Nov 17, 2023 - Things to Do

New documentary tackles climate change from the ground up

Photo of an actor holding a sign that says Common Ground

Actor Jason Momoa. Photo: Courtesy of the film "Common Ground."

A new documentary screening at the Music Box Saturday explores how to reverse climate change by tending to our soil.

What's happening: "Common Ground" digs into how humans have destroyed topsoil around the globe, which has a much more profound impact than air or water pollution.

  • "The fact that the climate community kind of missed this is stunning," co-director Josh Tickell tells Axios.

What they're saying: The filmmakers posit that the ground is the natural place to store carbon dioxide, yet our massive industrial food system has laid waste to the land, turning soil into dust.

  • "Conventional farming over the last 150 years has destroyed the topsoil that we built America on," co-director Rebecca Tickell tells Axios. "And not just in this country. We've desertified a third of the planet."

Be smart: The film isn't all gloom and doom. The Tickells spend time laying out solutions to how we can save our soil using regenerative agriculture by empowering and subsidizing sustainable farmers.

  • "It's all about not taking more than what you give," says Rebecca Tickell. "We've been sold on this myth that we have to keep farming in this really toxic way. And it couldn't be further from the truth."

Of note: The filmmakers realized their message needed to be amplified, so they turned to major Hollywood actors including Jason Momoa, Rosario Dawson and Laura Dern to contribute to this documentary.

What's next: The filmmakers will be at the Music Box for a screening and Q/A Saturday night.


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