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September 8, 2015

Disposable, Replaceable, Harmful – Films Explore How Our “Just Replace It” Attitude Hurts the Earth


Disposable products are all over the market today. With these types of products and packaging becoming easier and more affordable for vendors to use, we’re seeing the bigger impact they are slowly making on our environment. The E-Waste Tragedy and The Lightbulb Conspiracy, two films that will be screened at the Dominican Republic Environmental Film Festival (DREFF), explore the topics of disposable products and planned obsolescence, and how it’s doing more harm than good for our world. Cosima Dannoritzer, the director of these documentaries, will be present at the DREFF as a special guest for the screenings of her films.

The Lightbulb Conspiracy looks back at “once upon a time” when products were made to last. At the beginning of the 1920s, a group of businessmen were struck by an insight: ‘A product that refuses to wear out is a tragedy of business’ (1928). Thus Planned Obsolescence was born- the desire to own something a little newer, a little better, a little sooner than is necessary. The growth society flourished, everybody had everything, and waste was piling up – until consumers started rebelling. The Lightbulb Conspiracy asks an important question: Can the modern growth society survive without Planned Obsolescence?

Find screenings of this film here.

The E-Waste Tragedy takes viewers on a breathtaking journey following the disposal of electronic waste. Each year, up to 50 million tons of electronic waste is discarded. Television sets, cellular phones, computers, and household appliances are being dumped illegally in third-world countries, where it destroys the landscapes and the health of those forced to live with it. The E-Waste Tragedy brings us on an investigation to Europe, China, Africa, and the US, and reveals a toxic global trade fueled by greed and corruption.

Find screenings of this film here.

About Cosima Dannoritzer
Cosima Dannoritzer is a documentary filmmaker specializing in history and ecology. She has worked for broadcasters such as the BBC, Arte, Deutsche Welle, and Televisión Española. The Light Bulb Conspiracy was sold to more than 30 territories and won 12 international festival awards. The follow-up film, The E-Waste Tragedy, picks up the story from where the previous film ends, on a dumpsite for electronic waste in Ghana.

About the DREFF:
Since its creation in 2011, the Dominican Republic Environmental Film Festival (DREFF)- an initiative of Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (GFDD) and Fundación Global Democracia y Desarrollo (Funglode) -has been providing Dominicans with a platform of knowledge and debate on the environment and sustainable development, along with its challenges and best practices while celebrating the unique beauty and wealth that is the Dominican Republic’s natural heritage.

With a diverse selection of films and numerous panels, workshops, seminars, and community activities, the DREFF promotes dialogue and the exchange of knowledge and experience, inspiring Dominicans to adopt actions that contribute to the appreciation, conservation, and sustainable use of their environmental resources.

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