DamNationDirector: Ben Knight, Travis Rummel
USA | English
Eligible for Our World
In an attempt to harness the extraordinary power of water, more than 75,000 dams have been built in the United States over an 80-year span, the equivalent of one dam a day since the Jefferson administration. DamNation explores the history and legacy of hydropower and the growing movement to undo the dams and restore long-standing fisheries by legal and guerrilla means. When obsolete dams are taken down, rivers bound back to life as salmon and other wild fish return to their primeval spawning ground after decades without access.
The film chronicles many figures in this vital movement, among them Mikal Jakubal, who has painted massive cracks on dams, helping to kickstart a national movement to end the bottling up of rivers. DamNation spans decades from Franklin D. Roosevelt at the dedication of the mighty Hoover Dam to the final days of Washington state’s Elwha Dam being powered down after nearly a century in operation.
Featuring breathtaking cinematography, this powerful film odyssey explores the sea change in the national attitude from pride in big dams as engineering wonders to the growing awareness that our own future is bound to the life and health of our rivers.