One Planet Archive [world Service]

Episodes

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20100114
20100114

Is it now time for Europe to allow widespread cultivation of genetically modified crops?

The impacts of climate change are already with us. Changing weather patterns are affecting the lives of millions around the world, especially in food production.

In this week's One Planet, Richard Hollingham discusses the way biotechnology can help us develop new crops that can withstand harsher growing conditions. He goes to Brussels and talks to some of the biotech companies that want the European Commission to relax its attitude towards GMOs. He also talks to the European Commission about its policy on GM products.

Crops genetically adapted for climate change need to be drought and pest resistant and be able to thrive in poor quality soil. They also need to provide improved yields.

These crops are controversial, especially in Europe. Historically, European legislators have taken a very cautious attitude towards genetically modified food and animal feedstuff. Currently, the European Commission permits the import of genetically modified cotton, maize, oilseed rape, soybean and sugar beet for human and animal consumption. So far, the European Commission has issued a single licence permitting one variety of GM maize to be grown in Europe.

At present, there are about fifty GM products awaiting approval from the European Commission, of which nineteen are for cultivation. The companies that produce biotech crops want the EC to relax its moratorium on new product approvals. Apart from the obvious commercial opportunities, they argue that if Europe relaxes its attitude towards GM crops, developing nations will be more likely to accept them too, and it’s the developing nations that will be most affected by climate change. In that sense, Europe is becoming a crucial battlefield as companies struggle to get new crops licensed for cultivation.

There is still huge opposition within Europe to genetically modified crops. But is climate change beginning to alter the terms of the debate? If the world is to sustain its current population levels at a time when it's becoming increasingly difficult to cultivate traditional crops, have we now reached the point when Europe needs to take a more tolerant attitude towards the cultivation of GM crops?

Mike and the usual One Planet team are currently on a short break to prepare for the next series. But they'll be back the end of January. You can keep up to date with developments at One Planet HQ by joining in the conversation on Facebook - the link's below. Or alternatively, email the team at Oneplanet@bbc.com.

2010011420100115 (WS)

Is it now time for Europe to allow widespread cultivation of genetically modified crops?

2010011420100117 (WS)

Is it now time for Europe to allow widespread cultivation of genetically modified crops?

2010011420100115 (WS)
20100117 (WS)

The impacts of climate change are already with us. Changing weather patterns are affecting the lives of millions around the world, especially in food production.

In this week's One Planet, Richard Hollingham discusses the way biotechnology can help us develop new crops that can withstand harsher growing conditions. He goes to Brussels and talks to some of the biotech companies that want the European Commission to relax its attitude towards GMOs. He also talks to the European Commission about its policy on GM products.

Crops genetically adapted for climate change need to be drought and pest resistant and be able to thrive in poor quality soil. They also need to provide improved yields.

These crops are controversial, especially in Europe. Historically, European legislators have taken a very cautious attitude towards genetically modified food and animal feedstuff. Currently, the European Commission permits the import of genetically modified cotton, maize, oilseed rape, soybean and sugar beet for human and animal consumption. So far, the European Commission has issued a single licence permitting one variety of GM maize to be grown in Europe.

At present, there are about fifty GM products awaiting approval from the European Commission, of which nineteen are for cultivation. The companies that produce biotech crops want the EC to relax its moratorium on new product approvals. Apart from the obvious commercial opportunities, they argue that if Europe relaxes its attitude towards GM crops, developing nations will be more likely to accept them too, and it’s the developing nations that will be most affected by climate change. In that sense, Europe is becoming a crucial battlefield as companies struggle to get new crops licensed for cultivation.

There is still huge opposition within Europe to genetically modified crops. But is climate change beginning to alter the terms of the debate? If the world is to sustain its current population levels at a time when it's becoming increasingly difficult to cultivate traditional crops, have we now reached the point when Europe needs to take a more tolerant attitude towards the cultivation of GM crops?

Mike and the usual One Planet team are currently on a short break to prepare for the next series. But they'll be back the end of January. You can keep up to date with developments at One Planet HQ by joining in the conversation on Facebook - the link's below. Or alternatively, email the team at Oneplanet@bbc.com.

Is it now time for Europe to allow widespread cultivation of genetically modified crops?

20100121
2010012120100122 (WS)
20100123 (WS)
20100124 (WS)

One Planet investigates the geology behind the earthquake in Haiti.

It's 250 years since Port-au-Prince was hit by an earthquake, but to geologists the rapidly growing city has long seemed vulnerable to this most terrifying of natural disasters.

The Haitian capital sits almost on top of a geological fault line that has been steadily stressed for two and a half centuries, and the rocks had to give at some point. The impossible question was when.

In this special edition of One Planet, the BBC's Roland Pease talks to the geologists who only last year were warning of Haiti's peril, and hears about the lessons not only for Port-au-Prince, but for cities around the world that could be levelled in a moment, with no warning.

Mike and the usual One Planet team are currently on a short break to prepare for the next series. But they'll be back the end of January. You can keep up to date with developments at One Planet HQ by joining in the conversation on Facebook - the link's below. Or alternatively, email the team at Oneplanet@bbc.com.

2010012120100123 (WS)
20100124 (WS)

One Planet investigates the geology behind the earthquake in Haiti.

20100121

One Planet investigates the geology behind the earthquake in Haiti.

It's 250 years since Port-au-Prince was hit by an earthquake, but to geologists the rapidly growing city has long seemed vulnerable to this most terrifying of natural disasters.

The Haitian capital sits almost on top of a geological fault line that has been steadily stressed for two and a half centuries, and the rocks had to give at some point. The impossible question was when.

In this special edition of One Planet, the BBC's Roland Pease talks to the geologists who only last year were warning of Haiti's peril, and hears about the lessons not only for Port-au-Prince, but for cities around the world that could be levelled in a moment, with no warning.

Mike and the usual One Planet team are currently on a short break to prepare for the next series. But they'll be back the end of January. You can keep up to date with developments at One Planet HQ by joining in the conversation on Facebook - the link's below. Or alternatively, email the team at Oneplanet@bbc.com.

2010012120100122 (WS)

One Planet investigates the geology behind the earthquake in Haiti.

20100128
2010012820100130 (WS)
20100131 (WS)

Mike considers giving money away, hears from a Zambian church and looks out over London.

20100128

Mike considers giving money away, hears from a Zambian church and looks out over London.

The earthquake struck Haiti over two weeks ago now, but remarkable stories of people being pulled alive from the rubble have emerged throughout. Uplifting stories that highlight the huge efforts being made by Haitians themselves, as well as specialist aid workers who have flown in from around the world, to rescue trapped strangers.

Humanity's virtues have also being demonstrated by the hundreds of millions of dollars of aid that has being pledged, not just by governments, but by private individuals. In this week's One Planet we consider our growing willingness to help one another by digging into our pockets.

During the past decade, private donations from the world's richest nations have risen at over twice the rate of growth seen in official government aid.

We speak to fund raiser Renu Mehta about why the rich - the super-rich - give away large sums of money, and we hear from Africa, as Zambians tell us why they feel compelled to send money to Haiti.

Also in the show we take ecologist Stewart Brand out onto the top of One Planet HQ to look down on London and explain his love of cities. Plus we hear some scary bedtime stories. As ever, tune in and let us know what you think. Email Mike and the team on oneplanet@bbc.com. Or join in the conversation at our Facebook page - the link's below. See you there.

2010012820100129 (WS)

Mike considers giving money away, hears from a Zambian church and looks out over London.

2010012820100129 (WS)
20100130 (WS)
20100131 (WS)

The earthquake struck Haiti over two weeks ago now, but remarkable stories of people being pulled alive from the rubble have emerged throughout. Uplifting stories that highlight the huge efforts being made by Haitians themselves, as well as specialist aid workers who have flown in from around the world, to rescue trapped strangers.

Humanity's virtues have also being demonstrated by the hundreds of millions of dollars of aid that has being pledged, not just by governments, but by private individuals. In this week's One Planet we consider our growing willingness to help one another by digging into our pockets.

During the past decade, private donations from the world's richest nations have risen at over twice the rate of growth seen in official government aid.

We speak to fund raiser Renu Mehta about why the rich - the super-rich - give away large sums of money, and we hear from Africa, as Zambians tell us why they feel compelled to send money to Haiti.

Also in the show we take ecologist Stewart Brand out onto the top of One Planet HQ to look down on London and explain his love of cities. Plus we hear some scary bedtime stories. As ever, tune in and let us know what you think. Email Mike and the team on oneplanet@bbc.com. Or join in the conversation at our Facebook page - the link's below. See you there.

Mike considers giving money away, hears from a Zambian church and looks out over London.

Animals & Us2009123120100101 (WS)
20100103 (WS)

One Planet hears a very personal view of how humans exploit other species.

It was 28 years ago that the film director Victor Schonfeld made The Animals Film about the way humans exploit other species. He returns to the subject in a two-part documentary to give a very personal view on what, if anything, has changed since then.

In the first programme he looks at the use of animals for food and turns to experts in fields such as psychology, history, language and neurology to find out why humans seem so attracted to eating meat.

Next week, he focuses on the scientific establishment's attachment to using animals, and considers the future. Might social justice for other species actually benefit humans?

Mike and the usual One Planet team are currently on a short break to prepare for the next series. But they will be back the end of January. You can keep up to date with developments at One Planet HQ by joining in the conversation on Facebook - the link's below. Or alternatively, email the team at Oneplanet@bbc.com.

Animals & Us2009123120100101 (WS)
20100103 (WS)

One Planet hears a very personal view of how humans exploit other species.

It was 28 years ago that the film director Victor Schonfeld made The Animals Film about the way humans exploit other species. He returns to the subject in a two-part documentary to give a very personal view on what, if anything, has changed since then.

In the first programme he looks at the use of animals for food and turns to experts in fields such as psychology, history, language and neurology to find out why humans seem so attracted to eating meat.

Next week, he focuses on the scientific establishment's attachment to using animals, and considers the future. Might social justice for other species actually benefit humans?

Mike and the usual One Planet team are currently on a short break to prepare for the next series. But they will be back the end of January. You can keep up to date with developments at One Planet HQ by joining in the conversation on Facebook - the link's below. Or alternatively, email the team at Oneplanet@bbc.com.

Animals & Us20100107
Animals & Us2010010720100108 (WS)
20100109 (WS)
20100110 (WS)

One Planet hears a very personal view of how humans exploit other species.

It was 28 years ago that the film director Victor Schonfeld made The Animals Film about the way humans exploit other species. He returns to the subject in a two-part documentary to give a very personal view on what, if anything, has changed since then.

In part two he focuses on the scientific establishment's attachment to using animals, and considers the future. Might social justice for other species actually benefit humans?

Mike and the usual One Planet team are currently on a short break to prepare for the next series. But they will be back the end of January. You can keep up to date with developments at One Planet HQ by joining in the conversation on Facebook - the link's below. Or alternatively, email the team at Oneplanet@bbc.com.

Animals & Us2010010720100109 (WS)
20100110 (WS)

One Planet hears a very personal view of how humans exploit other species.

Animals & Us20100107

One Planet hears a very personal view of how humans exploit other species.

It was 28 years ago that the film director Victor Schonfeld made The Animals Film about the way humans exploit other species. He returns to the subject in a two-part documentary to give a very personal view on what, if anything, has changed since then.

In part two he focuses on the scientific establishment's attachment to using animals, and considers the future. Might social justice for other species actually benefit humans?

Mike and the usual One Planet team are currently on a short break to prepare for the next series. But they will be back the end of January. You can keep up to date with developments at One Planet HQ by joining in the conversation on Facebook - the link's below. Or alternatively, email the team at Oneplanet@bbc.com.

Animals & Us2010010720100108 (WS)

One Planet hears a very personal view of how humans exploit other species.