The evening of April 26th began early in the lobby of the Indiana Theater. Members of organizations such as the IUP E.C.O. club, the Indiana County Solid Waste Authority, the Coalition for a Healthy County, Indiana Community Gardens and more gathered in the lobby of the Indiana Theater to greet guests at tables, while musicians Scott Ellis and Andrew Fox livened the atmosphere with live acoustic performances of original eco-conscious tunes. The music set the tone for the rest of the evening and for the Center’s April film, YERT (Your Environmental Road Trip), a docu-comedy that provides some welcome relief in the face of daunting environmental challenges confronting today’s world.
The key question posed by the film is, “Are we doomed?” Not yet, we hope, because instead of dwelling in the negative, YERT asserts that we have the “license to thrive.” And thrive we do, as the film producers Mark Dixon, Ben Evans, and Julie Evans show us through some extraordinary examples of sustainability.
“We wanted to show Americans to Americans,” Mark Dixon said to the audience. “We want to publicize the good things that are happening.” Mark, co-producer of the film, was the guest speaker for the evening.
The audience in Indiana, PA was struck by the movie’s upbeat presentation of the very serious issues facing our communities, our nation, and the planet as a whole. In addition to all sorts of questions about the film and the filmmakers’ experiences on the road trip, members of the audience had plenty to share about their renewed hope for the future a sustainable economy based on local needs. Here in Indiana County, those projects include organic agriculture, renewable forms of energy, local manufacturing projects and other ideas and ideals based on a sustainable future.
“We need to figure out how to live well in a carbon constrained world and we’re going to need every single one of those 7 billion [people’s] ideas,” Mark said. “[People] in prison…in Europe, Africa, Russia…everyone.”