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Our Planet Matters: What’s the BBC plan all about?


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Media captionOur Planet Matters: What is climate change?

The BBC has announced plans for a year-long series of special programming and coverage on climate change.

A raft of news services and shows are planned as part of the Our Planet Matters project.

These include a new monthly Climate Check podcast from BBC Weather, and coverage of debates and events around the globe.

Digital, TV and radio outlets will all take part.

Sir David Attenborough also plans a new hour-long documentary for the Our Planet Matters programmes. Extinction: The Facts will examine the fragile state of the natural world.

“We have to realise that this is not playing games,” Sir David told the BBC. “This is an urgent problem that has to be solved and, what’s more, we know how to do it.”

How can I follow?

Online, the BBC will produce new explainers, interactive tools and guides to help sort through the jargon and analyse what’s happening in the UK and across our changing planet. You can check back on everything that has been published so far here.

In a new series for BBC Two, Ade Adepitan travels to countries on the frontline of climate change to find out what humanity is doing to face up to possibly the greatest challenge in our history in a three part series, Ade on the Frontline of Climate Change.

Radio 4’s PM programme will air The Environment in 10 Objects. Each episode will look at the environmental impact of one household item, and how we can respond to the climate crisis at home.

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Devastating wildfires in Australia have raised even greater awareness of the dangers posed by climate change

A new weekly podcast on the World Service will examine climate change from scientific, business and policy perspectives with the help of journalists from around the world.

BBC Weather meanwhile plans to bring in a monthly Climate Check service, to help audiences see trends behind the daily weather.

Adam Bullimore, head of BBC Weather, says it will be a chance to “share something more with audiences than just the typical weather forecast”, and will focus on the impact of data like CO2 emissions and Arctic sea ice measurements on our planet.

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Media captionHow to reduce your carbon footprint when you fly

The BBC will also cover the build up to the COP 26 climate summit in Glasgow this November. On Friday, BBC Breakfast and the News Channel will be live from Glasgow’s Science Centre talking about plans to make Scotland’s biggest city carbon neutral by 2030, and how this will affect its people.

In the summer, the BBC will host a climate debate. Experts and people from around the UK will be brought together at the audience event.

What about abroad?

Our worldwide network of BBC correspondents will report on the effects of climate change on the environment and communities from all corners of the globe.

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The BBC’s global network of correspondents will cover climate issues from around the globe

That even includes Antarctica. Chief environment correspondent Justin Rowlatt will be reporting from the remote Thwaites Glacier, where researchers are trying to find out the stability of the colossal ice mass.

All through 2020 the BBC will report on which countries, people and technologies are leading the way in tackling climate change.

Scientific work will also be a key focus. There will be coverage of how researchers are trying to understand the pace of climate change and its effects on the natural world.

How is the BBC doing on its own climate targets?

According to the BBC press office, the corporation reduced its carbon footprint by 78% last year by purchasing renewable electricity to match that used at major sites and is on track to remove all single-use plastics from BBC sites by the end of 2020.

The corporation now aims to go carbon neutral and has launched a project to identify what action is needed and how quickly it can be achieved.

“We’re committed to responsible travel policies including only travelling when necessary, using technology such as videoconferencing, improving the fuel efficiency of our vehicle fleet and introducing electric vehicles,” a statement reads. “Currently one of our contractors offsets CO2 emissions on our flights with them and we are exploring whether there’s scope to do more.”

BBC Director of News, Fran Unsworth, said: “We are very aware of our own impact on the environment and our responsible travel policy means we only fly when necessary.”

You can read the BBC’s Greener Broadcasting strategy here.



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