Anthony Powell’s “Antarctica: A Year on Ice” will be showing on March 23.

Thursday, March 20th, marked the beginning of the D.C. Environmental Film Festival, which hosts a stellar line-up of 200 films (many of them free), including stories about shady politicians, the impacts of technology on our happiness, and cancer-causing chemicals. The film festival—showing mostly free films—runs through the 30th of this month.

A common theme at this year’s festival seems to be how innovations have done damage to our planet. In one film,  “Antarctica: A Year on Ice,” photographer Anthony Powell captures the extreme conditions of life on the continent, where he spent 10 years filming. Another film, Toxic Hot Seat, discusses the danger of flame-retardants.

According to the Washington Post, “This fascinating HBO documentary unravels how flame retardants ended up in our couches, creating a major health risk to people, especially firefighters who inhaled the toxic fumes and have been getting cancer at an alarming rate. The movie will likely leave viewers enraged, especially when they realize who was behind the push for flame retardants — the tobacco industry — but also terrified, given that these chemicals are just a small portion of the unregulated, untested synthetics that surround us on a daily basis.”

The Environmental Film Festival features films originating from almost 40 countries. This year, 115 of the films are having their Washington, D.C., U.S. and world premieres at the festival. 2014 marks the 22nd annual D.C. Environmental Film Festival, it having been founded in 1993.

If you’re in the area, don’t miss out on some of these incredible films! Find out more at