By Neeraj Nanda
MELBOURNE, 1 January 2022: On New Year’s eve (31 Dec 2021), while searching for a movie on streaming services, I stumbled upon ‘Day Zero’ on Prime Video. I was sipping water to beat Melbourne’s heat. The fan was no solace. Little did I realize, I was about to see something so crucial to life. In fact, a tale of ‘Modern life’ vs ‘Life’. How depleting global fresh-water supplies have become a challenge as we continue to populate the world and more and more people accept ‘Modern life’ on a finite Earth. Will anyone listen?
The documentary simply explains it all and makes you think. Though the water crisis is global, it uses three countries – the US, South Africa, and Brazil to explain the issue. It starts off with New Year’s eve 2020 (31 Dec 2019) in the US, then South Africa and Brazil. The population pressure, agriculture, meat production… all depleting the globe’s freshwater supplies.
I wonder why Asia (China, India…), Africa, and so on don’t find a place in the documentary. But the documentary, is still, able to give the message – there is not enough water for the growing population on Earth. And, modern life (globally) is unsustainable. The water that belongs to everyone is being used to sustain agriculture and cattle for meat production. The world’s carving for beef (or any meat) is actually ‘the water we eat’. This means water used to feed cattle reared for meat is a major source of water depletion.
The focus on the Amazon forest in Brazil explains its importance for the world’s ecosystem. Its destruction under the current regime is a big concern, The Amazon has, the documentary says, 400 billion trees and much more natural. The destruction of the Amazon trees will take away the rain, it explains. The rain comes because of the trees. The best part of the documentary is where it explains how the rain comes because of the trees. I am sure anyone who understands this will never cut a tree.
Water is the blood of the landscape and many areas have severe droughts. This cannot go on forever. Without water, there is no life. In fact, water is life. Hence, this is a global problem and involves us all. This message is crystal clear – the Earth’s precious freshwater supplies will be exhausted. Ordinary people will suffer. Even if you are rich the issue will hurt you. Rapid consumption of water will remove nature’s ability to replenish the supplies. The scenario is scary.
A repeat, it’s – ‘Modern life’ vrs ‘life’. We have to start listening. The directors and their team have made us reach the defining moment where we have to listen and act to protect the world’s water, the magic that sustains life. To this date, no water has been located elsewhere in the Cosmos. It’s time to act.
Name – Day Zero
Duration – 1 hour 11 minutes
Classification – 13+
Directors- Virginia Quinn, Kevin Sim
Starring – Chiwetel Ejiofor, Chiwetel Ejiofor
Genres – Documentary
Subtitles – English [CC], Français
Audio languages English, Français
Streaming at – Prime Video