"Before the Flood," a new National Geographic documentary film about climate change featuring Leonardo DiCaprio, will be shown in a special screening at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 2, in 22 Deike Building on the Penn State University Park campus. The event is free and open to the public.
Following the screening, the audience will have the opportunity to engage in a panel discussion with Penn State climate change experts. Michael Mann, Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric Science and director of the Penn State Earth System Science Center, will moderate the panel discussion. Mann is also featured in the film.
- Richard Alley, Evan Pugh Professor of Geosciences and author of “Earth: The Operators’ Manual”
- Klaus Keller, professor of geosciences and director of Penn State’s Center for Climate Risk Management
- Tom Richard, professor of agricultural and biological engineering and director of the Penn State Institutes of Energy and the Environment
- Erica Smithwick, associate professor of geography and director of Penn State's Center for Landscape Dynamics
- David Titley, retired U.S. Navy rear admiral, professor of practice in Penn State's Department of Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences and founding director of the Center for Solutions to Weather and Climate Risk
About the film
"Before the Flood," by filmmaker Fischer Stevens and executive producer Martin Scorsese, follows DiCaprio as he travels to five continents and the Arctic, speaking to scientists, world leaders, activists and local residents to investigate concrete solutions to climate change and gain a deeper understanding of this complex issue.
“There is no greater threat to the future of our society than climate change, and it must be a top issue for voters this election season,” DiCaprio said in a statement. Added Stevens, “The level of support National Geographic is providing to create awareness about climate change is exactly what Leo and I were looking for when we made this film.”
The film presents an account of how society can prevent the demise, due to climate change, of endangered species, ecosystems and native communities across the globe. DiCaprio interviews individuals from every face of society in both developing and developed nations who provide unique, impassioned and pragmatic views on what must be done today to transition our economic and political systems into environmentally friendly institutions. It includes interviews with U.S. President Barack Obama, former U.S. President Bill Clinton, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon and Pope Francis, as well as top NASA researchers, forest conservationists, scientists, community leaders and activists.
“I just want to know how far we’ve gone,” DiCaprio said, “and if there’s anything we can do anything to stop it.” There are mind-numbing and/or heart-wrenching scenes of glaciers cascading in the sea, raging floods, horrific pollution and desperate polar bears.
DiCaprio is a longtime environmentalist who was designated in 2014 as a U.N. Messenger of Peace with a special focus on climate change by U.N. Secretary-General Ki-moon.