Environmental Studies • Engineering • Public Affairs 
Business • Sustainability Studies • International Relations
2017. Director & Producer David Schumacher.
84 Minutes. Includes captions.

THE NEW FIRE tells a provocative and startlingly positive story about a planet in crisis and the young heroes who are trying to save it. Nuclear power has been vilified in popular culture and among much of the environmental community. Yet the next-generation reactors currently in development may actually be key to avoiding global catastrophe. The young entrepreneurs heading this energy revolution realize they’re up against more than the climate clock – they need to convince all of us that the "new nuclear" is safe and achievable.


Filmed across four continents over the course of twenty-two months, Emmy-winning director David Schumacher’s film focuses on how the generation facing the most severe impact of climate change is fighting back with ingenuity and hope. Featuring Jeffrey Sachs, Bill Gates, James Hansen, Ken Caldeira, Kerry Emanuel and nuclear start-ups Oklo, Transatomic and TerraPower.

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What if the Solution to Climate Change is Hiding in Plain Sight?
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Reviewed by C. Cassady

"Schumacher turns the camera lens on brave, young, idealistic, and mediagenic innovator-entrepreneurs from MIT and other labs, who are formulating 'nuclear 2.0' [...] A notable [...] entry into the sustainability debate, the film also includes comments from nuclear proponent Bill Gates and author Tom Blees. Recommended."

"People will some day look back from a future where safe, clean, advanced nuclear power is a reality and recognize that this film was the catalyst that inspired a new generation of climate heroes to become nuclear engineers."

The New Fire tells the story of three advanced nuclear startups and in doing so, lays out the reasons why new nuclear is needed. This isn’t An Inconvenient Truth – it’s a new reality. We’re going to have to combat climate change, and we’re going to have to use nuclear power to do so. Some companies may succeed and some may fail. The question is: will humanity fail to address climate change because we fear nuclear power?”

"This smart, compelling documentary is filled with idealistic young engineers convinced that nuclear power is the right energy to match with renewables to fight global warming. I think they’re right—and I think you will too after you meet them, breathe their enthusiasm, and see and hear their bold new ideas.”

“With the urgency of transitioning to a low-carbon energy system, the debate over next-generation nuclear power takes on a special significance. The New Fire is the most important and captivating documentary film treatment of this issue. The film follows several young entrepreneurs on their quest for safe, flexible, and low-cost advanced nuclear technologies. Of great interest for all who are searching for solutions to the world’s climate-and-energy crisis.”

"The New Fire shows us that the path to avoiding serious climate risk can be one of plenitude and prosperity rather than sacrifice and scarcity. All those who are truly serious about our future must see this film."

“Taming climate change is a momentous challenge that is going to require every zero carbon technology we can affordably deploy, and The New Fire offers real hope that a new generation of nuclear technology can be part of that mix."

"The New Fire will inspire all with its revelations of the amazing entrepreneurial spirit around nuclear innovation. New and advanced nuclear power can provide us with clean and safe solutions to address our climate and energy challenge.”

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