Population is the theme of this year's Moving Mountains Symposium on Friday, May 25, kicking off the 34th annual Mountainfilm in Telluride film festival, which runs through May 28 over Memorial Day Weekend. The full roster of speakers for the symposium was just announced. "This theme synthesizes many issues Mountainfilm has examined in recent years, such as energy, water, food and extinction," said David Holbrooke, Mountainfilm in Telluride's festival director, in a statement released Tuesday. "The population was at 4 billion in 1974, and when that number is compared to estimates of 9 billion, or sometimes even 11, by 2050, it's hard to look at any issue we face -- such as food shortages, water depletion, energy consumption or disappearance of wildlife -- without factoring in population."
Mountainfilm in Telluride has traditionally featured a mix of films focusing on outdoor adventure and environmental issues, and in recent years has added the Moving Mountains Symposium to help take action on the latter and help engage festival fans and filmmakers. Themes have included Energy (2007), Water (2008), Food (2009), Extinction (2010) and Awareness Into Action (2011). This year's theme concerns all of the above, and couldn't be more timely: The global population recently passed the 7 billion mark.
Mountainfilm in Telluride executive director Peter Kenworthy sent us the complete list of symposium speakers yesterday::
Paul Ehrlich, author of the ground-breaking and controversial 1968 book titled The Population Bomb
Purnima Mane, former deputy director of the United Nations Population Fund and current president and CEO of Pathfinder International, a reproductive health care organization
Richard Heinberg, author of The End of Growth: Adapting to Our New Economic Reality (2011)
Dan Buettner, bestselling author of Blue Zones: Lessons for Living Longer from the People Who've Lived the Longest (2008) and Thrive: Finding Happiness the Blue Zones Way (2010)
Dave Foreman, founder of Earth First! who now runs The Rewilding Institute, an organization dedicated to continental-scale conservation in North America
Eliza Griswold, author of New York Times bestseller The Tenth Parallel, which explores the regional fault lines where Islam and Christianity meet
Scott Wallace, author of The Unconquered, a tale about traveling into the Amazon to gather information on an isolated tribe without making contact
Peter Gleick, a scientist on leave from the Pacific Institute who focuses on global freshwater challenges
Roz Naylor, director of the Center on Food Security and the Environment and professor of Environmental Earth System Science at Stanford University
Kathleen Parker, writer who specializes in population issues in the Southwest
Tickets for the full-day Moving Mountains Symposium are $65 and are also included with some of the festival-pass options available at Mountainfilm.org.
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