Star Trek IV Named Top Environmental Film

The UK’s, one of the top 3 environmental sites worldwide, has nominated Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home as one of the Greatest Environmental Movies of All Time. Other nominees include the dystopian Soylent Green and the Al Gore global warming documentary An Inconvenient Truth. The site states that the literal ‘save the whales’ plotline was “the most believable of the Star Trek films.”

In addition to being the most successful Trek film, STIV is certainly the one with the most topical message. The film was made shortly before the 1986 moratorium on most whaling. At the time, it seemed mandatory for Volkswagens to have a ‘Save the Whales’ bumper sticker.

New Star Trek to be topical?
Of course The Original Series often took on subjects of its day such as racism and the Vietnam War. In addition to STIV, Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country was also topical in that it dealt with the fall of the Soviet Union (with Klingons standing in for the Soviets). It is not known if the new Star Trek film currently in production will deal with issues of today, but co-writer Alex Kurtzman did drop a hint. In June Kurtzman told MTV

[Roddenberry] created a side of ‘Star Trek’ as a response to the Cold War. In a way, he made a fantasy of finding a way for everyone to come together — and that has managed to stick through all the versions of ‘Star Trek.’

The world’s changed, but it also hasn’t. We live in a world where it’s about ultra-paranoia of others, and that is as it was back when Roddenberry invented ‘Trek.’ In a way, it’s more timely now than ever to be doing this. … There was paranoia about the Cold War. That was their version of terrorism. We’re living in a very parallel environment right now.

More on the nominees for Top Environment Film at

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

LOL. I loved this film and glad it is still being recognized.

Those 3 are all good science fiction movies!

#2, Al Gore’s movie is science fact, not fiction. I pray that our politicians wake up so that our future generations can have a world like the one Star Trek portrays.

#3 Gore’s movie is scifi. There is no such thing as consensus in science.

Maybe if Algore followed his own advice it might be a good start. Global warming is the biggest scam the leftist wackos have come up with so far.

star trek 4 sent out a brilliant topical message of the time and its still relevent today. one of the greatest trek films. i never tire of it. there are so many great lines in it. good to see it recognised again.

I’m glad they used whales instead of fluffy kitties.I heard the original was about a probe that coughed up a furball on earth.

It’s AMAZING how today’s problems all originated from one WRONG TURN!!!!!

THE WRONG TURN CARRYING THE ARCHDUKE started a chain reaction that led to todays problems.

It led to WWI, which led to WWII, AND the Cold War. This then led to the Korean War and Vietnam War. While on the other side of the world, the Cold War made it possible for the Gulf Wars to occur.

Isn’t It Ironic how one wrong turn would lead to these terrible wars? If this wrong turn didn’t happen, STAR TREK, would never have existed because it was a result of the Cold War which was indirectly a result ot the two world wars.

if you get past the save the whale message. Trek IV had some of the most memorable trek lines and the character mingling was wonderful.

“Hello Computer” Classic stuff.

I love the Macintosh scene! that was reaking hilarious. I wonder if they meant to imply that the starfleet computers are based off of Mac OS? Now OSX.

I love the Macintosh scene! that was freaking hilarious. I wonder if they meant to imply that the starfleet computers are eventually based off of Mac OS? Now OSX.


please explain what the “leftist wackos” have to gain from this “scam”.

#4 your wrong… so wrong…. i think its sickening that Al Gore’s factual film has become a laughing stock for many people e.g. In the Simpson’s movie etc but i suppose thats the world today… your crazy for warning the world about something that IS happening and could, i said COULD possibly have drastic effects on civilisation as we know it… and your even more crazy if its not in our lifetime and not “our” problem.

on a less serious note… GO Trek IV i never understood how it was one of the best treks… but yea! (still think with a lot more money Trek V was what trek was all about along with Trek I)


There certainly *is* such a thing as “consensus in science” and to suggest otherwise is ridiculous. There is never such a thing as *unanimity* among scientists, which is different. Hell, there are a few scientists out there who claim that the HIV virus doesn’t cause AIDS.

I’m laughing at #4 and #5 (same person).
Go and look at Stephen Fry’s blog entry “getting overheated” (scroll down to the sub-title with the same name). He’s in America filming at the moment and he describes meeting someone who sounds just like you.

I’m laughing at #4 and #5 (same person).
Go and look at Stephen Fry’s blog entry “getting overheated” (scroll down to the sub-title with the same name). He’s in America filming at the moment and he describes meeting someone who sounds just like you.

Gornorrhea, best name ever! OMG that’s clever. :) I love it.

I forgot, to disagree with the left is trolling.

Sweet,, now lets hope the people in Japan watch Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home.

Go Greenpeace!,,,Good luck in the Antarctic waters

“A hornets nest” this is going to be fun though

It amuses me that there are still people like you in the world. Keep living the right wing lie, you crazy diamond!

I don’t think this thread will reach 50 posts. :(

i now have a giant furball image that won’t go away. the probe i assume would’ve looked like a giant litterbox.

check out william gibson’s bridge trilogy for some brilliant thoughts on historical nodal points and how they affect history. cool stuff.

some of us leftist wackos are pretty aggresive. we’ve been known to attack russian whalers with a bird of prey just to make a point.

There are scientists who say the all the planets in our solar system(including earth) have gone up 3 degrees in temp overall.There’s a Star Trek story there!

It’s those damn Rommies! Destroy the atmosphere, cripple the early federation!

Trek 4 is such a great film. I was 12 when it came out, and its environmental message really had an impact on me. I’m glad to see it was nominated for this.

I’m not sure if I’d agree that Star Trek IV was “the most believable” of the Star Trek movies, but the film’s strong reminder that failure to care for our environment can have disastrous consequences makes it one of the most important Trek films.

How do you think a writer would import modern terrorism paranoia into the Star Trek universe?

Clearly 9/11 was a terrible event, but it seems just as clear that the US response has been tragically flawed and an excuse for various abuses of concentrated power. These seem like themes that Star Trek often ascribed to the “alien” cultures, but rarely did the Federation deal with these sorts of problems within its own organization and culture. What event could inspire such fear, which forces would exploit that fear, and how would those forces collect and abuse the power granted ostensibly to facilitate deterrence and response?

#3 I’m almost certain the future is not going to be like Star-Trek.

The human population keeps growing, the natural world keeps shrinking, we can only produce enough food by creating vast landscapes of single crops all helped along with chemicals destroying wildlife and bio-diversity, all so more and more of us can stuff our fat, ugly, bloated faces with ever more food. We create millions of tons of garbage consisting of mad-made materials and chemicals and dump it in massive holes in the ground, or burn it giving off toxic gases, we turn paradises into ugly sprawling holiday resorts, We literally destroy vast landscapes in order to extract coal which is burn to make electricity so that we can leave our computers on all day and night, and suck up oil out the ground in order to drive ever-bigger cars so our off-spring don’t have to – god-forbid – walk to school. None of this oil or coal will be replaced for millions of years and will run out in maybe decades, yet our whole way of like relies on it. How stupid is that. And now China and India has decided it wants to be just like us.

So no. The future will not be like Star-Trek. I’m pretty confidant of that. I’m pretty confidant that it will be very different than now too.

There are scientists who say that the planets in the solar system have gone up 3 degress in overall temp. There are also scientsts who say that there is no proof that nicotine kills. It usually depends on where they get their founding from. Facts are facts, an we can not deny that pollution is affecting our world in a negative way.

Gee , they only litter the San Fransisco Bay with a BIRD OF PREY !! how environmental is that !!!! …… All that Trilithium leaking into the bay , killing all the fish …. Nope Try Again !

Maybe they put the bird of prey in there so coral could grow on it?

#29 – really good point. I’m quite curious as to how they would work in the non-black and white political situation. Certainly, things weren’t actually black and white back then, but it was much more legit to have the good guys (Federation/America) and bad guys (Klingons/Russians). I don’t think that would work now.

Some of the most interesting stories in all of Star Trek, though, have been those where the Federation itself is suspect. Maybe a bit of that? Consider, the writers have said there’s a little bit of DS9-ishness in the movie, and that was pretty much all about how the Federation had become corrupt but was still salvageable by good people. That’s certainly how I feel about America today, and I’d love to know if the writers are similar.

I wonder if Gene Roddenberry would have maintained a positive vision of mankind’s future if he were witness to the internet and the things people say to each other on messageboards.

Everybody, relax. The wars, the environment, all of that will not be solved by some back-and-forth here. Let’s try to be decent to one another.

“I’ve always thought of this as the most believable of the Star Trek films.” I suspect this comment is more than a little tongue in cheek.
However I reckon that in the grand scheme of canon, Star Trek the Moton Picture: a machine planet “finds” an interstellar probe with flat batteries that hasn’t worked a century, gives it the mother of all makeovers and it heads back to earth to find God!
The most ridiculuous storyline of the lot – and yet I loved the film!

Kirk and Spock saved the whales in Star Trek 4 and David Hassellhoff saved Sponge Bob and Patrick in the SpongeBob Movie.

I think its great that Trek 4 has been recognized. It spoke volumes during its time, as well as ST6. And, even Leonard Nimoy said- its the only Trek film where no one dies!:) All of Trek does have an underlying story if you know where to look for it, just as Law and Order does.
Go Trek!:)

PS- can we try and keep politics and political flamming out of the Trek posts? Anthony already warned some.I mean come on- Time and place people- Time and Place.


31.Well ,right now all the funding and awards are going to scientists who support a certain global warming theory.I’m not disagreeing that we need to curtail pollution.I’m just confronting you with your own logic.Hope you take it contructively.

The future portrayed in Star Trek is like Santa Claus. A nice fantasy to enjoy, but nothing that you truly believe is ever going to be real.

Doesn’t make me love ST or SC any less.

#4, you can disagree. You can also troll, which I believe you were doing. Why spark debate, when you can engender name calling instead?

Gores film does have inaccuracies, however the full effect is far more valuable. In the end, regardless of which side of the debate you are on, climate change is real, and it’s having an effect.

Having a Star Trek movie even being considered in the same breath as An Inconvenient Truth is quite fascinating. It’s nice to see it honored as being a social conscious film – which is exactly what Star Trek is ultimately about. Ultimately, when our kids look back on our time (as we do on our Parents 1960’s), I hope they view our lives with the same sweet smile of life in a simpler time.

#4 Ultimately, I hope that Anthony continues to keep the content of our discussions focused and that few outbreaks in politics (or religion, or Star Wars, or those pesky Canadians). We’re here to celebrate our love for ST, our unnatural need to see anything related to the new movie, and our near burning desire to finally see the Enterprise with wings and flames on the side!


I used ultimately too many times.

I always thought that was such a cool shot of the bird of prey over the whaling ship.

ST IV is one of the very few movies I can watch from beginning to end over and over again without getting bored.

I am in no saying that global warming is myth, it’s happening. Al Gore’s main argument in the movie actually happens the other way around. A rise in temperature causes a rise in CO2. Prove me wrong. When people say there is or isn’t a consensus, that’s half true. Many scientists who dissent from the “popular” opinion are silenced and repressed. The existence of global warming is not in question. It is the cause that is. Gore’s film is in no way fact and should not be accepted as such because the consensus is flimsy at best.

Actually, Japanese whaling is itself a by-product of American intervention in Japanese politics and culture.

Too bad that Star Trek IV had the worst special effects of the Trek films. (OK, maybe Star Trek V was worse.) If the special effects had been on par with the earlier films, this film would have undoubtedly been the best Trek film of all. What is great about the movie is that the theme brought in non-Trek fans to the theater.

CB spock frightens me. Do we have to lose all of Greenland before we act? Heck, Even Gaorge Bush admits Global Warming is a problem- And James Hansen of Nasa has been sounding the alarm for 20+ years now.

Scientific American has published some very telling articles on the subject.


Scientific American. Yeah. A real left wing publication, that.


Given the good news re Star Trek IV,

1) I wonder how Nimoy feels

2) Are they still planning to film parts of Trek XI In Iceland (Where they still allow whaling)?

3) How did they miss the ’70s movie “Silent Running” (Complete with Joan Baez soundtrack?)

I’m actually sad to see that An Inconvenient Truth did not win. On the other hand. AIT is not a movie but a documentry.

Global Warming is real, you can’t deny the Earth is warming. The debate is on whats causing it. I prefer to try and change things and not make up excuses.

I don’t think Japan has every watched Star Trek IV with their annual whale hunt…

I read that story about the Japanese whalers, and I immdiately thought of Trek. There was also that scandal with Hayden Pantierre of Heroes trying to save the dolphins who the Japanese were butchering. It’s a shame that in the 21st century we still continue past sins.

# 46 – Silent Running was another good example of an environmental movie. It should have received honorable mention.
Scientific American has been getting a bit vitriolic about global warming: jumping on the name calling bandwagon. Name calling is not very scientific.
Considering Al Gore created a company for selling carbon credits several years before AIT was released, it is at least a little suspicious. It looks to be a big infomercial. Even people who are proponents of AIT admit that it plays fast and loose with some information.
I don’t think buying and selling carbon credits will fix anything. It presumes that there is an inherent right to pump CO2 in the air. We need to focus on developing energy sources that do not dump CO2 or anything else in the atmosphere: like Bussard’s Polywell fusion or solar power satellites. The current global warning pundits seem more concerned with creating the panic and profiting from it, than actually trying to solve the problem.