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Can We Cool the Planet? Director’s Panel Discussion

April 21 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Join us for an exclusive panel discussion featuring the film producer, co-director and co-writer Ben Kalina, and Academy and Drexel experts

Climate change is the biggest challenge the modern world will ever face. What can we do to mitigate and adapt to the effects of extreme weather events, global warming and rising seas?

Watch Can We Cool the Planet? (54 minutes), and then join us for an exclusive panel discussion featuring the film’s producer, co-director and co-writer Ben Kalina, as well as Academy and Drexel experts.

The film can be accessed for free on NOVA:

Moderator: Roland Wall, Director of the Center for Environmental Policy at the Academy’s Patrick Center for Environmental Research


Jen Schneider – Co-Director, Co-Writer & Director of Cinematography

Jen Schneider is an award-winning cinematographer based in Philadelphia. She is an ICG Emerging Cinematographers Award recipient whose cinematography has been seen at Cannes, Sundance and Cameraimage, as well as PBS and many top-tier venues and platforms. Jen is a member of Writer’s Guild of America, the International Cinematographers Guild, as well as the film collectives Cinematographers XX and International Collective of Female Cinematographers. Currently, she is developing a new series about the fracturing of our social collective in the online era while she serves as cinematographer for an original documentary series for Amazon’s new IMDb channel, called “Bug Out,” about a $50,000 bug heist that launched an FBI probe and opened the door onto an illicit market for exotic animals from inside the humble walls of a Philadelphia insect museum.

Ben Kalina – Co-Director, Co-Writer & Co-Producer

Ben Kalina is an award-winning documentary producer and director whose work explores the colliding forces of human nature and environmental change. His first feature documentary, Shored Up, explored sea level rise and the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy as it ran headlong into unchecked coastal development. Shored Up won the 2014 Sundance Institute’s Lightstay Sustainability Award and was broadcast on DirecTV. Kalina produced and directed the NOVA film Can We Cool the Planet?, which traveled around the world to discover emerging technologies and nature-based solutions to counteract climate change. His in-progress feature doc Plan C for Civilization follows the scientist at the center of the controversial field of solar geoengineering, a technology designed to cool a quickly warming world. Other projects include Home: A Rockumentary, following a year in the life of a public middle school rock band in South Philadelphia, and A River Reborn, chronicling the revival of a river in the mountains of Central Pennsylvania poisoned by chemicals from abandoned coal mines. In addition to his independent documentaries, Ben produces a range of short films and other video projects through his company Mangrove Media. Based in Philadelphia, Mangrove partners with clients including The Nature Conservancy, PennEnvironment and the National Wildlife Federation.

Frauke Levin – Co-Producer

Frauke Levin is an Emmy-nominated documentary researcher and producer. A German native and graduate of the Universität fu?r Film und Fernsehen Konrad Wolf, she has co- and associate produced documentaries with a focus on historical and science topics for PBS NOVA, HBO,
National Geographic and others for the past 15 years. In 2006 she received an Emmy-nomination for Outstanding Individual Achievement in a Craft – Research for her work on Gray Matter by Joe Berlinger, a documentary that investigates the fate of children killed in the Nazi’s euthanasia program, whose remains continued to be used for medical research in post-war Austria. Most recently she produced Tatyana Yassukovich’s short film Closing Night, and co-produced the PBS NOVA program Can We Cool The Planet.

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