The documentary Racing Extinction premiered yesterday and is available on iTunes and Amazon (in case you do not have a screening location near you). Other than the extremely impressive visuals this film exposes the viewer to the behind the scenes world of the illegal wildlife trade, across species, countries, and other multiple facets. Because the story it is telling is about a system that is chaotic and spiraling out of control the film itself feels a bit chaotic and patchy at times but you will come out of it with a mix of feelings and thoughts. It is a roller coaster of frustration, depression, and glimpses of hope regarding what is labeled as the sixth mass extinction. This film is not asking you to go out and save species from extinction, it is simply asking you to hear the stories of the species that were lost and those that on the brink of joining them. Then, if you are willing, change just one thing to marginally help them.

I cannot really think of a way to summarize the film but as its producer said, it is meant to put a spotlight on the issue of biodiversity loss and wildlife trade. I would add that it is trying to to biodiversity and conservation what An Inconvenient Truth tried to do (perhaps succeeded?) to climate change. Another relevant media piece, which requires a much shorter attention span, is the following item in The Economist (thank you fellow SusDever Anthony D’Agostino for passing it along). It it a short example about how climate change and biodiversity loss are linked and how unregulated actions are already taking place.

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