Coming Soon: Blue Carbon
Told through the eyes of Grammy-nominated DJ and marine biologist, Jayda Guy, accompanied by a score from the Wu-Tang Clan's RZA and featuring Seu Jorge, Blue Carbon is an environmental feature documentary that brings together music and science to uncover what could be our greatest weapon in the fight against climate change.
Filmed in the USA, Senegal, Vietnam, France, Colombia and Brazil, the documentary explores the latest science around the relatively newly-discovered potential of oceans to absorb much more carbon from the atmosphere than even tropical rainforests. This "Blue Carbon" as scientists are now calling it, can be found in salt-marshes, sea-grasses and mangroves, but once again it is a race against time to protect and restore these vital ecosystems and to harness their untold power in the battle against global warming.
This is a journey that takes Jayda to the frontlines of climate change. In St. Louis, Senegal, whole towns that have stood for hundreds of years are being swept into the sea, forcing mothers to abandon their homes in order to keep their children safe. Here, climate change is too real to ignore and offers a bleak warning to the rest of the world.
Searching for a glimmer of hope and a tangible solution, Jayda explores one of the world’s most lucrative carbon offsetting projects, happening just miles away from the climate destruction she has just witnessed. On the face of it, the project seems positive: vast areas of mangrove forests lining the Sine Saloum Delta have been completely restored after being ravaged by severe drought in the 1970s. But digging deeper, Jayda discovers that the companies financing this are themselves some of the world's biggest polluters and the local women on the ground, actually doing the back-breaking planting, are paid barely enough to make a living.
Jayda leaves Senegal with even deeper questions. She understands that Blue Carbon ecosystems have the potential to sequester huge amounts of carbon, but what is the best way to harness this potential?
A small coastal community called Cispata Bay in Northern Colombia might hold the answer. Of all the Blue Carbon projects, only one has been given “premium” status by VERRA, the carbon watchdog. If there is one remaining place to find hope, it is here.
In Cispata Bay, the local people have taken ownership of the carbon credit programme and made it uniquely their own. They are being incentivised to protect the existing mangroves and the benefits—including economic ones—seem to be shared equally. It is an elusive formula for success that somehow combines leadership, vision, community, technology, and science.
But it is not until she visits her musical idol, Seu Jorge in Brazil and has a stunning encounter with a pod of humpback whales, does Jayda realize how interconnected nature is and the true power our oceans hold as one of our greatest tools in the fight against climate change.