15 Environmental Documentaries and Movies That Will Turn You Into an Environmentalist Tree Hugging Save the Ocean Warrior

Poisoned Waters (Frontline PBS):

More than three decades after the Clean Water Act, two iconic waterways—the great coastal estuaries Puget Sound and the Chesapeake Bay—are in perilous condition. With polluted runoff still flowing in from industry, agriculture, and massive suburban development, scientists fear contamination to the food chain and drinking water for millions of people. -Poisoned Waters, Frontline PBS (April 21, 2009)

Poisoned Waters | Frontline PBS (Season 2009, Episode 12)

Tapped (Prime Video):

The high cost — to both the environment and our health — of bottled water is the subject of this documentary that enlists activists, environmentalists, community leaders and others to expose the dark side of the bottled water industry. Americans may rethink their obsession with bottled H20 when they learn of the unregulated industry’s willingness to ignore environmental and health concerns, and the problems that arise as a result. -Tapped, Prime Video (May 2009)

‘Tapped’: Just Another Excellent Indie Documentary Likely To Bring You Down

Inside Japan’s Nuclear Meltdown (Frontline PBS):

FRONTLINE continues its investigation of nuclear safety with an unprecedented account of the crisis inside the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear complex after a devastating earthquake and tsunami struck Japan on March 11, 2011. -Inside Japan’s Nuclear Meltdown, Frontline PBS (February 28, 2012)

Inside Japan’s Nuclear Meltdown | Frontline PBS (Season 2012, Episode 8)

Climate of Doubt (Frontline PBS):

Four years ago, climate change was hot. Politicians from both parties, pressed by an anxious public, seemed poised to act. But that was then. Today, public opinion about the climate issue has cooled, and politicians either ignore the issue or loudly proclaim their skepticism of scientific evidence that human activity is imperiling the planet. What’s behind this reversal? -Climate of Doubt, Frontline PBS (October 23, 2012)

Climate of Doubt | Frontline PBS (Season 2012, Episode 21)

Gasland Part II (HBO Documentaries):

HBO’s Summer Documentary Series 2013 presents Gasland Part II, a film that explores the contamination of water, air, and democracy in the United States. -Gasland Part II, HBO (August 28, 2013)

The Film – Gasland 2: A film by Josh Fox – NOW on HBO

Mission Blue (Netflix):

Official trailer for Mission Blue, a Netflix original documentary. Mission Blue tells the story of world-renowned oceanographer Sylvia Earle as she travels the globe on an urgent mission to shed light on the dire condition of Earth’s oceans. -Mission Blue, Netflix (January 30, 2014)

The Film Mission Blue | Netflix (Sylvia Earle Alliance)

A Plastic Ocean (Netflix):

A Plastic Ocean is an adventure documentary shot on more than 20 locations over the past 4 years. Explorers Craig Leeson and Tanya Streeter and a team of international scientists reveal the causes and consequences of plastic pollution and share solutions. -A Plastic Ocean, Netflix (2016)

A Plastic Ocean – The Movie | Netflix (Release Date: April 19, 2017))

Chasing Coral (Netflix):

Divers, scientists and photographers around the world mount an epic underwater campaign to document the disappearance of coral reefs. (July 14, 2017)

Chasing Coral | A Netflix Orignal Documentary

War on the EPA (Frontline PBS):

How Scott Pruitt went from fighting the Environmental Protection Agency to running it and rolling back years of policy. -War on the EPA, Frontline PBS (October 11, 2017)

War on the EPA | Frontline PBS (Season 17, Episode 16)

Blackout in Puerto Rico (Frontline PBS):

FRONTLINE and NPR investigate the humanitarian and economic crisis in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria, examining how the federal response, Wall Street and years of neglect have left the island struggling to survive. -Blackout in Puerto Rico, Frontline PBS (May 1, 2018)

Blackout in Puerto Rico | Frontline PBS (Season 18, Episode 10)

Coal’s Deadly Dust (Frontline PBS):

Two years ago, a radiologist in Kentucky began seeing an overwhelming number of coal miners with the most severe form of black lung disease. It would lead to the biggest disease clusters ever documented. -Coal’s Deadly Dust, Frontline PBS (January 22, 2019)

Coal’s Deadly Dust | Frontline PBS (Season 2019, Episode)

Chernobyl (HBO Original):

On April 26, 1986, the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine, Soviet Union suffered a massive explosion that released radioactive material across Belarus, Russia and Ukraine and as far as Scandinavia and western Europe. Chernobyl dramatizes the story of the 1986 accident, one of the worst man-made catastrophes in history, and the sacrifices made to save Europe from the unimaginable disaster. -Chernobyl, HBO (May 6, 2019)

Chernobyl | HBO | Official Website for the Miniseries (Based on a True Story)

Flint’s Deadly Water (Frontline PBS):

Following a deadly Legionnaires’ disease outbreak that coincided with the Flint water crisis, a team of scientists urged the state’s top health official, Nick Lyon, to step up surveillance for the disease or else more people could die. His response, they say, was, “They’ll have to die of something.” -Flint’s Deadly Water, Frontline PBS (September 10, 2019)

Flint’s Deadly Water | Frontline PBS (Season 2019, Episode 16)

Fire in Paradise (Frontline PBS):

“Fire in Paradise” – A year after the devastating Camp Fire, FRONTLINE examines who’s to blame and why it was so catastrophic. With accounts from survivors and first responders, the documentary tells the inside story of the most destructive fire in California’s history, its causes and the impact of climate change. -Fire in Paradise, Frontline PBS (October 29, 2019)

“Fire in Paradise” | Frontline PBS (Season 2019, Episode 7)

Dark Waters (Focus Features):

Dark Waters tells the shocking and heroic story of an attorney who risks his career and family to uncover a dark secret hidden by one of the world’s largest corporations and to bring justice to a community dangerously exposed for decades to deadly chemicals. -Dark Waters, Focus Features (November 22, 2019)

Dark Waters Movie | Focus Features (Based on a True Story)

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