Tuesday, 20 November 2007

Earth - The Power of the Planet

Hopefully, you will have just finished watching Earth - The Power of the Planet. Tonight's spectacular programme was the first of a new series on BBC2, and looked at volcanoes - "the most important force in the creation of the planet as we know it today"...

If you missed the programme, and didn't see Dr Iain Stewart abseiling into a lava lake, then it is repeated on Sunday at 6.oopm - make sure you are watching!! (You can also pre-order the DVD of the series from the BBC Shop... I wonder if Santa reads Geogtastic...)


Anna.S said...

Earth - The Power of the Planet : Ice, was fascinating. The information about lake Mazula (North West USA)was astonishing. Over 16,000 years ago, the lake was formed and was held back by the northern ice sheet, but then over years and years the water got higher causing the dam to weaken, eventually collapsing producing the worst flood the world has ever seen. It was described as releasing a bomb. So lets see if the next episode, "oceans" is just as good.

Anna.S said...

Earth the Power of the Planet : Oceans. I was correct, it was just as good as the previous episode, perhaps even better. This episode was full of amazing facts, about the worlds oceans, also featuring a lot of information about the wildlife, which suits me fine.
It's incredible that 3/4s of the earth is taken up by water, truely astonishing, and that the water began from steam which then caused rain causing the water we all know today. Who'd have thought that 1/2 of the earths water was probably caused by a comet consisting of ice and rock?
Iain begins the episode in the Amazon basin, looking at the power and strength of tidal bores, which only happen a few days a year, they even happen here in the UK, they can be seen at the river Severn.
The Mediterranean sea was also featured. Due to the temperatures there, 3 times more water is lost there through evaporation than through the amount of water produced through precipitation.
Who would have though that tiny little creatures called phytoplankton can could cause so many problems if they didn't exist, no one thinks about how much these little creatures provide for the earths oceans. If these phytoplankton didn't exist the food chain would fall apart, water living animals would die because they need these small microscopic creatures to survive. They are said to produce 50% of the earths oxygen, quite remarkable really you've got to admit, that a microscopic creature can produce that many problems if they wern't here.
Overall though, this episode was the most overwhelming out of the ones i've seen so far. Showing the dramatic consequences of what global warming could do to the planet. Global warming is having an incredible impact on the planet, causing dramatic consequences, they are very worrying, and upsetting. Does anyone else think it's upsetting, or is it just silly me? If not take a deeper look into this program believe me you will be very amazed.

Miss Ellis said...

I'm really glad you enjoyed these programmes Anna. I have to be honest and say that, although I've neglected Gordon Ramsay in favour of Iain Stewart the past few weeks, I've been working at the same time and so not watching/listening properly. I've been impressed with what I've seen though.

Yr9 watched the Volcanoes episode last week and were pretty amazed by some of the footage - and some of them quite keen to go abseiling into the lava lake!!

A lot of the comments I've heard about the programme from fellow geographers have been quite negative though...

The obvious issue is that fact that I haven't heard the g-word mentioned once so far!!

I'd be interested to hear what other people thought of the programmes...?

Anna.S said...

I missed the volcanoes and atmosphere episodes sadly. I'll buy the DVD when it comes out in January. Have you seen the rare earth episode yet? I'll watch it tomorrow, then i'll put a smaller less essay typed overview on it.

Miss Ellis said...

I didn't see the last one as I forgot about it (and watched Gordon Ramsay!). I have the first 4 on video but I suspect the DVD will be rather better in quality!

anna.s said...

I've got the last 3 taped, if you want to borrow the tape you can do to see the rare earth episode.

Anna.S said...

Earth: The Power of the Planet – Rare Earth
A reasonably good episode to end the series, yet I don’t think it was as good as the previous episodes.
To begin with Iain gives us a little introduction about how the earth became as it is now. The earth was a reasonably small plant to begin with. Just a few million years after earth formed it collided with its twin Theia, which made earth a lot bigger, because part of its twin became embedded in part of the earth, if this hadn’t of happened we probably wouldn’t be all here today.
Iain went on to talking about meteorites, he went to Arizona to see one of the well known meteorite craters in the world. The meteorite crater in Arizona was caused by a piece of rock only 50 meters across yet caused the crater to be over the size of London. Astonishing. I’ve recently read about a meteor crater in Peru in my “Geographical” magazine, admittedly not as big as the one in Arizona but still a very interesting read.
More interesting facts given, yet this time about the moon and Jupiter. The moon is moving at a distance of 3.8cms every year away from the earth. You wouldn’t think that if the moon didn’t exist we probably wouldn’t either. We also wouldn’t exist without Jupiter. Jupiter is 300 times bigger than the earth, if it didn’t exist nothing would protect earth.
Off Iain goes again this time to Mexico jungle to go and have a look at cenotes, which are absolutely beautiful. Geographers and cave divers went into one of the cenotes in Mexico to look at its formation. When looking at them on a map they show a particular course, this shows the rim of a crater, which hit Mexico. This crater had a massive impact on the earth, it wiped out all the dinosaurs, yet this is when mammals became known.
Now Iain is on the move again this time to Madagascar off southeast Africa. This made me jealous I have to admit, I’ve wanted to go to Madagascar for years after reading up about it. 85% of life on Madagascar is unique to it. There’s only one 5th of the original jungle left on Madagascar due to deforestation that’s shocking and incredibly upsetting..
Global warming was mentioned, Iain was talking about the consequences of it. Why do people think that global warming is a good thing? I don’t see how it can be.
Every year a section of forest the size of Scotland is destroyed in the world. The rainforest in Bolivia totally disappeared in 20 years. I have to say I was almost in tears when hearing this it really upset me.
Anyway, overall a good episode to end the series.

Anonymous said...

...2nd worst flood the world has ever seen...at best: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Messinian_salinity_crisis