Watch Frank Capra's 1958 Film on Global Warming (Video)


Yes, there were movies being made about climate change as early as the 1950s. Dave Roberts has a great column in Grist today about the short memory we have in American political culture, and how this applies especially to climate 'scandals' and 'controversies'. He points out that though oil and coal lobbying groups--and the corporate-friendly politicians that are influenced by them--would like you to think otherwise, scientific evidence for climate change is far from new. It's not some radical new idea borne in the 90s--it's been studied for decades before that. For proof, here's a clip from a 1958 (!) film produced by Frank Capra (!!) about global warming that's surprisingly prophetic. Video after the jump.Called "the Unchained Goddess," this clip is from a film about weather and climate produced by Capra ("It's a Wonderful Life") who created a series of movies about science in the day.

Here's the NY Times' Andrew Revkin on the video, and what it signifies:

The basic idea [of greenhouse gas-driven warming], of course, goes back more than a century, but the real number crunching started in the 1950s, and even drew the attention of the filmmaker Frank Capra, who produced a series of television programs on science (in the post-Sputnik days when science was a high priority), that included "The Unchained Goddess," a remarkable 1958 film on weather and climate.
So what's the takeaway from this? Here's Roberts: "it was only when the modern corporatist right's political agenda was threatened that it suddenly decided the science was suspect. If our political culture had a memory longer than a gnat's, we wouldn't be taking them so seriously every time they come up with a new pseudo-scandal."

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