film goes beyond the current climate change narrative and offers hope that we can actually stave off the worst effects of global warming… Ice on Fire emphasizes the importance of an immediate, two-pronged approach to reversing the crisis: reducing carbon emissions through traditional renewable energy sources and new ones, like tidal energy, and implementing “drawdown” measures, focusing on methods for drawing down and sequestering carbon, including direct air capture, sea farms, urban farms, biochar, marine snow, bionic leaves, and others.”

11. I am Greta (2020)

Trailer: https://www.hulu.com/movie/i-am-greta-6eb88d15-22f0-4f7b-90aa-6933ddc2f90a

Where to watch: Hulu Premium

Description: “The story of teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg is told through compelling, never-before-seen footage in this intimate documentary from Swedish director Nathan Grossman. Starting with her one-person school strike for climate action outside the Swedish Parliament, Grossman follows Greta—a shy student with Asperger’s—in her rise to prominence and her galvanizing global impact as she sparks school strikes around the world. The film culminates with her extraordinary wind-powered voyage across the Atlantic Ocean to speak at the UN Climate Action Summit in New York City.”

12. Extinction: The Facts (2020)

Trailer: https://www.pbs.org/video/trailer-o52h97/

Where to watch: PBS, Amazon Prime, iTunes

Description: “With a million species at risk of extinction, Sir David Attenborough explores how this crisis of biodiversity has consequences for us all, threatening food and water security, undermining our ability to control our climate, and even putting us at greater risk of pandemic diseases.”

13. Greedy Lying B*stards (2013)

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sPax5-vCvA0

Where to watch: Amazon Prime, Kanopy

Description (Wikipedia): “The filmmakers examine how and why oil companies and other special-interest groups cast doubt on climate change and stall efforts to combat it.”

14. Carbon Nation

Trailer: https://www.imdb.com/video/vi2911410969?playlistId=tt1482991&ref_=tt_ov_vi

Where to watch: Tubi, Amazon Prime Video, Youtube

Description: “Carbon Nation is a documentary movie about climate change SOLUTIONS. Even if you doubt the severity of the impact of climate change or just don’t buy it at all, this is still a compelling and relevant film that illustrates how SOLUTIONS to climate change also address other social, economic, and national security issues. You’ll meet a host of entertaining and endearing characters along the way.”

15. Anthropocene: The Human Epoch (2018)

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ikMlCxzO-94

Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video, Youtube, Google Play

Description: “A cinematic meditation on humanity’s massive reengineering of the planet, ANTHROPOCENE: The Human Epoch is a four years in the making feature documentary film from the multiple-award-winning team of Jennifer Baichwal, Nicholas de Pencier, and Edward Burtynsky. Third in a trilogy that includes Manufactured Landscapes (2006) and Watermark (2013), the film follows the research of an international body of scientists, the Anthropocene Working Group who, after nearly 10 years of research, are arguing that the Holocene Epoch gave way to the Anthropocene Epoch in the mid-twentieth century, because of profound and lasting human changes to the Earth. From concrete seawalls in China that now cover 60% of the mainland coast, to the biggest terrestrial machines ever built in Germany, to psychedelic potash mines in Russia’s Ural Mountains, to metal festivals in the closed city of Norilsk, to the devastated Great Barrier Reef in Australia and surreal lithium evaporation ponds in the Atacama desert, the filmmakers have traversed the globe using high-end production values and state of the art camera techniques to document evidence and experience of human planetary domination. At the intersection of art and science, ANTHROPOCENE: The Human Epoch witnesses in an experiential and non-didactic sense a critical moment in geological history — bringing a provocative and unforgettable experience of our species’ breadth and impact.”

16. Racing Extinction (2015)

Trailer: https://www.opsociety.org/our-work/films/racing-extinction/

Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video, Youtube, Google Play, Apple TV

Description: “Infiltrating the world’s most dangerous black markets, a covert team unmasks the dark world of wildlife trafficking, a lucrative and organized enterprise with links to criminal syndicates. Using high-tech tactics, OPS reveals never-before-seen images that will forever change the way we see the world, bringing a voice to the thousands of species teetering on the brink of survival.”

17. Mission Blue (2014)

Trailer: https://mission-blue.org/the-film/

Where to watch: Netflix

Description: “Mission Blue inspires action to explore and protect the ocean. Led by legendary oceanographer Dr. Sylvia Earle, Mission Blue is uniting a global coalition to inspire an upwelling of public awareness, access, and support for a worldwide network of marine protected areas – Hope Spots.”

18. Breaking Boundaries: The Science of Our Planet (2021)

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gb6wQtNjblk

Where to watch: Netflix 

Description: “David Attenborough and scientist Johan Rockstrom examine Earth’s biodiversity collapse and how this crisis can still be averted.”

19. Years of Living Dangerously (2014 – 2016, TV series documentary)

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=juXzfwvVHZQ

Where to watch: Youtube, Sling

Description: “After a first season hailed as “the most important television series ever,” the Emmy award-winning documentary series, Years of Living Dangerously, returns with a second season to the National Geographic Channel, for an even deeper look at some of the most urgent climate change problems threatening the planet, and at some very real solutions. From India and China, to Africa and the United States, Years tells important and compelling human stories about individuals, communities, and governments facing critical choices that will impact the lives of millions for generations to come. This season’s team of celebrity correspondents includes David Letterman in is first post-Late Show assignment, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sigourney Weaver, Gisele Bündchen Jack Black, Ty Burell, Cecily Strong, Ian Somerhalder, America Ferrara, Nikki Reed, and Aasif Mandi.”

20. Mossville: When Great Trees Fall (2019)

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n4LVRdKJbIw

Where to watch: Youtube, PBS, Google Play, Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV

Description: “Mossville, Louisiana – A once-thriving community founded by formerly enslaved and free people of color, and an economically flourishing safe haven for generations of African American families. Today it’s a breeding ground for petrochemical plants and their toxic black clouds.  Many residents are forced from their homes and those that stay suffer from prolonged exposure to contamination and pollution. Amid this chaos and injustice stands one man who refuses to abandon his family’s land – and his community.” 

21. Generation Green New Deal (2020)

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eS2PtUQqUQY

Where to watch: Vimeo

Description: “Generation Green New Deal is a feature documentary film about a youth-led movement that fights to tackle the climate crisis and economic inequality, amidst fierce opposition. We are a diverse group of award-winning filmmakers & storytellers with unparalleled behind-the-scenes access to the driving forces behind the greatest political movement in a generation. This is a documentary that digs deep into the civic movement in support of a Green New Deal – a proposed package of sweeping social and economic reforms that aims to tackle climate change and economic inequality in one fell swoop.”

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