Urban Issues Film Festival

Vancouver Island University (Geography Department) and the Planning Institute of BC (North Island Chapter) with the support of the VIU Geographic Union and Friends of Plan Nanaimo will be holding the third annual Urban Issues Film Festival from 3 pm to 10 pm on Friday, November 21, 2008, in Room 109, Building 356, Vancouver Island University, 900 Fifth Street, Nanaimo.

After the welcoming announcements at 3 pm, the first film will be Garbage Warrior (86 minutes), a captivating documentary about radical Earthship eco-architect Michael Reynolds, and his fight to build off-the-grid self-sufficient communities – initially in the U.S. and later in developing nations. At 4:30 pm there will be a group discussion of the film. Garbage Warrior was declared "Riveting! Alternately profane, ridiculous and brave" at the Vancouver International Film Festival.

At 5 pm you'll see Mad City Chickens (80 minutes) which chronicles a movement to raise chickens in the city and how chicken enthusiasts are overcoming obstacles to this important part of an urban agricultural practice. At 6:20 pm a discussion of Mad City Chickens takes place, followed by a break for dinner.

At 7:30 pm it's BedZED (London) and Freiburg (15 minutes). BedZED, which stands for Beddington Zero (fossil) Energy Development, is a unique ecological neighbourhood created in 2000 in a suburb near London which produces no greenhouse gases. Over the past 30 years, the German city of Freiburg-in-Brisgau has been working towards improving its environment, with particular emphasis on transportation, waste and energy. It is now considered by many to be the 'greenest' city in Europe. A discussion follows at 7:45 pm.

At 8 pm there will be a panel discussion on how to implement some of these ideas in Nanaimo, with representatives from the City of Nanaimo, Vancouver Island University, and community-based sustainability groups. The festival will adjourn sometime between 9 and 10 pm.

Attendance at the third Annual Urban Issues Film Festival is free, but to attend one must register so that the organisers can calculate how to cater for the group. To sign up for your free space (if you are registering more than one person, please indicate so), email Deborah.Jensen AT nanaimo.ca. Attendees must pay for parking ($3 for nine hours).

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