Date(s) - Saturday 08/06/2011
In April 1977, the small coastal town of Seabrook, New Hampshire became an international symbol in the battle over atomic energy. Concerned about the dangers of potential radioactive accidents, more than 2,000 members of the Clamshell Alliance, a coalition of environmental groups, attempted to block construction of a nuclear power plant in Seabrook. 1,414 people were arrested in that civil disobedience protest and jailed en masse in National Guard armories for two weeks.
Filmed in a video-verité style, SEABROOK 1977 chronicles the dramatic events which made world headlines and sparked the creation of a grassroots antinuclear power movement across the United States. Scenes of the nonviolent demonstration and subsequent internment are interwoven with interviews with participants on all sides of the event, including local Seabrook residents, antinuclear activists, New Hampshire’s pro-nuclear Governor Meldrim Thomson, police and utility officials.
The video vividly documents the unfolding events as people march with banners and backpacks across the tidal marshes onto the construction site, erect a colorful tent city, and conduct on-site negotiations with the governor and police. After the mass arrests at the nuclear site, the scene changes to inside the armories, where the video follows the extraordinary experiences of the largest group of U.S. citizens incarcerated since the Vietnam war protests.
SEABROOK 1977 tells the story of this seminal event of 1970’s environmental activism and shows people making history from the grassroots.
As the nuclear power industry is currently pushing for an expansion of nuclear plants to be built in the United State as a “clean alternative” to fossil fuels, the experiences of 1970’s anti-nuclear activists are more relevant than ever.
A Video NewsReal Production, directed by Robbie Leppzer and Phyllis Joffe.