Celebrate Earth Day with these Top Five Documentary Picks

This week marks the 48th anniversary of Earth Day, with events and public awareness campaigns all aimed at raising our collective consciousness about how fragile life is here on Mother Earth. For many of us, it’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the daily grind and fail to truly appreciate the spectacular beauty and wonder of the world around us—which, in many cases, is in grave danger of disappearing.

Now celebrated by over a billion people worldwide, Earth Day gives us an urgent reminder to not only stop to appreciate Earth’s majestic beauty, but to also look at our own behaviors and how we might individually work to improve the longevity of life on our planet.

At CuriosityStream, we’re all about discovering, celebrating and protecting this fascinating place we call home. In honor of Earth Day, here are our top five favorite films, all streaming now on CuriosityStream, to help bring some wonder and perspective into your little part of the world.

This fantastic global journey will transport you to 20 of the most spectacular locations around the world in stunning 4K. The immersive docu-series features stunning scenery, a natural soundtrack with no narration that enables you to experience the shifting sands of the Jordanian dessert, the UK’s ancient Fountains Abbey, the dramatic monuments at Stonehenge, the hidden city of Petra, a glimpse at prehistoric Earth at the Rekyjanes Peninsula, historic Venice, Italy, the awe-inspiring canyons of Colorado, the heart of Manhattan’s Central Park and much more. You’ll want to add each one of these spectacular spots to your bucket list.

One of the most hotly debated topics in political discourse is climate change. Whether it’s solely man-made or a natural phenomenon—or both—there’s no denying that with 7 billion human inhabitants, Earth’s growing population pits economic viability against environmental sustainability. This brief, 50-minute look at the formation and work of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to decode climate science provides a thought-provoking perspective on how the changes we’re seeing around the world impact every aspect of human life, now and in the future.

As Earth’s temperature begins to rise, a movement led by economist Jeffrey Sachs, Director of the Earth Institute, has set a definitive goal: prevent the temperature from rising more than 2° before 2050. By establishing this concrete measure, Sachs’ organization is turning climate change prevention from an abstract concept into a real, measurable phenomenon, helping to influence governments around the world to take action to prevent climate-caused disasters.

The largest ecosystem on the planet, Earth’s oceans are a cornerstone of its life support system. But, dual threats of ocean pollution and overfishing could have a devastating effect on its delicate balance—and ultimately on mankind. This fascinating look at the threat to our oceans is hosted by renowned marine biologist Dr. Sylvia Earle, best-known for leading the first all-female team of aquanauts who lived for over two weeks in a high-tech habitat beneath the Caribbean Sea, conducting extensive exploration of the ecosystem.

This fascinating 10-part series narrated by Sigourney Weaver provides an incredible look into the future, centered around the scientific and technological innovations that will revolutionize our lives over the next 30 years. With a glimpse into the cities, homes and transportation of the future, see how overpopulation and pollution will drive shifts in waste management, food production, medicine and even sports and entertainment. It’s a peek into the next generation, hosted by one of this one’s most iconic figures in science fiction and environmentalism.

Wherever your Earth Day celebrations take you, it’s easy to take CuriosityStream along. Each of these documentary films and series will transport you to some of Earth’s most fascinating and fleeting locations. And if you’re still curious about the planet, visit one of these curated collections: Plants, Wildlife, and Oceans.

 

 

Michael Hammerstrom
Michael Hammerstrom is the Manager of Marketing and Engagement at CuriosityStream, the world's premiere nonfiction streaming service. He previously led national community engagement efforts for PBS, focusing on K-12 education, as well as for the national nonprofit KaBOOM!, mobilizing high need communities to build playgrounds through competitive grants and grassroots fundraising. He holds a BFA in Theatre and Liberal Arts from The Boston Conservatory and started his career performing and teaching children's theatre.
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