Best Climate Change Documentaries: Must-Watch Films for Environmental Awareness

What are the best climate change documentaries out there? I watched several and I decided to make a list:

Also, there are films (fiction and nonfiction) that are not specifically about climate change, but I would recommend them as well because they help create a better understanding of the issue of climate change or issues related to it:

  • Don't Look Up - a satirical film about astronomers warning about a cataclysmic comet heading towards Earth which is an allegory for climate change
  • The Social Dilemma - documentary that talks about how social media can lead to disinformation including climate change denial
  • 12 Angry Men - is a great movie to show how to be a good critical thinker and to analyze more deeply (and to avoid bias)
  • Inside Bill's Brain: Decoding Bill Gates - documentary about how Bill Gates is trying to create a new form of nuclear power that is safer, cleaner and more affordable
  • The Corporation - includes information on how corporations can cause a lot of environmental harm
  • Dark Waters -  a lawyer takes on DuPont for contaminating a town with unregulated chemicals
  • The G Word - an American documentary comedy show on Netflix produced by Barack and Michelle Obama that explores the importance of government regarding multiple issues
Documentary Camera

An Inconvenient Truth and An Inconvenient Sequel

The first documentary about climate change that I remember watching is "An Inconvenient Truth" featuring Al Gore, the former Vice President of the United States.

Al Gore's film won two Oscars, one for Best Documentary and another for Best Original Song. The film was released in 2006. Later, in 2007, Al Gore and the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) won the Nobel Peace Prize.

This is definitely a film you should see if you want to learn about climate change. However, there are more recent films that have more updated information.

Actually, a sequel was made about ten years later called "An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power." I would recommend watching both documentaries.

Merchants of Doubt

In 2014, "Merchants of Doubt" was released. It is a film about how corporations created doubt about the dangers of their products in order to make more money.

In this film, it discusses the tactics employed by the tobacco industry on spreading doubt about the negative health effects of smoking cigarettes. Their actions were unfortunately very effective and it worked for about 50 years in delaying action.

The documentary talks in depth about how fossil fuel companies spent money on front groups to spread disinformation about the reality of climate change. They used tactics very similar to that of the big tobacco companies.

If you want to learn more about climate change deniers, this is a good documentary to see. However, it does discuss many different industries which had spread disinformation.

Green World Rising , Before the Flood, and The 11th Hour

Leonardo DiCaprio is the narrator for "Before the Flood," "Green World Rising," and "The 11th Hour."

Green World Rising is a series of 4 short films released in 2014 about climate change:

  • Carbon
  • Last Hours
  • Green World Rising
  • Restoration

In 2016, "Before the Flood" was released which was a full-feature film about climate change. It explores the many aspects of climate change and follows Leonardo DiCaprio in his journey as the United Nations Messenger of Peace.

Back in 2007, the documentary "The 11th Hour" also spread awareness about climate change.

What Do You Think Are the Best Climate Change Documentaries?

I would love to hear what you think are the best climate change documentaries and I may add them to this list.

Feel free to contact me and tell me your suggestions.

Documentaries are a powerful way to educate and inspire action on climate change. They often feature compelling narratives, expert interviews, and striking visuals that bring the realities of climate change to life. By sharing your recommendations, you can help others discover these impactful films and contribute to the broader conversation about our planet's future. Whether it's a documentary that explores the science behind climate change, showcases innovative solutions, or highlights the human stories affected by environmental shifts, every suggestion can make a difference.

Engaging with these documentaries can also foster a sense of community and shared purpose. Watching and discussing these films with friends, family, or local groups can spark meaningful conversations and encourage collective action. By raising awareness and understanding through these visual stories, we can all play a part in driving the necessary changes to combat climate change. So please, reach out with your favorite documentaries and let's work together to expand this list and amplify the message of climate action.

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Further Reading and Sources


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