Since 2002, students in Professor Percival's Environmental Law class have enjoyed an unusual assignment: to split up into small groups and make a short film about an environmental issue that concerns them. The purpose of the ungraded assignment is to make students think about how to communicate complicated regulatory policy issues to the public. With the rise of You Tube and other new media outlets, digital video-making has become a valuable tool for influencing public opinion.
A total of 22 students in the fall 2012 Environmental Law class made nine environmental law films. As in past years the films demonstrated their enormous creativity. The films addressed a wide variety of topics including the environmental effects of methamphetamine labs, the environmental justice implications of pollution in Baltimore Harbor, offshore wind energy, natural gas exports, invasive species, and the effects of climate change on the wine industry. On March 27, 2013, the coveted "Golden Tree" awards were presented to the best films in ten categories as voted by an independent panel of judges (Prof. Taunya Banks, John Brosnan, Dominic Dachille, Sonja Gloeckle from the Voice of America, Prof. Kathleen Hoke, former Program Coordinator Laura Mrozek, Mark Nevitt, and Jill Smith.)
The 2013 Golden Tree awards went to the following:
Other films included:
This year’s Special Judge’s Award, proposed by judge Jill Smith, was the “Blair Witch Shaky-Cam Award Inspired by Dramamine.” It was awarded to “Baltimore Climate Action Plan” by Christine Hein and Kate Matthews.
A special thanks to all of our judges!