Tag Archives: biodiversity

CEC’s Santa Barbara Earth Day Green Film Festival

Films include Gaviota: The End of Southern California and Better Together

Featured as a part of the Community Environmental Council (CEC) Santa Barbara Virtual Earth Day celebration, the Green Film Festival will share a collection of over a dozen Earth-centered films from around the world during the festival, which is live online at http://sbearthday.org on 4/22, 23 & 24, as well as remaining with recorded content viewable from that site for a month, until 5/21.

The Santa Barbara oil spill in 1969 sparked Earth Day, 52 years ago. Community Environmental Council will hold the 51st annual Santa Barbara Earth Day festival virtually this year. Films featured at the CEC Santa Barbara Earth Day Green Film Festival fulfill the mission to advance environmental and social justice, environmental regeneration, climate healing and community resilience. Selections feature local films as well as a collection of short films from around the world. Highlights include:

Gaviota: The End of Southern California

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hf7XL4eXV2g

Produced by Tamlorn Chase and Directed by Shaw Leonard, Gaviota: The End of Southern California is a 40-minute film that explores one of the most threatened biodiversity hotspots in the world. In a monumental collaboration of artists, activists, and environmental organizations, this film documents the wildlife that thrives here like no other place in Southern California. Meticulously filmed over the course of five years, the film leads audiences from the ocean floor of the Santa Barbara Channel to the peaks of the jagged Santa Ynez Mountains. This wild journey crosses paths with breaching humpback whales, red-tailed hawks and elusive mountain lions. With nearly 90% of Southern California’s coast lost to development, the preservation of this coastline is the last bastion of hope for wildlife fighting to survive against a world closing in on them.

Better Together 

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/312615053 

The 1969 Union Oil blowout mobilized the Santa Barbara community to fight for the environment, inspiring the creation of many nonprofit organizations, Earth Day, the Environmental Protection Agency and one of the first interdisciplinary Environmental Studies programs. The legacy of the oil spill continues to inform local citizens, who have come together over the years to protect the air and water, preserve open spaces and for each other, as to when 3,000 volunteers joined the Santa Barbara Bucket Brigade to dig mud from homes after the deadly 2018 debris flow. As the world faces a global climate disruption, community resilience is more important than ever, and this one has practice.

“We all feel like we’re part of an ecosystem, that there’s an ecology of our relationships, so that what affects one person, affects us all in some way. We’re tied in an inescapable web of mutuality and interdependence.” — David Pellow, Chair, UCSB Environmental Studies Program

Better Together, narrated by Christopher Lloyd, directed by Isaac Hernandez and produced by Mercury Press International, features the following organizations: 350.org-Santa Barbara; African Women Rising; Chumash Maritime Association; Citizen’s Planning Association of Santa Barbara County; Committees for Land, Air, Water and Species; Community Environmental Council; Direct Relief; Environmental Defense Center; Food & Water Watch; Get Oil Out!; Gaviota Coast Conservancy; Habitat for Humanity of Santa Barbara County; Mission Blue; Montecito Trails Foundation; Pisces Foundation; Santa Barbara Audubon Society, Santa Barbara Bucket Brigade; Santa Barbara Channelkeeper; Santa Barbara County Search and Rescue; Santa Barbara Declaration of Environmental Rights; Santa Barbara Wildlife Care Network; SB Strong; Sierra Club Santa Barbara; The Solutions Project; and UCSB Environmental Studies. 

CEC’s Santa Barbara Earth Day Green Film Festival was produced by Mercury Press International.

Save the Planet With Native Plants

How you can protect and restore mother earth all year round

Over 50 years ago, an oil rig experienced a pressure blowout in the Santa Barbara Channel resulting in up to 3 million gallons of crude oil ripping through the ocean floor — the worst oil spill in the nation’s history up to that point. It took years for Santa Barbara’s ecosystem to recover, but the Earth Day movement took root. Despite our collective efforts that were started on that first Earth Day, globally we are still in the throes of the sixth major mass extinction in planetary history and the first time this has been caused by humans. Today, our global biodiversity is collapsing, resulting in an accelerated rate of species extinction. 

Earth Day, a time to demonstrate support for environmental protection, is an opportunity to bring awareness to the healing power of native plants. The mission of the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden is to conserve and protect native plants and habitats for the health and well being of people and the planet. That mission has become increasingly urgent as more native plant species face extinction, threatening the foundation of all life on the planet.

Saving plants means saving the planet. 

In honor of Earth Day, the Garden invites the community to restore the earth by  celebrating these critical native plants.

1) Spending time in nature is something we can all do to reconnect with mother earth, and it doesn’t go without healing benefits. Nature can help reduce anxiety, promote creativity and contribute to heart health. Research shows rewards begin accruing with as little as 2 hours a week.

“The Garden provides the community with respite filled with redwood trees, wildflower meadows, and Channel Island views,” said Dr. Steve Windhager, Executive Director of the Garden. “It’s a good opportunity to remind ourselves of the connection between our own health and the health of the planet.”

2) The Garden welcomes the community to take a stroll through our native plant displays on Earth Day to observe the unique beauty of California flora and learn more about what simple seeds of change you can implement that make a huge impact on our environment. Discover our chalkboard signs along the trails with tips on what you can do to protect biodiversity or join our Instagram livestream from 11am – 12:30pm for a Garden stroll with our Director of Education and Engagement.

3) Participate in Earth Day virtually by registering to join in Chumash Earth Day on April 20 at 1pm, hosted by the Santa Ynez Chumash Environmental Office. Windhager will be giving a presentation on how you can heal the earth starting in your own home and neighborhood by planting native plants.

4) Learn more about where climate leaders are stepping up to do the critical work needed to combat the climate crisis by joining in the Community Environmental Council’s 3-Day Virtual Earth Day Festival. The Garden’s Director of Education and Engagement, Scot Pipkin, will be a co-emcee on April 24 from 12pm – 3pm and will share how native plants can be used to lean into climate action at this urgent moment.

5) At the Garden, be sure to visit our nursery, which offers the widest selection of native plants on the central coast. Staffed with knowledgeable and experienced gardeners, there’s no better place to learn more about native plants, find the right selection for your garden, create wildlife habitat, or purchase a plant for a friend.

Protect and restore the earth this year through native plants. Native plants enhance the environment instead of threatening it, provide habitat for wildlife, and are a source of nectar for pollinators. Earth Day began in our own backyard, and can continue to grow there as well. 

 About the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden

The Garden serves the public as more than just a pretty place, but as a model for sustainability. Founded in 1926, the Garden is the first botanic garden focused exclusively on California native plants and currently spans 78 acres with five miles of walking trails, an herbarium, seed bank, research labs, library, and Nursery. The Garden welcomes the public every day from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. and offers a members-only hour from 9 a.m. – 10 a.m. For more information about the Garden, please visit sbbg.org.