Explore a Changing Antarctica with Nature and Nova

Release Date: 03/18/2009

HARTFORD, Conn. – On Tuesday, March 24, Connecticut Public Television (CPTV, www.cptv.org) takes a trip south – past the balmy equator, past the tropics and past Cape Horn. As the global climate begins to shift, Antarctica, the coldest place on Earth, is facing some drastic changes. Nature and Nova together present a compelling argument: when it comes to climate change, we can’t afford to get cold feet.  

Nature: “Penguins of the Antarctic” carries viewers to the frigid Antarctic at 8 p.m., among some of the planet’s most magnificent and puzzling creatures. Emperors and kings, chinstraps and adelies – the penguins of Antarctica somehow manage to make their home in one of the most unforgiving environments on Earth. Their life has always been a constant struggle to survive, but their biggest challenge is yet to come. As the global climate changes, long-established territories are being invaded and traditional nesting colonies are being disrupted. How will these extraordinary birds deal with the full effects of global warming?

The waddling birds aren’t the only species living in fear of climate change, however. A 9 p.m., Nova: “Extreme Ice” explores whether the next creature on nature’s hit list might be humans. As the world warms, the threat from rising sea levels poses an alarming potential for disaster. Some models now project a one-meter sea level rise over the next century, which could displace millions of people, requiring trillions of dollars of investment in coastal infrastructures. But these models don’t reflect recent findings that glaciers in Greenland and Antarctica are melting at an ever faster rate. What explains this alarming acceleration, and just how can we figure out what’s happening inside a gigantic wall of ice?

Airdates and Times

Nature: “Penguins of the Antarctic”
Airs Tuesday, March 24 at 8 p.m.

Nova: “Extreme Ice”
Airs Tuesday, March 24 at 9 p.m.

For more than 25 years, Nature has been the benchmark of natural history programs on television, capturing the splendors of the natural world, from the African plains to the Antarctic ice. The series has won nearly 450 honors from the television industry, parent groups, the international wildlife film community and environmental organizations, including 10 Emmys, three Peabodys and the first award given to a television program by the Sierra Club.

Nova helps viewers of all ages explore the science behind the headlines. Along the way, the premiere PBS science series demystifies science and technology, and highlights the people involved in scientific pursuits.

About Connecticut Public Television
CPTV is a media service of the Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network (CPBN, www.cpbn.org). It is a locally and nationally recognized producer and presenter of quality public television programming, including UConn Women's Basketball, original documentaries and educational programming. CPTV has built a reputation as a leader in children’s programming, including playing an historic role in bringing Barney & Friends™, Bob the Builder™ and Thomas & Friends™ to public television. The station offers 11 hours of positive, nurturing children’s programs each weekday, reaching 50,000 to 70,000 households daily. The Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network also includes WNPR, an affiliate of National Public Radio, Public Radio International and American Public Media. WNPR serves over 200,000 listeners in Connecticut, New York and Rhode Island with news and information. Its award-winning local programming includes The Faith Middleton Show and Where We Live. Overall, the network brings a broad spectrum of public affairs, entertainment, sports and educational programming to viewers, listeners and readers. For more information, visit www.cptv.org and/or www.wnpr.org.

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