Monday, September 5, 2011

Sea Change

Jonathan Schwartz, Director of Interlock Media, has recently returned from the Pihilippine village of Anilao. It is located three hours south of Manila, carved into the hillside outside of the port town of Batangas.


Jonathan was conducting research on an area called the Sula-Sulawesi Seascape for an intended Interlock Series. The series will concern oceans and coastal folkways, highlighting positive local responses to issues such as overfishing, pollution, and climate change.

Despite its proximity to coastal industries, Sulawesi one the most biologically diverse areas of the world and home to radically innovative marine science. Massive efforts are underway to place the stewardship of bays and reefs into the hands of local fisherman and village leadership: a banner story that begs to be told.

Romeo Trono, dynamic Executive Director of Conservation International in the Philippines, does a phenomenal job in the ecological hotspot they call the Coral Triangle. His team’s efforts extend all the way to Turtle Island, off the coast of Sabah, Malaysia. Schwartz will potentially direct the piece in co-production with Green Mango Pte Ltd, based in Singapore.

Schwartz’s exploration took place both above water, in local lifestyles in remote island villages, and underwater, where reefs are threatened by dynamite and cyanide fishing. He accompanied armed patrols in traditional fishing boats, which navigate monsoon-ripped waters to confront poachers, foreign trawlers, and even pirates.

This is part of an exciting trend in 21st century conservation, in which ecosystem restoration and community based socio-economic initiatives increasingly work together.

Landmarks Foundation

Interlock has begun collaboration with the Landmarks foundation, whose mission is to protect sacred sites globally, thereby bolstering religious tolerance and traditional folkways.

Most recently, the foundation was involved in the restoration of the Slat al Qahal Synagogue in Morocco. Other project sites are located in Easter Island, Bhutan, Bolivia, and Costa Rica.

The Blue Way: Paddling the Charles

Interlock is wrapping up a 20 minute video for a consortium of organizations promoting recreational access to the Charles River.

Our work is aimed to inspire populations such as recent immigrants, senior citizens, and inner-city residents who historically have not utilized this New England gem. This video also details how individuals with disabilities can access canoes and kayaks through training and adapted technology. The natural and human history of the Charles is also highlighted.

The recent publication of My Green Manifesto, by David Gessner, lends increased significance to our work.