Controversial climate change film produced by Michael Moore taken down from YouTube

The film was produced by Bowling for Columbine director Michael Moore
The film was produced by Bowling for Columbine director Michael Moore



The director of a controversial film about climate change produced  by Michael Moore has complained of censorship after it was removed by YouTube over a copyright claim from a British photographer.

Planet of the Humans, whose central tenet is that renewable energy is not environmentally friendly, was accused of being “riddled with errors” when it was released last month on YouTube.

It was removed from YouTube after a copyright claim over four seconds of footage showing the mining of rare earth minerals used to make wind turbines. The complaint was made to YouTube by the creator of the footage, British environmental photographer Toby Smith, according to the Guardian.

Director Jeff Gibbs said its removal is a “blatant act of censorship by political critics”, in a statement provided to the website Deadline.

“It is a misuse of copyright law to shutdown a film that has opened a serious conversation about how parts of the environmental movement have gotten into bed with Wall Street and so-called ‘green capitalists.’ There is absolutely no copyright violation in my film. This is just another attempt by the film’s opponents to subvert the right to free speech.”

The film has been accused of portraying outdated technology to suggest that renewables and green technology are no better for the environment because they rely on fossil fuels for their manufacture and operation.

Leah Stokes, a professor specialising in energy and environmental policy at the University of California, said it was “riddled with errors about clean energy”.

The efficiency of renewable technology has improved significantly in recent years, and the reliance on coal for electricity has also dropped, making technology such as electric vehicles much more green.

Dozens of climate scientists and experts called for the removal of the film, which has had 8 million views since it went up to mark Earth Day on April 21.