Up Close and Toxic
Examines the alarming levels of pollutants inside our homes and suggests ways to reduce them.
Directed by Caroline Underwood
Produced by CBC's "The Nature of Things"
Executive Producer: Michael Allder
Host: David Suzuki
"Home, sweet home." Most people would say that they feel safest in the comfort of their own homes. The skies could open up and pour down acid rain, the smelters might be spewing clouds of ash and dust, a thick layer of vehicular emissions might blanket the cities, but we remain healthy and happy in our sheltered environments.
"A unique video that provides an educational, entertaining, and effective presentation on indoor pollutants." NSTA Recommends
But, surprise, surprise. UP CLOSE AND TOXIC reveals that the great indoors is not as safe as we've been lulled into thinking. Toxicologists have found that the levels of most indoor air pollutants exceed those found outdoors - even in our most polluted cities. We know very little about the long term or cumulative effects of our indoor exposure. Cleaning products, pesticides, paint dust, lead particles in the carpet, plastic toys...UP CLOSE AND TOXIC provides an informative wake-up call in an entertaining manner, makes the sources of indoor pollution easy to understand, and provides tips for safer practices, materials, and cleaning agents.
Our guides are:
Dr. Richard Corsi, University of Texas at Austin, who is an expert on indoor air quality.
Dr. Donna Mergler, University of Quebec in Montreal, who is working on the identification of early physiological and neurological changes related to exposure to neurotoxic substances.
Dr. John Roberts who is a healthy home engineer and an expert on dust.
Grade Level: 7-12, College, Adult
US Release Date: 2003
Copyright Date: 2002
DVD ISBN: 1-59458-115-0
VHS ISBN: 1-56029-986-X
"Up Close and Toxic presents in entertaining and educational fashion truly important information for anyone with an appetite for breatheable air. It is must viewing for contemporary society dwellers everywhere."
Stuart Lieberman, Esq., Partner, Lieberman and Blecher--specializing in environmental law
"A lighthearted look at a serious subject...presented in an easily understood manner, and the production values are excellent. A good introduction to the topic for all audiences. Recommended."
Kay Hogan Smith, Educational Media Reviews Online
"An eye-opening tour of toxins and pollutants inside our homes and cars...Strangely humorous...the quality of the presentation and the interest generated by recent stories in the media about sick indoor spaces, make this a useful tool for classes studying environmental issues and public libraries with environmental media collections."
School Library Journal
"Up Close and Toxic is a unique video that provides an educational, entertaining, and effective presentation on indoor pollutants for secondary students...An excellent supplement for such diverse topics as chemistry, the environment, consumerism, health, pollution, science and technology, and toxic waste. This video presents a serious topic in an entertaining manner that will appeal to both visual and auditory learners... It nicely complements the National Science Education Standards content standards in Physical Science...Science and Technology...and Science in Personal and Social Perspectives. Up Close and Toxic is one way to provide teachers and their students with important scientific information about indoor pollutants as well as tips for safer decision-making."
Debby Chessin, Assistant Professor of Elementary Science and Math Education, NSTA Recommends
"This program is a wake-up call for those of us who silently believe that any environmental pollution posing health hazards must come from the outdoors...The well organized and scientifically accurate material is presented in an entertaining format to appeal to a general audience, as well as those who are scientifically inclined."
Best Science Films, Science Books and Films
Awards and Festivals
Selected One of the Best Science Films from the Past Five Years, Science Books & Films
Nominated for Best Science, Technology, Nature, Environment or Adventure Documentary, The Gemini Awards (Canadian Emmy)
Hazel Wolf Environmental Film Festival
The Green Film Festival, Washington DC
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... more Reviews
"With today's headlines steadily proclaiming contaminated foods, toys, household products and more, the current health crisis is one of the most important issues facing every American. Up Close and Toxic is a wake-up call to indoor air pollutants...A singularly invaluable addition to public library shelves and classroom viewing schedules, particularly in today's modern era of rising health care costs."
The Midwest Book Review