Interview With Jonah Bryson: "If we fail to protect the environment, nothing else matters"
by Spotlight News
Photo Credit: BRIAN DE RIVERA SIMON
We had the chance to speak with Film Director, Musician and Conservationist Jonah Bryson during TIFF 2016. Bryson has directed “The Fight For Bala”, a film that was released globally on The Huffington Post, and he is currently directing “A Sweet Spot In Time” with famed explorer and filmmaker Fabien Cousteau, also the grandson of Jacques Cousteau. In addition, he has worked with very influential musicians, and is a partner of environmental organizations including Mission Blue, the United Nations Environmental Programme and the IUCN.
Why is the environment so important to you?
The environment is what keeps us alive. We breathe the air, drink the water and eat the food that grows in the Earth. If we fail to protect the environment, our life support system, nothing else matters. If the air we breathe is too toxic or if the water we drink is too polluted we won’t survive. So that is why I’m doing everything I possibly can, using film and music, to inspire people to change. I also try to give them alternatives to live a more sustainable lifestyle.
How did you start doing all your work?
While growing up in the south of France, I had the chance to go to the Mediterranean Sea during the summers. I would swim in the Sea all day long and play with all the creatures I could find, from small fish to hermit crabs. That is what connected me to natural world.
Later on, after moving to Toronto, I found a passion for Entertainment. I started creating animations and slowly became attached to my camera. When I learned about the environmental issues we face today, I decided to combine my passions for entertainment and nature to send out the important messages of change and hope.
What did you think of Leonardo DiCaprio’s Climate Change Documentary “Before The Flood”?
I thought it was amazing. I had the great privilege of being invited to the premiere here at TIFF and I absolutely loved the movie. I’m so thankful that someone like Leo, who has such a powerful voice, is standing up for the future of our planet and humanity.
As a scuba-diver, I’ve seen the vast destruction of coral reefs because of the warming oceanic temperatures. And that’s happening, of course, due to our overconsumption of fossil fuels, causing the climate to drastically change.
In all previous mass extinction events, coral reefs were the first to die off. So that fact that they are dying now is insanely scary. Over 50% of them are gone already. We still have time to reverse these trends, but not that much. We can no longer sit around and ignore the problem.