A Wild Idea is an award-winning documentary about the Yasuni-ITT Initiative, Ecuador's unprecedented proposal for fighting global climate change. In exchange for payments from the world community, the country will leave untouched its largest oil reserves. If the proposal is accepted, it will conserve the Amazon’s biodiversity, protect the rights of indigenous people and avoid the emission of millions of tons of CO2 into the atmosphere.
A Wild Idea was directed and produced by Verónica Moscoso as her master's thesis at UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.
The film takes the viewer to the Yasuní National Park, in the Ecuadorian Amazon, capturing the rain forest’s stunning biodiversity. It also focuses in the millions of barrels of oil lying beneath the part of the park known as the ITT Block.
Exploiting the ITT seemed to be the logical step Ecuador had to take, but political changes have transformed the way the country views oil development. Through testimony representing different perspectives and rich archival video, A Wild Idea shows how the seemingly utopian ideal of keeping valuable oil underground turned into an official proposal.
As the film progresses, the complex initiative becomes easy to understand. The audience sees what’s at stake if the proposal is not accepted. And the political twists and turns that made it possible and that could also threaten the success of this revolutionary idea.
If accepted, the Yasuní-ITT initiative will protect perhaps the most biodiverse place on Earth. It would also respect the rights of two of the last nomadic indigenous people that live there in voluntary isolation. And it would avoid the emission of hundreds of millions of tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.
A Wild Idea is a thought provoking film that explores the complexity of oil development within a fragile ecosystem, its local and global implications, and its effects on the planet as a whole.
AWARDS: Best Student Film at the Green Screen Film Festival in 2011; Official Selection of Toronto International Film Festival.
Programming note: will be seen with Pipe Dreams.