Did you know the UK throws away enough rubbish to fill the Royal Albert Hall every hour? Our ever-increasing impact on the environment is an issue we all need to address.
To mark the end of the UN World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, BBC1 presents A Land Worth Loving, a TV programme that brings the environmental challenge home. Hosted by Nick Knowles (BBC1’s DIY SOS), the programme challenges us to consider how the lives we lead impact upon the wider environment.
We look at three families who have embraced a greener lifestyle. There’s a young couple in Somerset who decide they want to work with nature and set up a small organic farm. Further north, a second family take on the kind of life-change that many of us can only dream about. They give up their urban lifestyle in Leeds to live on a tiny island, with a population of less than 30, off the coast of Scotland. Another family has forsaken the mod cons most of us take for granted to live in an environmentally positive way in a wooden home in a Cotswolds forest.
The programme throws down the green gauntlet to residents of a Bristol street. When a thermal imaging camera reveals the most energy inefficient home in the street, the experts move in for a makeover with a difference. By installing some of the latest green materials and energy efficient devices, the team shows viewers how they can have a positive impact on the environment by making changes to their own homes.
Elsewhere in the street, two families, the Greens and the Shepherds, are challenged to reduce their rubbish by half. The programme charts their progress as they are forced to reconsider their shopping habits and learn how to recycle. Nick astonishes the Greens by putting four weeks' worth of their rubbish in a miniature glass-fronted landfill site at Bristol Zoo. The exhibit shows visitors and viewers just how little the plastic bottles and metal cans break down. Lawrence Green looks a little alarmed as he realises how long his empty beer cans will be on public show.