FRONTLINE Global Investigation Reports What Big Business Is Doing to Address Climate Problem
Release Date: 11/06/08
Author: M Simmons
DENVER – November 6, 2008 – Melting glaciers, rising sea levels, fires, floods and droughts.
Award-winning producer Martin Smith investigates how the world’s largest corporations and governments are responding to Earth’s looming environmental disaster in “Heat,” a two-hour FRONTLINE investigation airing Sunday, Nov. 16 at 7 p.m. on PBS-12, KBDI.
“I have reported on the Cold War, the breakup of the Soviet Union, the rise of Al Qaeda and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan,” says Smith, “but nothing matches climate change in scope and severity.”
With that sense of urgency in mind, Smith traveled to 12 countries on four continents to investigate whether major corporations and governments are up to the challenge. “Heat” features in-depth interviews with top policymakers and with leading executives from many of the largest carbon emitters around the world, including Chinese coal companies, Indian SUV makers and American oil giants.
The report paints an ominous portrait. Despite increasing talk about “going green” across the planet, environmental concerns are still taking a back seat to shorter-term economic interests.
In his interview with FRONTLINE, California’s attorney general, Jerry Brown, reminds Smith that it won’t be easy. “Our wealth, our society, our being is driven by oil and carbon. It’s intellectually dishonest to somehow say we can get some light bulbs or get a Prius, and then we’re all done.
“No, this is going to take massive technological innovation, “Brown said. “It’s going to take changes in the way we live and work. And it’s going to take cooperation of unprecedented degrees among business and government and among countries. That’s where we are, and that’s why there’s no other word except ‘daunting.’ I’m hopeful. I’m cautiously optimistic. But I would have to say one has to approach this with great humility.”
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