analysisBy Richard Lee
An Osisa funded film, Creating a Climate for Change, has been selected for the prestigious Princeton Environmental Film Festival (PEFF). Now in its seventh year, the festival is acknowledged as one of the top three festivals of its kind in the world.
Founded in 2006, the PEFF's mission is to share exceptional documentary films and explore environmental sustainability from a wide range of angles and perspectives. Creating a Climate for Change will be shown at PEFF on Friday February 8th.
Produced and directed by Jeffery Barbee, the award-winning film - and accompanying photo exhibition - is helping to raise awareness about the impact of climate change in southern Africa and about a number of innovative and positive home-grown projects that are helping people across the region to adapt.
The 35-minute film, which was co-funded by the Open Society Initiative for South Africa and premiered at COP17 in Durban last November, illustrates how locally-driven solutions can be devised and successfully implemented in some of the worst affected areas. And how they can empower people to improve their lives - and support sustainable socio-economic development - through the restoration and protection of their natural resources.
The film focuses on projects in Botswana, Namibia, Mozambique, Zambia and South Africa.
In the Baviaanskloof of South Africa, government, civil society and local communities have joined forces to replant vast areas of indigenous bush, known as Spekboom. This restores the water in the area, but also generates financial benefits through the carbon market. In northern Zambia, conservation farming has helped thousands of families to cope with less reliable rainfall.
On a regional level, the Kavango Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area focuses on the health of the two large watersheds that straddle five countries' borders. Meanwhile, the Desert Research Foundation of Namibia is one of the oldest research stations in the region and provides critical data.
Creating a Climate for Change won the prestigious jury award at the 2012 Film Festival of Colorado for best environmental film.The film has been shown in a number of festivals in the United States and is now being shown in Germany. Later this year, it will be showcased again in South Africa and Namibia.