2015 Film Fest

On February 19, 2015, the Clean Air Carolina and Catawba Riverkeeper Alliance co-hosted the 2nd Annual Clean Air-Clean Water Film Festival with Central Piedmont Community College in Charlotte. This free event featured excerpts from four films related to air and water followed by a panel discussion.


Coal Ash Stories

Coal Ash Stories includes four short films that illustrate the public health concerns, policy issues, and ways communities are responding. The film fest will show “Downwind and Downstream: With Power Comes Responsibility”, one story that exposes the health and environmental hazards left behind after coal is burned.

Downwind and Downstream website
Catawba Riverkeeper Coal Ash webpage

60 Minutes: A Billion Barrels of Muck

A massive coal ash spill turned a Tennessee town into an “apocalyptic moonscape,” CBS Lesley Stahl reported in 2009.

60 Minutes: A Billion Barrels of Muck online
Catawba Riverkeeper Coal Ash webpage


“Backyard” by Pale Blue Dot Media is a short film about fracking and its effects on the lives of five people. Following stories in Pennsylvania, Colorado, North Dakota and Montana, an eerie similarity emerges amongst them, despite the vast differences in geography and personal histories.

Film website: www.everyonesbackyard.com
Frack Free NC : www.FrackfreeNC.org

Local Action:
Contact your Representatives and ask them to co-sponsor HB76/SB72 disapproving the new fracking rules.

The Nature of Cities

“The Nature of Cities” by ThroughLine Productions is an inspiring film about the projects and people in cities across the world who believe that, even as we become more urbanized, we must reclaim an essential piece of our humanness – our connection to the nature around us.

Film website: www.thenatureofcities.org
“Last Child In the Woods” by Richard Louv: www.childrenandnature.org
“The Nature of Cities” Blog: www.thenatureofcities.com

Local Action:
Civic By Design – www.civicbydesign.com
CONNECT Our Future www.connectourfuture.org
Mecklenburg Livable Communities http://livablemeck.com/


Sam Perkins, Catawba Riverkeeper
Sam Perkins is the Catawba Riverkeeper for the Catawba Riverkeeper Foundation. He is a Charlotte native with journalism and environmental undergraduate degrees from UNC-Chapel Hill. He has a Master’s in geochemistry and hydrology from UNC-Chapel Hill’s Department of Marine Sciences. He did the primary research and on-the-ground sampling to build lawsuits against Duke Energy for coal ash contamination at the three sites on the Catawba River.

John Downey, Charlotte Business Journal
John Downey has covered utilities and the energy industry at the Charlotte Business Journal since 2006. That has included detailed coverage of environmental issues such as carbon emissions, the mercury rule, nuclear waste and coal ash disposal. He has been a reporter since 1978 and has worked at the Charlotte Business Journal since 1999.

June Blotnick, Clean Air Carolina
June Blotnick has served as Executive Director of Clean Air Carolina since 2005.  She holds a Bachelor’s degree from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and a Master’s in Education from Appalachian University. She has over 30 years of experience working with nonprofit and community based organizations in North Carolina.  June was awarded the 2013 Southeast Diesel Collaborative Visionary Champion Leadership Award by the EPA for her outstanding work in improving air quality by reducing toxic diesel emissions.  Sustain Charlotte recognized CAC in 2014 for Outstanding Contributions to Local Sustainability and has been nominated again this year.

Dr. Rose Mary Seymour, CPCC Center for Sustainability
Dr. Rose Mary Seymour is the Executive Director for the Center for Sustainability at CPCC.  She works with curriculum, student and faculty at CPCC to build capacity and raise awareness of issues related to a more sustainable future for campuses, students and our local community. She also teaches several courses in the Sustainability Technologies degree program.  Dr. Seymour has extensive experience in agricultural and environmental engineering dealing primarily with water quality.

Dr. Stephen Keener, Mecklenburg County Health Department
Dr. Stephen Keener, MD, MPH, has been with the Mecklenburg County Health Department for over 17 years, and currently serves and the Department’s Medical Director.  Dr. Keener practices in Family Medicine as well as Public Health & General Preventive Medicine, and holds degrees from Davidson College, UNC Chapel Hill and Duke University School of Medicine. Dr. Keener serves as an ex-officio member of the Mecklenburg County Medical Society board of directors and has spoken at press conferences and public hearings on a number of air quality issues including ozone pollution, diesel emissions and coal ash waste.