a project by TINKEBELL. about the future of the world. To save our
Will be presented during the World Food Festival, Rotterdam
Complete film in Dutch:
A short introduction film in English:
SAVE OUR CHILDREN – The slumbering threat of a worldwide
TINKEBELL. presents a drastic, extreme conclusion and
decides to sterilize herself.
Phosphate is as essential to life on earth as oxygen is. Without it
no living organism can exist. It is a main ingredient for the
catalyst of the world's food supply: fertilizer. It can't be
replaced nor can we artificially create it. And now it seems that
supplies are running low. Not many people are aware of the
importance of this element for our daily lives, let alone that the
material is as finite as oil and gas. But the Moroccan mines which
provide about 40% of the worlds Phosphate reserves are slowly but
steadily being depleted. At least, that is the theory of Wouter de
Heij, scientist and expert in the field of durable food production.
According to his findings the world will run out of readily
available, clean phosphate somewhere in the next 30-100 years. This
deficit would proof disastrous world food production. Without
phosphate De Heij estimates the food industry can only support an
approximate 1.5 billion people. In the coming decades we will
approach a world population of almost ten times this amount.
This frightful premise is the starting point of a new project by
Dutch artist TINKEBELL. In her continuing quest to save the world
she sets out to verify de Heij's claims, and to see if the problem
is as daunting as he sketches it. She does so by making a film in
which she speaks with several experts in the fields of biology,
phosphate and the balance of nature. She asks them if it might be
true that we will be without food within a couple of decades. This
film, SAVE OUR CHILDREN, is scheduled to premiere on the World Food
Festival next week in Rotterdam. Included are Louise Fresco (
professor in international durability), Dolf Boddeke (biologist,
fishery expert), Brendo Meulman (innovator in urine recycling) and
several other experts in the field. She also tries to uncover why
nobody seems to be talking about this issue in interviews with
several Dutch politicians from all sides of the political
The film is set up as an attempt to prove de Heij wrong. This seems
to be a natural response to the image of the future he is painting;
a world in constant conflict over the final scraps of food
available. Even when there still is a very limited amount of
phosphate available prices will skyrocket and geopolitical
struggles will increase. One way or another the human population on
this planet needs to decrease for it to be sustainable, be it
through war, (natural) disasters or, perhaps even more
controversially, by limiting the amount of children people are
allowed to have.
With this in mind, China’s recently lifting its single-child
policy can be seen as a very threatening decision.
During the interviews with the experts several solutions to the
problem are offered, but the notion that phosphate is finite and
that this will cause considerable problems seems to be part of the
consensus. Most of the possible solutions are quite practical, but
will only work if recognition of the issue gains momentum. Ideas
such as extracting phosphate from our own urine, filtering it from
the sea through algae, or retrieving it from the bones of dead
animals are extensively reviewed in the film. TINKEBELL. even
attempts to create her own phosphate by adding seawater to her own
urine. The magnesium in the seawater reacts with her urine and a
small amount of white phosphate is filtered out. All these measure
are drastic, expensive and will change the way we live our daily
lives. And although there seems to be a growing acceptance of the
need for sustainable energy and for a more effective use of raw,
finite materials, phosphate is nowhere to be found in either
politics or the public eye.
TINKEBELL. has made it her mission to increase public attention for
the possibility of a phosphate deficit. She feels that politicians
worldwide fail to address the problem. The global financial crisis
is partly to blame for this, but it seems that any long-term
thought is now absent from contemporary politics. So she feels she
has to take responsibility herself.
At the end of SAVE OUR CHILDREN, after a thoughtful and
fascinating exploration of all sides of the phosphate debate, she
arrives at a drastic and final conclusion. In spite of all the
possible solutions to the phosphate problem solving it seems very
improbable when there is no political pressure. In view of a future
without phosphate she decides to get sterilized. By doing so she
shows an extreme consequence of a worldwide problem.
The closing shots of the film show the artist lying in the
hospital, crying. She becomes a testament for a problem bigger than
us, a problem we have to take collective responsibility for.
This project needs your help! We made this film with
a small budget in the Dutch language, which is fine. But it would
be great if we could share the project with all the
non-Dutch-speaking people around the globe as well.
That's why we are looking for funding to translate this film.
Yes, with that, we could use some help!
contact for info or donate directly via this link.
(please mention your contact info and SAVE OUR CHILDREN)