Film Series

A Climate of Change: Sea Level Rise

The seas are rising, and every community on the coast of Maine—and coasts elsewhere—should explore ways to adapt for future sea levels.

The fifth film in our ongoing climate-related documentary series, A Climate of Change: Sea Level Rise follows the community of Vinalhaven, Maine, over a two-year period as they have conversations around planning for and responding to sea level rise on the island. It highlights some of the challenges they face, but more importantly, shows us how a small, yet engaged community can lead the way to planning for change.


Other RELATED happenings

Spring 2022: An all-day Climate of Change Conference for communities and leaders preparing for climate impacts.

Summer 2022: The sixth A Climate of Change film documenting our work in partnership with Luke’s Lobster to implement clean, renewable energy solutions for Maine’s working waterfronts, including solar solutions, biodiesel fuel, and testing, assessing, and promoting the use of electric vehicles.

Stay tuned for more information coming soon!


The First Four Films, 2013-2015

During the summer of 2013, the Island Institute hosted a two-day climate change workshop focusing on the state of science and fishermen’s observations from an ecosystem perspective. Scientists, policy makers, and resource harvesters discussed how new and proposed management strategies could be effective in the face of climate change. What came out of the workshop was a comprehensive report detailing issues, observations, and suggested next steps.

In addition to the report, a new video series was produced which highlights threatened fishing communities in Maine, Alaska, and Florida – and what they’re doing to adapt to these inevitable changes.

Warming waters, ocean acidification, industry collapse, aquaculture — across New England and the nation, fishermen and scientists are observing notable shifts in the ecosystem and dramatic changes on the water. The four short films in our “A Climate of Change” series show how impacts are felt in Alaska, Florida, and here in Maine.


PART 1: Warming Waters in the Gulf of Maine

Scientists, managers, and fishermen have all begun to discuss how we can and should be planning for the inevitable, but unpredictable, climate impacts on the marine ecosystem.


PART 2: Ocean Acidification in Alaska

Ocean acidification is a global problem, but its impact is being felt first and felt hardest in the Arctic. The state of Maine is looking towards Alaska and seeking to take a lesson from the experiences of fishermen there.


PART 3: Collapse and Adaptation in the Apalachicola Oyster Fishery

In early 2014, Mainers traveled to Apalachicola, Florida, once home to one of the most valuable oyster fisheries in the country, to see what happens when a fishery collapses completely and what the community is doing to adapt and revitalize itself.


PART 4: The Future of Aquaculture

Part 4 returns to Maine to focus on a positive future for the state’s fishing communities through aquaculture and how more and more resource harvesters are seeing farmed shellfish and sea vegetables as a vital way to stay on the water.