Friday, August 21, 2009
In August 2009, Interlock's Director Jonathan Schwartz led an investigative team to Ghana. The recent discovery of offshore oil reserves along the southern coast has prompted inquiry into the social and environmental fallout of extracting oil for export. Will the Ghanaian experience with oil sour as it has in Nigeria and the Sudan? The team headed to the northern tribal areas of the country to gauge whether or not the northern tribes saw promise or peril in what is a Southern phenomenon.
A grassroots project that is employing street kids to remold plastic into useful items also caught the group's attention.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
"El Pilar" is a new release on the pioneering practice of "archaeology under the canopy," which bolsters modern-day practices of sustainable, garden-style forest agriculture. The ancient technique of rainforest gardens offers an alternative source of revenue and a continuous supply of food, medicine and other resources to vulnerable Mayan communities living near the long-disputed border of Guatemala and Belize.
Dr. Anabel Ford is credited with the discovery of El Pilar, an ancient city of 20,000 (at its peak) that flourished for nearly 2,000 years with its gardens, temples and monuments all beneath its natural tree cover. Ford and others hope to promote the site as a tourist attraction, supporting the farming practice and creating the first archaeological "peace park" in the process, as these Central American nations cooperate for their mutual benefit.
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
When a hurricane is about to strike or a fire breaks out, nearly a million Mayan listeners now can hear the warning in nearly all of their 22 indigenous languages as well as Spanish. Supporting Cultural Survival in their efforts, the team at Interlock filmed the basic operations of Mayan radio, released a version of the film in Spanish, and are completing one in English.
Visit: Guatemala Radio Project
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Paying indigenous people their due respect is the refreshing new angle of Interlock's latest public service announcement. It insists that tribal peoples, who already live in the Earth's harshest environments, hold the key to human kind's ability to adapt to global warming.
As documentarian for the green industrial renaissance taking hold in Central Massachusetts, Interlock Media has spawned a new nonprofit, Greenworks of North Quabbin Inc.
In line with Interlock's mission to promote environmentally sustainable practices and social justice, Greenworks Inc. has been established to facilitate the creation of environmentally friendly jobs and economic growth in Central Massachusetts.
With its woodlands, farms and inventor/machinists, the area has natural potential to host a thriving green economy and lead entrepreneurs in the region in environmental preservation. Publicizing green tourism attractions, Greenworks of North Quabbin will build alliances between stakeholders to create and reinforce green development.
The group aims to make the Orange Innovation Center a home for green businesses and environmentally-focused community groups and social programs, in a manner consistent with Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building standards.
Interlock boosted employment for a dozen impoverished youths from rural Massachusetts this summer.
In addition to documenting the project for an open source website, we upheld the gold standard in green building renovations.
Communities Collaborative Inc, a foster care advocacy agency in Orange, Massachusetts, supervised the project. The team refurbished the non-profit wing of the Orange Innovation Center where we have a year-round soundstage studio.
The retrofitted loft offices will become a green-technology training institute.
It was eye-opening for Interlock staffers, who, as the art directors, ferreted out the truly green materials among those sold as such. Leftover metal from the original factory operations was turned into signage.
While helping expand affordable space for green concerns and facilitating youth training, in line with its mission of public education, Interlock learned valuable behind-the-scenes lessons in setting the groundwork for a green renaissance in central Massachusetts.