How do garbage habits impact our communities? How can we improve?
A standing-room-only crowd of more than 200 people turned out Monday night for the Let's Talk Trash Film Gala at the Portland Art Museum to see films created by local filmmakers that look at our region's waste.
More than a dozen films were submitted as part of the contest, which started in July. Five finalist films were chosen to be shown at Monday night’s event:
- "Garbage Days," a film by David Wester that illustrates the role of consumerism and discarded packaging on our economy and our waste stream.
- "Meet the Freegans," a film by Travis Shields that follows the story of Steve, a well-educated, professional, home-owning Portland man who sees value in eating food from dumpsters.
- "Rubbish Removal," a film by Marissa J. Thompson that tells the story of a man who has no idea of the mess he’s leaving behind.
- "Talking Trash," a film by Levi Anderson describing where the Metro region’s trash ends up and its effects on rural Oregon communities.
- "There is No Away," by Suzan Beraza that follows someone who tries to unravel the complexities of where trash goes and whether or not recycling is all that it’s cracked up to be.
Audience members also engaged in a discussion with the filmmakers about the making of their films and the insights they gained about garbage and consumption habits in the making of the film.
After viewing each film, audience members chose "There Is No Away" as the top film, earning a $500 prize for Beraza.
Monday’s gala was one of a series of Let’s Talk Trash events held this year to engage the public in ideas and discussions for how Metro can do a better job managing the region’s garbage system. Next year the Metro Council will make decisions that determine where future garbage will go and how the region’s solid waste system will adapt to those changes. More information about Let’s Talk Trash and some of the different choices the Metro Council will consider are available online at oregonmetro.gov/letstalktrash.