Previous     Next   

Home | Contact | Documentaries | Education | Short Films | Producer | About | Shop


Science and the Plastics Problem: An Introduction

This update on the plastics problem in New Zealand looks at innovations in bioplastics and a range of community responses.

It's the first in a series of short documentaries which centre round the work of Professor Juliet Gerrard, the Prime Minister's Chief Science Advisor.

The series is linked with Gerrard's desire to explore any gaps in local policy. At the many meetings she had with the science community, she would ask everyone to write one example of what they thought was an issue that needed attention on a post-it note. Those notes now fill a wall in her office and our series of documentaries will explore some of the most urgent themes.

"Science and the Plastics Problem" (which runs for about half an hour) includes part of a panel discussion on the 'circular economy' led by broadcaster Kim Hill. The documentary also looks at various scientific projects and at the Maori environmental group Para Kore. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern agreed to be part of our story, and also famous anthropologist Dame Jane Goodall who discusses the contribution of young people.

Created by director Shirley Horrocks and researcher Glenda Lewis - with the help of Professor Gerrard and her team - the series has received support from a wide range of organisations:

AgResearch Ltd, The Bio-Protection Research Centre, The MacDiarmid Institute, The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, The NZ Food Safety Science & Research Centre, Plant & Food Research, The Riddet Institute, Scion Research, Stats NZ, The University of Auckland, The University of Otago, Victoria University of Wellington, with additional support from the Institute of Environmental Science and Research (ESR)

The aim of the series is to spread the news beyond the science community to the general public who sometimes view science with suspicion. We also aim particularly at schools where young people are very concerned about what is happening to their planet.

We live in an age of rapid change and many problems, and we want our series to provide positive, evidence-based facts and advice. A long-term aim is also to add a feature length documentary.

The documentary is on line at:


Previous    Next