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Sustainability film gets local showing on Saturday

'A Passion for Sustainability' is not a film that needs polar bears on melting blocks of ice to make its point.

It merely uses 12 business people from Portland to make an overwhelming case for sustainability in a low-key manner.

The passion of Passion comes in its cumulative effect.

'This is a pivotal point in human history,' said Jane Turville, the film's co-producer. 'We're at a point where we will be making decisions that will preserve our future - or end the way we live.'

Lake Oswegans and West Linn residents will get a chance to see what this passion is all about when the film is shown at 6:30 p.m., Saturday at the Unity World Healing Center at 366 Third St. in Lake Oswego. Tickets are $5 at the door, and all proceeds will help fund the film's broader release.

This will be the film's second showing. The first came at the Broadway Theatre in Portland, and in movie vernacular it was absolutely boffo box office, attracting 356 people. More than enough to put a big smile on a producer's face.

'It was very well attended,' Turville said.

Turville, who is development director for Northwest Earth Institute, originally intended the film to be an eight-minute tribute to the 10th anniversary of Oregon Natural Step. But eight minutes simply could not contain all of the good material accumulated by director, writer and co-producer Eric Stacey of Landfall Productions.

'Eight months into it we realized we had enough for a documentary with a good, strong message to the nation,' Turville said.

The talent for a bigger production was certainly there. Turville is a screenwriter, while Stacey has vast experience in the movie-making business. His credits go all the way back to Patton, the Academy Award-winning classic starring George C. Scott in 1970.

But the big thing about Passion is the businesses. Some are huge, such as Nike and Collins Companies. Others make pizza, wine or women's fashions.

The thing they have in common is their inspirational message: Businesses can be a force for beneficial environmental and cultural change and still prosper greatly. The people in Passion put to rest old saws about sustainability being for profits.

Yet, as the film points out, Portland is the capitol of sustainability in the USA. All of the businesses in the film use Natural Step as the basis for their plans. And while Natural Step thrives greatly in Portland, it has not yet strongly taken root nationwide.

But Turville thinks Passion can change that. She is marketing her film to every PBS television station in the nation, reaching more than 300 markets, including some for which sustainability is only a rumor.

'We need to raise $20,000,' Turville said. 'We have $14,000. We have been very well received by the Portland community, including the businesses.

In addition, the film can be purchased on DVD from the Web site www.passionforsustainability.com using PayPal or a credit card.