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Owning the Weather

By Climate Guest Contributor on December 12, 2009 at 6:00 am

"Owning the Weather"

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A Film by Robert Greene (2009, 92 minutes)

Owning the Weather

The following is a guest post by Hillary Berkowitz of 4th Row Films about “Owning the Weather,” which is being screened in Copenhagen, tomorrow, Sunday the 13th.

The desire to modify the weather has been around forever; but with the threat of catastrophic climate change, water wars, and intensifying hurricanes, a new breed of weather control has emerged.

OWNING THE WEATHER tells the story of weather modification in the United States, from Charles Hatfield’s infamous rainmaking days to modern plans to engineer the climate.

There are more than fifty active weather modification programs in the United States alone. Through the eyes of key individuals on the front lines of a crucial but largely unknown debate, the film introduces the cloud seeders struggling for mainstream recognition, the “legitimate” scientists who doubt them, and the activists who decry any attempts to mess with Mother Nature.

Will the scientific renegades in the weather modification community ever shed the label of “snake-oil salesman”?  Will they succeed in securing government funding for the first time in decades?  What does it mean to our society if there are no more “Acts of God”?

The film premiered in April 2009 at the prestigious Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, had a length festival run and will now be available on cable Video-on-Demand, iTunes, Amazon VOD and a host of other places beginning on December 6th, 2009

Recently the film received the great honor of being asked to participate in the United Nations Climate Change Conference (known as COP15) taking place this December in Copenhagen, Denmark.  COP15 will draw leaders and renowned scientists from all over the world to discuss the most pressing environmental issues of our time.

To coincide with this historic conference, the city of Copenhagen is organizing a series of cultural programs and events.  They have invited OWNING THE WEATHER to screen on Sunday, December 13, to an audience of hundreds near City Hall Square.  In addition, a panel discussion about climate change and geoengineering will follow the screening, featuring some of the more notable scientists and thinkers in the field. Being a part of the annual mega-meeting about global environmental issues will be a real highlight for the film, especially considering the fact that only seven films were invited.

Using this international forum, we hope to start a real debate about one of the most controversial scientific and ethical dilemmas of the new millennium.  We’ve always wanted to control the weather.  Now we might have to.

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