10/25/2022 - 11:45 AM Uhr
On The Brink
by Sean Aita
freely adapted from Antigone by Sophocles
"On the Brink" takes up the main motifs of Sophocles' "Antigone" - secular authority versus conscience, willingness to compromise versus civil disobedience, and responsibility versus personal happiness - and transfers them to the present, to the fictional oil-producing state of Trusavia. The explosive drama deals with the most pressing issue of our time, the climate crisis and the social conflicts that arise from it, with special emphasis on the perspective of young people.
Natural Resources Management student Antigone "Tiggy" Nanrod does not have it easy at Trusavia Public University with her family background. She is the niece and sole heir of Creon Nanrod, who heads the family business Nanrod Transnational Oil & Gas, the largest oil and gas company in the country. Her uncle raised her as his own daughter after the death of her parents, and their relationship is palpably one of affection and trust. In times of hardened fronts in the climate change debate, the oil industry inevitably becomes the target of environmental movements and so does Tiggy at Trusavia University. Doing his utmost to give the company an environmentally and socially conscious image, Creon has involved his niece in the development of a new non-profit project, Leaf & Branch, which aims to help small communities build environmentally sustainable energy production options. Tiggy does not negate the burning issue of climate change in any way - hence her choice of studies - and yet she understands her uncle's point of view that the world cannot currently do without fossil fuels due to a lack of sufficient alternative energy sources.Tiggy comes under fire at university from militant environmentalist Liana Dunmo of the "Global Warming Alliance", who attacks her without any restraint after a lecture. Only Tiggy's childhood friend Theo is able to curb the verbal exchange somewhat. Tiggy cannot accept the undifferentiated negative image that Liana paints of Creon Nanrod and so the opponents agree on a meeting between Liana and Creon so that the latter can form a first-hand opinion.
As expected, the confrontation between environmentalist and company boss is heated, but is interrupted by catastrophic news: A pipeline in the biodiverse river delta has sprung a leak and thousands of gallons of crude oil have escaped. Creon immediately sets out to inspect the damage. Meanwhile, Tiggy tries unsuccessfully to calm Theo, whose grandfather lives as a fisherman in the delta.
In the days that follow the natural disaster, Tiggy secretly researches the company's safety policies. The shocking discoveries turn her into an active member of the Global Warming Alliance, which is a feast for the press and a slap in her uncle's face. When Lianna also reveals to her that Nanrod has no intention of having the delta cleaned up, Tiggy's inner conflict between her conscience and her family loyalty comes to a head. Ultimately, she has to conclude that she can no longer live with compromise. She allows herself to be persuaded into a dangerous act of sabotage, in which she ultimately becomes the main suspect in the police investigation...
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