Hot climate changes and drought the new normal, states Nova experts

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The biggest television story of 2012 may not be President Obama winning re-election, but massive global climate change as both Nova and Frontline prepare major new shows to help explain what’s going on.

Thought-provoking television on PBS is now being aimed at anyone doubting the problem of climate change; while the Nova and Frontline program websites feature numerous new fall television stories currently in the works that offer valuable information that viewers can use as the Earth gets hotter and hotter, and drought and terrible weather “becomes the new normal.” For instance, The New York Times – in association with PBS – reported on the Nova TV website Aug. 9 that the latest price report from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization is most alarming. “The agency stated on Thursday that its food price index jumped by 6 percent in July,” reported the Times Aug. 9. “That was largely because of rising grain prices, with the drought in the United States and its expected impact on the corn harvest being the biggest factor. The cereals component of the index jumped 17 percent.”

Nova experts define climate change as “a significant and lasting change in the statistical distribution of weather patterns over periods ranging from decades to millions of years.”

Also, the New York Times climate change story - featured on the Nova program website Aug. 9 - talks about the price Americans will have to pay in the wake of both ongoing and highly serious climate change and drought.

Nova says climate change could mean world food crisis

In turn, the Times reported Aug. 9 that “the global food crisis that came to a head in 2008 and again in 2011, with riots in dozens of countries, is by no means over. Many prices are still below their peak levels of recent years, true enough, but they are high by the standards of recent decades. And they could rise further as the impact of higher feed-grain prices works its way through meat and dairy markets. Cereal prices stand only slightly below their all-time peak levels in April 2008.”

As both Nova and Frontline have reported this year – in groundbreaking TV shows that focus on how climatologists struggle to save rapidly melting parts of once frozen regions of the Earth, and why more devastating floods will be “the new normal for many Americans” – the high temperatures and droughts of recent years just won’t go away.

For instance, the New York Times report for Aug. 9 points to how many scientists view “human-induced climate change” as turning into a serious stress on the food system; with rising demand in developing countries is also a major factor.”

Many experts are worried “that future demand cannot be met at prices the world’s poor people can afford. Reacting to Thursday’s report, groups campaigning against hunger demanded that governments in the advanced countries redouble their focus on poor farmers in developing countries. Steps have been taken in that direction since the crisis peaked in 2008, but they remain inadequate, in the view of some of those groups,” adds the Times report on Nova’s website.

“World leaders must snap out of their lazy complacency and realize the time of cheap food has long gone,” Colin Roche, head of economic justice advocacy at Oxfam International, said in a statement. “Without action, millions more people are in danger of joining the billion who are already hungry.”

PBS TV shows set to inform while also entertaining the public

While many Americans view TV as simply entertainment; while entertaining themselves to death with lots of programs that offer sexual eye candy or the ever popular violence or greed, public broadcasting serves the American people; while most other TV shows serve their corporate sponsors.

Hence, when wondering about the impact of climate change, it’s a no brainer, says teachers and others who value education on TV, which PBS may offer the kind of programming that both informs and entertains.

In turn, both Emmy-award winning PBS “Nova” and “Frontline” TV programs are devoting several new shows under the heading “Planet Earth” to the ongoing concern about the current drought that has sent more than 3,000 high temperature records thus far this year, reports The New York Times and other major U.S. media.

Climate change impacts all Americans

For instance, PBS announced on its Nova and Frontline TV programs and accompanying websites that new topics for its fall television programs will look at climate change and its impact on forests, oceans, air, species, land use while also featuring regular reports on the ongoing “climate debate.”

Also, Frontline is tacking the subjects of renewable and conventional energy; while also focusing the impact of climate change on U.S. and global markets. Other reports continue with the “green technology theme.”

In turn, Frontline journalism teams are now researching future TV reports about current legislation, lobbying, policy debates, regulation and even international diplomacy when it comes to how the U.S. and other nations will be confronting climate change in the years go come.

Overall, the fall preview from PBS is not so much about who is screwing who, or winning what but simply about news viewers can use as they must come to terms with such important subjects as climate change; with television’s role to both inform, educate and entertain now viewed as more important than ever.

Image source of a mother and daughter walking along the central Oregon coast early Aug. 9 after record high temperatures have turned the morning “marine layer” into a “crazy light show,” say locals who are currently dealing with massive debris and such things as occasional oil slicks caused by last year’s earthquake in Japan that triggered massive Tsunami waves to reach the West Coast. Climate change, it seems, is happening everywhere these days, quipped one local on the beach Aug. 9. Photo by Dave Masko

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