Watch Our Vanishing Wilderness
- 1 Season
Our Vanishing Wilderness is a six-part documentary series produced by PBS Video. Each episode showcases a different natural environment in North America that is at risk of disappearing forever. The series examines the impact of human activity and climate change on these fragile ecosystems, and highlights the urgent need for conservation and preservation efforts.
In the first episode, viewers are introduced to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska, one of the last intact wilderness areas in the United States. The refuge is home to a wide variety of wildlife, including caribou, wolves, and polar bears. However, the area is also rich in oil and gas reserves, and the Trump administration has made moves to open up the refuge for drilling. The episode features interviews with scientists, environmental activists, and native Alaskans, who all share their concerns about the potential impact of oil drilling on the fragile Arctic ecosystem.
Episode two, "Rainforest at the Crossroads," takes viewers to the Pacific Northwest, where the temperate rainforest is facing threats from logging and development. The episode focuses on the Tongass National Forest in Alaska, which is currently the subject of a contentious debate over whether to lift protections that prevent logging and development in large parts of the forest. Scientists and conservationists argue that the Tongass is a crucial habitat for countless species, including wild salmon and grizzly bears, and that its preservation is essential to fighting climate change.
The third episode of Our Vanishing Wilderness, "Wild Florida," explores the unique ecosystem of Florida's Everglades. The region is home to hundreds of species of birds, reptiles, and mammals, many of which are at risk due to habitat loss and human development. The episode also delves into the ongoing battle against invasive species like pythons and iguanas, which threaten to disrupt the delicate balance of the Everglades.
Episode four, "Cascadia: The Wild Coast," takes viewers to the rugged coastline of the Pacific Northwest, where old-growth forests and rocky shores are home to a diverse array of marine and terrestrial wildlife. However, as the human population in the area grows, developers are eyeing the coast for new homes and businesses. The episode looks at the impact of development on the coast, as well as efforts to protect and restore critical habitat areas.
The fifth episode, "Great Plains: America's Lingering Wild," focuses on the grasslands of the American Midwest. Once home to vast herds of bison and pronghorn antelope, the region has seen significant habitat loss due to agriculture and development. The episode examines efforts to restore the grasslands and bring back native species, as well as the challenges facing ranchers and farmers in the region.
Finally, in the last episode, "The Wild Within," the series visits urban areas like Seattle, Vancouver, and Los Angeles, showing how even in the midst of bustling cities, there are still pockets of wildness to be found. The episode highlights the importance of urban parks and green spaces, as well as the efforts of local conservationists to protect and restore natural areas in and around cities.
Throughout the series, Our Vanishing Wilderness emphasizes the urgent need for conservation and preservation efforts to protect these fragile ecosystems for future generations. The show features stunning footage of some of North America's most spectacular natural environments, as well as interviews with scientists, activists, and locals who are all working to ensure that these areas are protected and preserved. By highlighting the interconnectedness of all living things and the delicate balance of our planet's ecosystems, the series hopes to inspire viewers to take action to protect the natural world.