Patrick Gilfether ’15 Collaborates with GeRAM on Leuser Ecosystem Awareness through Film

When Shansi Fellow Patrick Gilfether ’15 is not teaching at Syiah Kuala University, he is busy filming the world around him. Patrick’s latest film produced for the Aceh Citizen Lawsuit Movement (Gerakan Rakyat Aceh Menggugat or abbreviated to GeRAM) aims to raise awareness of the destruction of the Leuser Ecosystem, the last place on earth where critically endangered species such as Sumatran varieties of elephants, rhinos, orangutan, and tigers still co-exist together. The 2.6-million-hectare Leuser Ecosystem is essential to over four million people for water and clean air. Unfortunately, the set of zoning laws known collectively as a spatial plan issued in 2013 by the Aceh government will soon disrupt the ecosystem valued by many communities. To fight back against the government, a class-action lawsuit has been filed by nine Indonesian citizens to challenge the legality of those laws. Watch the documentary below to hear why Indonesian citizens are suing their government to save the environment.

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