I wrote about a couple of this year’s Sundance docs earlier on the blog: Josh Tickell’s Audience Award-winning Fields of Fuel, and Patrick Creadon’s IOUSA. I was positive about the first, enjoying Tickell’s breathless narration and ability to cram a huge amount of info on biodiesel, the alternative fuel source, into his feature. And I was less positive about IOUSA, finding its arguments limited by its focus on one particular contingent of deficit hawks. Another thing: Fields of Fuel is quite direct about what its advocating, coming up with an explicit multi-point plan to harness the power of biodiesel to help resolve our energy crisis, while IOUSA ended with a more generic “write your Congressman!” kind of message.
Both topics are even more now in the news than they were in January, and with the increased news presence comes the need for more complicated discussions about these issues. So, to provide a bit of balance to my largely positive take on Fields of Fuel, I’ll note the current discussion over world hunger and poverty and whether or not the developed nations’ various bio-fuel mandates are driving up the cost of food. Here’s a link to a blog, Gas. 2.0, which is pro-biodiesel but does acknowledge that increased use of the alternative energy may be playing a factor.