Discovery HD explores climate change with Arctic Circle premiering in April

In some of the world’s most desolate and stunning locations, the damaging impact of human activity is evident; climate change is hitting the Arctic harder and faster than any other region on Earth. Although the North may seem remote from the population centres of the world, this – sensitive ecosystems forever altered by climate change – is where the brunt of our carbon footprint is felt the most.

Premiering Wednesday, April 21 at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT Discovery HD presents ARCTIC CIRCLE, where untold riches are at stake – and maybe the future of the planet itself. As ice melts and polar bears die, this two-part documentary series – produced in association with the National Film Board of Canada and NHK Japan – reveals nations scrambling to claim Arctic territories and pump oil and gas from under pristine northern waters.

Gearing up for Earth Day 2010, Discovery HD presents ARCTIC CIRCLE – a two-part documentary series on the dramatic effects climate change is having on the Far North, April 21.
 
In the remote Svalbard Islands of Norway, a polar bear cub lies dead. After days of wandering on the once ice-covered shore searching for food, the cub finally succumbs to starvation. Meanwhile, across the Barents Sea, in the Norwegian village of Hammerfest, a massive new liquefied natural gas plant has sprung up. It processes gas drilled from deep below the Arctic waters – something that would not have been possible only a few years ago when this region was covered in thick ice.
 
In what should be one of the coldest places on Earth, there is little doubt that the climate is getting warmer. And sudden changes in nature’s once predictable ways are not only alarming – they’re life-threatening. Discovery HD’s ARCTIC CIRCLE lays bare the devastating reality of the Far North and the potentially irreversible effects of human behaviour on this region.
 
Highlights from the two-part series of ARCTIC CIRCLE include:
 
ARCTIC CIRCLE: “On Thin Ice”
Wednesday, April 21 at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT
Chronicling the effects of climate change on the land and animal inhabitants, meet an international team of scientists who are vividly demonstrating how global warming threatens the very existence of polar bears, seals and other creatures. Later, witness huge ice shelves crumbling into the sea, polar bears struggling to survive and torrents of water flowing where there should only be ice.
 
ARCTIC CIRCLE: “Battle for the Pole”
Wednesday, April 21 at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT
In an epic race to claim territory, meet the very people battling to pump oil and gas from beneath the pristine Arctic seabed. For the engineers constructing ice-breaking tankers and the crew of the world’s northernmost oil rig, the pursuit is all about excitement, opportunity and new frontiers. But the more energy exploited from the Arctic, the more the ice will melt – locking into a destructive cycle whose effects are only starting to become apparent and which may be unstoppable.
 
ARCTIC CIRCLE was produced by the National Film Board of Canada and NHK Japan in association with Discovery HD.

About the author