Episodes

SeriesEpisodeTitleFirst
Broadcast
RepeatedComments

19990801

Antibiotics have saved millions of lives this century but the race to find new, stronger drugs has become critical as strains of resistant bacteria develop.

This is partly due to the overuse of antibiotics in agriculture to promote growth in farm animals.

This programme asks why farmers use antibiotics and whether they can stop.

19971126

A nine-part environmental series.

In the second of two programmes on global climate change, Jeremy Cherfas looks at the factors shaping the political consensus around this issue.

There is a clearly identified enemy - greenhouse gases - and a consensus that something must be done.

Why, then, are we in danger of wasting the opportunity?

19971130

A nine-part environmental series.

In the second of two programmes on global climatic change, Jeremy Cherfas looks at the factors shaping the political consensus on this issue.

There is a clearly identified enemy - greenhouse gases - and agreement that something must be done.

Why, then, are we in danger of wasting the opportunity?

19971230

Roger Harrabin takes a personal journey through the Philippines, looking at the main environmental issues facing the country.

1997123119980118

Water is essential for life and, while we may take it for granted, many countries are prepared to go to war for a safe, clean water supply.

So what is the real price of water? And is it the environment that is paying?

19980104
19980107

A look at the environmental consequences of choices we make every day of our lives - from the coffee we drink and the jeans we wear to our journey to work.

With Jeremy Cherfas.

19980111
19980114
19980121

The last in the current series.

19980125

A look behind the news at the environment.

19990607

British Gulf War veterans have tested positive for uranium poisoning and the civilian cancer rate in Iraq is increasing.

Yet both the Ministry of Defence and the UNITED STATES military have denied that depleted uranium has any detrimental effects.

The US has recently admitted using it in Kosovo.

This programme investigates the truth about depleted uranium.

19990614

Forty percent of antibiotics used in the world are used in agriculture, not to fight disease but to promote growth in farm animals.

Strains of resistant bacteria are overpowering our current range of drugs.

This programme investigates the use of antibiotics in farming.

20020926

Series exploring environmental issues.

Tom Feilden asks what garden pesticide use is doing to our wildlife.

20021003
20021010

Series exploring environmental issues.

Tom Feilden asks why we are using ever-increasing amounts of pesticide in our gardens.

20030410

Eco Island: Will Mallorca's new environmental tax on tourists turn lager louts into bird watchers? Miriam O'reilly investigates.

20030424

The Energy Gap: Our NUCLEAR industry is being phased out, our gas supplies are running out and the coal mines have closed.

So how will Britain be powered in 20 years time?

20030508

The Peace Dividend? Could Northern IRELAND's wildlife be the big loser in the peace process? Alex Kirby reports.

2003082120030828

Tom Feilden investigates the effect of antibiotics on the environment.

20040506

Last Jewl in the Med: The Croatian island of Vis is the last Mediterranean island to be unaffected by tourism. This programme looks at the World Wildlife Fund's efforts to preserve its status.

2006050520060512

What happened to John Prescott's ten-year transport vision? Launched in a blaze of publicity in 2000, Mr Prescott promised to spearhead a huge investment programme in Britain's road and rail systems. But six years on, is Britain on its way to waving goodbye to polluted roads and cancelled trains?

Tom Heap and Miriam O'Reilly travel the country by road and rail to get the real story of life in the slow lane.

2006072820060804

Guerrilla Gardeners: Can the Guerrilla Gardeners transform Britain's inner cities into green oases? Tom Heap joins them on a mission. [Rpt of Fri 9.00pm]

2006080320060805

Guerrilla Gardeners: Can the Guerrilla Gardeners transform Britain's inner cities into green oases? Tom Heap joins them on a mission. [Rptd Sat 3.00pm]

2007042620070427

Tom Heap explores the impact of professional football on the environment. With travel and litter as well as lighting and water demands, just one match can have a huge impact.

Goalkeeper David James has seen how other countries have taken measures to improve sustainability and believes that more clubs in the UK could play their part. Tom assesses measures currently in place and visits the team claiming to have the UK's first sustainable stadium.

Tom Heap explores the impact of professional football on the environment.

Goalkeeper David James has seen how other countries have taken measures to improve sustainability, and believes that more clubs in the UK could play their part.

2007050320070504

Perth, the most isolated city in the world, has been forecast to become a future ghost metropolis by environmentalist Tim Flannery. The city is highly vulnerable to climate change, and although plans exist for prolonged drought conditions the local ecology remains extremely fragile.

Perth, the most isolated city in the world, has been forecast to become a future ghost metropolis by environmentalist Tim Flannery.

2007051020070511

Drought is set to be a permanent way of life in Australia even after the summer ends. How is the driest country on the driest continent in the world going to manage its water supplies to ensure that its growing population has enough?

2007090620070907

As the changing weather patterns show increased rainfall and a greater threat of flooding in the UK, Charlotte Smith asks whether agricultural practices could or should play a greater role in flood prevention.

2007091320070914

Miriam O'Reilly looks at attempts to manage the UK's fish stocks through the Common Fisheries Policy and their apparent failure. She visits Iceland, long hailed as a good example of sustainable fishing, to hear how politicians have just slashed cod quotas. She asks whether European politics works against the UK when it comes to rebuilding our stocks and whether scientists are taken seriously enough.

Miriam O'reilly looks at attempts to manage the UK's fish stocks through the Common Fisheries Policy and their apparent failure.

2007092720070928

The world's population predicted to grow to 9 billion people by 2050. Tom Heap asks whether this is the one environmental issue we should be concentrating on above all others, yet shying away from because of its controversial nature.

2007100420071005

One of the key arguments against biofuels is the potential for food shortages as more land is given over to growing energy crops. So can we feed ourselves as well as produce renewable fuels? Tom Heap investigates.

So can we feed ourselves as well as produce renewable fuels? Tom Heap investigates.

20080606

The Shipping News

Following the beaching of the MSC Napoli in Lyme Bay last year, Miriam O'Reilly looks at what the shipping industry is doing to prevent another catastrophe for marine birds.

20080822

Summer of Mud

Renewable energy powered stages, biodegradeable tent pegs and car-share schemes all sound great when trying to reduce the environmental impact of summer festivals, but do they really make any difference? How much do festival-goers and performers really care about the environment?

20080829

Gulls: Code Red

Seagulls are breeding rapidly, thriving and getting bigger. With the decline of fishing in coastal waters, they have been moving inland to more benign conditions in towns and cities, especially where there are landfill sites. Experts fear trouble if urban gulls are allowed to go on breeding unchecked, but measures to control their population are proving ineffective.

20080905

Green on Green

With the urgent need for alternative sources of energy, there are some difficult choices to be made between power generation and the environment. It has been suggested that influential pressure groups such as the RSPB, WWF and Greenpeace need to decide where they stand on green energy and should possibly be prepared to make sacrifices for the greater good of the planet.

20080912

Old Bricks, New Tricks

Miriam O'Reilly explores possible solutions to housing problems. According to the government, eco-towns could not only alleviate housing shortages for young families and first-time buyers but also provide the means to cut carbon emissions. But some housing experts suggest that recycling derelict buildings and contaminated land could provide an even better answer.

2008091820080919

The environmental series looks at the politics of famine.

At a time of heightened food insecurity, are the food aid policies of many UK-based aid agencies actually contributing to the problem?

20080926

Hurrah for the Eco Car

Politicians tell us that the future of motoring is electric, and several of the major car companies are launching a new generation of greener vehicles using hydrogen fuel technology. All are being trumpeted as the salvation of the motor car in a world without oil. But despite being promised green cars as long ago as the 90s, very few have yet to materialise on our roads. Tom Heap investigates

2009051120090514

Tom Heap examines the carbon footprint of older people.

This age group are said to be heavy consumers, but they could also play an important part in preparing for climate change in an ageing society.

Tom Heap examines the carbon footprint of older people. This age group are said to be heavy consumers, but they could also play an important part in preparing for climate change in an ageing society.

2009101220091015

Who really makes the biggest difference on climate change - those living on the edge or those working firmly within the system? Tell us about your experience of environmental campaigning via the Costing the Earth Facebook site (link below).

A recent Christian Aid survey found that 93 per cent of people think everyone in the UK should have the right to peaceful protest, 50 per cent think the police are too heavy handed, and 18 per cent are put off protesting in the future due to heavy-handed policing.

Costing the Earth finds out about those who continue to campaign on the planet's behalf; is it really getting harder for them to make an impact on how we and our governments behave?

Mark Carter has been on hunger strike for over 46 days to highlight the plight of the seal.

Some might see his actions as mad, but for Mark this is the only way to affect the government's proposed marine bills.

During the last 10 years the common seal population has declined by a third but they are still being killed and for Mark, at least, the only solution is a ban on these culls.

What effect will 500 signatures have against the interests of the fishing industry, and, whatever the results, how will he react?

Jonathan Porritt recently resigned his post at the Forum for the Future with the dire warning that, 'A combination of political paralysis, corporate vested interest and our conservative-co-opted media' alongside 'basic entitlements protecting the rights of dissenting voices being eroded' mean tough times for green activists.

The recent G20 protests saw some of the most draconian police tactics for some time.

Using laws intended to prevent terrorists in the wake of 9/11 like Stop and Search, green activists have often found themselves at the front line of human rights issues.

At the same time, the government's recent moves to change planning laws and rush through proposals for wind farms and nuclear plants via the Infrastructure Planning Commission quango could mean that contentious plans go ahead before activists have time to launch protests.

Is it really getting harder for people like Tim, a regular at Climate Camp who has been informed that his photo and details are on police file, to affect change?

Equally important is whether the long-used methods of mass camps, extreme acts and even advertising really have the impact that changing policy and people's behaviour requires.

A recent report from the World Wildlife Fund suggests not.

Could Whitehall workers or investment bankers be making a bigger difference without even trying, and if these methods haven't worked, what next?

We follow Mark and Tim's stories to find out what one individual's efforts can achieve and look at the big protests of recent years to find out what the future of green activism might hold.

Tom Heap finds out if eco-activists are facing their toughest challenges yet.

A recent Christian Aid survey found that 93 per cent of people think everyone in the UK should have the right to peaceful protest, 50 per cent think the police are too heavy handed, and 18 per cent are put off protesting in the future due to heavy-handed policing. Costing the Earth finds out about those who continue to campaign on the planet's behalf; is it really getting harder for them to make an impact on how we and our governments behave?

Mark Carter has been on hunger strike for over 46 days to highlight the plight of the seal. Some might see his actions as mad, but for Mark this is the only way to affect the government's proposed marine bills. During the last 10 years the common seal population has declined by a third but they are still being killed and for Mark, at least, the only solution is a ban on these culls. What effect will 500 signatures have against the interests of the fishing industry, and, whatever the results, how will he react?

The recent G20 protests saw some of the most draconian police tactics for some time. Using laws intended to prevent terrorists in the wake of 9/11 like Stop and Search, green activists have often found themselves at the front line of human rights issues. At the same time, the government's recent moves to change planning laws and rush through proposals for wind farms and nuclear plants via the Infrastructure Planning Commission quango could mean that contentious plans go ahead before activists have time to launch protests.

Equally important is whether the long-used methods of mass camps, extreme acts and even advertising really have the impact that changing policy and people's behaviour requires. A recent report from the World Wildlife Fund suggests not. Could Whitehall workers or investment bankers be making a bigger difference without even trying, and if these methods haven't worked, what next?

2010040720100408

Do we need to set a price on the environment to get policy makers, business and individuals to really take it seriously? Alkborough Flats on the Humber Estuary is a haven for birdlife but has also offered £400,000 worth of flood protection a year.

The carbon storage in its sediment is valued at a further £14,500 plus there's additional revenue from recreation and tourism.

Bees are another example.

Their services to farming are estimated at £200 million a year with the retail value of what they pollinate closer to £1 billion.

Upland farming is already heavily subsidized but should they be paid not to farm (which can cause costly contamination in drinking water for example) and instead be paid to maintain water quality, guard against flooding and maintain wildlife habitats? If real monetary reward is to be gained could there be many more people keen to hear the environment message.

Or is this an over simplification of the value of our natural resources.

After all we are already dealing with the fallout of what some see as a failed reliance on capitalist economics.

What was a theoretical issue is becoming reality.

Right now the National Ecosystem Assessment is taking place.

Government-sponsored inspectors are actually pricing up the services provided by our environment with a view to embedding them in policy.

Tom Heap meets the economists and leading figures from the world of banking and accounting who could be the unlikely answer to safeguarding biodiversity.

Tom Heap finds out if it's really possible, or desirable, to put a price on nature.

Do we need to set a price on the environment to get policy makers, business and individuals to really take it seriously? Alkborough Flats on the Humber Estuary is a haven for birdlife but has also offered £400,000 worth of flood protection a year. The carbon storage in its sediment is valued at a further £14,500 plus there's additional revenue from recreation and tourism. Bees are another example. Their services to farming are estimated at £200 million a year with the retail value of what they pollinate closer to £1 billion. Upland farming is already heavily subsidized but should they be paid not to farm (which can cause costly contamination in drinking water for example) and instead be paid to maintain water quality, guard against flooding and maintain wildlife habitats? If real monetary reward is to be gained could there be many more people keen to hear the environment message. Or is this an over simplification of the value of our natural resources. After all we are already dealing with the fallout of what some see as a failed reliance on capitalist economics.

What was a theoretical issue is becoming reality. Right now the National Ecosystem Assessment is taking place. Government-sponsored inspectors are actually pricing up the services provided by our environment with a view to embedding them in policy. Tom Heap meets the economists and leading figures from the world of banking and accounting who could be the unlikely answer to safeguarding biodiversity.

2010092920100930

The UK's carbon capture and storage (CCS) sector could sustain 100,000 jobs by 2030 and generate up to £6.5bn a year.

The Energy Act 2010 made law plans to raise a levy on power users to establish four CCS projects in Britain and the Carbon Capture and Storage Association (CCSA), says Britain is now at the forefront of this new technology.

But could this also put Britain at the forefront of an expensive mistake?

Christene Ehlig-Economides, professor of energy engineering at Texas A&M, and Michael Economides, professor of chemical engineering at University of Houston recently published a report looking at the need to store CO2 in an enclosed space.

Their calculations suggest that the volume of CO2 to be disposed cannot exceed more than about 1% of pore space.

This will require from 5 to 20 times more underground reservoir volume than has been envisioned by many, and it renders geologic sequestration of CO2 a non-starter.

"It is like putting a bicycle pump up against a wall.

It would be hard to inject CO2 into a closed system without eventually producing so much pressure that it fractured the rock and allowed the carbon to migrate to other zones and possibly escape to the surface," Economides said.

Their findings have been disputed but in another blow to CCS The Mongstad project in Norway, developed by oil firm Statoil, which was seen as one of the first to start full-scale operation has been set back.

The current government cannot commit to the money needed to keep the project on track so it will be put on hold until at least 2014.

But does this mean the idea should be given up by our own new government? At the University of Nottingham Mineral carbonation is a promising technology which captures CO2 by reacting it with magnesium or calcium rich minerals, producing valuable carbonates and doing away with the need for vast underground storage.

If it works it could provide a much needed solution with less inherent risk.

The big question remains how much we are willing to pay for the fix.

Tom Heap investigates.

Tom Heap asks if Carbon Capture and Storage could be a magic bullet for climate change.

The UK's carbon capture and storage (CCS) sector could sustain 100,000 jobs by 2030 and generate up to £6.5bn a year. The Energy Act 2010 made law plans to raise a levy on power users to establish four CCS projects in Britain and the Carbon Capture and Storage Association (CCSA), says Britain is now at the forefront of this new technology. But could this also put Britain at the forefront of an expensive mistake?

Christene Ehlig-Economides, professor of energy engineering at Texas A&M, and Michael Economides, professor of chemical engineering at University of Houston recently published a report looking at the need to store CO2 in an enclosed space. Their calculations suggest that the volume of CO2 to be disposed cannot exceed more than about 1% of pore space. This will require from 5 to 20 times more underground reservoir volume than has been envisioned by many, and it renders geologic sequestration of CO2 a non-starter.

"It is like putting a bicycle pump up against a wall. It would be hard to inject CO2 into a closed system without eventually producing so much pressure that it fractured the rock and allowed the carbon to migrate to other zones and possibly escape to the surface," Economides said.

Their findings have been disputed but in another blow to CCS The Mongstad project in Norway, developed by oil firm Statoil, which was seen as one of the first to start full-scale operation has been set back. The current government cannot commit to the money needed to keep the project on track so it will be put on hold until at least 2014.

But does this mean the idea should be given up by our own new government? At the University of Nottingham Mineral carbonation is a promising technology which captures CO2 by reacting it with magnesium or calcium rich minerals, producing valuable carbonates and doing away with the need for vast underground storage. If it works it could provide a much needed solution with less inherent risk. The big question remains how much we are willing to pay for the fix. Tom Heap investigates.

20120221

Environmental investigation series.

2020042120200422 (R4)

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

06/10/201020101007

Dr Alice Roberts investigates the growing problem of plastic floating in the sea.

07/04/201020100408

Tom Heap finds out if it's really possible, or desirable, to put a price on nature.

07/09/201120110908
11/05/200920090514

Tom Heap examines the carbon footprint of older people.

12/01/200920090115

Tom Heap considers how the recession is likely to affect attitudes towards the environment

12/10/200920091015

Tom Heap finds out if eco-activists are facing their toughest challenges yet.

29/09/201020100930

Tom Heap asks if Carbon Capture and Storage could be a magic bullet for climate change.

A Burning Solution2009041320090416

Sales of wood burning stoves have rocketed over recent months.

So much so that producers have struggled to meet demands.

But could the latest 'must have' accessory for the style-concious householder be part of the solution in meeting our renewables targets?

Burning woodchip - or biomass - can provide both heat and electricity.

It is environmentally friendly since the carbon has already been captured by the tree as it has grown and it is a renewable resource, so has wood's time come?

In this week's Costing The Earth we look at the range of biomass heating schemes in the UK – from small-scale wood-burning stoves that can effectively heat a home, to huge projects that are on the horizon: a massive biomass power station is planned at Port Talbot in South Wales.

On the way we meet a bona fide environmental maverick in Barnsley where government renewable targets have been reached decades in advance.

We find out what the government is doing, if it really is green, and whether vast swathes of woodland would be chopped down to make an impact on our renewables target.

And with the Port Talbot plant set to import a lot of the biomass from Canada, how sustainable is that project?

Investigating the range of biomass heating schemes in the UK, from small-scale wood-burning stoves that can effectively heat a home to a massive biomass power station planned in Port Talbot. But, with the plant set to import a lot of the biomass from Canada, how sustainable is the project?

Plus an environmental maverick in Barnsley, where government renewable targets have been reached decades in advance.

Investigating the range of biomass heating schemes in the UK.

A Burning Solution20090416

Synopsis

Sales of wood burning stoves have rocketed over recent months. So much so that producers have struggled to meet demands. But could the latest 'must have' accessory for the style-concious householder be part of the solution in meeting our renewables targets?

Burning woodchip - or biomass - can provide both heat and electricity. It is environmentally friendly since the carbon has already been captured by the tree as it has grown and it is a renewable resource, so has wood's time come?

In this week's Costing The Earth we look at the range of biomass heating schemes in the UK – from small-scale wood-burning stoves that can effectively heat a home, to huge projects that are on the horizon: a massive biomass power station is planned at Port Talbot in South Wales. On the way we meet a bona fide environmental maverick in Barnsley where government renewable targets have been reached decades in advance.

We find out what the government is doing, if it really is green, and whether vast swathes of woodland would be chopped down to make an impact on our renewables target. And with the Port Talbot plant set to import a lot of the biomass from Canada, how sustainable is that project?

Costing The Earth investigates the range of biomass heating schemes in the UK.

A Decade Of Fracking2014093020141001

Tom Heap visits communities living with the shale gas industry, from Texas to Lancashire.

After a decade of fracking, communities in Texas are still arguing about the pros and cons of the shale gas industry. With the industry ready to begin production in Lancashire, Tom Heap compares and contrasts the hopes and fears of Texans with those of the villagers of the Fylde coast.

Producer: Anne-Marie Bullock.

A Fire In Provence20031113

This summer southern FRANCE suffered its worst forest fires for decades.

Hundreds of thousands of hectares of prime wildlife habitat have been destroyed.

Miriam O'reilly takes a rare opportunity to visit the still-smouldering ruins of these great forests and find out what the destruction means for the wildlife and the people of the region.

What does fire do to nature, how quickly does it recover? How does the species balance change? What arguments ensue over the devastated land and are developers keen to take on the blasted heaths or will new trees be planted?

A Green Utopia?20020912

Series exploring environmental issues. `A Green Utopia?' Alex Kirby asks if the next generation of new towns can avoid the mistakes of the past

`A Green Utopia?' Alex Kirby asks if the next generation of new towns can avoid the mistakes of the past.

A Greener Home For All20180313

The UK needs 300,000 new homes a year, Tom Heap asks if building big can also be green.

Programme looking at man's effect on the environment and how the environment reacts

Our homes and their construction have a huge impact on the environment. The construction industry is estimated to contribute to 40% of worldwide energy use and in the UK alone the building sector uses more than 400 million tons of material a year, many of which have an adverse impact on the environment. Added to this is the impact on local air quality and green spaces and the energy used in heating, lighting and even furnishing new homes.

The government has set a target of 300,000 new homes a year to help solve the growing housing crisis but this figure is nearly double the current rate of building. So is there anyway we can solve the housing crisis without nearly doubling our emissions? Tom Heap sets out to find out where, what and how we could build affordable and green homes for all.

A Greener Way To Go2014022520140226

Do you try to lead a greener life? Tom Heap investigates how to have the greenest death.

Many of us are trying to lead a greener life, but how many of us will continue the trend to its logical conclusion... into death? On this week's Costing the Earth, Tom Heap takes to the ocean waves, the forest floor, and the lab, to try and suss out the 'greenest way to go'.

Over 70% of us here in the UK choose to be cremated, and the majority of the rest are buried - '6 feet under' - in traditional cemeteries. But for those who might worry about the fossil fuel cost of being burned, or the toxic embalming fluids commonly used in burial, there are other options on the table.

We take a blustery boat trip just off the Isle of Wight with one of the UK's only 'Marine Funeral Directors', to hear about the specially designed coffins that help you sink to your final resting place beneath the waves. And if you don't fancy sleeping with the fishes, how about sleeping beneath the shade of a mighty oak? Tom heads to the picturesque Downs of East Hampshire to hear how your final resting place could go hand in hand with an ambitious reforestation project. And he takes a glance into the future of the industry too, with two methods which could be out of a science fiction novel. How would you like your mortal remains to be chemically dissolved in high pressure alkali solution? Or perhaps freeze-dried and frozen, then shattered into an organic powder? And will these 'futuristic' new methods of getting our 'Ashes to Ashes', ever become available on our own shores?

Produced in Bristol by Emily Knight.

A Resilient World?2014040120140402

A panel of climate experts debates how we will have to adapt in the face of climate change

Following the publication of the latest report from the Intergovernmental panel on Climate Change, a panel of climate experts debates how nations and populations around the world will have to adapt and prepare for the effects of climate change in the coming decades.

Recent extreme weather events suggest that the effects of climate change are beginning to show and so what can be done to mitigate the impact of major climate event?

Presenter: Tom Heap

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

A Toilet For The 21st Century2014021120140212

2.5 billion people on the planet have no sanitation so how do we give toilets to everyone?

There are 2.5 billion people living on the planet without access to basic sanitation.

As a result hundreds of children die from diseases such as diarrhoea every day, and women and children risk personal safety when they perform the simplest of human functions.

In this week's Costing The Earth Dr Kat Arney looks at ways to allow everyone to have access to safe, clean, environmentally friendly toilets.

She visits a toilet festival in London to find out about toilet designs that can be applied to every environmental condition across the globe: toilets that require no water, toilets that can turn waste into an asset in the form of fertiliser and toilets filled with waste-eating worms in a quest to design a toilet for the 21st Century.

Presenter: Dr Kat Arney

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

A Very Large Hole In The Sahara2011092120110922

Scientists are looking at novel ways to halt sea-level rise and reverse global warming.

Miranda Krestovnikoff investigates which futuristic geoengineering concepts could become a reality.

Miranda Krestovnikoff discovers ways that scientists could use to halt sea level rise.

Scientists are looking at novel ways to halt sea-level rise and reverse global warming. Miranda Krestovnikoff investigates which futuristic geoengineering concepts could become a reality.

A Very Large Hole In The Sahara20110922

Miranda Krestovnikoff discovers ways that scientists could use to halt sea level rise.

Acoustic Ecology2016030120160302 (R4)

Peter Gibbs asks whether sound could become a vital tool in conservation, helping us understand far more about how wildlife interacts and how it is affected by changes in the environment. Technological advances in recording mean that we can now record huge amounts of data in remote locations. By using algorithms scientists hope to break down complex interactions between animals and their environment and be able to predict change or protect species. This is the emerging science of soundscape ecology. Scientists are hoping to apply big data solutions learnt from fields such as genetics to re-imagine conservation and asking all of us to listen and imagine what a world without natural sounds such as birdsong might be like.

Producer: Helen Lennard.

Can the sound of the Amazon help to save it? Peter Gibbs reports.

Adapting Insects2012020720120208

Can we adapt disease-carrying insects to become friends not foes? Alice Roberts reports.

In the battle to protect crops and eradicate disease, scientists are turning to ever more ingenious ways to defeat the old enemy - insects. Instead of just going for the kill, they're finding ways of changing behaviour, of recruiting the predator's enemies as our friends. They're using genetic modification and other breeding techniques to ensure that insects breed, but the young don't survive long enough to do any damage. So can we make insects do our bidding and create a world without pesticides? Professor Alice Roberts investigates for 'Costing the Earth'.

Producer: Steve Peacock.

After Chernobyl2016042620160427 (R4)

When radioactive particles from the Chernobyl disaster landed in Germany's Black Forest one woman decided to change her country's relationship with nuclear energy forever.

Julian Rush meets Ursula Sladek, founder of EWS Energy and prime mover in Germany's abandonment of nuclear energy.

Following the story from the first detection of radioactive particles, through the persistent impact of radioactive caesium in the soil to the rapid development of renewable energy after the Fukushima disaster of 2011, Julian tells the story of the transformation that's known in Germany as the Energiewende. With Ursula's son, Sebastian he discusses the future for renewable energy in a nuclear-free nation and considers the influence Germany may have on the rest of Europe.

Produced by Alasdair Cross and Melanie Brown.

How the fallout from Chernobyl changed Germany forever. Julian Rush reports.

Alien Invaders2011033020110331

The threat to wildlife from invasive species is now one of the greatest across the world and it is growing.

Killer shrimp are the latest non-native species to be found in a formerly quiet and respectable area of Cambridgeshire.

In the UK we have endlessly debated the problem of the grey squirrel and Japanese knotweed but in Spain the invaders are being driven out permanently.

Can their plan work and would eradication return native species to abundance or simply create new problems in our ecosystems?

Recent studies suggest the rise in invasive species stems from international trade.

Global warming has also contributed to species migration and survival in the wild.

The Spanish authorities have drawn up a list of 168 offending species including the raccoon and mink, zebra mussels, and one of the worse offenders the ruddy duck.

In New Zealand rats are driving the yellowhead bird to extinction and the chrytrid fungi is causing a worldwide decline in amphibians but can species really recover after competition is successfully eradicated? It seems that in some cases they can.

The near extinct black vented shearwater is recovering on a Mexican island after the eradication of cats, goats and sheep.

The wallaby is also recovering after red fox were taken out in Australia.

However, there are also a growing number of scientists who argue that to eradicate invasives is costly, cruel and ultimately unnecessary.

In Puerto Rico invasive species have been the only plant and wildlife able to survive in eroded soils.

Their encroachment has returned lifeless areas to thriving jungles, eventually providing a more encouraging environment for native species to return.

If we can't beat them then it may even be time to learn from these ecological survivors.

Producer Helen Lennard

Repeated on 31:03:2011 13:31:00.

Invasive species are a growing problem.

Tom Heap asks if we can really live without them.

The threat to wildlife from invasive species is now one of the greatest across the world and it is growing. Killer shrimp are the latest non-native species to be found in a formerly quiet and respectable area of Cambridgeshire. In the UK we have endlessly debated the problem of the grey squirrel and Japanese knotweed but in Spain the invaders are being driven out permanently. Can their plan work and would eradication return native species to abundance or simply create new problems in our ecosystems?

Recent studies suggest the rise in invasive species stems from international trade. Global warming has also contributed to species migration and survival in the wild. The Spanish authorities have drawn up a list of 168 offending species including the raccoon and mink, zebra mussels, and one of the worse offenders the ruddy duck.

In New Zealand rats are driving the yellowhead bird to extinction and the chrytrid fungi is causing a worldwide decline in amphibians but can species really recover after competition is successfully eradicated? It seems that in some cases they can. The near extinct black vented shearwater is recovering on a Mexican island after the eradication of cats, goats and sheep. The wallaby is also recovering after red fox were taken out in Australia.

However, there are also a growing number of scientists who argue that to eradicate invasives is costly, cruel and ultimately unnecessary. In Puerto Rico invasive species have been the only plant and wildlife able to survive in eroded soils. Their encroachment has returned lifeless areas to thriving jungles, eventually providing a more encouraging environment for native species to return.

Invasive species are a growing problem. Tom Heap asks if we can really live without them.

America - The Villain?20020905

As the JOHANNESBURG earth summit draws to a close, Tom Feilden asks whether the UNITED STATES is really the environment's arch-enemy.

America's Climate Resistance20171107

Roger Harrabin travels to the USA to meet America's climate resistance.

It's a year since President Trump was elected.

In that time he has appointed a climate sceptic as head of the Environmental Protection Agency, he has insisted that he will bring the coal industry back, and he still has not appointed a science advisor.

Roger Harrabin travels to the USA to meet those spearheading the resistance to President Trump's climate policies.

In California he meets Governor Jerry Brown. Jerry is determined that California pushes ahead towards a cleaner future. He visits the world's largest battery storage plant near San Diego, and travels to the San Gorgonio Pass, the site of one of the world's largest wind farms.

Heading east from California to Ohio, and coal country, Roger meets Bob Murray, head of the Murray Energy Corp. Bob is determined to see coal jobs protected, but even he believes that coal's heyday has passed, but he remains bullish.

Roger also meets form science advisor to President Obama, Dr John Holdren. John thinks that economics should ensure that the USA remains on a path to cleaner energy.

Producer Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

America's Energy Independence2016112220161123 (R4)

What does the election of Donald Trump as president of the USA mean for the environment?

New President elect of the USA Donald Trump is a climate change denier, and so what does his rise to power mean for the environment?

Among his early pledges he states: ""The Trump Administration will make America energy independent. We will end the war on coal, and rescind the coal mining lease moratorium, the excessive Interior Department stream rule, and conduct a top-down review of all anti-coal regulations issued by the Obama Administration.

He promises to rip up climate deals and get the USA mining and burning fossil fuels again, giving jobs back to areas that need them.

Costing The Earth will take each sector and try to predict what the next four years will hold for each energy generator. Is there any good news for the environment or will Trump's election usher in a return to dirty, polluting, fossil fuel-burning days that we were pulling away from?

Presenter: Tom Heap

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Amphibian Extinction2013043020130501

Tom Heap asks what's being done to save the 40% of amphibian species at risk of extinction

Frogs, toads and newts are becoming a less frequent sight in our ponds and gardens. Globally 40% of amphibians - almost 2000 species - are threatened with extinction according to the IUCN red list. Some scientists even say we're on the verge of the 6th mass extinction. Yet with things at such an alarming state Tom Heap asks what's being done to save these creatures and if it's too little too late?

Amphibians are a key part of the food chain but not only do they control less favoured bugs, they have also been described as 'hopping pharmacies' carrying important chemical compounds on their skin which have been used for medicines. If they disappear so does that link.

Tom hears about the different factors which are impacting on numbers - including habitat loss, climate change and diseases such as chytrid fungus and ranavirus. Andrew Blaustein at the University of Oregon is currently doing research to find out why some species are more vulnerable to chytrid than others but has also found parasites causing mutations in frogs nearby - including some with up to 15 limbs.

Meanwhile, of the UK's seven native amphibian species, one- the pool frog - has already died out. Tom travels to the secret location where they've been reintroduced from Sweden to find out how well they're doing and what can be learnt from this near-miss. Tom also gets his hands dirty on toad patrol, helping them cross busy roads as they come out of hibernation and return to their ponds for breeding. As he asks motorists to apply their brakes he also asks just how much this will do to halt their decline.

Producer: Anne-Marie Bullock.

Antarctic Assault2018050120180502 (R4)

The penguins of the Antarctic rely on krill. What happens when we get a taste for it?

Programme looking at man's effect on the environment and how the environment reacts

The whales, penguins and other seabirds and marine mammals of the Southern Ocean depend upon a reliable supply of the tiny shrimp-like krill. New developments in fishing and freezing technology mean that we can now join in the feast, popping krill pills for their high Omega 3 content.

The writer and chef, Gerard Baker has been working on fishing boats and cruise ships in the Antarctic for twenty years. He's worried that there may not be enough krill to go around, particularly in the crucial regions where breeding penguins rely on an easily accessible source of food.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

"

Antarctic Treaty2009040620090409

Tom Heap reports on the Antarctic Treaty, a unique but little-known beacon of global co-operation which has kept the soldiers at bay and the scientists in harness on the continent for the last 50 years.

It has survived Cold War tension, the Falklands war and rapacious fishing to emerge as a textbook study of how diplomacy can avoid conflict.

But can it rebuff the pressures of the next 50 years, with tourists, bio-prospectors and energy companies all scouring the planet for scarce resources?

It has survived Cold War tension, the Falklands war and rapacious fishing to emerge as a textbook study of how diplomacy can avoid conflict. But can it rebuff the pressures of the next 50 years, with tourists, bio-prospectors and energy companies all scouring the planet for scarce resources?

Tom Heap reports on the Antarctic Treaty.

Antarctic Treaty20090409

Tom Heap reports on the Antarctic Treaty, a unique but little-known beacon of global co-operation which has kept the soldiers at bay and the scientists in harness on the continent for the last 50 years.

It has survived Cold War tension, the Falklands war and rapacious fishing to emerge as a textbook study of how diplomacy can avoid conflict. But can it rebuff the pressures of the next 50 years, with tourists, bio-prospectors and energy companies all scouring the planet for scarce resources?

Tom Heap reports on the Antarctic Treaty.

Antipasto Agony2015102720151028 (R4)

Bad news for lovers of tapenade and pesto - olive trees are succumbing to a new disease.

Bad news for lovers of tapenade and pesto. Olive trees are succumbing to a new disease. Tom Heap reports from Puglia on the ultimate foodie nightmare.

The heel of Italy is currently gripped by an outbreak of Xylella fastidiosa, a voracious tree disease that is systematically devastating olive groves in the main areas of production for olive oil.

95% of the world's olive trees are in the Mediterranean, and Italy is the world's second largest exporter of oil, behind Spain.

Rural communities risk being torn apart as the disease threatens the livelihoods of farming families that have grown olives in the region for centuries. The whole environment is set to change as trees die, leaving the landscape totally bare.

Tom meets the scientists about to wage war on the bacteria: Professor Giovanni Martelli and Dr Donato Boscia from the University of Bari. They are working to find a way of stopping the disease from spreading. If they are unsuccessful, olive production in the whole of the Mediterranean basin could be at risk.

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Apocalypse Then And Now2012092620121023

During the Vietnam War two million tons of American bombs were dropped on the tiny nation of Laos, more than the combined weight dropped on Japan and Germany during World War Two. The environmental impact was horrific, destroying forests, killing endangered wildlife and poisoning water supplies. For forty years the people of rural Laos have had to live with the constant fear of stepping on one of the thousands of unexploded bombs that litter the countryside.

Bomb clearance has been partial and sporadic but the sudden influx of mining companies coupled with the building of new roads and hydro-electric dams is speeding things up. Farmland which has been unusable for decades is being bought up, cleared of bombs and sold on to developers. In 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap and Georgia Catt hear how the tough work of the bomb clearance teams is altering the environment of Laos. Local people may be glad to see the back of the American bombs but the roads and mines that replace them are changing the face of the country forever.

Producer: Alasdair Cross

Aquatic Plastic20101013

Could courts of law be the first refuge for victims of climate change? Tom Heap finds out.

Aquatic Plastic20101014

Could courts of law be the first refuge for victims of climate change? Tom Heap finds out.

Aquatic Plastic - Can Lawers Save The Earth?2010101320101014
Arctic Dreams2011020920110210
20110210 (R4)

The melting of the Arctic is sparking a goldrush, bringing energy and mineral companies north in search of oil, gas and minerals.

To the people of the north it's a confusing time.

New business and industry can offer jobs and money but they threaten the pristine environment and seem certain to further dilute the native culture.

In this second programme on the future of the melting north Tom Heap visits Arctic Canada to find out more about the impact of development on flora, fauna and the native people.

He hears how the Inuit have taken up semi-western lifestyles only in the last fifty years.

They were persuaded by the Canadian government to leave behind a life of small family groups following the seasonal movements of caribou, seal and whale in return for subsidised lives in new settlements scattered across the north.

Their children were taken away from their parents to residential schools hundreds of miles away.

The separation and inevitable abuse destroyed families and turned a proud, independent culture into one of dependence.

Communities are still dealing with the fall-out, suffering the worst rates of suicide, alcoholism, violence and premature death in Canada.

In recent years the Inuit have gradually come to take more control over their own destiny.

Today they have the power to say 'yes' or 'no' to miners and oil prospectors.

A new generation of native leaders is determined that any money to be made from the natural resources will go toward turning around their communities.

Tom Heap meets local people to find out how they want development to proceed and hears from politicians and academics how the native people fit into the international picture.

Will the Inuit really have a voice when the US, Russia and Canada begin squabbling over the region's resources?

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

How the melting Arctic is changing the lives of the people of the north.

The melting of the Arctic is sparking a goldrush, bringing energy and mineral companies north in search of oil, gas and minerals. To the people of the north it's a confusing time. New business and industry can offer jobs and money but they threaten the pristine environment and seem certain to further dilute the native culture.

He hears how the Inuit have taken up semi-western lifestyles only in the last fifty years. They were persuaded by the Canadian government to leave behind a life of small family groups following the seasonal movements of caribou, seal and whale in return for subsidised lives in new settlements scattered across the north. Their children were taken away from their parents to residential schools hundreds of miles away. The separation and inevitable abuse destroyed families and turned a proud, independent culture into one of dependence. Communities are still dealing with the fall-out, suffering the worst rates of suicide, alcoholism, violence and premature death in Canada.

In recent years the Inuit have gradually come to take more control over their own destiny. Today they have the power to say 'yes' or 'no' to miners and oil prospectors. A new generation of native leaders is determined that any money to be made from the natural resources will go toward turning around their communities.

Tom Heap meets local people to find out how they want development to proceed and hears from politicians and academics how the native people fit into the international picture. Will the Inuit really have a voice when the US, Russia and Canada begin squabbling over the region's resources?

Arctic Dreams20110210

How the melting Arctic is changing the lives of the people of the north.

Arctic Future2014110420141105 (R4)

The melting sea ice of the Arctic creates opportunities and threats. Tom Heap reports.

The melting sea ice of the Arctic creates opportunities and threats. Tom Heap meets the leaders of the Arctic nations in Reykjavik as they try to shape a profitable future for the region.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Art And The Environment20181120

Climate change is hard to depict. Polar bears on melting ice caps are far away from everyday life and the data is often complex and confusing. So could art in its broadest sense help us to understand the implications of global warming and environmental degradation? Tom Heap takes a look at how the creative community is responding to what is arguably the biggest threat of our time and asks if art can succeed in eliciting a response where science has failed.

Music and visual arts which make climate data sets tangible, clothing which make pollutants visible and artists who make their creative response a form of protest. These are just a few of the ways in which artists are responding to environmental issues but it remains to be seen if these visions can impact our collective beliefs and behaviours.

Could art help us see, hear and feel the problems facing our planet? Tom Heap finds out.

Programme looking at man's effect on the environment and how the environment reacts.

Bambi Bites Back2012021420120215

Bambi has never had it so good. Changes in farming fashion now provide deer with delicious things to eat and warm places to sleep all winter long. The result is a big increase in numbers and a rapid geographical spread, taking our native and introduced species into the most urbanised parts of our islands.

In 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap investigates the causes of the deer boom and some of the unexpected impacts. Deer take a heavy toll on young trees, enraging foresters and ruining the prospects for ground-nesting birds like nightingales. They're also meeting increasingly grisly ends, killed by on-coming cars or targeted by poachers armed with crossbows or air guns.

So should we wring our hands or celebrate the success of our largest land mammals? Should we cull and control or aim to make a profit from nature's bounty? Tom joins a team of specialists from Scottish Natural Heritage for a late night deer count through urban Scotland and meets a stalker who is offering wealthy Germans the chance to bag a lowland stag.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Deer numbers are rising fast. Tom Heap asks what this means for the rural landscape.

Bambi Bites Back20120215

Deer numbers are rising fast. Tom Heap asks what this means for the rural landscape.

Battery Powered Britain20170912

New developments in battery technology are changing the way Britain is powered.

New developments in battery technology are changing the way we power Britain. More efficient, higher capacity batteries expand the range of electric vehicles and allow solar and wind power plants to provide smooth, 24 hour electricity.

Tom Heap is in Cornwall where power companies and local innovators are developing a new battery-powered economic model that could be rolled out to the rest of the UK.

From mining the lithium that makes the batteries to holiday parks producing clean power for the grid Cornwall is leading the way.

Producer: Alasdair Cross

Photo: Nicholas Davies.

Beasts Of The Border2016032920160330 (R4)

Tom Heap examines the wildlife impact of Europe's new borders.

As gates close against migrants entering Europe Tom Heap is in Croatia to examine the wildlife impact of the continent's new borders.

Red deer have been found dying on the razor wire and the vulnerable local population of lynx is now split between Slovenia and Croatia. With a shrunken gene pool the lynx could soon be lost from the region.

From the Austrian Alps, south through the Balkans to Greece the mountains provide a vital habitat for large carnivores like bear and wolf. As new fences rise across the region Europe's peak predators face a bleak future.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Beasts Of The East2003080720030814

How will Poland's wealth of wildlife fare when the country joins the European Union? Alex Kirby investigates.

Bees Fight Back2013050720130508

Are modern 'neonicotinoid' pesticides behind the collapse of bee colonies?

Much heat has been generated about about modern pesticides called neonicotinoids.

Their supporters - the companies which make them, the farmers who use them and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs - say they are vital to protect crops and boost yields in a hungry world. They say jobs would be threatened in a big way if they were outlawed and that there is no scientific proof that they are harming pollinating insects which are also vital to agriculture.

On the other side of the debate are environment campaigners, scientists, the European Food Safety Authority, the European Commission and a House of Commons select committee. They say there is so much evidence that neonicotinoids kill bees and other useful insects that their use in farms and gardens cannot be justified. Beekeepers are divided, some fearing that the alternative chemicals would cause even more damage, some saying that the other threats to bees - disease and loss of habitat - are far more serious. Some even challenge the whole notion that bees are suffering a serious decline.

For Costing the Earth, Tom Heap goes into the fields and hedgerows of England - and into the laboratory of the country's only Professor of Apiculture - to sort spin from science and facts from campaign catchphrases. He also hears from scientists and experts on the global health of pollinating insects and the crops that depend on them.

Produced by Steve Peacock.

Berlin's Big Gamble2013012920130130

Can Germany produce all its power from green energy? Tom Heap investigates.

It's an environmental experiment on an unprecedented scale. Germany's political parties have agreed to close the country's nuclear power stations and slash its use of coal, oil and gas. But can the industrial powerhouse of Europe really continue to churn out the BMWs and Mercedes on a meagre diet of wind and solar energy?

In the first of a new series of 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap travels to Berlin to meet the politicians of right and left who share a vision for a green Germany and the industrialists who fear that blind optimism has replaced logic at the heart of government.

Tom visits Feldheim, a tiny village that produces enough wind power to run a city and talks to the activists who plan to take over the entire electricity grid of Berlin and run the capital on alternative energy. Their enthusiasm is infectious but could the reality be power cuts and the departure of the industrial giants to the US and the Far East?

The stakes are high. If the plan they've christened the Energiewende, or energy transformation, succeeds, then Germany will have created a low-carbon model for the UK and the rest of the industrialised world. If it fails Germany could lose its place as an economic superpower.

Better Living Through Chemistry?2009010520090108

Tom Heap investigates how being exposed to a cocktail of pesticides could potentially damage our health.

A High Court ruling in November 2008 found in favour of a woman who claimed that prolonged exposure to pesticides sprayed in the fields surrounding her home had made her ill.

In the light of this, the EU has proposed that several pesticides be banned, but how might crop yields and food prices be affected should a ban be implemented?

How being exposed to a cocktail of pesticides could potentially damage our health.

Tom Heap investigates how being exposed to a cocktail of pesticides could potentially damage our health. A High Court ruling in November 2008 found in favour of a woman who claimed that prolonged exposure to pesticides sprayed in the fields surrounding her home had made her ill. In the light of this, the EU has proposed that several pesticides be banned, but how might crop yields and food prices be affected should a ban be implemented?

Better Living Through Chemistry?20090108

How being exposed to a cocktail of pesticides could potentially damage our health.

Tom Heap investigates how being exposed to a cocktail of pesticides could potentially damage our health. A High Court ruling in November 2008 found in favour of a woman who claimed that prolonged exposure to pesticides sprayed in the fields surrounding her home had made her ill. In the light of this, the EU has proposed that several pesticides be banned, but how might crop yields and food prices be affected should a ban be implemented?

Big Oil Big Trouble2016090620160907 (R4)

The big oil companies are the pantomime villains of the global warming debate. They've been accused of everything from climate change denial to commercial incompetence in a rapidly changing world. Campaigners attack their boardroom practices and push pension funds and universities to withdraw their investments.

Tom Heap examines the reactions of the likes of Exxon, Shell, BP and Total to the mounting evidence of man-made climate change. How much did they know? How much did they lobby against meaningful action? He meets Lord Browne, the former head of BP who famously rebranded his company as 'Beyond Petroleum' to find out why the rest of the industry failed to join his campaign to cut emissions and invest in renewable energy.

Tom and Lord Browne also discuss the changing rhetoric since the signing of the 2015 Paris climate change agreement. With fresh commitments to alternative fuels could the oil companies finally turn themselves from the villain to the principal boy, using their engineering expertise to halt the planet's changing climate?

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Can the big oil companies re-invent themselves as climate saviours? Tom Heap reports.

Biofuels2007051720070518

A look at the new generation of green fuels and how the technology can best be utilised in this country.

Are we going down the American road of heady enthusiasm for green fuels, or is a more cautious approach necessary?

Biofuels

A look at the new generation of green fuels and how the technology can best be utilised in this country. Are we going down the American road of heady enthusiasm for green fuels, or is a more cautious approach necessary?

Black Gold In Paradise2017022120170222 (R4)

Yasuni National Park in Ecuador is widely recognised as the most biodiverse place on earth. Around 10% of all known life forms can be found within a few hundred acres of this part of the Amazon rainforest. Yet the forest sits on top of thousands of barrels of crude oil and the Ecuadorian government has now given the go-ahead for drilling. Tom Heap finds out what is at stake and asks why the Ecuadorian government which has one of the greenest constitutions in the world has decided to exploit the reserves.

Producer: Helen Lennard.

Oil exploration has begun in the most biodiverse place on earth. Tom Heap investigates.

Black Gold In The Arctic20031127
Black Monday, Green Tuesday?2009011220090115

Tom Heap considers how the recession is likely to affect attitudes towards the environment.

If the current financial and environmental problems are rooted in our taste for consumption, surely an economic slowdown is a painful but necessary step in the right direction towards a greener planet? Fewer cars on the roads, fewer flights in the air and an enforced prudence when it comes to personal spending will mean less energy use and less waste.

But as the government advocates spending our way out of recession, some environmentalists fear that there will be a rush to develop a more environmentally-damaging infrastructure in order to keep the economy buoyant.

Others say that we are on the threshold of a new green world where workers in traditionally polluting industries such as car manufacturing will be able to switch to new green jobs.

Tom Heap considers how the recession is likely to affect attitudes towards the environment. If the current financial and environmental problems are rooted in our taste for consumption, surely an economic slowdown is a painful but necessary step in the right direction towards a greener planet? Fewer cars on the roads, fewer flights in the air and an enforced prudence when it comes to personal spending will mean less energy use and less waste. But as the government advocates spending our way out of recession, some environmentalists fear that there will be a rush to develop a more environmentally-damaging infrastructure in order to keep the economy buoyant. Others say that we are on the threshold of a new green world where workers in traditionally polluting industries such as car manufacturing will be able to switch to new green jobs.

Black Monday, Green Tuesday?20090115

Tom Heap considers how the recession is likely to affect attitudes towards the environment. If the current financial and environmental problems are rooted in our taste for consumption, surely an economic slowdown is a painful but necessary step in the right direction towards a greener planet? Fewer cars on the roads, fewer flights in the air and an enforced prudence when it comes to personal spending will mean less energy use and less waste. But as the government advocates spending our way out of recession, some environmentalists fear that there will be a rush to develop a more environmentally-damaging infrastructure in order to keep the economy buoyant. Others say that we are on the threshold of a new green world where workers in traditionally polluting industries such as car manufacturing will be able to switch to new green jobs.

Blackpool: The New Dallas?2010090820100909

The Deepwater Horizon disaster proved the dangers of searching for our oil and gas in ever more challenging environments.

Oil companies that had been keen to explore in deeper, colder and more isolated waters have been forced to take a step back and reconsider their options.

Their response has been to launch an extraordinary land grab, buying up the rights to explore vast tracts of the US and Europe in search of unconventional oil and gas.

From Lancashire to Gdansk and New York to the Rockies enormous reserves of shale gas lurk temptingly close to the centres of population.

Recent advances in extraction techniques have launched an industry in the US and persuaded the major oil companies to begin prospecting expeditions throughout Europe.

The advantages are obvious, removing our dependence on the Middle East, cutting back on the costs of transport and transmission.

The disadvantages are less obvious but could be fatally insurmountable.

In the US shale gas producers are blamed for poisoning water courses and even causing earthquakes.

Exploratory drilling is already happening within sight of the Blackpool Tower so the need to consider the pitfalls and potentially enormous prizes of land-based oil and gas in the UK is urgent.

Deepwater drilling for oil and gas is dangerous.

Can we find our supplies closer to home?

The Deepwater Horizon disaster proved the dangers of searching for our oil and gas in ever more challenging environments. Oil companies that had been keen to explore in deeper, colder and more isolated waters have been forced to take a step back and reconsider their options.

Their response has been to launch an extraordinary land grab, buying up the rights to explore vast tracts of the US and Europe in search of unconventional oil and gas. From Lancashire to Gdansk and New York to the Rockies enormous reserves of shale gas lurk temptingly close to the centres of population. Recent advances in extraction techniques have launched an industry in the US and persuaded the major oil companies to begin prospecting expeditions throughout Europe.

The advantages are obvious, removing our dependence on the Middle East, cutting back on the costs of transport and transmission. The disadvantages are less obvious but could be fatally insurmountable. In the US shale gas producers are blamed for poisoning water courses and even causing earthquakes.

Deepwater drilling for oil and gas is dangerous. Can we find our supplies closer to home?

Blackpool: The New Dallas?20100909

Deepwater drilling for oil and gas is dangerous. Can we find our supplies closer to home?

Bonn Climate Talks: Where Next?20171114

Tom Heap reports from the UN Climate Change Conference in Bonn.

Tom Heap is in Bonn for the United Nations annual climate change discussions.

It is the first year with Donald Trump in power as president of the United States of America and Tom will be exploring what impact his climate stance will have on the conference talks and any future agreements.

Tom's guests are Lou Leonard, senior vice president of climate and energy at WWF US. He leads their climate program in the US and he is in Bonn to represent the 'We Are Still In' movement, referring to President Trump's desire to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement. Rachel Kyte is Chief Executive Officer of Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL), and Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Sustainable Energy for All. Oliver Maurice is Director of The International National Trusts Organisation: the organisation that oversees all of the national trust organisations around the world, and Mark Pershin. Mark fronts an organisation called 'Less Meat, Less Heat' and he tells Tom about something called the 'Climatarian' diet.

Tom will be taking stock of some of the topics disucssed in this series of Costing The Earth and asks how our attempts to combat climate change are proceeding and will proceed in the future. Will public responsibility and engagement with the problems that are now being faced galvanise more of the world's population into action?

Presenter: Tom Heap
Producer Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Bottle Bank Wars2012013120120201

Since goldrush days San Francisco has been a magnet for those on the make. But the latest moneymakers aren't interested in striking gold, they're in search of cans and bottles. The city's efforts to boost recycling rates have been so successful that the value of rubbish has spiralled, leading to battles between official, unofficial and downright criminal garbage collectors.

San Francisco now recycles 78% of it's trash: paper, bottles, cans, plastics and even food gets recycled or composted. This is partly due to the California Bottle Bill of 1987 that introduced legislation to ensure a deposit was repaid on bottles and cans that were sold in the state. The amount recyclers get depends on the package they return.

The city has also made it extremely easy for residents to recycle. They now have three bins. A brown bin for food waste, a black bin for general waste and a blue bin for recycling.

It's these now iconic blue bins that scavengers target, pillaging the bottles and cans before Recology, the city's official garbage collectors, can get to them. They then take the booty to recycling centers and collect a few bucks.

The fear is that now small time pilfering by a handful of scavengers is becoming more organised with criminal gangs getting in on the act.

Tom Heap hits the streets of San Francisco to meet those making cash from trash.

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

In San Francisco, recycling is so profitable that they're fighting over the trash.

Bottle Bank Wars20120201

In San Francisco, recycling is so profitable that they're fighting over the trash.

Bristol: Green Capital?2015022420150225 (R4)

Bristol is Europe's Green Capital for 2015. Tom Heap finds out what that means.

Bristol has been named as Europe's Green Capital for 2015. Tom Heap finds out if local people will see real improvements in their city.

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Britain Disconnected2016020920160210 (R4)

Extreme weather over the past few years has cut off large chunks of rural Britain from the outside world. Does our Victorian infrastructure need an urgent update? Tom Heap reports.

Producer: Sarah Swadling.

Extreme weather this winter has cut off large areas of Britain from the outside world. Does our Victorian infrastructure need an urgent update?

With parts of Cumbria cut-off since early December, bridges down in Yorkshire, hundreds of ferry cancellations and the West Coast train line out of action until March it's increasingly clear that Britain can't cope with the strong winds and floods that are becoming the new norm.

Should we embark on a new transport revolution, pouring concrete and laying steel to future-proof our roads and railways or should we accept a disconnected Britain?

Presenter: Tom Heap

Britain From 2060: The Land2012081420120815

What will Britain's landscape look like in 2060? Tom Heap on our changing climate.

According to the latest predictions on global warming Britain from the 2060s could begin to look rather like Madeira. In the first of a two-part investigation into the impact of climate change Tom Heap visits the island 350 miles from the coast of Morocco to find out how we might be living in the second half of the 21st century.

With a climate dominated by the Atlantic, a wet, mountainous north and a warm, dry, over-populated south Madeira already resembles Britain in miniature. The settlers who arrived from Portugal in the 15th century developed a complex farming system that found a niche for dozens of crops, from olives and oranges to wheat and sweet potatoes. Could British farmers prepare for a less predictable climate by studying the delicate agricultural arts of the Madeirans?

Irrigation systems bring water from the wet north of Madeira to the parched south where 90 percent of the population live and most of the tourists visit. Should Britain accept the inevitable and invest in the water pipes that could keep the South-East of England hydrated with Scottish and Northumbrian water?

Tom will also be studying the island's wildlife. Can Britain expect semi-tropical insects and reptiles to invade the south as our mountain hares and ptarmigan die out in the north? Or does Madeira's broad range of species offer hope of something subtly different but just as fascinating from the 2060s?

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Britain In 2060: The Land2012081420120815

What will Britain's landscape look like in 2060? Tom Heap on our changing climate.

According to the latest predictions on global warming, Britain in 2060 is going to look very much like Madeira. In the first of a two-part investigation into the impact of climate change Tom Heap visits the island 350 miles from the coast of Morrocco to find out how we might be living in fifty years.

With a climate dominated by the Atlantic, a wet, mountainous north and a warm, dry, over-populated south, Madeira already resembles Britain in minature. The settlers who arrived from Portugal in the 15th century developed a complex farming system that found a niche for dozens of crops, from olives and oranges to wheat and sweet potatoes. Should British farmers prepare for a less predictable climate by studying the delicate agricultural arts of the Madeirans?

Irrigation systems bring water from the wet north of Madeira to the parched south where 90% of the population live and most tourists visit. Should Britain accept the inevitable and invest in the water pipes that could keep the South-East of England hydrated with Scottish and Northumbrian water?

Tom will also be studying the island's wildlife. Can Britain expect semi-tropical insects and reptiles to invade the south as our mountain hares and ptarmigan die out in the north? Or does Madeira's broad range of species offer hope of something subtly different but just as fascinating for 2060?

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Britain In 2060: The Seas2012082120120822

What fish can we expect in our seas in 2060? Tom Heap investigates climate change Britain.

Rising sea temperatures are already bringing new species to our shores. Sunfish, sea turtles and basking sharks are common sights. But what can we expect to see in the fishing nets by 2060?

The key to the species that visit these shores is the plankton on which they feed. Species of plankton more usually found in areas of the southern Atlantic ocean are now turning up on our shores, and so are the fish and mammals that feed on them.

So will tropical species replace the cod and haddock in Britain's fish and chip shops? Will great white sharks patrol our beaches? Tom Heap takes to the water to predict the state of our seas in fifty years.

Will we all be eating Boarfish and chips? Red Mullet Goujons? Tom Heap asks whether the waters around the UK are set to become home to exotic whales and dolphins such as these pictured below.

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

All photos courtesy of the Sea Watch Foundation library.

Britain In Flames2012041720120418

Last spring huge swathes of the British countryside, from Dorset to the West Highlands erupted in flames. In the wake of a dry winter and drought orders across the south there's a real risk of another year of serious wildfires.

In 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap investigates the causes of forest and moorland fire and the innovative ideas that could help us predict them, and fight them.

At Crowthorne Forest in Berkshire, site of the most destructive of 2011's fires he meets the young families evacuated from their homes who are now planting saplings that should prove to be more fire-resistant than their charred predecessors. In Northumbria he joins the local fire and rescue service for an exercise designed to test their speed and efficiency in the face of fire. And in the forests of South Wales he finds out why the region is the arson capital of the UK.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Is the UK ready for a new season of wildfires? Tom Heap investigates.

Britain In Flames20120418
Britain Rules The Waves2015091520150916 (R4)

Can Britain save the oceans by protecting its overseas territories? Tom Heap reports.

Britain still owns islands large and small across the globe, from Pitcairn to South Georgia and Bermuda to Ascension. Could we use the waters around these territories to protect vast swathes of the oceans from overfishing and development? Tom Heap meets the islanders and the conservationists eager to see if Britain really can lead the way.

He takes to the water to see how Gibraltar is using its spawning grounds to restore the health of the Mediterranean and finds out what the enormous new no-fishing zone around Pitcairn could mean for the Pacific.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Britain Under Water2014021820140219

The fight back against the flood waters starts here. Tom Heap reports.

It's time to fight back against nature. For two months great swathes of Britain have been paralysed by torrential rain, storms and flooding. Tom Heap has had enough. In a special edition of 'Costing the Earth' he'll be eschewing the moaning and buck-passing in favour of a search for a long-term solution to Britain's vulnerability.

With the help of experts from the Met Office and the National Trust, water engineers and economists Tom will discuss the challenges in an era of climate change and the best solutions that science can offer.

Producer: Alasdair Cross

Britain's Environment: The Debate2015050520150506 (R4)

How will the next government tackle Britain's environmental problems? Tom Heap reports.

The politics of the environment and our food supply are vital for the future of the planet.

Tom Heap hosts a debate asking if this election campaign has raised the issues that need addressing.

What specific commitments have the political parties made on nature? Where are the big ideas to tackle climate change? How can we secure our food supplies without wrecking the planet?

Tom Heap will put these challenging issues to a panel that features philosopher, Roger Scruton, former Executive Director of Friends of the Earth, Tony Juniper, Chief Executive of the Soil Association, Helen Browning, Director of Forum for the Future, Jonathon Porritt and Heather Hancock, lead author of the independent review of the BBC's coverage of rural affairs.

Presenter: Tom Heap

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Britain's Green Capital 20152014032520140326

In 2015 Bristol will be European Green Capital. We discover exactly what that means.

In 2015 Bristol will be European Green Capital. We discover exactly what the title means to the city and what makes Bristol so environmentally friendly.

The 'Green Capital' award is new. It's been going for the last five years and next year Bristol will become the sixth. Miranda Krestovnikoff discovers why Bristol was successful in it's bid and what makes the city stand out from the rest of the country for it's environmental credentials.

Miranda visits last year's winning city, Nantes to find out what makes a city European Green capital and what the legacy is for future generations living in Nantes. She discovers how the Green Capital award is spreading the environmental message across Europe and what Bristol can learn from previous winners.

In this week's Costing The Earth Miranda Krestovnikoff talks to the team behind the bid to find out what big plans they have in store for Bristol as they prepare to become European Green Capital for 2015 and meets Bristol's flamboyant and eco-thinking mayor, George Ferguson, as he sets out the green agenda for the years to come.

Presenter: Miranda Krestovnikoff

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Britain's Nuclear Future20110323

Britain is running out of power.

Ten new nuclear reactors were supposed to provide the solution.

In this week's 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap asks if the events in Japan have dealt a fatal blow to the future of the industry.

Tom will be examining the changes in safety regimes that may be provoked by the ongoing disaster.

He'll also be asking if the economic case for nuclear has changed and looking ahead to the future supply of uranium.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

What next for the British nuclear industry? Tom Heap reports on the future of fission.

Britain is running out of power. Ten new nuclear reactors were supposed to provide the solution. In this week's 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap asks if the events in Japan have dealt a fatal blow to the future of the industry.

Tom will be examining the changes in safety regimes that may be provoked by the ongoing disaster. He'll also be asking if the economic case for nuclear has changed and looking ahead to the future supply of uranium.

Britain's Overseas Wildlife2014052020140521

Britain's Overseas Territories are a treasure trove of wildlife. Tom Heap reports.

Britain's Overseas Territories from the Caribbean to the Falkland Islands contain a treasure trove of wildlife. A new report from the RSPB reveals that 94% of unique UK species live beyond our shores. But many of those astonishing creatures are at great threat from tourist development and invasive species.

To discover whether we are doing enough to protect our secret garden of species Tom Heap visits the Turks and Caicos Islands, 150 miles to the east of Cuba.

Britain's Wilderness2012082820120829

The first attempt in England to turn a landscape back into a wilderness is 10 years old.

The first attempt in England to turn a landscape back into a wilderness is 10 years old this year.

In this week's Costing The Earth, Miranda Krestovnikoff visits Ennerdale Valley, on the Western edge of the Lake District, to find out how the scheme is progressing.

Rewilding, as the scheme has become known, allows natural processes to take place, in order to return the habitat to as natural an environment as possible. The landscape has been managed in such a way that natural flora and fauna have been encouraged back to the valley. Miranda meets those involved in returning the valley to a wilderness.

In order for the project to be be a success, the major land owners in the valley: the National Trust, the Forestry Commission, Natural England and United Utilities have all been working together.

Miranda discovers how successful the rewilding project has been and whether or not schemes of this type are worth attempting elsewhere in the UK: a country that has very little wilderness that has been untouched by human hands. She also finds out the vital role visitors to the area play in keeping the landscape alive.

Presenter: Miranda Krestovnikoff

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Bug Eats Bug2003072420030731

Tom Feilden finds out if predators could save the British countryside from insect invasion.

Bug Mac And Flies2011090720110908
Building A Better City2003073120030807

Britain's cities are being rebuilt on a scale unprecedented since 1945.

Miriam O'reilly asks if we are getting it right this time.

Buildings2009091420090917

The places where we live and work account for well over a third of the energy the world uses - our homes, offices, cinemas and sports centres are a much bigger problem for the planet than cars, lorries, planes and ships. Does that mean we can fly as much as we like as long as we sort out the problems on the ground? Tom Heap investigates.

A recent report backed by some of the world's leading corporations identified buildings as major contributors to problems of climate change. The even worse news is that most of the homes, offices and public buildings that will be standing in the middle of the century have already been built, so they will have to be expensively adapted if they are to be made green enough to meet even modest energy-saving targets. The business leaders behind the report have said that although the work is expensive, it will pay for itself in reduced energy bills in a surprisingly short time.

But they also say that it simply won't get done until governments make it compulsory. Have the politicians got the bottle? Do the numbers really work? Tom Heap visits homes, offices and experts to ask whether payback time has arrived, who is footing the bill, and how much disruption it will mean at home, at work and at play.

Tom Heap asks if we are looking in the wrong place for solutions to climate change.

Does that mean we can fly as much as we like as long as we sort out the problems on the ground? Tom Heap investigates.

Have the politicians got the bottle? Do the numbers really work? Tom Heap visits homes, offices and experts to ask whether payback time has arrived, who is footing the bill, and how much disruption it will mean at home, at work and at play.

Buildings20090917

Tom Heap asks if we are looking in the wrong place for solutions to climate change.

Burn That Fat!20130925

Fighting the fat can be a difficult issue - and not just for our waistlines. Old cooking oil from our takeaways and roast dinners can cause major problems - from polluting watercourses to blocking sewers and causing flooding if not disposed of carefully. But rising commodity prices and surprising new uses have turned it from waste product to wonder in some people's eyes.

Tom Heap slides his way to a fat recycling plant where everything from large scale tubs of mayonnaise to tiny butter sachets and even pork scratchings are seen as a golden resource which can be treated and turned into fuels. Out of date or overcooked foods can still find a purpose - even 'frier sludges' are valued here.

So how far would Tom go in pursuit of useful waste fat? A trip beneath the streets of London to the sewers sees him in search of 'fatbergs' - created by the build up of grease thrown down our sinks. Some as large as double-decker buses have been found which have to be blasted out to ensure they don't block the system and cause sewage to flood people's homes. Now instead of being sent to landfill they're being put to good use - despite being once of the most degraded fats on the spectrum.

Meanwhile the University of Wolverhampton has been using oil from the local chippy and canteen for its lab experiments. They've been able to make a bioplastic - something so pure from something so dirty - that it will be used inside the human body to aid healing.

Produced in Bristol by Anne-Marie Bullock.

California Gasping2011051820110519

California has a rapidly expanding population, one of the world's most important agricultural zones and a chronic lack of water.

That contradiction has led to 70 years of wrangling punctuated by outbursts of violence and corruption.

A new plan is being drawn up which is intended to resolve the outstanding problems once and for all, finding a balance between the needs of farmers, consumers and the environment.

Travelling from one of the primary sources of the state's water in the far north to the threatened landscape of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Tom Heap hears the voices of those who've spent their lives in these stunning landscapes, feeling themselves at the mercy of those in power.

Is California's desperate search for water at an end? Tom Heap reports.

California has a rapidly expanding population, one of the world's most important agricultural zones and a chronic lack of water. That contradiction has led to 70 years of wrangling punctuated by outbursts of violence and corruption.

California Gasping20110519

Is California's desperate search for water at an end? Tom Heap reports.

Carbon Free Islands2019100820191009 (R4)

The Orkney Islands are pioneering a zero carbon approach to energy.

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Orkney's strong winds and powerful tides have attracted renewable energy pioneers for decades. For much of the year the islands produce more energy than they can use. Turbines are shut down and green energy goes to waste. The UK government has spotted an opportunity, funding the REFLEX project which aims to use that excess energy to develop new ways to power a community.

Tom Heap visits Orkney to see how hydrogen storage, huge batteries and electric ferries and cars can be lashed together with clever software to remove fossil fuels from an entire energy system.

Producer: Alasdair Cross

Carbon Trading2011031620110317

It sounded like the perfect answer.

Carbon trading could halt global warming, boost 'green' investment in the developing world and make money for city traders.

Four years on and Europe's complex system to cut emissions from our factories has comprehensively failed.

Despite vast amounts of money and effort being thrown at the scheme the current phase of carbon trading has, according to one report, cut emissions by a third of one per cent.

In 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap asks if capitalism's big idea has a future or just a murky past.

Back in the 1990s, in a desperate attempt to get the United States to sign up to binding reductions in the emission of greenhouse gases the concept of carbon trading was developed.

The idea was that polluting industries would be forced to buy the right to pollute in the form of carbon credits.

If they wanted to pollute more they'd have to pay.

If they polluted less then they could make a profit by offering their surplus credits to other businesses.

Over time the number of credits would be reduced, bringing worldwide carbon emissions tumbling in a relatively pain-free way.

The truth, as Tom discovers, is very different.

The US has refused to take part, Japan and Korea have shelved plans to join in and the issue splits the Australian government.

Only in the European Union has a system been developed and even here corruption, theft and a vast surplus of credits have combined to damage the policy's reputation and blunt its effectiveness.

Despite doubts about the system it's influence is spreading fast.

Many businesses are using a system of voluntary carbon off-setting to ease the conscience of their customers.

Buy a flight or a 4 x 4 and you'll often be asked to pay a little extra to fund carbon-reduction schemes in the developing world.

Closer to home the idea of habitat banking is gaining ground.

This could give developers the chance to build on a wildlife-rich area as long as they pay to create the equivalent habitat elsewhere.

It's a concept that's popular within the coalition government and supporters expect it to become a major part of conservation policy in England within the decade.

Should we worry about this commodification of our environment or embrace the arrival of money and markets into the campaign to save our planet and improve the green space on our doorstep?

Why has capitalism's answer to climate change failed? Tom Heap investigates.

It sounded like the perfect answer. Carbon trading could halt global warming, boost 'green' investment in the developing world and make money for city traders. Four years on and Europe's complex system to cut emissions from our factories has comprehensively failed. Despite vast amounts of money and effort being thrown at the scheme the current phase of carbon trading has, according to one report, cut emissions by a third of one per cent. In 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap asks if capitalism's big idea has a future or just a murky past.

Back in the 1990s, in a desperate attempt to get the United States to sign up to binding reductions in the emission of greenhouse gases the concept of carbon trading was developed. The idea was that polluting industries would be forced to buy the right to pollute in the form of carbon credits. If they wanted to pollute more they'd have to pay. If they polluted less then they could make a profit by offering their surplus credits to other businesses. Over time the number of credits would be reduced, bringing worldwide carbon emissions tumbling in a relatively pain-free way.

The truth, as Tom discovers, is very different. The US has refused to take part, Japan and Korea have shelved plans to join in and the issue splits the Australian government. Only in the European Union has a system been developed and even here corruption, theft and a vast surplus of credits have combined to damage the policy's reputation and blunt its effectiveness.

Despite doubts about the system it's influence is spreading fast. Many businesses are using a system of voluntary carbon off-setting to ease the conscience of their customers. Buy a flight or a 4 x 4 and you'll often be asked to pay a little extra to fund carbon-reduction schemes in the developing world. Closer to home the idea of habitat banking is gaining ground. This could give developers the chance to build on a wildlife-rich area as long as they pay to create the equivalent habitat elsewhere. It's a concept that's popular within the coalition government and supporters expect it to become a major part of conservation policy in England within the decade.

Carbon Trading20110317

Why has capitalism's answer to climate change failed? Tom Heap investigates.

Cave Carnage2011083120110901

Deep beneath southern Europe there stretches a 500 kilometre long subterranean world.

Underground rivers and vast caverns are home to unique and unusual species like the blind salamander and the freshwater sponge.

Barely explored, the caves of Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Albania are facing up to a rash of environmental threats.

In Costing the Earth Tom Heap will be joining caver and Whitley Award-winning biologist, Jana Bedek to explore the caves, spot the wildlife and witness the destruction.

Waste dumping and agricultural pollution are damaging waterways all through the cave system but it's in Croatia that some of the toughest challenges exist.

Preparing for European Union membership the country is pushing ahead with the development of highways and hydro-electric plants.

The construction is threatening some of the most valuable wildlife sites on the continent but the damage is invisible to most local people and all but the most adventurous of visitors.

Is damage unavoidable in the rush to join the EU or does Croatia risk losing its natural foundations?

Europe's strangest species are under threat of extinction.

Tom Heap investigates.

Deep beneath southern Europe there stretches a 500 kilometre long subterranean world. Underground rivers and vast caverns are home to unique and unusual species like the blind salamander and the freshwater sponge. Barely explored, the caves of Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Albania are facing up to a rash of environmental threats.

In Costing the Earth Tom Heap will be joining caver and Whitley Award-winning biologist, Jana Bedek to explore the caves, spot the wildlife and witness the destruction. Waste dumping and agricultural pollution are damaging waterways all through the cave system but it's in Croatia that some of the toughest challenges exist. Preparing for European Union membership the country is pushing ahead with the development of highways and hydro-electric plants. The construction is threatening some of the most valuable wildlife sites on the continent but the damage is invisible to most local people and all but the most adventurous of visitors.

Europe's strangest species are under threat of extinction. Tom Heap investigates.

Cave Carnage20110901

Europe's strangest species are under threat of extinction. Tom Heap investigates.

Cerrado20100505

With 5% of the world's flora and fauna Brazil's enormous Cerrado region is a rich mosaic of grass and woodland that is being destroyed at twice the speed of the Amazon rainforest.

Taking up one quarter of Brazil's land mass the Cerrado lacks the high profile of the Amazon or its celebrity supporters, making it easier for the fast expanding sugarcane and soya industries to take bigger bites out of the savannah.

That can mean the loss of unique species and the destruction of traditional ways of life in the region.

For 'Costing the Earth' Tim Hirsch visits the Cerrado to hear from local people who are trying to save their land by making it pay.

Ice creams flavoured with unusual Cerrado fruits and bird-watching holidays for British tourists may not be able to compete with large-scale farming but locals hope they'll give the area the publicity it needs for real protection.

Brazil's Cerrado is one of the world's richest eco-systems.

Can it be saved?

Taking up one quarter of Brazil's land mass the Cerrado lacks the high profile of the Amazon or its celebrity supporters, making it easier for the fast expanding sugarcane and soya industries to take bigger bites out of the savannah. That can mean the loss of unique species and the destruction of traditional ways of life in the region.

For 'Costing the Earth' Tim Hirsch visits the Cerrado to hear from local people who are trying to save their land by making it pay. Ice creams flavoured with unusual Cerrado fruits and bird-watching holidays for British tourists may not be able to compete with large-scale farming but locals hope they'll give the area the publicity it needs for real protection.

Brazil's Cerrado is one of the world's richest eco-systems. Can it be saved?

Chemical Weapons: 100 Years On2014042920140430

Tom Heap finds out how Syria's chemical weapons are going to be disposed of.

With the end of April being the deadline for Syria's President Assad to sacrifice his entire arsenal of chemical weapons, Tom Heap finds out the nitty-gritty of how they're going to be disposed of. This involves previously untried methods such as neutralising the most dangerous chemicals on board an American vessel, the MV Cape Ray. This, as we'll hear, presents its own problems. Other Syrian chemicals will be destroyed in Port Ellesmere in Cheshire, as well as in the United States, Germany and Finland.

Tom puts these efforts of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) into a historical perspective, exactly 99 years after the first recorded use of chemical weapons in Ypres during the First World War.

Producer: Mark Smalley.

Chernobyl19990627

When Chernobyl and its NUCLEAR legacy erupted into our lives 13 years ago, the world woke up to the global implications of the NUCLEAR industry.

The programme investigates why we are still waiting for all of the reactors on the Chernobyl site to be closed down.

China's Water Revolution2015042820150429 (R4)

China needs more water urgently. Isabel Hilton examines the nation's options.

China has powered its development with water. When it needed energy for industry it built the largest hydro-electric dams in the world. When the farmland and factories of northern China were threatened with drought an enormous canal was built to pipe supplies from the south. China has the engineering skill, the capital and the will to challenge the limits that nature sets on development. But the exploitation of China's water resources has come at a great cost, forcing millions from their homes, polluting natural lakes and rivers and pushing rare animal species to the brink of extinction.

Isabel Hilton, editor of the China Dialogue website, assesses the progress of China's water revolution and asks where its water will come from in the future. Can large-scale engineering continue to provide the answers or must government teach industry and the public to live within their means?

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Chinese Salmon2012091120120912

In January 2011 the Scottish Government announced a new deal to supply salmon to China. If only 1% of its population chose to eat it the Scottish industry would have to double in size. The target set is to increase the industry by 50% by 2020. Conor Woodman asks how this can be done without impacting on the environment.

Concerns about salmon farming include the spread of sea lice, escapes, pollution of the sea bed and the impact of sea lice treatment on other sea life. However it provides jobs, both directly and indirectly in areas often with fragile economies.

Conor visits the island of Gometra in the Inner Hebrides where a new fish farm is being proposed. The island has no electricity and only a few residents but is classed as 'very sensitive countryside'. It's one of five new fish farm sites applied for in the last 6 months. While the residents there oppose it, many of those on neighbouring Ulva hope the jobs will attract more young people to the area.

Conor speaks to the Scottish Association for Marine Science about how the industry is dealing with the environmental issues. He also hears about the new direction some of the industry is taking - Marine Harvest is moving out of traditional lochs to open sea locations which it hopes will lead to larger farms being permitted. He also speaks to a British company looking to introduce 'closed containment' systems by farming tanks of fish on land. Is this the new image of salmon farming in the UK and will these methods face issues of their own?

Producer: Anne-Marie Bullock.

Conor Woodman asks how farmed Scottish salmon production can increase by 50% sustainably.

Cities Without Cars2016091320160914 (R4)

The battle in big cities continues: how do you keep cars out to cut congestion and reduce pollution? Chris Ledgard visits Paris and Barcelona to explore two different approaches. In Paris, the mayor's office wants to ban the most polluting cars, and coloured stickers are being introduced to help the authorities determine which vehicles can enter the city centre. Meanwhile, more and more Paris residents are turning to the electric car-sharing scheme, Autolib. We hear how it works. In Barcelona, urban ecologists are adapting the famous grid system designed by Ildefons Cerda to create 'superblocks' - large traffic-free spaces across the city where the sound of traffic is only distantly heard. Chris talks to the scheme's inventor, Salvador Rueda, and hears about his vision for Spain's second biggest city.

Producer: Chris Ledgard.

Keeping cars out of the city: Chris Ledgard explores new plans in Paris and Barcelona.

Clean Air For Kids2019031920190320 (R4)

Clean air - the fightback: Tom Heap investigates air pollution and children's health.

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet"

Cleaning Up The Ganges2010052620100527

Tom Heap visits the holy Ganges river to discover if India's life source can ever be clean

The Ganges, above all is the river of India, which has held India's heart captive and drawn uncounted millions to her banks since the dawn of history.

The story of the Ganges, from her source to the sea, from old times to new, is the story of India's civilization and culture, of the rise and fall of empires, of great and proud cities, of adventures of man"".

So said India's first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru.

The Ganges holds a sacred place in the Hindu religion.

It is a requirement for the 830 million Hindus in the world today to bathe in its waters at least once in their lifetime.

Today the Ganges is a filthy shadow of its former majesty but all that is about to change.

The World Bank is lending the Indian government $1.5 billion to help clean the river, but it is 10 times the length of the Thames and many argue that its distance from the sea, its proximity to so many fast-growing cities, as well as India's lack of a sewage system mean that it is an impossible task.

Efforts to clean-up the Ganges tributary, the Yamuna, have failed and scientists argue that more money is needed to expand treatment plants in Lucknow, Allahabad and Kanpur but sewage first needs to reach these plants.

Some argue that water management is the source of the problem and that this is where money should be spent.

Climate change and dam building are drying up the river at its source and they argue the only way to clean it is to increase the flow of clean supply.

Tom Heap travels the banks of the river to find out if the Holy Ganges can be saved.

Producer: Helen Lennard.

"The Ganges, above all is the river of India, which has held India's heart captive and drawn uncounted millions to her banks since the dawn of history. The story of the Ganges, from her source to the sea, from old times to new, is the story of India's civilization and culture, of the rise and fall of empires, of great and proud cities, of adventures of man". So said India's first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru.

The Ganges holds a sacred place in the Hindu religion. It is a requirement for the 830 million Hindus in the world today to bathe in its waters at least once in their lifetime.

Today the Ganges is a filthy shadow of its former majesty but all that is about to change. The World Bank is lending the Indian government $1.5 billion to help clean the river, but it is 10 times the length of the Thames and many argue that its distance from the sea, its proximity to so many fast-growing cities, as well as India's lack of a sewage system mean that it is an impossible task.

Efforts to clean-up the Ganges tributary, the Yamuna, have failed and scientists argue that more money is needed to expand treatment plants in Lucknow, Allahabad and Kanpur but sewage first needs to reach these plants. Some argue that water management is the source of the problem and that this is where money should be spent. Climate change and dam building are drying up the river at its source and they argue the only way to clean it is to increase the flow of clean supply.

Climate Change: Inconvenient Facts?2015033120150401 (R4)

With Antarctic sea ice growing, Tom Heap asks what is happening to the climate.

With arctic sea ice shrinking and Antarctic sea ice growing, Tom Heap asks what is happening to the climate.

Despite the consensus of scientists around the world, there are still some anomalies in the computer models of the future climate. Tom Heap is joined by a panel of experts to tackle some of the difficult questions that lead to uncertainties in our understanding of the changing climate.

The perceived wisdom in the scientific community is that the climate is warming but evidence shows that even though Arctic sea ice is melting, there has actually been a growth in Antarctic sea ice. That, along with a documented slow down in the warming of the climate since 1998, has been a 'stone in the shoe' of the climate change story. So what is happening?

Tom is joined by BBC and Met office weather presenter John Hammond to put these 'difficult' climate scenarios to a team of experts: Mark Lynas is an author and environmental campaigner, Mike Hulme is professor of Climate and Culture at Kings College London and Dr Helen Czerski is a broadcaster and 'bubble physicist' at UCL.

With the help of this panel, Costing The Earth discusses how best to communicate anomalies that don't appear in climate models and make the science sometimes hard to comprehend.

Presenter: Tom Heap

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Coast: 50 Years Of Change2015102020151021 (R4)

A new report reveals how the UK's coast has changed over the last 50 years.

A new report from the National Trust reveals how how our coast has changed over the last 50 years. Tom Heap asks if we've become better or worse at protecting the nation's prime asset.

He joins John Whittow who led a team of students to survey the coast in 1965 and compares his findings with a brand new study from Leicester University. Has the rapid urbanisation of the 1960s continued or has the tide been turned? What new threats are on the horizon?

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Cocoa Loco2011042720110428

Cocoa costs have soared recently. Tom Heap asks if costly chocolate might be good for all.

It used to be a treat but now a chocolate bar is one of the cheapest ways to fill up.

Chocolate is the unlikely substance at the heart of commodity wars.

Cocoa has been reported to be more valuable than gold but will this mean the end of the nation's coffee break.

Over-farming has caused problems in chocolate producing countries in Africa and South America.

The pressure to produce cheap cocoa has meant farmers have failed to replant and replenish.

Soil has become unusable and mature trees are now reaching the end of their life cycle.

Fair trade has been forced on even the biggest producers like Nestle as the only means to get the raw product.

But, is it too little too late and is this late interest a real commitment to fair deals for farmers and their land?

There is concern that speculation by financial traders has helped to push up food prices worldwide, creating an unsustainable bubble that makes it even harder for many in the developing world to afford to eat.

Workers in the UK have also felt the impact - Burton's Foods blamed higher cocoa and wheat prices for the closure of its Wirral factory - where Wagon Wheels and Jammie Dodgers are made - with the loss of over 400 jobs.

Palm oil is another growing problem.

Cheap, easy to grow and lucrative, many cocoa farmers have switched to this crop and turned their land over to monoculture.

Costing the Earth investigates the efforts to keep our favourite treat going and asks if this is the first commodity of many to succumb to over-production and unrealistically cheap market prices.

Cocoa costs have soared recently.

It used to be a treat but now a chocolate bar is one of the cheapest ways to fill up. Chocolate is the unlikely substance at the heart of commodity wars. Cocoa has been reported to be more valuable than gold but will this mean the end of the nation's coffee break.

Over-farming has caused problems in chocolate producing countries in Africa and South America. The pressure to produce cheap cocoa has meant farmers have failed to replant and replenish. Soil has become unusable and mature trees are now reaching the end of their life cycle. Fair trade has been forced on even the biggest producers like Nestle as the only means to get the raw product. But, is it too little too late and is this late interest a real commitment to fair deals for farmers and their land?

There is concern that speculation by financial traders has helped to push up food prices worldwide, creating an unsustainable bubble that makes it even harder for many in the developing world to afford to eat. Workers in the UK have also felt the impact - Burton's Foods blamed higher cocoa and wheat prices for the closure of its Wirral factory - where Wagon Wheels and Jammie Dodgers are made - with the loss of over 400 jobs.

Palm oil is another growing problem. Cheap, easy to grow and lucrative, many cocoa farmers have switched to this crop and turned their land over to monoculture. Costing the Earth investigates the efforts to keep our favourite treat going and asks if this is the first commodity of many to succumb to over-production and unrealistically cheap market prices.

Coral Versus Coal2018030620180307 (R4)

Why has Australia failed to arrest the decline of the Great Barrier Reef?

Programme looking at man's effect on the environment and how the environment reacts

The rapid decline of the Great Barrier Reef is one of the environmental crises of the decade. But who is to blame?

Environmental activists have accused successive Australian governments of underestimating the threats to the reef from agriculture and the shipping industry but their focus is now on a coal mine.

India's Adani corporation has government support for the development of one of the world's largest new mines at Carmichael, inland from the Great Barrier Reef. Construction would increase shipping traffic around the reef but the real concern is the extra carbon dioxide that the burning of millions of tonnes of coal would send into the atmosphere. This could increase the speed of climate change and lead to yet warmer waters around Australia, potentially killing even more of the coral of the Great Barrier Reef.

Marine biologist and film-maker, Ellen Husain meets both sides of the debate to find out if new jobs from the mine could outweigh the damage to the reef and the jobs that reef tourism supports.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Could Britain Feed Itself?2019042320190424 (R4)

Could Britain feed itself? Tom Heap assesses how much more of our own food we could potentially produce. Currently we import nearly half - 30% from the EU but in a time of growing population and political change could we step up our home grown fare? He asks about the innovative technology helping farmers make smart use of the land they have, visits labs to ask what changes we might need to allow and sizes up our allotments, gardens and window boxes to see if we could be more productive at home. With some theoretical ideas and practical realities he aims to give you food for thought.

Producer: Anne-Marie Bullock

Could Britain feed itself? Tom Heap investigates the pros and cons of self-sufficiency.

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Countdown To Copenhagen2009102620091029

Tom Heap looks behind the jargon and political scene-shifting to ask whether or not a definitive new deal on climate change will come out of the talks at Copenhagen in December 2009.

Politicians from around the world will attempt to thrash out a deal in Denmark's capital city to limit the damage that the changing climate on the planet. Most now accept that this means drastic cuts in the use of oil, coal and gas. Getting agreement on how that should be achieved among 192 nations seems impossible. Tom seeks to find out how to interpret the codes of official statements and off-the-record briefings.

He also hears from some of the people who will have to live with the consequences and ask how their voices are working their way into the Copenhagen process. These include the President of the Maldives, who warns that his fight against the encroaching seas is our fight too. Children in Sri Lanka who have been exchanging experiences with English counterparts by the sea in Essex, and a group of children working under the banner Generation Green struggle to produce an action plan for Downing Street.

And in case anyone thinks the Jeremy Clarkson worldview has withered in the face of this upsurge of youthful greenery, Tom joins a group of boy and girl racers in Cheltenham for a petrol-fuelled conversation about living now and paying later.

Tom Heap on the prospects for the United Nations' crucial climate change conference.

Countdown To Copenhagen20091029

Tom Heap on the prospects for the United Nations' crucial climate change conference.

Covid-19: The Environmental Impact2020041420200415 (R4)

Tom Heap talks through the green issues emerging during the coronavirus pandemic and asks what the environmental legacy might be.

Tom examines the effect of the lockdown – with millions of people now working from home, planes being grounded and fewer cars on the roads, has there been a big environmental improvement, and will that be reversed once our lives return to normal?

With the help of experts from the fields of climate change, aviation, ecology and environmental standards, we track the changes in air pollution and global temperature.

And what will the return to ‘normal' look like? With the UK aiming to be carbon neutral by 2050, Tom asks whether the pandemic can be seen as a trial run for a zero-carbon world and looks at how international climate targets might be affected.

And Costing the Earth examines claims that some governments are using the pandemic as an opportunity to reverse environmental legislation.

Producer: Melvin Rickarby

What effect is the coronavirus pandemic having on the environment? Tom Heap investigates.

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Tom Heap talks through the green issues emerging during the coronavirus pandemic and asks what the environmental legacy might be.

Tom examines the effect of the lockdown – with millions of people now working from home, planes being grounded and fewer cars on the roads, has there been a big environmental improvement, and will that be reversed once our lives return to normal?

With the help of experts from the fields of climate change, aviation, ecology and environmental standards, we track the changes in air pollution and global temperature.

And what will the return to ‘normal' look like? With the UK aiming to be carbon neutral by 2050, Tom asks whether the pandemic can be seen as a trial run for a zero-carbon world and looks at how international climate targets might be affected.

And Costing the Earth examines claims that some governments are using the pandemic as an opportunity to reverse environmental legislation.

Producer: Melvin Rickarby

What effect is the coronavirus pandemic having on the environment? Tom Heap investigates.

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Crisis, What Crisis?2009020920090212

Miriam O'reilly investigates whether the crash in prices for old newspaper and plastic bottles has made recycling a waste of time.

Miriam O'Reilly investigates whether a crash in prices has made recycling a waste of time.

Crisis, What Crisis?20090212

Miriam O'Reilly investigates whether a crash in prices has made recycling a waste of time.

Miriam O'Reilly investigates whether the crash in prices for old newspaper and plastic bottles has made recycling a waste of time.

Cruel Harvest2012091920121016

The disastrous global harvest of 2012 has slashed food supplies from the parched Mid-West of the USA to the dusty plains of Ukraine. In this time of crisis many farmers are asking if they should continue to grow crops to be turned into fuel for cars and power stations when they could be feeding more people.

Costing the Earth visits the American corn-belt of Missouri and the rape fields of Bedfordshire to investigate the international impact of the tightening food supplies and ask if we need to get used to more extreme weather patterns over the coming decades. Can scientists help farmers grow crops that are more resistant to drought and flood or should we accept that all of our fertile land should be turned over to food production?

Producer: Steve Peacock.

Cruise Ships And Creeks2012042420120425

It is the third-largest natural harbour in the world but even so, it isn't deep enough for modern ships. Falmouth in Cornwall wants to invest £100 million to modernise its ship-repairing docks and facilities for cruise liners.

The project would create hundreds of jobs, protect existing businesses and bring cash-laden tourists into the surrounding area. It depends on being able to dredge the channel into the harbour and that's where the problem lies - to do so would mean digging up rare calcified seaweed called maerl which is protected by law and lies in a special conservation area.

It's a classic stand-off between economic development and protecting the natural environment- now specialist marine scientists have been called in to see whether both sides can be satisfied. Tom Heap gets to grips with rare seaweed and big bucks in Cornwall for 'Costing The Earth'.

Producer: Steve Peacock.

Falmouth's plans to attract cruise ships could damage the environment. Tom Heap reports.

Cruise Ships And Creeks20120425

Falmouth's plans to attract cruise ships could damage the environment. Tom Heap reports.

Cruising: A Dirty Secret2016111520161116 (R4)

Tom Heap investigates the link between cruise ships and poor air quality.

A new cruise ship terminal is planned for Greenwich. Enderby Wharf will bring holiday makers right into the heart of the UK's capital city.

Greenwich is an existing pollution hotspot. Heavy traffic from nearby Trafalgar Road and the Blackwall Tunnel mean that air quality limits are frequently breached. Bringing a cruise ship into the area will further exacerbate the problem, increasing traffic bringing goods and services to the terminal.

Residents have raised concerns that visiting ships would burn 700 litres of diesel an hour whilst in dock. That's the equivalent of over 650 HGV lorries idling in an already polluted part of the city. At least 9000 Londoners already die prematurely each year as a result of breathing dirty air.

Southampton is a city built around its docks and so Tom Heap visits the Solent to find out how bad air pollution from cruise ships can be and asks what can be done by the industry to cut down on harmful emissions when the ships are in berth.

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Csi Landfill2013100820131009

Tom Heap discovers landfill mining: finding value in what's been thrown away.

Tom Heap discovers landfill mining: finding value in what's been thrown away. He visits Belgium to meet the first prospectors digging for treasure in trash.

For years rubbish has been thrown away and sent to landfill sites, but now there are moves to look at what's been discarded as a resource.

Metals, plastics, ceramics and minerals are all buried under ground. As waste in landfill decomposes it emits gases. All are rich pickings and valuable to those looking to recycle and reuse the waste we've thrown away as scientists and engineers look to close the circle of waste.

Presenter: Tom Heap

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Csi Rhino2013040920130410

Tom Heap finds out how DNA analysis can help prevent illegal trade in Rhino horn.

Tom Heap finds an unlikely battle line in the fight to protect remaining wild rhino populations being fought here in the UK. Rhino horn is now worth twice as much as gold because of its perceived value in Asian medicine. New markets in Vietnam have increased the pressure from poaching on wild populations but also on horn found in museums and zoos in the UK. Museums are now warned not to display real rhino horn and zoos like Colchester have had to increase security measures to protect their live rhino. To help prevent illegally obtained horn from leaving the country and encouraging the market for rhino horn scientists in the UK are setting up a DNA database of all the horn kept here in museums, private collections and on the heads of living rhino in zoos.

Tom discovers that these highly threatened animals can be surprisingly gentle given their size and that thefts from UK museums have become increasingly common. The criminal gangs looking to profit from horn theft are highly organised and DNA forensics could be vital in achieving convictions.

It is hoped that less illegal horn feeding the market will help put an end to the demand but there are also new arguments for a legal trade to sate the demand using farmed rhino whose horns could be regularly shaved. The debate around legalisation remains live but most people agree that a worldwide DNA database would be the only way to regulate and prevent poached rhino horn being traded legally. Wildlife crime officers say that DNA forensics could be vital in helping protect rhinos and many other endangered species in the future.

Current Concerns20020425

Series exploring environmental issues.

`Current Concerns'.

Alex Kirby discovers that some miscarriages can be caused by household appliances.

Cycle City2015041420150415 (R4)

The bulldozers have already begun work on London's 'cycle superhighways' or 'Crossrail for bikes'. Cycling enthusiasts have declared these segregated lanes to be the infrastructure which London needs to make cycling much more appealing for all. Andrew Gilligan, the Mayor's Cycling Commissioner says if Transport for London can get the engineering right then cycling in the capital will become safer and far more people might make the switch from cars, buses and trains to carbon free pedal power. The potential carbon and congestion savings are huge, up to 25% of transport emissions if we can reach the levels of cycling now seen in Copenhagen, and those who cycle are also healthier. However, to replicate Dutch or Danish bike culture cycling's appeal must move beyond the lycra-clad males to become the first choice for women, children and older people too.

Tom Heap finds out if these cycle superhighways can really deliver for the capital and if the huge amounts of money being spent here and elsewhere across the country can ensure a cycling revolution for all of Britain's would-be bikers.

Producer: Helen Lennard.

Tom Heap saddles up to find out if Britain is really about to become a nation of cyclists.

Dare To Share20171003

Could the sharing economy save the planet? Tom Heap finds out.

The ability to share underused resources like holiday homes and car journeys through online sites has disrupted many sectors of the economy. Many people now travel using 'Airbnb' or 'Uber' and being able to deal directly with the owner of the property or the driver of the car has opened up additional revenue streams for some and cheaper travel options for us all. As many more industries are about to be 'disrupted' by sharing technology Tom Heap discovers how the sharing economy might also be good for the planet.

New apps like Olio and Fat Llama or the Library of Things are designed to allow people to share everything from leftover food to lawnmowers. In a world where space is at a premium and less people will own their own home many of us may no longer want to store so much 'stuff'. The solution is to borrow what we need when we need it and many statistics suggest we have already reached a point of 'peak stuff'. Buying less manufactured goods may be bad for the economy but it could be good news for the planet. Tom finds out just how far the sharing economy can provide for his needs and asks if this shift in how and what we consume can really save energy and emissions.

Producer: Helen Lennard.

Dash For Ash2013021920130220

UK landfills are full. Should we create energy from our waste? Tom Heap investigates.

By 2020 the UK must significantly reduce its landfill habit. A recent government report warned that we would run out of landfill space by 2018 and a European Directive means we must reduce the amount of waste sent to landfill from 48% to 35% or face big fines. Next year landfill tax will hit £80 per tonne. Unsurprisingly there has been a huge rise in planning applications for incinerators. 90 are proposed to add to the 30 currently in operation. Waste is big business. Tom Heap visits existing sites where our rubbish is currently being shipped abroad to create energy and heat in Europe and asks whether it is time we followed suit.

New technologies such as gasification are currently being developed which will provide even more heat and power from our residual waste and they promise to be far cleaner than the mass burn incinerators on the continent, yet opposition remains strong. 'Costing the Earth' hears from local residents who fear the health implications if dioxins formed in the high temperatures are released. Environmental campaigners argue that even if the health risks can be addressed this solution only creates more carbon dioxide emissions when what we really need is more recycling and less initial waste. In his film 'Trashed' actor Jeremy Irons looks at how our waste affects our health and that of the planet. Tom asks if it's time for a national strategy on what goes into our bins and where our rubbish ends up.

Producer: Helen Lennard.

By 2020 the UK must significantly reduce its landfill habit. A recent government report warned that we would run out of landfill space by 2018 and a European Directive means we must reduce the amount of waste sent to landfill from 48% to 35% or face big fines. Next year landfill tax will hit £80 per tonne. Unsurprisingly there has been a huge rise in planning applications for incinerators. 91 are proposed to add to the 30 currently in operation. Waste is big business. Tom Heap visits existing sites where our rubbish is currently being shipped abroad to create energy and heat in Europe and asks whether it is time we followed suit.

New technologies such as gasification are currently being developed which will provide even more heat and power from our residual waste and they promise to be far cleaner than the mass burn incinerators on the continent, yet opposition remains strong. 'Costing the Earth' hears from local residents who fear the health implications if dioxins formed in the high temperatures are released. Environmental campaigners argue that even if the health risks can be addressed this solution only creates more carbon dioxide emissions when what we really need is more recycling and less initial waste. In his film 'Trashed' actor Jeremy Irons looks at how our waste affects our health and that of the planet. Tom follows him as he asks if it's time for a national strategy on what goes into our bins and where our rubbish ends up.

David Attenborough On Climate Change20151117

David Attenborough and a panel of fellow experts on the natural world join Tom Heap to preview this month's Climate Summit in Paris. Can the world's leaders come to an agreement on the warming planet?

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Deep Sea Treasure20100414

Our explorations of the deep oceans have so far given us only tantalising glimpses of weird and wonderful species.

A team from the National Oceanography Centre in Southampton is currently sailing through the Caribbean and the Southern Ocean on a mission to provide us with much more than a few fuzzy photos of a giant worm or an upside down prawn.

They want to tie-up the loose ends, telling us just how the many islands of life in the deep actually interact.

They hope their mission will greatly aid conservation efforts and make the exploitation of the ocean's resources fairer and more sustainable.

'Costing the Earth' joins the expedition as it sails from southern Chile and launches Isis, a remote-controlled submarine armed, for the first time, with high definition cameras.

The crew of the RRS James Cook explore the depths of the ocean in search of new life.

Our explorations of the deep oceans have so far given us only tantalising glimpses of weird and wonderful species. A team from the National Oceanography Centre in Southampton is currently sailing through the Caribbean and the Southern Ocean on a mission to provide us with much more than a few fuzzy photos of a giant worm or an upside down prawn.

They want to tie-up the loose ends, telling us just how the many islands of life in the deep actually interact. They hope their mission will greatly aid conservation efforts and make the exploitation of the ocean's resources fairer and more sustainable.

Deepwater Horizon - The Real Damage2011041320110414

President Obama described Deepwater Horizon as America's worst environmental disaster.

If that was true why have fish numbers in the Gulf massively increased since the blow-out?

One year on from the disaster Tom Heap travels through Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana in search of the true economic and environmental impact of the spill.

Did the political and media reaction cause more damage to the region than the accident itself?

He'll also be asking what effect the reaction to the disaster could have on Britain's plans for deep water drilling.

President Obama described Deepwater Horizon as America's worst environmental disaster. If that was true why have fish numbers in the Gulf massively increased since the blow-out?

One year on from the disaster Tom Heap travels through Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana in search of the true economic and environmental impact of the spill. Did the political and media reaction cause more damage to the region than the accident itself?

Tom Heap looks at the environmental impact of Deepwater Horizon one year on.

Deepwater Horizon - The Real Damage20110414

Tom Heap looks at the environmental impact of Deepwater Horizon one year on.

Defenders Of The Reef2018022720180228

Meet the people fighting to save the natural wonder of the world, the Great Barrier Reef.

Marine biologist and film-maker, Ellen Husain studied the Great Barrier Reef for her Masters degree thirteen years ago. Today she's back to dive with her old supervisor. The picture is grim. So much of the life she remembers has gone, wiped out by the great coral bleaching events caused by rising sea temperatures.

Some who love the reef are in despair, others who once chose to ignore the signs are finally energised, determined to do what they can to slow or even reverse the decline. Ellen meets the people of the reef- tour operators, aboriginal Sea Rangers and coral scientists- to discover if one of the great natural wonders of the world really can be saved.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Delivering Clean Air2017030720170308 (R4)

More delivery trucks means more air pollution in our cities. Tom Heap looks for an answer.

Internet shopping continues to rise worldwide. That means a lot more delivery vans on the streets of our towns and cities. Those vans and trucks, often powered by dirty diesel engines, are contributing to air pollution problems that can cause significant increases in premature death and great discomfort for people suffering from heart and lung conditions.

As part of the BBC's 'So I Can Breathe' season Tom Heap sets out to find innovative solutions. Could drones or robots be the answer? Could we cut out the middle man and use 3D printers to create everything we want at home? Perhaps it's simply a matter of converting all those vans to electric or gas power or even carrying out the majority of home deliveries by bike.

With the promise of ever-quicker delivery times the search for a solution becomes ever more urgent if we're to prevent our consumer addiction becoming an air pollution crisis on every doorstep.

Producer: Helen Lennard.

Demolishing Dams2018042420180425 (R4)

Why dismantle a dam that produces low-carbon electricity? Peter Gibbs investigates.

Programme looking at man's effect on the environment and how the environment reacts

Large hydro-electric dams continue to be planned and built in Africa, Asia and South America. In Western Europe and the US they're tearing them down. Peter Gibbs wants to know why.

These wonders of engineering are a symbol of our ability to harness nature to produce renewable energy. The trouble is that many dams radically alter the natural life of rivers and harm their ecosystems. The majority of rivers in Europe and the US have dams on them, many of which are aging and are no longer serving any useful purpose. Gradually the conversation is changing and communities are realising that dams don't have to be forever. Now there's a growing movement to remove the worst offenders and restore rivers to their natural state.

France is currently embarking on the biggest dam removal in Europe. Two large hydro-electric dams will soon be demolished on the River Sélune in Normandy. Here a choice had to be made between energy production and biodiversity. Peter Gibbs meets the different groups involved in the project to find out how they are planning for the removals. Will the opening up of wild salmon migration routes and improvements in water quality make up for the loss of low-carbon energy?

Producer: Sophie Anton.

"

Digging Britain2011021620110217 (R4)

Dr Alice Roberts examines the impact of metal detecting on our heritage and landscape.

The Staffordshire and Frome Hoards are just two of the most exciting archaeological finds in recent years. Both were found by amateur treasure hunters in the UK using metal detectors. A good news story in these tough times but what is the real affect of legions of unqualified diggers on Britain's heritage and landscape?

The growing popularity of metal detectors has meant big finds in the past few years but a new detector has been produced which triples the depth at which small objects can be detected. So far detecting has been tolerated in Britain on the basis that it only digs up land to plough depth and therefore doesn't exacerbate disturbance of historically significant sites.

This new development adds fuel to what is already a heated debate. Archaeologists feel that treasure hunters take valuable finds from sites which should be excavated properly, archaeology is all about context they argue and once artefacts are removed our heritage is lost. The Countryside Alliance is warning landowners not to allow metal detectors on their land in order to avoid disputes but many detectors have signed up to a voluntary code designed to minimise their impact on farmland.

The detectors argues that without their valuable help today's agrochemicals will destroy a base metal object within a few years of it being in the ground. Coins have been destroyed in the last 50 years which have been in the ground for millennia. Stone implements are also broken with today's modern mechanical ploughs.

There are 30,000 metal detectorists today. They started detecting landmines after the war but will they continue to offer a service to the landscape and its heritage or simply take what it has to offer.

Digging Climate Change2016041220160413 (R4)

Professor Alice Roberts asks if archaeology can help us understand climate change.

Producer: Helen Lennard.

Digging Up Britain2011021620110217

The Staffordshire and Frome Hoards are just two of the most exciting archaeological finds in recent years.

Both were found by amateur treasure hunters in the UK using metal detectors.

A good news story in these tough times but what is the real affect of legions of unqualified diggers on Britain's heritage and landscape?

The growing popularity of metal detectors has meant big finds in the past few years but a new detector has been produced which triples the depth at which small objects can be detected.

So far detecting has been tolerated in Britain on the basis that it only digs up land to plough depth and therefore doesn't exacerbate disturbance of historically significant sites.

This new development adds fuel to what is already a heated debate.

Archaeologists feel that treasure hunters take valuable finds from sites which should be excavated properly, archaeology is all about context they argue and once artefacts are removed our heritage is lost.

The Countryside Alliance is warning landowners not to allow metal detectors on their land in order to avoid disputes but many detectors have signed up to a voluntary code designed to minimise their impact on farmland.

The detectors argues that without their valuable help today's agrochemicals will destroy a base metal object within a few years of it being in the ground.

Coins have been destroyed in the last 50 years which have been in the ground for millennia.

Stone implements are also broken with today's modern mechanical ploughs.

There are 30,000 metal detectorists today.

They started detecting landmines after the war but will they continue to offer a service to the landscape and its heritage or simply take what it has to offer.

Dr Alice Roberts examines the impact of metal detecting on our heritage and landscape.

The Staffordshire and Frome Hoards are just two of the most exciting archaeological finds in recent years. Both were found by amateur treasure hunters in the UK using metal detectors. A good news story in these tough times but what is the real affect of legions of unqualified diggers on Britain's heritage and landscape?

The growing popularity of metal detectors has meant big finds in the past few years but a new detector has been produced which triples the depth at which small objects can be detected. So far detecting has been tolerated in Britain on the basis that it only digs up land to plough depth and therefore doesn't exacerbate disturbance of historically significant sites.

This new development adds fuel to what is already a heated debate. Archaeologists feel that treasure hunters take valuable finds from sites which should be excavated properly, archaeology is all about context they argue and once artefacts are removed our heritage is lost. The Countryside Alliance is warning landowners not to allow metal detectors on their land in order to avoid disputes but many detectors have signed up to a voluntary code designed to minimise their impact on farmland.

The detectors argues that without their valuable help today's agrochemicals will destroy a base metal object within a few years of it being in the ground. Coins have been destroyed in the last 50 years which have been in the ground for millennia. Stone implements are also broken with today's modern mechanical ploughs.

There are 30,000 metal detectorists today. They started detecting landmines after the war but will they continue to offer a service to the landscape and its heritage or simply take what it has to offer.

Digging Up Britain20110217

Dr Alice Roberts examines the impact of metal detecting on our heritage and landscape.

Disappearing Alps2018052220180523 (R4)

The permafrost is thawing, and the glaciers retreating. What will be left of the Alps?

Programme looking at man's effect on the environment and how the environment reacts"

Dry Me A River2019111220191113 (R4)

Whilst this Autumn’s heavy rainfall has caused some rivers in the north of England to burst their banks and flood neighbourhoods there are rivers in the south-east with barely a drop of water in them. Tom Heap asks what impact this is this having on aquatic ecosystems. He talks to water companies and environmental campaigner Feargal Sharkey to find out how flora and fauna are changing as a result of the shortage of water. It's a particular concern for chalk streams, which provide a unique wildlife habitat found in very few places in the world. Tom asks who's the blame - the water companies for taking water out of the rivers, the Environment Agency for giving them permission to do it, or us consumers for using more water per person than we ever have before?

Producer: Emma Campbell

Northern English rivers are flooding whilst southern rivers dry up. Tom Heap investigates.

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Drying Rivers2019111220191113 (R4)

Why is so much of south-east England suffering from drought conditions?

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Dunes Into Bunkers2018040320180404 (R4)

Should we build golf courses on sensitive sand dunes? Peter Gibbs investigates.

Programme looking at man's effect on the environment and how the environment reacts

It's a decade since Donald Trump began building his golf resort on the enormous mobile sand dunes of Balmedie in Aberdeenshire. Conservation organisations bitterly protested and the idea of building golf courses on sensitive dune habitats seemed tainted. Today, however, a new course is being proposed for Coul Links on the stunning coastline to the north of Inverness. Peter Gibbs investigates the impact of Trump's development and the increasingly bitter controversy over the new course.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Dying Rivers2019110520191106 (R4)

Why is so much of south-east England suffering from drought conditions?

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Eco Anxiety2019051420190515 (R4)

Is the future of the planet making you depressed? Do you feel paralysed, unable to imagine the happiness of future generations? As global governments fail to respond to the existential crisis of climate change it’s understandable that some people seem unable to conjure up a sense of hope, understandable that dozens of young British women have joined the Birthstrike movement, refusing to bring more children into the world. Verity Sharp meets the eco-anxious and asks if they are ill or simply more perceptive than the rest of us.

Producer : Ellie Richold

Is the future of the planet making you depressed? Verity Sharp meets the eco-anxious.

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Eco Homes Now!2020031720200318 (R4)

The demand for housing is pushing through developments of millions of new build homes. So why aren't these all being built to the best energy efficiency standards possible with the technology that's now available? Tom Heap reveals how the scrapping of zero carbon homes has meant years of construction has not had to meet the higher standards hoped for. The new Future Homes Standard has just been consulted on but Tom Heap hears it's not just missing the mark for some groups but is at risk of reducing some standards altogether.

Homes now come with an EPC - an Energy Performance Certificate - to test how reliable they are Tom trains thermal cameras onto a new build house to reveal any leaks or hidden short cuts that may be lurking behind the walls.

Tom also gets a vision of the future - where clever design on village scale and with artificial intelligence could see us living in a low carbon way without even having to think too hard about it.

Presented by Tom Heap
Producer: Anne-Marie Bullock.

Why aren't all the new homes being built meeting the lowest carbon impact?

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Eco-cities2015042120150422 (R4)

Tom Heap investigates whether eco-cities are living up to their promise.

In years gone by, Costing the Earth has visited two eco-cities, which both promised that rapid urban development could be green, sustainable and profitable. Dongtan in China was meant to be part of ""the quest to create a new world"", according to British designers Arup. Masdar in the Arabian Gulf was to have ""changed the world"", according to British architect Norman Foster. But Dongtan never got built, thanks to Chinese political machinations and corruption, while Masdar has stalled, a victim of the world economic crisis.

China is still pressing ahead with over 100 new eco-cities. But does the idea of the eco-city make sense anyway? Critics say that some very ordinary new cities are being branded as ""eco"" in an attempt to give them a green marketing gloss, and that promoting the idea of the virtuous self-contained eco-city can mask a failure to build sustainably in the rest of the economy.

Producer: Jolyon Jenkins.

Eco-city Limits2010032920100401

Eco-cities. Architects, developers and visionaries have been promising them for the past decade. Dongtan was supposed to be the green Shanghai, the Thames corridor was supposed to be a linear eco-city, Florida's building a car-free city for 100,000, eco towns were to spread around the UK. But time and time again economic reality intrudes, plans are shelved or diluted and another commuter suburb is thrown up with a token wind turbine.

The answers might be found at the World Future Energy Summit in the extraordinary setting of Masdar City in Abu Dhabi. $20bn has been committed by the government to ensure this city is the first zero carbon conurbation. With the money made supplying the world's fossil fuel the Abu Dhabi emirate has employed Norman Foster to create the anti-Dubai- a car and skyscraper-free city powered by the sun. If anyone can do it then the cash-rich, democracy-free, hugely ambitious rulers of Abu Dhabi are the men to back. Progress is rapid with students already attending the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology with its focus on renewable energy and the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) making its home as the first international agency to be located in the Middle East.

With the great and good of the sustainability movement gathered together in Masdar City in early 2010 it's a perfect opportunity to test the concept- a real model for the cities of the future or a green smokescreen for the oil states' carbon- hungry habits.

Tom Heap tests the limits of an eco-city being built in a desert.

Eco-city Limits20100401

Tom Heap tests the limits of an eco-city being built in a desert.

El Nino: Driving The Planet's Weather2014091620140917

Weatherman Peter Gibbs investigates the global impact of the weather phenomenon El Nino.

Meteorologist, Peter Gibbs investigates the global impact of the weather phenomenon El Nino. Forecasts predict El Nino will occur at the end of this year, creating fear in many communities around the world.

Flooding, drought and famine have all been caused by the phenomenon in the past. Peruvian fishermen are often the first to notice as warmer waters change the behaviour of coastal fish stocks. Peter hears what they've already noticed and finds out how these changes could have ripple effects around the world. The anchovies in Peruvian waters are caught to feed farmed salmon but they're also an important food source for seabirds. The warm waters could also cause an imbalance in marine life and weather changes that will impact on global crop yields.

Peter Gibbs looks into the possible impacts of El Nino, how long it would take to recover and what's being done to prepare.

Producer: Anne-Marie Bullock.

Election 20192019120320191204 (R4)

Tom Heap assesses the environmental policies of the major political parties.

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Britain's politicians have been promising the Earth on climate change. Tom Heap chews over the plausibility of their pledges.

He's joined by Angela Francis of WWF, green finance expert Michael Liebreich, Ellie Whitlock from the UK Youth Climate Coalition and the editor of Business Green, James Murray.

Producer: Alasdair Cross

Can Britain's political parties live up to their environmental promises?

Electric Cars Recharged2013082720130828

Tom Heap asks if a new breed of electric car may finally bring them to the mainstream.

It has been the Next Big Thing for longer than most people can remember but there are signs that the much-derided electric car may finally be poised for it's moment in the sun.

For Costing the Earth, Tom Heap visits the factory where a major European car maker's latest electric supermini takes it's place on the same production line as it's petrol and diesel cousins.

And he discovers that experts believe that success will come this time thanks to a combination of improved technology, commercial imperatives and a hefty dose of EU legislation.

Electric Dreams2018100220181003 (R4)

Is it time to buy an electric car? Peter Gibbs takes the plunge.

Programme looking at man's effect on the environment and how the environment reacts.

Electric Island2015051920150520 (R4)

Tom Heap visits the Scottish island that can power itself.

The tiny Scottish island of Eigg is teaching the world how remote communities can power themselves. Tom Heap meets the locals and the visitors who are eager to learn their secrets.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Electrifying Africa: Beyond The Grid2013030520130306

Solar lamps are lighting parts of Africa the grid cannot reach. Tom Heap investigates.

Micro-solar lamps are now lighting parts of Africa that the grid cannot reach. Tom Heap investigates how the solar spread is emulating the wide reach of mobile phones in Africa.

There are currently over 100 million kerosene lamps across Africa that are the main source of light in parts of the continent that are either off-grid or where people cannot afford to hook-up to the electricity grid. These lights are polluting, dangerous and expensive.

Burning a kerosene light in a small room produces the same detrimental effect as smoking two packets of cigarettes. They are a fire hazard and they can cost as much as 15% of an average salary to fuel in some parts of the continent.

Tom heap sets out to discover if a small desktop solar lamp that costs a fraction of the running expenses of a kerosene lamp can improve the health of millions of people and help to lift Africa out of poverty.

This week's programme is produced in conjunction with BBC Newsnight and BBC World's 'Our World' programme. To watch the films made to accompany the programme visit the Newsnight and Our World websites.

Presenter: Tom Heap

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Mirco-solar lamps are now lighting parts of Africa that the grid cannot reach. Tom Heap investigates how the solar spread is emulating the wide reach of mobile phones in Africa.

Electrifying Africa: The Power Beneath2013022620130227

A geothermal revolution is set to electrify Africa. Tom Heap visits Kenya's Rift Valley.

A geothermal revolution is set to electrify Africa. Tom Heap visits the Rift Valley in Kenya, a potential source of abundant energy to find out if promises to light up even the remotest parts of the continent are going to come true.

Tom enters Hell's Gate National Park to meet the engineers harnessing the power of hot steam trapped beneath the crust, and heads north to the Menengai Crater to find geologists prospecting for power.

Back in Nairobi Tom meets businessmen and shopkeepers held back by a lack of readily available electricity and visits the poor neighbourhood of Kibera to find out how power and light can transform the lives of all Africans living with limited electricity.

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Ending The Plastic Age20180919

Solving the plastic problem. Four experts join Tom Heap to offer fresh answers.

Programme looking at man's effect on the environment and how the environment reacts.

How do we solve the plastic crisis? Tom Heap is joined by an expert panel to find fresh ways to cut down on plastic waste.

It's become the environmental crisis that's caught the imagination. Since Blue Planet 2 broadcast heart-rending images of albatross and turtles tangled in plastic waste enormous pressure has been exerted on government and retailers to reduce the flow of plastic into landfill and the oceans. But what's the best way to dispose of plastic? How do we reduce our consumption of such an incredibly versatile material? Are there future plastics that will degrade and disappear without a cost to the planet?

Lucy Siegle, BBC 'One Show' reporter and author of a new book, 'Turning the Tide on Plastic' joins Tom alongside Richard Walker, MD of Iceland supermarkets who has pledged to remove plastic packaging from own-label goods by 2023. Bath University's Janet Scott discusses plant-based alternatives to plastic and Dustin Benton of the Green Alliance explains how campaigners are keeping up the pressure on government to improve the treatment and recycling of waste.

Recorded at Countryfile Live at Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire.

Energy Storage2014051320140514

Tom Heap explores the innovative ways to store energy rather than let it go to waste.

Massive batteries? Compressing or liquefying air? Moving gravel uphill on ski lifts? Tom Heap looks at some of the big ideas proposed for storing energy using science or the landscape and explores which may become a reality if we're to keep the lights on.

Huge investment is being made in renewable energy but as solar and wind fluctuate and are intermittent often energy goes to waste because the points at which they generate isn't when the demand occurs. So why not use that energy and store it in another form to be used when it's required? Many companies are proposing ideas to do that - from extending traditional pumped hydro to compressing or liquefying air, electrolysing water or shifting heavy materials up mountains. Or will a revolution in batteries - making them cheaper and from different materials - help the cause?

Tom Heap takes a look at some of the bold ideas to see how far they'll go to keeping the lights switched on, what they'll cost financially and aesthetically and if there's any sign of committing to any of them at all.

Energy Use High2009012620090129

Miriam O'reilly investigates the government's school building programme.

She hears that unneccessarily complicated 'green features' are being built into some new schools, hampering teachers from getting on with the job of teaching and in some cases causing schools to use up to three times more energy than ones that were built ten, 20 and even 100 years ago.

Miriam O'Reilly investigates the government's school building programme. She hears that unneccessarily complicated 'green features' are being built into some new schools, hampering teachers from getting on with the job of teaching and in some cases causing schools to use up to three times more energy than ones that were built ten, 20 and even 100 years ago.

Energy Use High20090129

Miriam O'Reilly investigates the government's school building programme.

Everything's Gone Green!20180220

Why are environmental issues suddenly back in political fashion? Tom Heap investigates.

In the last General Election environmental issues barely merited a mention. Nine months on and the Prime Minister is making keynote speeches on recycling and Michael Gove is issuing a flurry of policy initiatives to get the green-minded voter on-side.

Tom Heap sets out to discover why this remarkable transformation has taken place. Is it the Attenborough Effect, the power of the newly-green Daily Mail or a blatant attempt to woo the youth vote? Perhaps senior politicians have actually come to accept the gravity of Earth's predicament.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Exotic Pets2013032620130327

Miranda Krestovnikoff asks if the trade in pet reptiles and amphibians should be banned.

Miranda Krestovnikoff looks at the impact of taking animals from the wild to be kept as pets. She asks if the trade in reptiles and amphibians could or should be banned.

Exploding Penguins20170509

Peter Gibbs meets the Penguins of the Falkland Islands.

Fake Plastic Sea2010100620101007

What's happening in the Gulf of Mexico is quite literally a drop in the ocean compared to the growing plastic pollution further out in the Pacific and now found closer to home in the North Atlantic.

Thirteen years after the world woke up to the threat from plastic polluting our seas and CTE's award-winning expose of the potential threat to our food, we reveal how far from winning the war on plastic pollution it's actually getting worse.

Along British beaches UFO's - unidentified floating objects are appearing in larger quantities than ever before.

The Marine Conservation Society recently reported that the amount of plastic on our beaches has more than doubled in the last 15 years and more and more of it ends up inside or wrapped around our wildlife.

Nobody knows what these oddly shaped bits of plastic are or where they have come from but there are increasingly urgent attempts to find out how much of it might be out there and what we can do to stop it.

The Pacific Gyre, a vortex of floating plastic already twice the size of France, is well documented but Gyres in the North and South Atlantic, The Indian Ocean and a further Pacific patch whilst long suspected have only just been discovered.

Anna Cumming of the 5 Gyres Project discovered the North Atlantic Gyre in February and the Project is about to sail for the Southern Atlantic.

High profile campaigners like David de Rothschild, who sailed to the Pacific Gyre on a boat made of plastic bottles called The Plastiki, have told us about the sheer horror and size of the rubbish patch, now Costing the Earth looks at what can be done about it.

The Plastiki boat has been made using a revolutionary new plastic which is completely recyclable, a new plant in Ireland plans to turn plastic waste into fuel and there is even a new plastic being made from algae.

The University of Sheffield are also researching the use of microbes to break down the plastics already in the sea.

Prevention would be the key but with the gyres themselves only the tip of the problem and 70% of the plastic we allow into the sea sinking to the sea-bed a solution to disperse these giant rubbish islands is essential.

Dr Alice Roberts investigates the growing problem of plastic floating in the sea.

What's happening in the Gulf of Mexico is quite literally a drop in the ocean compared to the growing plastic pollution further out in the Pacific and now found closer to home in the North Atlantic. Thirteen years after the world woke up to the threat from plastic polluting our seas and CTE's award-winning expose of the potential threat to our food, we reveal how far from winning the war on plastic pollution it's actually getting worse.

Along British beaches UFO's - unidentified floating objects are appearing in larger quantities than ever before. The Marine Conservation Society recently reported that the amount of plastic on our beaches has more than doubled in the last 15 years and more and more of it ends up inside or wrapped around our wildlife. Nobody knows what these oddly shaped bits of plastic are or where they have come from but there are increasingly urgent attempts to find out how much of it might be out there and what we can do to stop it.

The Pacific Gyre, a vortex of floating plastic already twice the size of France, is well documented but Gyres in the North and South Atlantic, The Indian Ocean and a further Pacific patch whilst long suspected have only just been discovered. Anna Cumming of the 5 Gyres Project discovered the North Atlantic Gyre in February and the Project is about to sail for the Southern Atlantic.

High profile campaigners like David de Rothschild, who sailed to the Pacific Gyre on a boat made of plastic bottles called The Plastiki, have told us about the sheer horror and size of the rubbish patch, now Costing the Earth looks at what can be done about it. The Plastiki boat has been made using a revolutionary new plastic which is completely recyclable, a new plant in Ireland plans to turn plastic waste into fuel and there is even a new plastic being made from algae.

The University of Sheffield are also researching the use of microbes to break down the plastics already in the sea. Prevention would be the key but with the gyres themselves only the tip of the problem and 70% of the plastic we allow into the sea sinking to the sea-bed a solution to disperse these giant rubbish islands is essential.

Fantastic Plastic2020040720200408 (R4)

Plastic waste is the scourge of developing countries. Many have poor waste collection and virtually no recycling. But there may be ways in which local people can put the waste to good use

In Cameroon a child called Pierre Kamsouloum wanted to play football, but had no ball. He got the idea of melting soft plastic, the kind that food is wrapped in, and moulding it into a crude football. A few years later, without a job and looking for a way to make money, he came back to the idea, and realised that if you mixed the molten plastic with sand, you could turn it into tough paving slabs, competitively priced. Now, with the help of NGOs, thousands of people across Cameroon and Gambia have been trained in the technique.

In the Netherlands, design student Dave Hakkens had the idea of creating machines that people could use to recycle their plastic locally. Using quite basic technology, these machines shred, melt and then extrude plastic into moulds to make flat sheets, bowls, and even giant Lego-style house building bricks. The designs are all open-source and online, and a movement of thousands of people has grown up, building, improving and using Dave’s machines.

In Guatemala, German environmentalist Susanne Heisse was depressed by the plastic pollution collecting at the side of Lake Atilan. Inspired by the actions of a neighbour, she started stuffing the waste into plastic drinking bottles, and so the idea of the eco-brick was born – a building block that can be strong and durable and at the same time sequesters the plastic and stops it breaking down into dangerous plastics.

None of these ideas is without its difficulties and each has its critics. But until we find ways to live without plastic, could they be part of the solution?

Presenter/Producer: Jolyon Jenkins

How people in developing countries can turn plastic waste from a problem into a solution

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Plastic waste is the scourge of developing countries. Many have poor waste collection and virtually no recycling. But there may be ways in which local people can put the waste to good use

In Cameroon a child called Pierre Kamsouloum wanted to play football, but had no ball. He got the idea of melting soft plastic, the kind that food is wrapped in, and moulding it into a crude football. A few years later, without a job and looking for a way to make money, he came back to the idea, and realised that if you mixed the molten plastic with sand, you could turn it into tough paving slabs, competitively priced. Now, with the help of NGOs, thousands of people across Cameroon and Gambia have been trained in the technique.

In the Netherlands, design student Dave Hakkens had the idea of creating machines that people could use to recycle their plastic locally. Using quite basic technology, these machines shred, melt and then extrude plastic into moulds to make flat sheets, bowls, and even giant Lego-style house building bricks. The designs are all open-source and online, and a movement of thousands of people has grown up, building, improving and using Dave’s machines.

In Guatemala, German environmentalist Susanne Heisse was depressed by the plastic pollution collecting at the side of Lake Atilan. Inspired by the actions of a neighbour, she started stuffing the waste into plastic drinking bottles, and so the idea of the eco-brick was born – a building block that can be strong and durable and at the same time sequesters the plastic and stops it breaking down into dangerous plastics.

None of these ideas is without its difficulties and each has its critics. But until we find ways to live without plastic, could they be part of the solution?

Presenter/Producer: Jolyon Jenkins

How people in developing countries can turn plastic waste from a problem into a solution

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Fast Fashion Slow Down2019032620190327 (R4)

Fast fashion is responsible for more emissions than shipping and aviation combined and by 2050 could account for a quarter of the world’s carbon budget. Consumers have been informed about the ethical alternatives but whilst sales of more sustainably sourced clothes are increasing, the biggest success of 2018 was a fast fashion brand which often sells dresses for less than the cost of their postage.

After grilling the fashion industry, the House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee has recommended action to curb throwaway culture at an industry level. But can regulation really change a nation of shopaholics who buy more clothes than the people of any other country in Europe? Lucy Siegle finds out how social media has fuelled a huge increase in consumption and how regulation, industry leaders and new generations of consumers and campaigners may finally force the industry to curb its excess.

Producer: Helen Lennard

Can fast fashion be forced to slow down? Lucy Siegle reports

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet"

Fate Of The Falcons2020031020200311 (R4)

Meet the Naga people of India who have turned from hunters to conservationists.

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

The Naga people of north-east India and Myanmar have long been famed for their hunting prowess. In the days of traps and catapults a balance was maintained but the influx of high calibre guns and the arrival of the Chinese Medicine Trade have wiped out much of the jungle wildlife. Tigers and Asian Black Bear are now very rare sights and even deer are increasingly hard to find.

Travel writer, Antonia Bolingbroke-Kent visits Nagaland to meet the local tribal people who have decided that enough is enough. They've banned hunting around their villages and created their own wildlife refuges. Already the signs are positive, with the revival of the Amur Falcon which was once hunted by the thousand and now nests peacefully in enormous flocks in the forest canopy.

Producer: Alasdair Cross

Meet the Naga people of India who have turned from headhunters to conservationists.

Feeding The Crops Of The Future2014031820140319

Tom Heap investigates whether we're running out of phosphorus, an element vital for life.

Tom Heap looks at whether we're running out of phosphorus. It's an essential element in fertiliser and all life on earth depends on it. Nowadays we get it from mining phosphate rock, which is a finite resource. Some scientists have predicted that we could run out within decades.

Britain has no phosphate rock reserves of its own, and with 80 per cent of known rock under the control of one country, Morocco, should we be taking future supplies more seriously, as a matter of national security?

Tom investigates whether there are alternatives to phosphate rock, such as extracting phosphorus from sewage. He learns about a nineteenth century gold rush in East Anglia, where fortunes were made from extracting phosphate from fossilised dinosaur bones and droppings. In an emergency, could we go back to this old method?

Producer: Jolyon Jenkins

Fertility And The Environment2018092520180926 (R4)

Jheni Osman asks what environmental factors may be affecting human and animal fertility.

Programme looking at man's effect on the environment and how the environment reacts.

Environmental investigation series.

Fields Paved With Gold2011040620110407

Birmingham City Council is already fitting solar to 10,000 homes and farmers with more than 35 acres had hoped to earn as much as £50,000 a year harvesting solar energy.

But, the government now seems to be backtracking on its promise of large subsidies.

Spain's solar industry recently crumbled due to the false economics of government funding and they have a lot more sunshine than the UK.

Germany too, which has the world's largest market for solar, has recently had to dramatically decrease promised feed in tariffs in order to prevent an unsustainable bubble.

Detractors of solar argue that even if we covered the country in panels we would only produce the energy of a handful of power plants.

Nevertheless the limited FIT offer is heralding a 'goldrush' in parts of the South West who hope to revive the local economy.

Once the offer ends the industry must be able to sustain itself but in the UK is the latest renewable hot ticket worth the gamble? Even in sunny Cornwall five figure planning application fees have put off many investors and new uncertainty over feed in tariffs has stalled planned projects.

There are those who believe covering the roofs of some of our most loved National Trust Institutions like Dunster Castle with panels will be an expensive mistake.

Others believe that any government or public body influence will only falsely inflate and then ultimately suppress the real value of solar.

As ever the industry relies on growing take up making technology cheaper and increased funding for research increasing efficiency even in Britain's darkest parts.

Low cost organic solar cells being developed at Cambridge University could be the answer but can we afford to wait for them to come online.

Tom Heap asks whether the UK is ready for a solar goldrush.

Birmingham City Council is already fitting solar to 10,000 homes and farmers with more than 35 acres had hoped to earn as much as £50,000 a year harvesting solar energy. But, the government now seems to be backtracking on its promise of large subsidies. Spain's solar industry recently crumbled due to the false economics of government funding and they have a lot more sunshine than the UK. Germany too, which has the world's largest market for solar, has recently had to dramatically decrease promised feed in tariffs in order to prevent an unsustainable bubble.

Detractors of solar argue that even if we covered the country in panels we would only produce the energy of a handful of power plants. Nevertheless the limited FIT offer is heralding a 'goldrush' in parts of the South West who hope to revive the local economy. Once the offer ends the industry must be able to sustain itself but in the UK is the latest renewable hot ticket worth the gamble? Even in sunny Cornwall five figure planning application fees have put off many investors and new uncertainty over feed in tariffs has stalled planned projects.

There are those who believe covering the roofs of some of our most loved National Trust Institutions like Dunster Castle with panels will be an expensive mistake. Others believe that any government or public body influence will only falsely inflate and then ultimately suppress the real value of solar.

Fields Paved With Gold20110407

Tom Heap asks whether the UK is ready for a solar goldrush.

Fight The Power20170920

How to become the world's most powerful environmentalist without really trying.

Meet Gina Lopez, the radical green activist who suddenly found herself appointed Environment Minister for the Philippines. Rodrigo Duterte was elected President with the promise to cut crime by killing thousands of criminals. He lived up to expectations, initiating a vicious war against suspected drug dealers, ignoring the protests of international human rights groups.

But Duterte wasn't just tough on street criminals, he also planned to crack down on the environmental abuses of large corporations perceived to have exploited the people and landscape of the islands. To achieve those ends he offered radical green activist, Gina Lopez the office of Environment Minister. Flushed with sudden and unexpected power Lopez removed licences from mining companies she suspected of abusing the environment. Peter Hadfield tells the story of what happened next.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Fighting Fire2017020720170208 (R4)

When wildfires engulfed the Canadian city of Fort McMurray last May 90,000 people were displaced and well over £2bn of damage was caused, making it one of the costliest natural disasters of all time.

That fire proved to be just the start of a summer of flames that ripped through California, Greece and France. An area the size of India now burns every year and climate change is blamed for an increase in the length of the fire season across the boreal forests of North America.

Tom Heap visits Fort McMurray to find out how a city could be so easily engulfed by fire and to meet the local scientists and firefighters working out fresh strategies to make sure it doesn't happen again.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Fire In The Amazon2019091720190918 (R4)

How can we prevent a repeat of the devastating fires in the Amazon?

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Fish - The Next Fight2013042320130424

Tom Heap meets the activists hoping to bring an end to illegal fishing.

Tom Heap meets the activists hoping to bring an end to illegal fishing by tackling the problem head on: by getting in the way of pirate fishermen.

Tom also meets campaigners who believe that the only way for fish stocks to recover is for a ten year moratorium to be imposed, allowing species of fish to become plentiful once more.

Fish Farms Of The Future20171024

Tom Heap finds out if fish farming can really feed the planet without trashing our oceans.

A new study suggests farmed fish could be key to feeding a growing global population. Fish are an efficient source of protein and already over half the fish we now eat are farmed. However, this phenomenal growth in the production of salmon and other popular seafood has had a detrimental effect on their wild cousins. Wild salmon numbers have fallen and conservationists blame the fish farms for the spread of disease, sea lice and the pollution of habitats. Most farmed fish also require a diet which includes smaller wild fish in order to help them create Omega-3 which has well documented health benefits for us all. This too has an impact on the wild fish stocks with many key species now under pressure.

Tom Heap investigates the dramatic and novel approaches which the industry may need to adopt in order to keep up with our appetite for fish suppers and it seems the best solution for the health of our oceans might be to take the fish we eat and the food we need to feed them out of the sea altogether.

Producer: Helen Lennard.

Fishing Future2017040420170405 (R4)

Can Brexit save the British fishing industry? Tom Heap investigates.

The British fishing industry suffered decades of sharp decline during our membership of the European Union. The European Common Fisheries Policy has long been regarded by many as a disaster, both for fishermen and for fish stocks. So will Brexit bring a bright new dawn? Will fishing boats from other nations be forced from our waters, could new 200 mile limits provide our fleet with copious fish to catch? Or will our Brexit negotiators focus on maintaining markets for big businesses like finance and the car industry, offering our fish stocks as sacrificial pawns?

Tom Heap visits fishing communities in Peterhead, Hastings and Brixham to gauge the mood and meets the conservationists hoping that new measures could revive our fish stocks.

Producer: Sarah Swadling.

Flight From Disaster2014040820140409

Can nature heal itself? Julian Rush reports on the aftermath of an environmental disaster.

When millions of litres of poisonous sludge poured out of a zinc mine in Andalucia in 1998 wildlife was devastated for miles around. As the tidal wave of filth headed for the marshlands of Donana National Park it became a disaster for Europe as well as Spain. The prime route for birds migrating between Africa and Northern Europe seemed certain to be poisoned for decades to come.

Sixteen years on from Spain's worst environmental disaster Julian Rush returns to the region to discover how nature, with a little help, has reclaimed much of the devastated area. The birds have returned and flocks of British birdwatchers are enthusiastically following the Imperial Eagles, Griffon Vultures and millions of birds on their spring migration back to the UK. Laurence Rose of the RSPB shares his memories of the disaster and shows Julian the path of the pollution which has become a lush, green feeding ground for resting birds.

The idyll, however, may be short-lived. Illegal boreholes dug to water enormous strawberry farms that export their produce to Northern Europe are sucking the life out of the marshes. Tourism is impinging on the wilderness and there are even advanced plans to resume mining at the site of the accident. With Andalucia desperate for jobs and foreign currency the local government is anxious to boost the region's industrial sector. Finding the best balance between industry and nature is vital for the future prosperity of this stunning area and for the exhausted birds that make their way across the Sahara to Britain's shores.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Forests Of The Orangutan2016102520161026 (R4)

Some of the last refuges of the orangutan are under threat. Peter Hadfield reports.

Some of the last refuges of the Orangutan are under threat. As food manufacturers demand more palm oil for their processed products so the pressure grows on the forests of Indonesia which contain some the last of the Orangutan and some of the world's densest reserves of carbon capturing peat. Peter Hadfield travels to Indonesia to witness the forest being cleared and the peat being burnt.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Four Menus To Save The Planet2016050320160504 (R4)

How should we eat to reduce our carbon footprint? Four experts debate very different ideas

How should we eat to reduce our carbon footprint and save the planet? Should we all give up meat? Or eat only meat that's reared on grassland which couldn't be used for anything else? Or maybe eat intensively-reared meat that grows so fast that it has no time to emit a lot of methane before it's slaughtered?

Aside from meat, how important are food miles? Some argue that food grown in hot countries and transported here by boat has a lower overall carbon footprint than

food grown in Britain.

Tom Heap chairs a debate from the Bristol Food Connections festival with four experts who have very different views, and present their own menus for low-carbon eating: Jasmijn de Boo, Chief Executive of the Vegan Society, Simon Fairlie, author of ""Meat - A Benign Extravagance"", Mark Lynas, environmental author, and Sean Rickard, agricultural economist.

Producer: Jolyon Jenkins.

From Iceland With Love2016040520160406 (R4)

Tom Heap finds out how Iceland could solve Britain's energy crisis.

The Ice Link interconnector would link Iceland's cheap and carbon free electricity from hydro and geothermal to the UK. It could provide the equivalent power of a medium sized power plant through a copper cable laid under the sea between the two countries. Crucially the power would be reliable and available when other renewable sources such as wind and solar are not. However, as Tom Heap discovers when he visits the land of fire and ice, environmental campaigners like Bjork fear that this green solution for UK homes could create a need to develop into the pristine wilderness of Iceland's Highlands. Should we pursue our global climate goals even if it has the potential to affect untouched and fragile landscape elsewhere? Tough decisions for Iceland and for us all.

Producer: Helen Lennard.

Frozen Fish2012040320120404

The seas around the Antarctic contain some of our last healthy fish stocks. Tight regulation and vicious weather conditions have kept most trawlers out of the southern waters but the global demand for protein could push more fishermen to sail to the frozen south.

For 'Costing the Earth' the chef Gerard Baker travels to South Georgia to hear how scientists hope to maintain the health of the southern oceans in the face of overwhelming odds. Could their experience help the rest of the world secure the future of fish?

Is it too late to save the healthy fish stocks of the Antarctic? Gerard Baker reports.

Frozen Fish20120404

Is it too late to save the healthy fish stocks of the Antarctic? Gerard Baker reports.

Fruits Of The Forest20160921

Can the growing of fashionable super fruits save the Amazon rain forest? Peter Hadfield meets the native farmers finding ways to profit from the forest without chopping it down.

In the dark days of the 1980s vast tracts of the Amazon disappeared every year, the trees sold for furniture production and the naked land converted into cattle pasture. International campaigns and the brave struggle of local activists eventually led to reserves being set up in which native people could harvest forest nuts, herbs and fruits without cutting down the trees.

The fruits of the forest such as acai berries, cacao and passion fruit have proven such a hit with healthy eating enthusiasts that the business is booming, attracting the attention of big international food companies. Could the reserves turn out to be a victim of their own success? Could the forest's natural bounty be over-exploited? Peter Hadfield travels along the Amazon to meet the local people trying to balance their livelihood with the health of the forest.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Fur Or Faux?2011030920110310

One of the most controversial clothing trends in Britain is the fashion revival of fur.

In this week's 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap investigates the claims by the British Fur Trade Association that fur is natural, renewable and a sustainable resource that's kind to the environment.He visits a fur a farm in Copenhagen where farmer Knud takes Tom around his farm that can house up to 24,000 mink.

Tom sees for himself the conditions in which the animals are kept, how they're killed and how their pelts are used.

But how does Knud, and the wider industry, respond to recordings of animal cruelty and neglect from other European fur farms? And what about charities like PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) who back in the 1990s ran a very successful campaign that vilified the wearing of fur? What do they make of the 'green' credentials of fur and its come back in the fashion world.

Campaigners for fur claim it's natural, renewable and sustainable.

Tom Heap investigates.

One of the most controversial clothing trends in Britain is the fashion revival of fur. In this week's 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap investigates the claims by the British Fur Trade Association that fur is natural, renewable and a sustainable resource that's kind to the environment.He visits a fur a farm in Copenhagen where farmer Knud takes Tom around his farm that can house up to 24,000 mink. Tom sees for himself the conditions in which the animals are kept, how they're killed and how their pelts are used.

Campaigners for fur claim it's natural, renewable and sustainable. Tom Heap investigates.

Fur Or Faux?20110310

One of the most controversial clothing trends in Britain is the fashion revival of fur. In this week's 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap investigates the claims by the British Fur Trade Association that fur is natural, renewable and a sustainable resource that's kind to the environment.He visits a fur a farm in Copenhagen where farmer Knud takes Tom around his farm that can house up to 24,000 mink. Tom sees for himself the conditions in which the animals are kept, how they're killed and how their pelts are used.

But how does Knud, and the wider industry, respond to recordings of animal cruelty and neglect from other European fur farms? And what about charities like PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) who back in the 1990s ran a very successful campaign that vilified the wearing of fur? What do they make of the 'green' credentials of fur and its come back in the fashion world.

Campaigners for fur claim it's natural, renewable and sustainable. Tom Heap investigates.

Fusion Future2010030820100311

For 50 years nuclear fusion has been touted as the safe, cheap, limitless fuel of the future.

In 2010 the future may finally arrive.

The Lawrence Livermore Laboratory in the United States is expected this year to fire a laser which will demonstrate, for the first time, more energy coming out of a fusion reaction than has been put in.

For many scientists it will be the public proof that all their work has been worthwhile, that the future really does belong to fusion energy.

Tom Heap meets the world's top fusion scientists and, from a safe distance, witnesses a fusion reaction taking place.

He asks what the enormous recent advances in fusion research really mean.

Can we expect a fusion power station to be boiling our kettle in 10, 20 or 100 years? Is there enough fuel available to move from experimentation to real-world energy production? How safe is the whole process? It may produce much less radioactive waste than conventional nuclear power stations, but the fuel used is the raw material for hydrogen bombs.

Does the future belong to fusion?

Tom Heap investigates the real potential of fusion power.

For 50 years nuclear fusion has been touted as the safe, cheap, limitless fuel of the future. In 2010 the future may finally arrive.

The Lawrence Livermore Laboratory in the United States is expected this year to fire a laser which will demonstrate, for the first time, more energy coming out of a fusion reaction than has been put in. For many scientists it will be the public proof that all their work has been worthwhile, that the future really does belong to fusion energy.

He asks what the enormous recent advances in fusion research really mean. Can we expect a fusion power station to be boiling our kettle in 10, 20 or 100 years? Is there enough fuel available to move from experimentation to real-world energy production? How safe is the whole process? It may produce much less radioactive waste than conventional nuclear power stations, but the fuel used is the raw material for hydrogen bombs.

Fusion Future20100311

Tom Heap investigates the real potential of fusion power.

Future Forests2012121320121215

Is the crisis in the UK's ash forests a vision of the future? Tom Heap reports.

The crisis in Britain's ash forests came as a shock to public and politicians. But is it a vision of the future for our woodlands? Stressed by climate change and vulnerable to pests and diseases crossing the English Channel the prospects seem grim.

In a special edition of Costing the Earth Tom Heap asks what our forests will look like in the future. Is there anything we can do to stem the flow of disease, can our native trees be made more resilient or should we consider planting a wider range of trees? Tom visits Lithuania where ash dieback disease first came to attention in Europe to find out how they've come to terms with new threats to their forests and meets the experts and enthusiasts with a fresh approach to protecting our forests.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Future Forests20170523

Can Britain revive its forests and provide our own wood to build homes? Tom Heap finds out

Can Britain revive its forests and grow the wood we need for a greener economy? Tom Heap investigates as we approach the 800th anniversary of the 1217 Charter of The Forest. Tree planting in England has hit a forty five year low which is alarming both the timber industry and environmentalists. Tom visits a new woodland in Central Scotland combining conifers with native tree species to offer wildlife habitats, flood prevention, and public access as well as timber. Foresters hope this new generation of mixed woodland will overcome resistance to tree planting, from those who fear a dark monoculture of conifers. Meanwhile, Ella McSweeney reports on a conifer planting boom in Ireland which, it's claimed, could damage the environment and price small farmers off the land. Back in the UK, Tom discusses how producing hardwood timber from broadleaved woodlands might give them a more secure future.

Producer: Sarah Swadling.

Future-proofing Forests2014031120140312

Julian Rush asks what is being done to protect UK forests from diseases like ash dieback.

Ash dieback was discovered in the UK in late 2012 and since then has been killing many of the UK's ash trees. But it's not the only threat - many pests and diseases are attacking different species which make up our forests and ancient woodlands. Julian Rush asks if our trees are simply vulnerable victims, susceptible to diseases, or if they have the strength to fight back.

He visits Wentwood in South Wales where phytopthora ramorum (PR) has infected larch trees causing the clear felling of over 70 acres, with more anticipated. He asks if this is the only solution and how the loss of the trees will also affect the animals and insects.

As ash dieback also spreads across the UK, Julian visits the scientists working to trace a natural resistance in trees and breed a new stronger generation of trees. The urgency of the situation has forced them to share their findings sooner, open sourcing information and enlisting the help of the public which has already led to new findings and chance developments which might not otherwise have been discovered. He asks if enough is being done soon enough and if the scientists or the diseases are winning the race. With a swathe of other diseases also threatening he asks if we have to learn to live with disease and accept that change in our forests is inevitable.

Produced in Bristol by Anne-Marie Bullock.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920229]

The first of eight programmes exploring the environment. This week Teresa Gorman , MP, and Jonathon Porritt battle for the planet, while presenter Roger Harrabin offers zoological immortality and reporter Dylan Winter dons his green wellies. Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920229]

Unknown: Teresa Gorman

Unknown: Jonathon Porritt

Presenter: Roger Harrabin

Reporter: Dylan Winter

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920304]

A new series exploring the environment.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920307]

Exploring the environment, with Roger Harrabin. Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920307]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin.

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920311]

The Environmental magazine

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920314]

Richard Sanders asks why this country is spending billions of pounds taking nitrates out of the drinking water, when those extracted are then turned into fertiliser and sold back to farmers.

Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920314]

Unknown: Richard Sanders

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920318]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19920321]

Robin Page reports from

Kenya on exploitation and the environment. And are catalytic converters for cars a political con trick? Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920321]

Unknown: Robin Page

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920325]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19920328]

Environmental current affairs with wit, clarity and imagination. Presented by Roger Harrabin.

Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920328]

Presented By: Roger Harrabin.

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920401]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19920404]

The pros and cons of the greener global life. Presented by Roger Harrabin.

Producer Jeffrey Olstead. Stereo

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920404]

Presented By: Roger Harrabin.

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920408]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19920411]

The pros and cons of the greener global life. Presented by Roger Harrabin.

Producer Jeffrey Oistead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920411]

Presented By: Roger Harrabin.

Producer: Jeffrey Oistead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920415]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19920418]

The last in the present series on the pros and cons of the greener global life. With Roger Harrabin. Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920418]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19920422]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19920704]

Back with a second series, presenter

Roger Harrabin investigates the long, hot environmental summer just a case of Rock 'n' Rio? And does a new survey show that children are being brainwashed by the Greens?

Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920704]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920708]

Roger Harrabin investigates the long, hot environmental summer - just a case of Rock 'n' Rio? And does a new survey show that children are being brainwashed by the Greens?

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920708]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920711]

Roger Harrabin challenges Michael Heseltine on the greening of industry. Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920711]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin

Unknown: Michael Heseltine

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920715]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19920718]

Live from the Whole Earth Show in Dorset: the first completely natural programme - thanks to wind power, solar panels and oxen.

Editor Tim Finney

Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920718]

Editor: Tim Finney

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920722]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19920725]

Twenty years ago the Blueprint For Survival was published. Roger Harrabin asks its editor, Edward Goldsmith , if he thinks anything has really changed since then. And Dylan Winter finds out whether there is environmental friendliness after death.

Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920725]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin

Editor: Edward Goldsmith

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920729]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19920801]

5: Can fashion ever be environmentally friendly? Plus: a look at the proposal to blast 600 million tons of rock from the Hebrides. Producer Jeffrey Oistead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920801]

Producer: Jeffrey Oistead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920805]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19920808]

Dylan Winter meets the winner of the WWF song contest while

Ted Harrison puts to sea with the whalers in Norway. Presented by Roger Harrabin.

Editor Tim Finney

Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920808]

Unknown: Ted Harrison

Presented By: Roger Harrabin.

Editor: Tim Finney

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920812]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19920815]

Live from UK Environment

City, Middlesbrough - where old £1 notes are turned to compost. Producer Jeffrey Oistead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920815]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19920819]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19920822]

with Roger Harrabin.

In the final programme of the present series the winner of the programme's eco-villain competition is announced, and there's a visit to the house that's powered by chip fat. Producer Jeffrey Oistead Editor Tim Finney

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920822]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin.

Producer: Jeffrey Oistead

Editor: Tim Finney

Genome: [r4 Bd=19920826]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19921107]

Roger Harrabin returns with the environment magazine.

An investigation into how Japan is poised to lead the world into what it believes is a cleaner and safer future - based on plutonium. Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921107]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19921111]

with Roger Harrabin.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921111]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921114]

with Roger Harrabin.

In the USA militant misers are saving the planet and money too. Hamish Mykura reports on the runaway success of the Tight Wad Gazette. In the studio, Ian Hislop reveals those who are economical with the environmental truth. And Vaughan Purvis asks: why worry about Sellafield when everybody has a nuclear waste dump in their own home?

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921114]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin.

Unknown: Hamish Mykura

Unknown: Ian Hislop

Unknown: Vaughan Purvis

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921118]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19921118]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19921121]

with Roger Harrabin. Polar explorer Robert Swan explains how getting sunburnt at the South Pole set him off on the road to becoming a UN commissioner for the environment. Meanwhile, Vaughan Purvis and his geiger counter sniff out more radiation, and ask why 26,000 Trimphones were dumped in a South Wales car park.

Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921121]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin.

Unknown: Robert Swan

Unknown: Vaughan Purvis

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921125]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19921128]

Gill Powell reports from Germany where even environmentalists are alarmed at the recycling laws which threaten to bury the country under mountains of rubbish. In the studio

Frances Caimcross , environment editor of The Economist, looks at the cost of putting the eco into economics. Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921128]

Unknown: Gill Powell

Unknown: Frances CaimcRoss

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921205]

with Roger Harrabin.

From the Cornish home of James Lovelock , the former space scientist, inventor of the microwave and creator of the Gaia theory.

Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921205]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin.

Unknown: James Lovelock

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921209]

Stereo

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921212]

This week's programme finds Roger Harrabin lurking in the grotto of a Green Santa, while

Simon Parkes looks at how-consumers are conned by "green hype".

Producer Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921212]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin

Unknown: Simon Parkes

Producer: Jeffrey Olstead

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921216]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19921219]

In the last programme of the series Rufus Bellamy searches for an eco-friendly Christmas tree and ends up in flames; the Bishop of Durham burns with indignation; and Botswana unleashes a broadside on the Rio backsliders.

Presented by Roger Harrabin.

Editor Tim Finney

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921219]

Unknown: Rufus Bellamy

Presented By: Roger Harrabin

Editor: Tim Finney

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921223]

In the last programme of the series Rufus Bellamy searches for an ecofriendly Christmas tree and ends up in flames; the Bishop of Durham burns with indignation, and Botswana unleashes a broadside on the Rio backsliders. Presented by Roger Harrabin. Stereo

Genome: [r4 Bd=19921223]

Unknown: Rufus Bellamy

Presented By: Roger Harrabin.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930227]

In the first of a new series, the environmental programme goes on the beat with LA's finest. California has draconian anti-pollution laws, and a special police force to enforce them.

Vaughan Purvis joins the officers as they lock up top executives and stalk illegal waste dumpers. Presenter Roger Harrabin. Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930227]

Unknown: Vaughan Purvis

Presenter: Roger Harrabin.

Producer: Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930303]

Radio 4's environmental programme reports from California.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930306]

Biotechnology is a dirty word in the Green movement - enemy of nature, the environment and third-world farmers.

But now the Chinese have thrown a spanner in the works by claiming that their biotechnology has great potential for those impoverished farmers the Green movement champions.

Roger Harrabin asks

Jonathon Porritt if environmentalists will have to think again. Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930306]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin

Unknown: Jonathon Porritt

Producer: Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930310]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930313]

On the eve of the Budget, Roger Harrabin asks: is being green and mean the way to find riches? Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930313]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin

Producer: Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930317]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930320]

The environmental programme which looks at anything from environmental loos to whether the whale needs saving.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930320]

Producer: Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930324]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930324]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930327]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930327]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930331]

The environmental programme which looks at anything from environmental loos to whether the whale needs saving.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930403]

Leicester might seem an unlikely centre of environmental excellence, but for years the council has run "Environment

City", encompassing many facets of urban life from roads to eco-homes. This week, the winners of the latest competition get an environmental audit of their home, and other

Leicester families pilot a city-wide energy-saving scheme.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930403]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930407]

With a report from Leicester on the "Environment City" initiative and a city -wide energy-saving scheme.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930410]

This spring the Norwegian whaling boats will resume commercial hunting, with the rancour of world opinion ringing in their ears. Environmental groups are up in arms and governments are threatening boycotts - but does the whale need saving? Roger Harrabin investigates in the last programme of the series. Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930410]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930414]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930703]

nThe series which deals with all things environmental returns with a look at the problem of population growth. The convention has been to seek to control population growth in the Third World, but with the average American consuming up to 50 times the resources of a Bengali or African, Roger Harrabin asks whether the problem lies in our own backyard.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930703]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930707]

First in a new series of the environmental magazine.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930710]

American David Holden suspects there is more biodiversity in his new garden in north London than in the fields of the home counties. And at the Royal Show, Roger Harrabin questions whether the English countryside is worth paying for. Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930710]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930714]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930717]

Roger Harrabin calculates how many miles a British dinner travels before it arrives on the plate ; asks whether trade is compatible with a green planet; and wonders what a sustainable lifestyle might be for the year 2010. Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930717]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930721]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930724]

Secretary and Shadow Secretary for the Environment John Gummer and Chris Smith hammer out Britain's future. Presented by Roger Harrabin.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930724]

Unknown: John Gummer

Unknown: Chris Smith

Presented By: Roger Harrabin.

Producer: Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930728]

John Gummer and Chris Smith hammer out Britain's environmental future.

Presented by Roger Harrabin.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930728]

Unknown: John Gummer

Unknown: Chris Smith

Presented By: Roger Harrabin.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930731]

Roger Harrabin looks at Britain's waste disposal record, and the effects of the surge in recycling.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930731]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930804]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930807]

Roger Harrabin investigates how much dirt is left behind by the green laundry.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930807]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930811]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930814]

Presented by Roger Harrabin. This week's programme looks at how gambling, medicines and skin creams are being used to save biodiversity in the Americas. producer Mane Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930814]

Presented By: Roger Harrabin.

Producer: Mane Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930818]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19930821]

In the last programme of the series, Roger Harrabin visits The Centre for Alternative Technology in Mid-Wales.

Producer Mane Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930821]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin

Producer: Mane Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930825]

Roger Harrabin visits the Centre for Alternative Technology in mid-Wales.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19930825]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19931106]

With demand for timber set to double over the next 10 years, the first of the new series goes to bioeria, Papua New Guinea and the Amazon to see how greed, corruption and spiralling demand is killing the world's last great forests. Peter Harrabin reports.

Producer Marie Helly

SEE THIS WEEK page 18

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931106]

Unknown: Peter Harrabin

Producer: Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931110]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19931113]

Cathy MacCormack is a single parent living in a damp house on a large rundown Glasgow estate. She and her fellow tenants are trying to persuade politicians to make the same links that they have - poor housing means already poor families spending millions of pounds on energy to heat the sky over the Easterhouse estate. She wants money spent on energy-efficient housing- good for health, jobs, people and the planet. Presented by Roger Harrabin.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931113]

Unknown: Cathy MacCormacK

Presented By: Roger Harrabin.

Producer: Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931117]

Cathy MacCormack is a single parent living in a damp house on a large rundown Glasgow estate. She and herfellow tenants are trying to persuade politicians to make the same links that they have - poor housing means already poor families spending millions of pounds on energy to heat the sky over the Easterhouse estate. She wants money spent on energy-efficient housing-good for health, jobs, people and the planet. Presented by Roger Harrabin.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931117]

Unknown: Cathy MacCormacK

Presented By: Roger Harrabin.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931120]

Roger Harrabin and David Holden meet the greenest people in Europe. The Dutch have some of the most environmentally friendly policies around, funding armies of academics and institutions, energy efficiency schemes and pollution clean-ups But they are also major consumers. Can they make the huge changes in lifestyle advocated by their politicians?

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931120]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin

Unknown: David Holden

Producer: Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931124]

Roger Harrabin and David Holden investigate whether the Dutch are the greenest people in Europe.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931124]

Unknown: Roger Harrabin

Unknown: David Holden

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931127]

Information and entertainment from the programme which investigates all things green. Presented by Roger Harrabin.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931127]

Presented By: Roger Harrabin.

Producer: Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931201]

Presented by Roger Harrabin.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931201]

Presented By: Roger Harrabin.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931204]

Presented by Roger Harrabin.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931204]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19931208]

Information and entertainment from the programme which investigates all things green. Presented by Roger Harrabin.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931208]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19931211]

Presented by Roger Harrabin.

Producer Mane Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931211]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19931215]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19931215]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19931218]

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931218]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19931222]

Roger Harrabin asks whether any of the world's religions have green thoughts in their hearts.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19931222]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940330]

In the first of the new series, Mark Whittaker questions the greenness of Britain's woodland policy. Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940330]

Unknown: Mark Whittaker

Producer: Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940403]

NEW ln the first of the new series,

Mark Whittaker questions the greenness of Britain's woodland policy.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940403]

Unknown: Mark Whittaker

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940406]

Cars bad, buses good. It's official. But how can the bus compete with the glamour of the car, and who dares leave the safe, secure car for the streets?

Mark Whittaker reports on whether there is any going back to public transport for anyone with enough money to avoid it.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940406]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940410]

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940413]

Green, clean industry means big profits - say government, the CBI and environmentalists. Mark Whittaker asks whether massive manufacturing concerns can really act in harmony with nature. Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940413]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940417]

Presented by Mark Whittaker.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940417]

Presented By: Mark Whittaker.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940420]

Presented by Mark Whittaker. Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940420]

Presented By: Mark Whittaker.

Producer: Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940424]

with Mark Whittaker.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940424]

Unknown: Mark Whittaker.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940427]

How much power do local authorities have to change people's behaviour? Mark Whittaker goes to Leicester- Britain's first Environment City - to find out how communities can be motivated to act for the good of the planet.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940427]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940501]

Mark Whittaker goes to Leicester to find out how communities can be motivated to act for the good of the planet.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940501]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940504]

Drainage and diversion have been the mainstay offenland farming but the cost is high - within a hundred years over 16 feet of soil has been lost to the winds.

Mark Whittaker asks whether the forces of water can ever be subjugated, be it in the low-tech flood plains of the Mekong or the pumped fields of East Anglia.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940504]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940508]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940508]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940511]

This week's programme asks if science can ever be a pure thing or are politicians and campaigners selective about the things they believe in to further the cause? Presented by Mark Whittaker. Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940511]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940515]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940518]

Presented by Mark Whittaker.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940518]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940522]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940720]

As the sound of timber hitting the ground rises in a crescendo across the world, Mark Whittaker looks at new methods of forestry. The paper industry claims that "clear-cutting" only mimics nature's fires. Can the pulpers and saw mills now say that your milk comes in green packaging?

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940720]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940724]

Mark Whittaker looks at new - methods of forestry.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940724]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940727]

This week's programme investigates the new Labour leadership. Has the new team considered how plans for boosting manufacturing will contaminate the planet? Are they still peddling the dream of increased consumption and more material wealth or is there a radical agenda? Mark Whittaker reports.

Producer Mane Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940727]

Unknown: Mark Whittaker

Producer: Mane Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940731]

Mark Whittaker asks if the new Labour leadership has considered how plans for manufacturing will contaminate the planet?

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940731]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940803]

This week's programme treads cautiously into the murky mudlands of New Jersey. legacy of the once mighty heavy industry. Mark Whittaker meets the poor, the black and the powerless who frequently share their neighbourhoods with toxic soils and rivers, and asks why so much is being spent on legalistic buck passing and so little on the necessary clean up.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940803]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940807]

The murky mudlands of New Jersey.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940810]

If planners listened to what people want, this week's programme would be a stroll through the streets of two jewels in the environmental crown - where flowers bloom and trees bow heavy and green. From Hulme in Manchesterto Moscow's medieval cousin, MarkWhittaker looks at what makes a city sustainable.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940810]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940814]

From Hulme, Manchester, to Suzdal in Russia, Mark Whittaker takes a look at what makes a city sustainable.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940814]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940817]

The programme which investigates all things green. With Mark Whittaker.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940817]

Unknown: Mark Whittaker.

Producer: Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940821]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940824]

Information and entertainment from the programme which investigates all things green. Presented by Mark Whittaker.

Producer Mane Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940824]

Presented By: Mark Whittaker.

Producer: Mane Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940828]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940831]

Last in the series with Mark Whittaker.

Producer Marie Helly

Genome: [r4 Bd=19940831]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19940904]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19941102]

Mark Whittaker looks at Britain's degraded rivers - many are little more than concreted, straightened sewers devoid of wildlife and inaccessible to people. Will they ever be restored? Producer Jessica Mitchell

Repeated Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941102]

Unknown: Mark Whittaker

Producer: Jessica Mitchell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941106]

A look at Britain's degraded rivers. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941109]

This week Mark Whittaker goes in search of Seed Savers - the unsung heroes who struggle to protect the genetic diversity of our crop plants against global seed breeders.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sunday9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941109]

Unknown: Mark Whittaker

Producer: Jessica Mitchell.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941113]

A report on the Seed Savers. Repeated fom Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941116]

What's the point of parks? In the past they were paragons for promenaders or pit stops forthe urban poor. Currently, the proper use of these public spaces is under question. This week

Mark Whittaker pursues those with a stake in posting out the parks of the future. Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rpted Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941116]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19941120]

A look at the parks of the future. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941123]

Presented by Mark Whittaker.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sunday9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941123]

Presented By: Mark Whittaker.

Producer: Jessica Mitchell.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941127]

Presented by Mark Whittaker. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941127]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19941130]

What should children be taught about the environment?

Presented by Mark Whittaker.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941130]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19941204]

What should children be taught about the environment? Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941207]

This week, Mark Whittaker looks at the impact of environmental destruction on our spirits and psyches, In the Hebrides, a Canadian Indian chief has come to make common cause with the islanders against a superquarry, And in California, eco-psychologists offer therapy for those traumatised by environmental loss.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941207]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19941211]

A look at the impact of environmental destruction on our spirits and psyches. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941214]

Mark Whittaker presents reports from Malaysia, Malawi and India.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941214]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19941218]

Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941221]

Presented by Mark Whittaker. Producer Jessica Mitchell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19941221]

Presented By: Mark Whittaker.

Producer: Jessica Mitchell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950329]

The environmental programme returns with Mark Whittaker looking at attempts by local communities in Britain and the USA to turn the buzz words of "sustainable development" into reality.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950329]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950402]

Mark Whittaker looks at the buzz words of "sustainable development". Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950402]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950405]

Mark Whittaker explores the relationship between unemployment and the environment.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950405]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950409]

A look at the relationship between employment and the environment. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950412]

Mark Whittaker reports on energy efficiency schemes in South Africa, Thailand and Bristol.

Producer Jessica Mitchell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950412]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950416]

Mark Whittaker reports on energy-efficiency schemes.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950416]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950419]

Mark Whittaker asks how nations can share the environment more peacefully. Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950419]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950423]

Mark Whittaker asks how nations can share the environment more peacefully. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950423]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950426]

The environmental series asks who are the best guardians of the most fundamental of all resources - land.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950426]

Producer: Jessica Mitchell.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950430]

Who are the best guardians of the most fundamental of all resources - land?

Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950503]

Mark Whittaker presents a special programme on the North Sea. What does the future hold for the most studied sea in the world, surrounded by some of the most polluting nations and vociferous environmentalists?

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950503]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950507]

Mark Whittaker presents a special programme on the North Sea. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950507]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950510]

Mark Whittaker takes a look at cost benefit analysis, as it is applied to everything from global climate change to a small marshland in Kent.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950510]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950514]

Mark Whittaker takes a look at cost benefit analysis. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950514]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950517]

In the last of the series,

Mark Whittaker looks at the environmental challenges that have arisen following the end of the Cold War and Nicola Baird runs a computer-simulated tropical island for a day.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950517]

Unknown: Mark Whittaker

Unknown: Nicola Baird

Producer: Jessica Mitchell.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950521]

In the last of the series, Mark Whittaker looks at the environmental challenges that have arisen following the end of the Cold War. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950521]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950712]

Mark Whittaker presents a new series of the environmental magazine. With Britain's flora, fauna and people all clamouring for space, something's got to give. Today's programme visits two battlesites - Britain's only turlough or limestone lake and the New Forest

- to see how the needs of animals, people and plants might be reconciled. Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950712]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950716]

Mark Whittaker examines how the conflicting demands of people, plants and animals are being reconciled on Britain's protected land. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950716]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950719]

How does art affect the way we think about the environment? This week

Mark Whittaker visits a community art project on the Thames and talks to deep ecology poet Gary Snyder.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950719]

Unknown: Mark Whittaker

Unknown: Gary Snyder.

Producer: Jessica Mitchell.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950723]

Investigating how art affects the way we think about the environment. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950726]

With no overall coastal planning policy linking sea and land, Mark Whittaker asks whether the current voluntary management schemes will be enough to protect Britain's coasts.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950726]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950730]

Will voluntary schemes be enough to protect Britain's coastline? Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950802]

Mark Whittaker looks at the pressure on poorer countries to build new roads in the name of free trade - but to the detriment of the environment. Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950802]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950806]

Mark Whittaker looks at how poorer countries are building new roads to the detriment of the environment.

Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950806]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950809]

This week - how the boffins calculate nuclear risk. With reports on Sellafield and the new environmental bugbear - biotechnology. With Mark Whittaker. Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950809]

Unknown: Mark Whittaker.

Producer: Jessica Mitchell.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950813]

How scientists calculate risk. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950816]

Presented by Mark Whittaker.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950816]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950820]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950820]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950823]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950823]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950827]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950827]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950830]

In the last of the series, Mark Whittaker looks at environmental awareness in China as it enters the world market.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19950830]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19950903]

In the last of the series, a report on environmental awareness in China. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19951101]

The environmental magazine returns for an eight-part series with Mark Whittaker investigating stories ranging from Indian land rights in Argentina, to pollution in Tibet and ecovillages in the UK.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19951101]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951105]

The environmental magazine returns for an eight-part series. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19951108]

Mark Whittaker looks at new ways of adapting business and the economy to meet the environmental agenda.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19951108]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951112]

Mark Whittaker looks at new ways to meet the environmental agenda. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19951112]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951115]

Mark Whittaker asks whether developing countries can protect their oceans from the plunder and pollution of richer nations.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19951115]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951119]

Can developing countries protect their oceans from pollution? Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19951122]

Mark Whittaker presents the environmental magazine programme. Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19951122]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951126]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951126]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951129]

This week Mark Whittaker looks at environmentalism as a catalyst for democratic change around the world. Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19951129]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951203]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951203]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951206]

Mark Whittaker goes in search of tranquillity - can it be found on this crowded island?

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19951206]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951210]

Mark Whittaker seeks tranquillity. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19951210]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951213]

Mark Whittaker discovers some of the initiatives young people are taking to control and improve their environment. Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19951213]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951217]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951217]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19951220]

Mark Whittaker presents the last in the series of the environmental magazine. Producer Jessica Mitchell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19951220]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960313]

Mark Whittaker coolly explores the hottest environmental issues in a new series of the green magazine.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960313]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960317]

Presented by Mark Whittaker , Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960317]

Presented By: Mark Whittaker

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960320]

The environmental programme looks at the growing problem of congested cities, like Bangkok, with its car toilets and motorcycle midwives.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960320]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960324]

The problem of congested cities. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960327]

Flash floods and scalpings on the trail of the elusive Jururei Amazon Indians.

Mark Whittaker looks at the precarious rights of indigenous peoples.

Producer Jessica Mitchell. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960327]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960331]

Mark Whittaker looks at the precarious rights of indigenous peoples. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960331]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960403]

Reports from Canada and Russia on the protection of the Arctic's unique habitat. Producer Jessica Mitchell

Repeated Easter Day 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960403]

Producer: Jessica Mitchell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960407]

The protection and exploitation of the Arctic's unique habitat. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960410]

A place of bleak beauty and fragile ecology? Mark Whittaker looks at what man has made of the Durham

Dales.

Producer Marie Helly. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960410]

Unknown: Mark Whittaker

Producer: Marie Helly.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960414]

Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960417]

A look at the ambiguous relationship between Greens and technology. Presented by Mark Whittaker.

Producer Marie Helly. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960417]

Presented By: Mark Whittaker.

Producer: Marie Helly.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960421]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960424]

Absentee landlords, sporting estates and the shadow of history are all creating a Scottish desert, according to environmentalists who want to repopulate the Scottish Highlands with the rural Scot. Mark Whittaker asks whether a larger rural population would transform Scotland.

Producer Marie Helly. Rptd Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960424]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960428]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960501]

In the last of the series of the environmental magazine,

Mark Whittaker examines the facts behind green scares, myths and hype.

Producer Marie Helly. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960501]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960505]

In the last of the series, Mark Whittaker examines the facts behind the green scares, myths and hype. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960505]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960703]

The environmental magazine returns for an eight-part series, presented by Mark Whittaker.

1: Recent scares about baby milk mark increasing concern over the serious effects that chemical additives may have on humans. The programme asks who can we turn to for accurate information.

Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960703]

Presented By: Mark Whittaker.

Producer: Sera Lefroy-Owen

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960707]

Mark Whittaker presents the environmental magazine. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960707]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960710]

Mark Whittaker presents the environmental magazine.

Mountains. A look at human influence on mountain ecology, in the run-up to a UN conference on mountains.

Producer Sera LefroyOwen. Rptd Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960710]

Unknown: Mark Whittaker

Producer: Sera Lefroyowen.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960714]

Mark Whittaker presents the environmental magazine which today explores the human influence on mountain ecology. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960714]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960717]

The focus for environmental activism has radically shifted. It is no longer in the corridors of Whitehall that the environmental cause is championed, but in the boardrooms of multinational companies. Mark Whittaker charts this shift from ministers to producers.

Producer Sera LefroyOwen. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960717]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960721]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960721]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960724]

Mark Whittaker reports from Australia and America on the ability of indigenous people to understand how fire can be used to manage the natural world. Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen

Repeated Sunday at 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960724]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960728]

The human impact on mountain ecology. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960731]

In tonight's programme,

Mark Whittaker charts the shift of focus in environmental activismfrom the corridors of Whitehall to the boardrooms of multinational companies. Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen

Repeated Sunday at 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960731]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960804]

Mark Whittaker charts the shift in environmental activism. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960804]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960807]

Although gold has long been an emblem of affluence and success, it is also a source of effluence and degradation. Mark Whittaker looks at goldmining.

Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen

Repeated Sunday at 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960807]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960811]

Mark Whittaker looks at gold mining. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960811]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960814]

How does Britain's water scarcity fit into the global picture of water management? Mark Whittaker looks at the potential for water wars in the Middle East and lessons for the future in California. Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen

Repeated Sunday at 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960814]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19960818]

Water management around the world. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960821]

Last of the series of the environmental magazine, with Mark Whittaker.

Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen. Rptd Sun 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960821]

Unknown: Mark Whittaker.

Producer: Sera Lefroy-Owen

Genome: [r4 Bd=19960825]

Last of the series of the environmental magazine, presented by MarkWhittaker. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961023]

Mark Whittaker kicks off the new series of the environmental documentary programme by taking a look at how green issues are reported in the media. Producer Sara Lefroy-Owen

Repeated Sunday at 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961023]

Unknown: Mark Whittaker

Producer: Sara Lefroy-Owen

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961027]

Mark Whittaker takes a look at how green issues are reported in the media. Revised repeat from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961027]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19961030]

Mark Whittaker explores the controversial issues surrounding prawn and shrimp farming in South East Asia. Producer Sara Lefroy-Owen Repeated Sunday at 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961030]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19961103]

Mark Whittaker explores prawn and shrimp farming in South East Asia. Revised repeat from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961103]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19961106]

Mark Whittaker looks at the question of balance in nature and asks whether one species should be culled in order to ensure the survival of another. Producer Sara Lefroy-Owen

Repeated Sunday at 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961106]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19961110]

Mark Whittaker asks whether one species should be culled in order to ensure the survival of another. Revised repeat from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961110]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19961113]

In the first of two programmes on the environmental effects of refugees, Mark Whittaker reports from a Rwandan settlement in Tanzania. Producer Sara Lefroy-Owen

Repeated Sunday at 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961113]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19961117]

Mark Whittaker reports from a Rwandan settlement in Tanzania.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961117]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19961120]

In the second of two programmes,

Mark Whittaker looks at the growing problem of the environment acting as a "push factor", forcing population movements from areas where the natural world has been degraded. Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen

Repeated Sunday at 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961120]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19961124]

With Mark Whittaker.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961124]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19961127]

With Mark Whittaker.

Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961127]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19961201]

With Mark Whittaker. Revised

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961201]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19961204]

Mark Whittaker examines the progress of Local Agenda 21 since the Earth Summit in 1992. Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen

Repeated Sunday at 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961204]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19961208]

Revised

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961211]

Mark Whittaker presents the last in the current series of environmental magazines.

Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen

Repeated Sunday at 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19961211]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19961215]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970326]

An eight-part environmental series. 1: CFC Smuggling. After crack cocaine, CFCs are the most valuable commodity smuggled through Miami.

Mark Whittaker reports from Russia, the suspected source of many contraband CFCs, and Miami, where a recent crackdown by US Customs has seen the first imprisonments for this type of environmental crime. Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen

Repeated Easter Day 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970330]

An eight-part environmental series. 1: CFC Smuggling

Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970402]

An eight-part environmental series. 2: Packaging. A look at the new packaging regulations to be introduced this month and their implications for producers, consumers and the environment. Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen Repeated Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970406]

An eight-part environmental series. 2: Packaging Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970409]

An eight-part environmental series. 3: Northern Ireland. Mark Whittaker reports from the Province. Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen Repeated Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970409]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970413]

An eight-part environmental series. 3: Northern Ireland. Mark Whittaker reports from the province in a special programme looking at environmental issues in Northern Ireland. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970413]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970416]

An eight-part environmental series.

4: Patenting. With urgent and growing concern over the patenting of genetic forms, Mark Whittaker looks at the minefield of patenting laws and the struggle to create an equitable protective framework. Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen Repeated Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970416]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970420]

An eight-part environmental series. 4: Patenting Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970423]

An eight-part environmental series. 5:

Election. Mark Whittaker looks at the Europeanisation of environmental policy and whether it is seen as a threat to national autonomy or as a response to the challenges of an increasingly global society.

Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen Repeated Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970427]

An eight-part environmental series. 5: ElectionRepeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970430]

An eight-part environmental series. 6: The Aral Sea. The shrinking Aral

Sea in Central Asia is seen as one of the worst legacies of Soviet rule. Can the west provide the right expertise and finance to treat the problem? Presented by Jeremy Cherfas. Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen Repeated Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970430]

Presented By: Jeremy Cherfas.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970504]

An eight-part environmental series. 6: The Aral Sea. Jeremy Cherfas asks what western help is needed to prevent ecological devastation around the shrinking Aral Sea in Central Asia. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970504]

Unknown: Jeremy Cherfas

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970507]

The seventh in an eight-part environmental series. Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen Repeated Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970511]

The seventh in an eight-part environmental series. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970514]

In the last in an eight-part environmental series, Mark Whittaker visits Hong Kong.

Producer Sera LefroyOwen. Rptd Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970514]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970518]

The last in an eight-part environmental series visits Hong Kong. Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970723]

An eight-part environmental series. 1: Forestry. Eighty per cent of the world's old growth forests have now been destroyed or degraded. In the aftermath of Earth Summit II, this programme asks what can be done to protect the remainder. Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen Repeated Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970727]

Jeremy Cherfas presents the eight-part environmental series. 1: ForestryRepeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970727]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970730]

Jeremy Cherfas presents an eight-part environmental series.

2: Green Architecture. This programme looks at why so much of the housing in Britain is so energy-inefficient, and asks how a sustainable future can realistically be achieved. Producer Sera Lefroy-Owen Repeated Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970730]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970803]

Jeremy Cherfas presents the eight-part environmental series. 2: Green ArchitectureRepeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970803]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970806]

Jeremy Cherfas presents an eight-part series on the environment.

3:Integrated Transport. This week

Jeremy Cherfas asks if people should be weaned from their dependency on the car for the sake of the planet. Producer Hugh O'Donnell Repeated Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970806]

Unknown: Jeremy Cherfas

Producer: Hugh O'Donnell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970810]

Jeremy Cherfas presents an eight-part series on the environment. 3:Integrated TransportRepeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970810]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970813]

An eight-part series on the environment. 4: Environmental Protest. From the Rainbow Warriorto tunnelling in Manchester, active protest seems synonymous with the environmental movement. Jeremy Cherfas asks whether it achieves anything, and whether a move into the boardroom might be more effective. Producer Hugh O'Donnell Repeated Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970813]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970817]

Jeremy Cherfas presents the series on the environment. 4: Environmental ProtestRepeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970817]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970820]

An eight-part series on the environment.

5: Fishing. Jeremy Cherfas talks to fishermen and politicians in Canada and Scotland, and asks how we can preserve communities which have relied on fishing the seas for generations while, at the same time, sustaining fish stocks. Producer Hugh O'Donnell Repeated Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970820]

Talks: Jeremy Cherfas

Producer: Hugh O'Donnell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970824]

Jeremy Cherfas presents an eight-part series on the environment. 5: FishingRepeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970824]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970827]

An eight-part series on the environment. 6: Aid. The promise by the British government to decouple aid payments from tied business deals was widely welcomed by all environmental organisations. Jeremy Cherfas looks at the power of the World Bank, the future of British Aid and the environmental consequences of misdirected money. Producer Hugh O'Donnell Repeated Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970827]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970831]

Jeremy Cherfas presents an eight-part series on the environment. 6: Aid Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970831]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970903]

Eight-part series on the environment. 7: A look at the problems of nuclear waste, and an innovative way to encourage people to recycle. Presented by Jeremy Cherfas.

Producer Hugh O'Donnell. Rptd Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970903]

Presented By: Jeremy Cherfas.

Producer: Hugh O'Donnell.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970907]

Jeremy Cherfas presents an eight-part series on the environment.

7: Nuclear Waste and Recycling Repeated from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970907]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970910]

Utilities. In the last of an eight-part environmental series, Jeremy Cherfas calls the utilities industry to account and asks whether it is mortgaging our future in its rush for profits. Producer Hugh O'Donnell Repeated Sunday 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970910]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19970914]

Utilities. Jeremy Cherfas with the last of an eight-part environmental series. Revised

Genome: [r4 Bd=19970914]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19971119]

A nine-part environmental series. 1: In the first of two programmes,

Jeremy Cherfas looks at the effects of global climate changes on nature, the economy and society. Producer Hugh O'Donnell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19971119]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19971123]

A nine-part environmental series. The first of two programmes on global climate change. With Jeremy Cherfas. Revised repeat from Wednesday

Genome: [r4 Bd=19971123]

Unknown: Jeremy Cherfas.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19971126]

A nine-part environmental series. In the second of two programmes on global climate change, Jeremy Cherfas looks at the factors shaping the political consensus around this issue.

Producer Hugh O'Donnell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19971126]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19971130]

A nine-part environmental series. The second of two programmes on global climate change with Jeremy Cherfas.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19971130]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19971203]

A nine-part environmental series. 3: A look at the management of water supplies - is the environment paying the real price? Producer Hugh O'Donnell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19971203]

Producer: Hugh O'Donnell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19971207]

Water supply management.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19971210]

A nine-part environmental series. 4: City life is becoming more of a strain - not oniy on people, but on the environment as well. The programme takes New York as its case study. Producer Hugh O'Donnell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19971210]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19971214]

A nine-part environmental series. 4: City life is becoming more and more of a strain on the environment. Revised

Genome: [r4 Bd=19971217]

A nine-part environmental series.

5: A look at the environmental cost of industrial agriculture. Is the drive to produce more food destroying the very land it depends on? Producer Hugh O'Donnell

Revised 9.30pm

Genome: [r4 Bd=19971217]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19971221]

5: A look at the environmental cost of industrial agriculture.

Genome: [r4 Bd=19971228]

A look at the power of the World Bank, the future of British aid and the environmental consequences of misdirected money. With Jeremy Cherfas. Producer Hugh O'Donnell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19971228]

Unknown: Jeremy Cherfas.

Producer: Hugh O'Donnell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19971230]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19971230]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19981202]

Five years ago, Britain and other nations surrounding the North Sea were shamed by a report describing how they were polluting their own back yard. But Brussels - the city which is pointing the finger - turns out to be another of the worst offenders.

Producer Hugh O'Donnell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19981202]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19981209]

Oceans. As the 1998 Year of the Ocean draws to a close, this programme considers the environmental implications of exploiting the oceans for solutions to man's problems. Producer Hugh O'Donnell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19981209]
Genome: [r4 Bd=19981216]

Malaria continues to be a global menace. Three million people die from it every year, and it is mainly a disease of the developing world. Yet lobbyists are succeeding in enforcing a worldwide ban on a pesticide that is the most effective weapon against it-namely DDT. This programme investigates that dilemma and the power of the environmental lobby. Producer Hugh O'Donnell

Genome: [r4 Bd=19981216]
Ghost Fishing2019092420190925 (R4)

Plastic nets and equipment left in the ocean by fishing boats is estimated to make up over 40% of ocean plastics. Even worse these plastic 'ghost nets' can go on catching fish and attracting other wildlife which then become entangled too. Often these nets are very old and once they finally do start to degrade they add to the problem of 'microplastics' which are ingested by sea creatures. It's a big global problem but as Lucy Siegle discovers in Cornwall and Italy there are lots of solutions on offer and teams of enthusiastic volunteer divers who want to get these old nets out of the sea and into a recycling scheme.

With the help of 'Ghost Fishing UK' Lucy takes a look at what can be done to prevent more 'ghost gear' being lost and to help get existing nets out of our oceans.

Plastic 'ghost gear' left in the sea by fishing causes problems. Lucy Siegle discovers why

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Plastic nets and equipment left in the ocean by fishing boats is estimated to make up over 10% of marine rubbish and in the 'Great Pacific Garbage Patch' over 40% of the accumulated plastic is lost fishing gear. Even worse these plastic 'ghost nets' can go on catching fish and attracting other wildlife which then become entangled too. Often these nets are very old and once they finally do start to degrade they add to the problem of 'microplastics' which are ingested by sea creatures. It's a big global problem but as Lucy Siegle discovers in Cornwall and Italy there are lots of solutions on offer and teams of enthusiastic volunteer divers who want to get these old nets out of the sea and into a recycling scheme.

Gm Update: Pig 262013052120130522

Tom Heap investigates the latest developments in GM technology.

He visits the University of Edinburgh's Roslin Institute for the latest on precision genome engineering in animals and discovers the story behind ""Pig 26"", the first genetically-modified pig.

Scientist Bruce Whitelaw tells Tom Heap that Pig 26 has been genetically 'edited' with the hope that scientists at Roslin can create pigs that are resistant to African Swine Fever, an aggressive disease that is fatal to pigs. It's currently virulent in Russia and there's no reason why the disease couldn't arrive in the UK.

Tom also meets Helen Sang who is currently working on breeding resistance to avian flu into chickens using genetic modification.

Despite the fact the GM technology is being used, according to the scientists Tom meets, to improve animal welfare by making animals disease resistant, will GM technology ever be accepted by the public in the UK?

We also hear from commentators from the USA, where a GM salmon is set to hit the supermarket shelves this year, and journalist and author Joanna Blythman believes that it is unlikely that a similar product would ever reach the shelves in the UK.

Presenter: Tom Heap

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

One of the main aims of the latest genome technology is to produce disease-resistant animals, but will GM technology and ever be accepted by the public in the UK?

Tom Heap investigates.

Gold Of The Conquistadors2011101220111013

Five hundred years ago the Spanish Conquistadors enslaved the population of South America in their desperate efforts to squeeze more gold and silver from the mines of Peru, Chile and Mexico.

Today the industry is booming again, driven by the global demand for copper and the rising price of precious metals.

New technology has made the industry safer for workers but the sensitive environment of the Andes is under threat from the rapacious water demands of the mining process.

In 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap asks if the modern mining companies are helping to end poverty in Central and South America or acting like modern-day conquistadors.

Mining is booming in South America.

That's bad news for the environment.

Five hundred years ago the Spanish Conquistadors enslaved the population of South America in their desperate efforts to squeeze more gold and silver from the mines of Peru and Chile.

Tom Heap investigates the mining boom in South and Central America.

Today the industry is booming again, driven by the global demand for copper and the rising price of precious metals. New technology has made the industry safer for workers but the sensitive environment of the Andes is under threat from the rapacious water demands of the mining process.

Mining is booming in South America. That's bad news for the environment.

Gold Of The Conquistadors20111013

Five hundred years ago the Spanish Conquistadors enslaved the population of South America in their desperate efforts to squeeze more gold and silver from the mines of Peru and Chile.

Today the industry is booming again, driven by the global demand for copper and the rising price of precious metals. New technology has made the industry safer for workers but the sensitive environment of the Andes is under threat from the rapacious water demands of the mining process.

In 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap asks if the modern mining companies are helping to end poverty in Central and South America or acting like modern-day conquistadors

Tom Heap investigates the mining boom in South and Central America.

Grapes Of Wrath2010102020101021

Wine drinkers face an uncertain future.

A decade of great vintages, plentiful supplies and cheap prices could be about to come to a shuddering halt.

In the classic wine regions of Europe there are huge concerns over climate change and land use.

Burgundy's greatness is based upon the relatively low temperatures that allow its chardonnay and pinot noir grapes to ripen slowly.

Gradually rising temperatures in the region are ripening the grapes more quickly, increasing sugar and therefore alcohol levels.

The subtle flavours are threatened and, given the strict geographical rules of the French system, the very existence of Burgundy wine could be under threat.

Meanwhile, in Germany's Mosel Valley construction has already started on a motorway and spectacularly ugly bridge that will cut across the vineyards.

Local winemakers fear that the delicate geology of the region will be shattered forever, altering the conditions that create the world's finest riesling.

The New World doesn't escape the environmental problems facing the industry.

In Australia decades of over-abstraction and drought have denuded vital water supplies whilst climate change could make many of the wine-making regions inhospitable to all but the hardiest grapes.

Tom Heap considers the threats to the world's wine and asks what can be done to protect our best vineyards from environmental change.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Is the golden age of wine coming to an end? Tom Heap reports from the Mosel Valley.

Wine drinkers face an uncertain future. A decade of great vintages, plentiful supplies and cheap prices could be about to come to a shuddering halt.

In the classic wine regions of Europe there are huge concerns over climate change and land use. Burgundy's greatness is based upon the relatively low temperatures that allow its chardonnay and pinot noir grapes to ripen slowly. Gradually rising temperatures in the region are ripening the grapes more quickly, increasing sugar and therefore alcohol levels. The subtle flavours are threatened and, given the strict geographical rules of the French system, the very existence of Burgundy wine could be under threat.

Meanwhile, in Germany's Mosel Valley construction has already started on a motorway and spectacularly ugly bridge that will cut across the vineyards. Local winemakers fear that the delicate geology of the region will be shattered forever, altering the conditions that create the world's finest riesling.

The New World doesn't escape the environmental problems facing the industry. In Australia decades of over-abstraction and drought have denuded vital water supplies whilst climate change could make many of the wine-making regions inhospitable to all but the hardiest grapes.

Grapes Of Wrath20101021

Is the golden age of wine coming to an end? Tom Heap reports from the Mosel Valley.

Grapes Of Wrath20101028

Wine drinkers face an uncertain future.

A decade of great vintages, plentiful supplies and cheap prices could be about to come to a shuddering halt.

In the classic wine regions of Europe there are huge concerns over climate change and land use.

Burgundy's greatness is based upon the relatively low temperatures that allow its chardonnay and pinot noir grapes to ripen slowly.

Gradually rising temperatures in the region are ripening the grapes more quickly, increasing sugar and therefore alcohol levels.

The subtle flavours are threatened and, given the strict geographical rules of the French system, the very existence of Burgundy wine could be under threat.

Meanwhile, in Germany's Mosel Valley construction has already started on a motorway and bridge that will cut across the vineyards.

Local winemakers fear that the delicate geology of the region will be shattered forever, altering the conditions that create the world's finest riesling.

The New World doesn't escape the environmental problems facing the industry.

In Australia decades of over-abstraction and drought have denuded vital water supplies whilst climate change could make many of the wine-making regions inhospitable to all but the hardiest grapes.

Tom Heap considers the threats to the world's wine and asks what can be done to protect our best vineyards from environmental change.

Is the golden age of wine coming to an end? Tom Heap reports from the Mosel Valley.

Wine drinkers face an uncertain future. A decade of great vintages, plentiful supplies and cheap prices could be about to come to a shuddering halt.

In the classic wine regions of Europe there are huge concerns over climate change and land use. Burgundy's greatness is based upon the relatively low temperatures that allow its chardonnay and pinot noir grapes to ripen slowly. Gradually rising temperatures in the region are ripening the grapes more quickly, increasing sugar and therefore alcohol levels. The subtle flavours are threatened and, given the strict geographical rules of the French system, the very existence of Burgundy wine could be under threat.

Meanwhile, in Germany's Mosel Valley construction has already started on a motorway and bridge that will cut across the vineyards. Local winemakers fear that the delicate geology of the region will be shattered forever, altering the conditions that create the world's finest riesling.

The New World doesn't escape the environmental problems facing the industry. In Australia decades of over-abstraction and drought have denuded vital water supplies whilst climate change could make many of the wine-making regions inhospitable to all but the hardiest grapes.

Green Babies2013031920130320

Alice Roberts asks if a UK baby boom could damage the planet.

2013 is predicted to see the biggest baby boom in 40 years. Whether it's the Royal baby or an after effect of the Olympics nobody is certain. But what does this mean for the planet? Dr Alice Roberts, who is herself expecting, finds out whether population really is the biggest threat to our environment.

The UK really is bucking the trend. In the US fears of a baby bust are coupled to predictions of economic decline. These are after all tiny unborn consumers. This is perhaps why many eminent nature watchers from David Attenborough to James Lovelock believe that over population is the biggest threat to our planet. No one can predict what a sustainable number of people would be but many agree that the predicted 10 billion plus is too many. At least, that is, if global rates of consumption increase to Western levels. George Monbiot points out that most growth in population is in the developing world where carbon footprints are often negligible.

Paradoxically the key to lowering the birth rate is higher standards of living and that inevitably means increased consumption. The recent Royal Society Paper concludes that population and consumption must be tackled together. So can these new baby boomers become more sustainable? Alice Roberts takes a look at prams, poop and purees to find out if there is such a thing as an 'eco baby'. If there is, she discovers, it may not be in what we purchase on their behalf but about how they connect with the natural world.

More and more evidence suggests being outdoors creates healthier, happier children and 'Project Wildthing' is an attempt to repackage and sell the concept of nature in order to compete with the marketing heavy worlds of toys and TV. Perhaps a new generation of nature lovers might want less stuff and enjoy the planet more.

Producer: Helen Lennard.

Green Cities2007053120070601

The urban environment has not been traditionally associated with wildlife, but experts are finding that the city can provide a remarkable diversity of flora and fauna.

Conservationists fear that many of our most precious species could be lost in the rush to build more houses.

But as Tom Heap discovers, this is not just a case of environmentalists against planners.

Wildlife and green spaces are becoming increasingly important in today's towns and cities.

Green Cities

The urban environment has not been traditionally associated with wildlife, but experts are finding that the city can provide a remarkable diversity of flora and fauna. Conservationists fear that many of our most precious species could be lost in the rush to build more houses. But as Tom Heap discovers, this is not just a case of environmentalists against planners. Wildlife and green spaces are becoming increasingly important in today's towns and cities."

Green Dream Homes2003081420030821

How easy is it to build your own eco-friendly house? Miriam O'reilly investigates.

Green On Green2008082820080829

With the urgent need for alternative sources of energy, there are some difficult choices to be made between power generation and the environment.

It has been suggested that influential pressure groups such as the RSPB, WWF and Greenpeace need to decide where they stand on green energy and should possibly be prepared to make sacrifices for the greater good of the planet.

Gulls: Code Red

Seagulls are breeding rapidly, thriving and getting bigger. With the decline of fishing in coastal waters, they have been moving inland to more benign conditions in towns and cities, especially where there are landfill sites. Experts fear trouble if urban gulls are allowed to go on breeding unchecked, but measures to control their population are proving ineffective.

Green Places For Everyone2019111920191120 (R4)

David Lindo, the Urban Birder, rarely sees a black or ethnic minority face when he's bird-watching in town or country. That's something he's determined to change for all our sakes. When diverse communities use their green space and demand more of it, health and well-being is improved and the battle to conserve species can more easily be won.

Producer: Helen Lennard

David Lindo AKA The Urban Birder asks how to make green space accessible for everyone

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Programme looking at man's effect on the environment and how the environment reacts.

Greening Fido2010022220100225

Could it be time to put an end to our pets? Alice Roberts asks if Fido can ever be green.

The average cat emits half a tonne of CO2 and a dog 1.75 tonnes per year. Using calculations based on how much land is needed to produce the food they need, a New Zealand couple have found that a large dog has a bigger carbon footprint than a 4 x 4 Toyota Landcruiser. Few people even know what goes into their pets' food and then there's the wider impact of our pets: the feline killer instinct towards wildlife, the never-ending cycle of poo which needs bagging and binning and the toys and bedding, shipped from other parts of the world to keep them happy.

Curbing global warming could also be vital to your pet's future. Scientists have warned that the small heartworm that kills dogs, cats and foxes is already on the rise in the UK with more cases appearing in the north of the country because of warmer, wetter summers. Furthermore, because of the increased numbers of pets coming into the country from abroad without quarantine, there is a greater threat of exotic diseases that can become established in warmer temperatures and may even pose a threat to humans.

To find out what can be done, Alice Roberts takes her own pets to boot camp. One good dog goes on a vegan diet, while her other pampered pooch lives it up on meat-rich foods. The results are suprising.

So should we be giving up the age-old bond between man and dog or do the studies which claim your bundles of fur are essential to your wellbeing mean their CO2 emissions are worthwhile? Could we even put them to good use? There are the methane digesters in San Francisco using their by-products to produce gas and electricity, the innovative student who has set up a hamster wheel generator for his mobile phone or the increasingly trendy option of having a pet that you can eat. Get a hen and save on food miles for your breakfast.

To find out what can be done, Alice Roberts takes her own pets to boot camp.

Greening The Green Belt2015031020150311 (R4)

Tom Heap asks if the green belt surrounding UK cities is really green or pleasant.

The UK's housing crisis is acute. We need to build but where? Many critics point to the ample green space which surrounds some of our most overcrowded cities and towns. The green belt celebrates 60 years since it became part of National Policy but its history stretches back far further. The idea of a stretch of land which separates the urban from the rural has been commended as the defining planning policy of the nation. This legislation is at the core of our notion of what it is to live in a 'green and pleasant land'. But is it fit for purpose in the 21st Century? Many critics feel that it is now time to reassess the lines upon which these boundaries were drawn and make a strategic plan for how we want people to live and commute in the near future. The green belt protects many environmental assets closest to our cities but Tom Heap asks whether we are making the most of this vital natural asset.

Greening The Teens2011050420110505

Take your average teenagers, Trudy (13, loves sports and Twilight), Liam (16, loves computer games) and Craig (19, loves cars).

So much of what they enjoy seems to be energy intensive, but does this demographic really use more power? How do you get them to care about the environment they are going to inherit?

That's the experiment Birmingham University is about to undertake.

Can computer games, mobile alerts and social media create a generation of greens or are they already ahead of the curve? Farmworld is the most popular application on Facebook but could a real world equivalent to keeping and trading your animals online really help to change attitudes? Nestle have committed themselves to making the palm oil they use more eco-friendly after a Greenpeace spoof KitKat advert went viral, but can teenagers pre-occupation with all things online always produce such results?

And should the kids really have to shoulder the responsibility? After all it was probably their gas-guzzling, gadget-consuming baby boomer parents and grandparents that created the problem.

The UK Youth Climate Coalition is launching a long-term campaign, which will see all 650 Members of Parliament in the UK 'adopted' by a young person in their constituency in an attempt to keep climate change at the top of their agenda.

How successful will their campaign be, even if the kids are alright can they really affect change at the top?

Costing the Earth finds out if teenagers can really learn to turn the lights out.

Take your average teenagers, Trudy (13, loves sports and Twilight), Liam (16, loves computer games) and Craig (19, loves cars). So much of what they enjoy seems to be energy intensive, but does this demographic really use more power? How do you get them to care about the environment they are going to inherit?

That's the experiment Birmingham University is about to undertake. Can computer games, mobile alerts and social media create a generation of greens or are they already ahead of the curve? Farmworld is the most popular application on Facebook but could a real world equivalent to keeping and trading your animals online really help to change attitudes? Nestle have committed themselves to making the palm oil they use more eco-friendly after a Greenpeace spoof KitKat advert went viral, but can teenagers pre-occupation with all things online always produce such results?

And should the kids really have to shoulder the responsibility? After all it was probably their gas-guzzling, gadget-consuming baby boomer parents and grandparents that created the problem. The UK Youth Climate Coalition is launching a long-term campaign, which will see all 650 Members of Parliament in the UK 'adopted' by a young person in their constituency in an attempt to keep climate change at the top of their agenda. How successful will their campaign be, even if the kids are alright can they really affect change at the top?

Greening The Teens20110505

Costing the Earth finds out if teenagers can really learn to turn the lights out.

Guardians Of The Environment?20170926

Tom Heap asks if the Environment Agency is fit for purpose.

Tom Heap asks if the Environment Agency is fit for purpose. After seven years of deep cuts to its staffing and budgets, Tom Heap asks the EA's Chair, Emma Howard Boyd, to respond to her critics. We hear from those who are concerned that the EA is doing too little, too late when it comes to protecting the quality of our rivers and the environment, and that it can appear toothless when dealing with the rising tide of waste crime.

Senior Conservative politician, John Gummer, now Lord Deben, created the Environment Agency in 1995. He tells us that the organisation has become too cosy to government and has lost its independence. Emma Howard Boyd responds to these and other concerns, such as the EA's shedding of one third of its frontline enforcement officers over the last five years. Can it still safeguard our environment?

Producer: Mark Smalley.

Guilt-free Flying2009101920091022

Can technology turn aviation green? A new report suggests that flying has a 4.9 per cent share of the overall contribution to climate change. That is a figure that seems certain to rise once the dampening effects of recession disappear.

Tom Heap asks if this means that the era of cheap flights is over, or can man's infinite capacity for invention keep the industry alive? Tom explores the options with Iron Maiden singer, professional pilot and keen enthusiast for 'green aviation', Bruce Dickinson.

They examine the use of lighter materials for aircraft, changes in air traffic control to cut down time spent in the air and more radical solutions, from biofuels to the rebirth of the airship.

Can technology remove the guilt from flight? Tom Heap and Bruce Dickinson investigate.

Guilt-free Flying20091022

Can technology remove the guilt from flight? Tom Heap and Bruce Dickinson investigate.

Gulls: Code Red2008090420080905

Seagulls are breeding rapidly, thriving and getting bigger.

With the decline of fishing in coastal waters, they have been moving inland to more benign conditions in towns and cities, especially where there are landfill sites.

Experts fear trouble if urban gulls are allowed to go on breeding unchecked, but measures to control their population are proving ineffective.

Green on Green

With the urgent need for alternative sources of energy, there are some difficult choices to be made between power generation and the environment. It has been suggested that influential pressure groups such as the RSPB, WWF and Greenpeace need to decide where they stand on green energy and should possibly be prepared to make sacrifices for the greater good of the planet.

Heat From The Deep2018112720181128 (R4)

The heat contained in the top 3km of the Earth’s crust could power the planet thousands of times over. Despite that, less than 1% of the world’s electricity comes from geothermal energy. That may be about to change.

Near Redruth in Cornwall a 3 mile deep hole is being dug- it will be the deepest in the UK. Cold water will be pumped down to the 200 degrees hot rocks below, the hot water returning will drive turbines to provide electricity for thousands of homes. Nearby, the Eden Project and the seawater lido in Penzance are building their own geothermal plants.

But Cornwall is just the tip of the iceberg. Geothermal electricity was first produced in 1904 at Larderello in Tuscany. Today Enel Green Power supply a third of the region's electricity from natural steam and they have plans to get much bigger, exploiting an extraordinary bit of chemistry. When water goes above 374 degrees centigrade and 221 bars of pressure it becomes a supercritical fluid. This contains five times as much energy as 200 degree water, transfers energy twice as efficiently and has a lower viscosity. Overall, you can theoretically get ten times more energy than from a similar conventional borehole.

The new technology also promises more efficient geothermal energy in regions far away from geological hot spots like Iceland and Italy. The only fly in the ointment is that some techniques involve creating bigger fractures in the rocks. Experiments at Basel in Switzerland provoked an earthquake. So can the incredible potential of new-gen geothermal be exploited without provoking protests?

Producer: Alasdair Cross

Can we exploit the hot rocks beneath the earth's crust for power? Peter Gibbs reports.

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet.

Helen Czerski's Arctic Expedition2018100920181010 (R4)

After six weeks at the North Pole Helen Czerski has new insights into the climate change

Programme looking at man's effect on the environment and how the environment reacts.

After a month at the North Pole Helen Czerski has fresh insights into climate change

The Arctic is warming twice as fast as the rest of the planet. That's certain to impact on the weather we experience in Britain. Physicist Helen Czerski and a boatload of international scientists have just spent a month at the North Pole conducting experiments to find out much more about the impacts of this extraordinary change to our planet.

Join Helen on the Arctic ice floes for the very latest research on the rapid changes to the far north.

Producer: Alasdair Cross

After six weeks at the North Pole, Helen Czerski has new insights into climate change.

The Arctic is warming twice as fast as the rest of the planet. That's certain to impact on the weather we experience in Britain. Physicist Helen Czerski and an icebreaker full of scientists have just spent six weeks at the North Pole conducting experiments to find out much more about the impacts of this extraordinary change to our planet.

Photo by Mario Hoppmann

Heroines Of The Rainforest2017031420170315 (R4)

Two remarkable women have found a formula to save the last of the Indonesian rainforest.

The Indonesian rainforest has suffered enormous damage over the last few decades. Logged for timber and cleared for palm oil production, the habitat of remarkable creatures has declined at an extraordinary rate, leaving the region's iconic Orangutan critically endangered.

Peter Hadfield has travelled across Borneo to meet two remarkable women who have found a formula to reverse the decline. Dentist, Hotlin Ompusunggu and doctor, Kinari Webb set up a clinic which offered cheap healthcare to villages that agree to stop logging in their neighbourhood. The clinic also teaches low intensity farming practices, providing local people with fresh vegetables and a new income stream, bringing the traditional slash and burn agricultural techniques to an end.

Hotlin has been awarded one of the Oscars of the conservation world- a Whitley Gold Award- and the hope is that the formula can be rolled out to other regions of the world threatened by deforestation.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

High Speed Hell?2011100520111006

What you hear is not necessarily what you're getting.

We all have our pet noise hates, but experts tell us that the nuisance caused by noise depends on a number of factors and certainly not just volume.

For this week's Costing The Earth, Tom Heap consults the experts and discovers that our response to noise is not only subjective, it is easily influenced by context and even what we can see.

Tom also looks at the environmental impact of major construction projects and asks what more could be done to limit the damage.

Money, politics and diligent campaigning all have a part to play in ensuring that the latest technology is brought into play.

Throw enough money at the problem and major projects like the High Speed rail line between London and Birmingham be significantly quieter and less disruptive than campaigners fear.

How much disruption will a new high speed rail line really cause? Tom Heap reports.

The high speed rail line between London and Birmingham has already provoked plenty of anger along the length of its proposed route.

But what's the truth about the level of noise and disruption that a development like this will really cause?

In 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap enlists a team of experts in noise, smell and psychology to test the impact of Britain's first high speed line to the Channel Tunnel and to gauge the likely impact of High Speed 2.

He'll also be talking to railway historian Christian Wolmar to find out how rural Britain reacted to the sight of steam locomotives powering past the hay ricks and pitchfork-wielding peasants.

Producer: Steve Peacock.

The high speed rail line between London and Birmingham has already provoked plenty of anger along the length of its proposed route. But what's the truth about the level of noise and disruption that a development like this will really cause?

In 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap enlists a team of experts in noise, smell and psychology to test the impact of Britain's first high speed line to the Channel Tunnel and to gauge the likely impact of High Speed 2. He'll also be talking to railway historian Christian Wolmar to find out how rural Britain reacted to the sight of steam locomotives powering past the hay ricks and pitchfork-wielding peasants.

High Speed Hell?20111006

What you hear is not necessarily what you're getting. We all have our pet noise hates, but experts tell us that the nuisance caused by noise depends on a number of factors and certainly not just volume. For this week's Costing The Earth, Tom Heap consults the experts and discovers that our response to noise is not only subjective, it is easily influenced by context and even what we can see.

Tom also looks at the environmental impact of major construction projects and asks what more could be done to limit the damage. Money, politics and diligent campaigning all have a part to play in ensuring that the latest technology is brought into play. Throw enough money at the problem and major projects like the High Speed rail line between London and Birmingham be significantly quieter and less disruptive than campaigners fear.

How much disruption will a new high speed rail line really cause? Tom Heap reports.

Hit The Gas!2019030520190306 (R4)

From the cattle shed to the racetrack, ammonia is having a moment. In the wrong place it's a dangerous pollutant, in the right place it's a clean fuel for your car. Ella McSweeney and Peter Hadfield report on the two faces of the gas chemists know as NH3.

The increasing global demand for milk means more big dairy herds. More cows means more dung and urine. Mixed together they produce ammonia gas which contributes to urban air pollution and destroys sensitive habitats. In Ireland scientists have spotted big problems in peat bogs. The mosses which help create the carbon-grabbing peat are dying off in areas down-wind of dairy, pig and chicken farms. Farmers are being asked to change the way they store and spread their slurry, but it could be too late for some of the island's most vulnerable bogs.

Meanwhile, in Australia they're exploiting some interesting properties of ammonia. Environmentally-friendly hydrogen-powered cars have been around for years but they've failed to take off because hydrogen is costly and awkward to transport. By contrast, ammonia is very simple to move around from refinery to fuel station. Splitting the N from the H is straightforward, giving drivers a source of fuel that emits only water from the exhaust pipe.

So can ammonia complete its journey from environmental villain to green hero?

Producer: Alasdair Cross

From the cattle shed to the racetrack. How ammonia cleaned up its act.

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet"

Home Power20020411

Series exploring environmental issues.

`Home Power'.

Alex Kirby discovers how to turn one's home into a power station.

Homes Fit For 20502020031720200318 (R4)

The demand for housing is pushing through developments of millions of new build homes. So why aren't these all being built to the best energy efficiency standards possible with the technology that's now available? Tom Heap reveals how the scrapping of zero carbon homes has meant years of construction has not had to meet the higher standards hoped for. The new Future Homes Standard is being consulted on but Tom Heap hears it's not just missing the mark for some groups but is at risk of reducing some standards altogether.

Homes now come with an EPC - an Energy Performance Certificate - to test how reliable it is Tom trains thermal cameras onto a new build to reveal any leaks or hidden short cuts that may be lurking behind the walls.

Tom also gets a vision of the future - where clever design on village scale and with artificial intelligence could see us living in a low carbon way without even having to think too hard about it.

Producer: Anne-Marie Bullock.

Why aren't all the new homes being built meeting the lowest carbon impact?

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Hot In The City2013102920131030

Heatwaves are killing thousands. Tom Heap asks how we can change our cities to survive.

Heatwaves and rising temperatures are killing thousands of people each year and that's expected to increase dramatically in the future. Tom Heap asks if our cities are becoming uninhabitable and goes in search of the innovative design changes we migh have to incorporate into our homes, offices and cities to survive.

The'urban heat island effect' has shown how temperatures can reach their highest in cities compared to the surrounding countryside. Rising Summer temperatures for prolonged periods, coupled with the intensity of thousands of people living, working and travelling in a confined area while blasting air conditioning to keep cool can mean the heat is held in our cities fails to ease overnight. This can lead to more than just getting hot under the collar - increased pollution, poor health and even death.

Tom Heap sweats it out in New York and London to find out how we'll have to change to cope. Streets and building design can help to keep things cool so should we demolish Paris and start again? Building materials are being created to absorb and hold water and reflect the sun's rays but is that enough? Will concrete be done away with altogether? Trees and rivers could become the city's superheroes so should we be demolishing roads to prioritise them?

Tom also heads to Milan to see a radical new housing design where trees and plants don't simply decorate but help form a 'vertical forest' to cool and shield the residents from scorching heat and pollution. Will this urban jungle become the forerunner of things to come?

Produced in Bristol by Anne-Marie Bullock.

Hunting The Beefalo2015030320150304 (R4)

Tom Heap goes in search of the hybrid beefalo, which is damaging the Grand Canyon.

A failed breeding experiment has led to a hybrid creature running riot in the Grand Canyon. The Beefalo is now growing in number rapidly and causing damage to the landscape, threatening the environment and eco-system and trashing ancient monuments of Native Americans. Yet with a hunting ban in the National Park how can they be controlled? Tom Heap goes in search of the legendary creature and the answers.

The iconic bison is on the emblem on the National Parks yet in 1906 its numbers in America were falling so low 'Buffalo Jones' tried a cross-breeding programme with cattle to create the hardy 'beefalo' hybrid. The state eventually took over the herd and kept numbers down through limited hunting. But the beefalo is wise it seems and has learnt it can escape that threat inside the Grand Canyon National Park.

An estimated population of around 600, and growing by up to 50% a year, is causing huge damage to the park. Its herds concentrate the damage in sensitive areas - drinking dry water holes, polluting them, over grazing and leaving bare soil, their success is damaging the landscape and eco-system. Now they're also kicking down ancient monuments of Native American tribes for whom the canyon is a spiritual home. Meanwhile tourists hoping to catch sight of the creatures have found their cars attacked.

So how do you solve a problem like the beefalo? A massive consultation has begun to look at the lethal and non-lethal options and consider if a cull is a viable option despite the sensitivities in the park. Tom Heap goes tracking the beefalo and asks how much damage will be done before a solution is found.

Presented by Tom Heap and produced in Arizona by Anne-Marie Bullock.

Hurrah For The Eco Car2008092520080926

Politicians tell us that the future of motoring is electric, and several of the major car companies are launching a new generation of greener vehicles using hydrogen fuel technology.

All are being trumpeted as the salvation of the motor car in a world without oil.

But despite being promised green cars as long ago as the 90s, very few have yet to materialise on our roads.

Tom Heap investigates

Hurrah for the Eco Car

Politicians tell us that the future of motoring is electric, and several of the major car companies are launching a new generation of greener vehicles using hydrogen fuel technology. All are being trumpeted as the salvation of the motor car in a world without oil. But despite being promised green cars as long ago as the 90s, very few have yet to materialise on our roads. Tom Heap investigates

In Cod We Trust2003082820030904

Alex Kirby investigates the social and environmental consequences of the impending extinction of North Sea cod.

In Conversation With David Attenborough2015111720151118 (R4)

David Attenborough and fellow experts join Tom Heap to preview the Paris Climate Summit.

David Attenborough and a panel of influential thinkers on the natural world join Tom Heap to preview this month's Climate Summit in Paris. Can the world's leaders come to an agreement to save a warming planet?

The director of Titanic, Avatar and Terminator, James Cameron tells Tom that a vegan diet can slash our carbon emissions. Former Australian Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd recalls what went wrong at the last climate summit in Copenhagen and explains why he's so much more hopeful of real commitments on carbon emissions from the Paris meeting.

David MacKay, the government's chief scientific advisor on energy policy until 2014, tells Tom that Europe's renewable energy policy is unfit for purpose and David Attenborough raises the thorny issue of our rising population.

Producer: Alasdair Cross

Indian Energy2019052120190522 (R4)

As India votes we find out if the environment is rising up the agenda.

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Indian Impact2019052120190522 (R4)

As India votes Navin Singh Khadka travels the sub-continent to find out if environmental issues are rising up the agenda.

Amongst nations India is the third highest emitter of carbon dioxide. Its rapid pace of development is pushing emissions higher and worsening air quality. The BBC World Service Environment Correspondent visits the energy capital of India to find out if that link between development and environmental damage can be broken.

Producer: Alasdair Cross

As India votes, are environmental issues rising up the political agenda?

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Insect Extinction?2019052820190529 (R4)

Insects are the most varied and abundant animals outweighing humanity by 17 times, yet they are in decline in many parts of the world. Insects have been called the ‘glue’ in nature and are essential for the proper functioning of all ecosystems as pollinators, food for other animals, and recyclers of nutrients. This month the United Nations IPBES report said insect abundance has declined very rapidly in some places, and the available evidence supports a “tentative” estimate that 10% of the 5.5m species of insect thought to exist are threatened with extinction.

Leading entomologists tell Tom Heap that insects have an image problem when it comes to conservation and the first step is getting people to care about these little creatures. We hear about the weird and wonderful world of some insect species that are declining in the UK, including mayflies and dung beetles and discover just how they contribute to the systems we humans rely on. The conversion of natural environments to create farmland is one of the main causes of the decline, with the use of pesticides, urbanisation and climate change also major factors. Tom asks global pesticide manufacturer Bayer about what they’re doing to help reverse insect decline and considers how we can practically make more space for insects.

Producer: Sophie Anton

Photo credit: Dr Beynon's Bug Farm

What did insects ever do for us? Tom Heap meets the people trying to stop their decline.

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

Insulation For The Nation2017042520170426 (R4)

Tom Heaps asks if UK homes can be retrofitted to cut carbon emissions.

Tom Heaps asks if insulation and power-saving gadgets can cut carbon emissions from homes.

Our homes are responsible for 25% of our carbon emissions in the UK. Tom Heap asks if we can retrofit our homes to fight climate change.

An Englishman's home is his castle, but most homes are not well defended against cold air and high fuel bills and if we are going to hit our 2050 carbon dioxide emissions targets we need to start a retrofit revolution from our front doors.

Tom visits the house of his producer, Martin, to take stock of his 'typical' Edwardian terrace. Pre-1920s housing makes up a big proportion of UK homes and what Tom and a team of eco-house experts discover in Martin's house is not uncommon: draughty doorways, patches of damp, hot-spots and cold spots.

Martin's home has room for improvement and so Tom then makes a whistle-stop tour of homes that are part of the SuperHomes network. SuperHomes is an organisation of determined householders who have made big changes to their dwellings to improve energy efficiency, cut bills and reduce emissions. They show that small changes can make a big difference.

However, in order to tackle our ageing housing stock, a lot of skilled workers are needed. Energy consultant Peter Rickaby, and Gavin Killip from the Environmental Change Institute at Oxford University explain that we simply do not have the skilled workforce to carry out the necessary retrofit renovations. The problem will be, according to Professor Linda Clarke from the Westminster Business School, exacerbated by Brexit.

Meanwhile, at his 'power station' in Notting Hill, Michael Liebreich, director of New Energy Finance at Bloomberg thinks we should think big: renovating all our homes could mean that we don't need big new power stations like Hinkley.

Presenter: Tom Heap
Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Intergovernmental Panel On Climate Change2013100120131002

Tom Heap reports on the latest findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

He's joined by a panel of top scientists and thinkers to pick over the report and discover what the indications are for the global climate over the next few decades. The panel includes:

Professor Julia Slingo, Met Office Chief Scientist

Sir Mark Walport, UK Government Chief Scientific Adviser

Dr. Bjorn Lomborg, Author of ""The Skeptical Environmentalist

Professor Mike Hulme, Professor of Climate and Culture, King's College London

Mark Lynas, Author and environmentalist

Tony Grayling, Head of Climate Change and Communities, Environment Agency

Presenter: Tom Heap

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Into The Arctic2011020220110203
20110203 (R4)

In 2010 the Canadian Arctic experienced its warmest year on record.

Suddenly the area's resources- oil, gas, iron ore, uranium, even diamonds- seem accessible.

From Siberia through Greenland to Canada and Alaska energy and mining companies are descending on the north, eager for a slice of the profits they believe to be waiting for them in the gathering slush.

In the first of two programmes Tom Heap is in Arctic Canada to find out more about the new goldrush and to ask if the scramble for resources could reignite the great Cold War rivalries.

The Arctic has held a fascination for Europeans for centuries.

Vikings, fishermen and whalers plundered for short summer seasons and in 1576 Sir Martin Frobisher sailed around Baffin Island in search of the North-West passage to the riches of the east, a search that would obsess sailors for the next 350 years.

Today the passage is clearing and shipping lines are examining the possibility of a high speed route between Western Europe and China.

The clearing of the ice is also making oil exploration easier and allowing mining companies to access the mineral wealth of the north.

That wealth is also attracting the attention of the national governments that claim a share of the Arctic.

It's three years since the explorer, Artur Chilingarov piloted his submarine to the seabed beneath the North Pole, planted a flag and claimed it for Russia.

The diplomatic repercussions of that dramatic act are still being felt around the Arctic today.

Does that make economic, diplomatic or even military conflict inevitable or can the Arctic states share out the spoils without further damaging one of the most fragile environments on earth?

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

The Arctic is melting.

The battle over its resources is just beginning.

Tom Heap reports.

The Arctic is melting. The battle over its resources is just beginning. Tom Heap reports.

In 2010 the Canadian Arctic experienced its warmest year on record. Suddenly the area's resources- oil, gas, iron ore, uranium, even diamonds- seem accessible. From Siberia through Greenland to Canada and Alaska energy and mining companies are descending on the north, eager for a slice of the profits they believe to be waiting for them in the gathering slush.

The Arctic has held a fascination for Europeans for centuries. Vikings, fishermen and whalers plundered for short summer seasons and in 1576 Sir Martin Frobisher sailed around Baffin Island in search of the North-West passage to the riches of the east, a search that would obsess sailors for the next 350 years.

Today the passage is clearing and shipping lines are examining the possibility of a high speed route between Western Europe and China. The clearing of the ice is also making oil exploration easier and allowing mining companies to access the mineral wealth of the north.

That wealth is also attracting the attention of the national governments that claim a share of the Arctic. It's three years since the explorer, Artur Chilingarov piloted his submarine to the seabed beneath the North Pole, planted a flag and claimed it for Russia. The diplomatic repercussions of that dramatic act are still being felt around the Arctic today.

Into The Arctic20110203

The Arctic is melting. The battle over its resources is just beginning. Tom Heap reports.

Iron Curtain Turns Green2019102920191030 (R4)

The Iron Curtain was an accidental wildlife haven. 30 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall, Tom Heap walks the borderlands to see how nature has continued to thrive.

Before the fall of the wall naturalists in West Germany had noticed that some bird and mammal species favoured life in the deathzone with its lack of human disturbance. When the Soviet bloc crumbled they joined friends and colleagues in the East to declare a Greenbelt through Europe, from Trieste on the Adriatic to Lubeck on the Baltic.

Against the odds their campaign has met with great success, creating new migration routes for some of Europe's biggest mammals whilst keeping developers away from most of the old border between East and West.

Producer: Alasdair Cross

The Iron Curtain was an accidental wildlife haven. Nature still thrives in the deathzone.

Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet

James Wong On The World's Toughest Plants20170530

How much is UK food security threatened by climate change? Botanist James Wong finds out.

Between 20 and 33% of the world's plant species are currently at risk of global extinction. That's the estimation of recently published studies. So how much will climate change impact on the variety, availability and price of the food on our plates? Botanist James Wong investigates the links between global warming and the rate at which crops are able to adapt and evolve to rapidly changing conditions.

Speaking to farmers, plant breeders and scientists at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and elsewhere he hears about the plant world's likely 'winners' and 'losers'. Having deeper roots and more efficient water-use strategies is a clear bonus, and one that's being addressed by British plant scientists who are developing more drought-resistant wheat varieties by breeding them with ancient antecedents of one of the world's most important crops. That's in the UK, but elsewhere around the world, James Wong learns that many plants are facing extinction before they have been recognised as being at risk, and perhaps in some cases even before they have been discovered.

Producer: Mark Smalley.

Jellyfish Invasion!2012052220120523

Jellyfish are taking over the world's oceans, eating baby fish and driving marine ecosystems back to the primitive Cambrian era. Or are they? Although incidents of human-jellyfish interaction are on the increase, it's hard to be sure that the jellies are really increasing in number over the long term. But then again, if we wait till we are sure, won't it be too late? Miranda Krestovnikoff investigates.

Producer: Jolyon Jenkins

Katrina: An Unnatural Disaster2010090120100902

Bad weather shouldn't cause more than 1800 deaths in the world's richest country.

Five years on from Hurricane Katrina Tom Heap investigates the real reasons for the New Orleans death toll.

It may be classified as a natural disaster but the famously fractious locals agree on one thing- nature had nothing to do with it.

They suggest corruption, complacency and the nagging suspicion that a dirt poor, predominantly black city could never expect much help from Washington's power brokers.

In the first of a new series of 'Costing the Earth' Tom Heap returns to the city to dig a little deeper, identify the villains and gauge the city's chance of surviving the next big storm.

Should the oil industry shoulder the blame? Decades of oil extraction from the Louisiana coast has lowered the land, leaving it more vulnerable to flood and to the depredations of the industry's offshore drilling.

How about the US Army? They were charged with building hard defences against a once in 250 year hurricane yet the levees failed throughout the city.

Today the same organisation is re-building the defences, this time with a promise to defend the city against a once in a hundred year flood.

How can a city rebuild with a promise like that? And what of the wetlands and barrier islands that experts had warned were disappearing fast, leaving the coastline unprotected? How many of the $14bn that's flowed through the city are actually being used to rebuild long-term, natural protection for the city?

Tom Heap helps the people of New Orleans in their search for answers.

Five years after the devastation of Katrina, is New Orleans safe from hurricane and flood?

Bad weather shouldn't cause more than 1800 deaths in the world's richest country. Five years on from Hurricane Katrina Tom Heap investigates the real reasons for the New Orleans death toll.

It may be classified as a natural disaster but the famously fractious locals agree on one thing- nature had nothing to do with it. They suggest corruption, complacency and the nagging suspicion that a dirt poor, predominantly black city could never expect much help from Washington's power brokers.

Should the oil industry shoulder the blame? Decades of oil extraction from the Louisiana coast has lowered the land, leaving it more vulnerable to flood and to the depredations of the industry's offshore drilling. How about the US Army? They were charged with building hard defences against a once in 250 year hurricane yet the levees failed throughout the city. Today the same organisation is re-building the defences, this time with a promise to defend the city against a once in a hundred year flood. How can a city rebuild with a promise like that? And what of the wetlands and barrier islands that experts had warned were disappearing fast, leaving the coastline unprotected? How many of the $14bn that's flowed through the city are actually being used to rebuild long-term, natural protection for the city?

Katrina: An Unnatural Disaster20100902

Five years after the devastation of Katrina, is New Orleans safe from hurricane and flood?

Keep On Trucking2010020820100211

While aviation is often seen as the climate change villain, the transport of freight by road and ship is often ignored. Shipping is a far bigger polluter and seems unlikely to benefit from the investment in technology which airlines have planned. Could there be a way to cut down emissions from freight transport? Tom Heap finds out just how much pollution is being shifted needlessly around the place by hitching a lift with a 25-year-old Londoner, who was named the UK's Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2009. His business, Shiply.com, is a bit like eBay, but for shipping your stuff. The business has been going for just over a year and has already saved over 1.6 million kg of CO2 by making use of spare capacities.

On a larger scale Eddie Stobart's is Britain's best known haulier. The company recently made moves into rail freight but questions remain on how many of our deliveries can be made by rail and if the freight industry as a whole is really facing up to the question of how to decarbonise transport.

Our goods need to be delivered, but at what cost? Tom Heap goes trucking to find out.

Could there be a way to cut down emissions from freight transport? Tom Heap finds out just how much pollution is being shifted needlessly around the place by hitching a lift with a 25-year-old Londoner, who was named the UK's Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2009.

Keep On Trucking20100211

Our goods need to be delivered, but at what cost? Tom Heap goes trucking to find out.

Lava: A Dangerous Game2015031720150318 (R4)

Tom Heap meets the scientists trying to lessen the impact of volcanic eruptions.

A report from the United Nations published this week highlights for the first time the international impacts of volcanoes. Previously regarded as a local problem for people in Iceland, Indonesia or Central America the UN now recognises that our interconnected world can be split asunder by relatively small eruptions.

The 2010 eruptions in Iceland disrupted air travel for weeks, costing the global economy an estimated $4.9bn. In response enormous improvements are being made in the technology used to detect imminent volcanic eruptions. But is the technology enough on its own? Do changes need to be made in the way that vulnerable communities in the developing world are taught about the dangers on their doorstep? Can more be done to communicate risk without inducing panic?

From Nicaragua to Iceland, Montserrat to Santorini, Tom Heap hears from the scientists on the frontline, men and women enchanted by the stunning beauty of volcanoes but well aware of their potential to destroy communities and change our climate.

Producer: Alasdair Cross.

Let It Snow!2011102620111027

With planes grounded, airports shut and chaos on the roads, last winter was the harshest in a century.

Temperatures plummeted to minus 22 degrees in Scotland and the whole of the UK was covered in a thick blanket of snow and ice for weeks.

Britain was brought to a standstill.

It is estimated that the cold weather cost the economy around £700 million; energy demand rocketed with demand for gas breaking all records; 60,000 miles of roads were gritted; thousands of schools were shut.

Weather forecasters are unsure if the last two winters are the shape of things to come, or whether the country suffered freak conditions.

With winter 2011 approaching, Tom Heap finds out what preparations are being made to ensure the country's transport infrastructure, power stations, emergency services and food retailers are ready for another big freeze.

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Tom Heap investigates ways to keep Britain moving if we have another harsh winter.

Temperatures plummeted to minus 22 degrees in Scotland and the whole of the UK was covered in a thick blanket of snow and ice for weeks. Britain was brought to a standstill.

Let It Snow!20111027

Tom Heap investigates ways to keep Britain moving if we have another harsh winter.

Litter2016032220160323 (R4)

How do you persuade a throwaway society to use a bin? Chris Ledgard on litter campaigns.

The government in Westminster has promised England a new, national anti-litter strategy. But how do you persuade a throwaway society to use a bin? Chris Ledgard reports on anti-littering campaigns, from the litter ambassadors in the Swiss mountains, to litter enforcement officers in Wolverhampton. And he meets David Sedaris, a man dedicated to cleaning up the streets where he lives.

Producer: Chris Ledgard.

Living It Small2014041520140416

Tom Heap squeezes into micro-homes to see if living compactly has environmental answers.

Did you have a tree house or a den as a child and think you could happily live there? What is the smallest space you could live in without being driven doolally? As the demand for houses and the cost to buy and run them shoots upwards, it seems more of us may be thinking small and bijou is cosy and obtainable...and the environment could be benefitting by default.

Tom Heap (6 foot 2 inches tall) explores the world of the micro-home - compact spaces often skimming minimum space standards. Some offering a cheaper way for people who work in expensive areas to live nearby or others boasting their green credentials or amazing design.

But is space in the eye of the beholder? Designers claim use of light, storage and some clever little tricks and twists can make a home feel bigger than it is and possibly even make it more desirable for the cool kids. Let's face it, the modern TVs and music and reading collections all require far less space. Using movable walls or mezzanine levels can mean we re-use space, don't waste heat and light and saving on expensive land could mean it's a solution for those priced out of the countryside as well as the city.

As our expectation of space has grown over the last century Tom asks if an Englishman's (or anyone else's) home is still his castle. Do the cool kids with clever design have the green answer to housing crisis or are they simple buying into overcrowding?

Presented by Tom Heap.

Produced in Bristol by Anne-Marie Bullock.

Lungs, Lies And Automobiles2015100620151007 (R4)

Have we been lied to about the quality of the air we breathe? Do car manufacturers, regulators and farmers have some explaining to do about their emissions to the atmosphere? Tom Heap investigates.

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Have we been lied to about air pollution? Tom Heap investigates.

Made To Last?20170502

How long do you expect your electronic gadgets and clothes to last? Time to fight back.

How long do you reasonably expect your electronic gadgets and clothes to last? Has the cheapening of products meant we're too ready to let them go when they break and buy new? Jheni Osman is sick of things breaking and the energy and resources that went to making them going to waste. She meets those who are fighting back and lengthening the lifecycle of their goods. Around the country those who lack the skills or know-how to fix things are learning how in community parties and online. But some products are now being built so they're difficult or costly to repair. She meets the campaigners who are calling for companies to be upfront about the life expectation of a product alongside the price tag and learns how some companies are offering a 'lifetime product' with repairs and replacements offered if the items break. Is this the way more companies will go or is it commercial suicide?
Can the fulfilment of fixing a laptop or amp transfer to clothing? We hear why we'll only go a certain way to 'make do and mend' but how even retailers, who've been part of the fast fashion fad, are pioneering new techniques to reuse clothes, find new fabrics and make them last longer. Can the new frock feelgood factor translate to making clothes last longer.
Presented by Jheni Osman and Produced by Anne-Marie Bullock.

Making A Splash2014102120141022 (R4)

Tom Heap meets a man who can turn dirty water into clean, drinkable water.

Tom Heap meets Darren Reynolds, a health and environment professor, who has developed a mini treatment plant that can turn dirty water into clean drinkable water.

The technology could be transported around the globe and put to use in places where clean water is scarce, such as in areas where there is a humanitarian crisis.

Costing The Earth discovers how the machine works and looks at other technology that could improve the water supplies of millions of people around the world.

Presenter: Tom Heap

Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.

Man Vs Woman Vs Planet2018101620181017 (R4)

Lucy Siegle and Tom Heap ask which gender is worse for the environment and why it matters.

Programme looking at man's effect on the environment and how the environment reacts.

The environment affects us all so should gender matter when we consider how best to save the planet? Lucy Siegle and Tom Heap take on the gender divide to find out how global warming has a disproportionate impact on women and how solutions which put women in charge can be highly effective in saving carbon as well as creating equality.

March Of The Pylons2011101920111020

Britain's electricity grid needs replacing.

Our old power network is approaching obsolesence.

That means that there's a real threat of a new army of pylons spreading out across some of our most beautiful landscapes.

Since the advent of electricity, power