by Michael Bonello
From the ancient Paleolithic, the film moves quickly to the hunter gatherers and early Neolithic pastoralists of the Holocene period (the last 12,000 years). The narrative theme of the film, which links these prehistoric peoples to modern-day Libya, is Water. The film shows how the early rivers and lakes influenced the settlement and movement of our stone-age ancestors in the desert. But these rivers and lakes were to dry up. With the increasing desiccation of the Sahara after about 5,000 BP (before present), man, at least in the Libyan desert, was able to adapt to this climatic change by tapping the waters that are now only found beneath the earth. The film highlights this extraordinary transition in desert civilisation in the emergence, almost three thousand years ago, of the Garamantian civilisation. In so doing, it stresses the critically important link between conservation and sustainable development.