When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1990, Cuba's economy went into a tailspin. With imports of oil cut by more than half – and food by 80 percent – people were desperate. This film tells of the hardships and struggles as well as the community and creativity of the Cuban people during this difficult time. Cubans share how they transitioned from a highly mechanized, industrial agricultural system to one using organic methods of farming and local, urban gardens. It is an unusual look into the Cuban culture during this economic crisis, which they call "The Special Period." The film opens with a short history of Peak Oil, a term for the time in our history when world oil production will reach its all-time peak and begin to decline forever. Cuba, the only country that has faced such a crisis – the massive reduction of fossil fuels – is an example of options and hope.
Global Public Media has an excellent article on the documentary and the changes in Cuba that are examined in it.
Want some context? Here's a short article by Colin J. Campbell, founder of the Association for the Study of Peak Oil & Gas, that provides an overview of the peak oil issue, and of its significance.
For even more information about peak oil, check out this two part interview with Richard Heinberg: