Starts Monday 21 July 2008 at 7.30pm

This original and highly topical documentary series from the Sundance Channel examines some of the most important environmental concerns facing humanity. Big Ideas for a Small Planet starts Monday 21 July at 7:30pm, on TVNZ 6 Family.

Each week a different issue is put under the microscope. Expert commentators, from activists, scientists and writers, through to environmental personalities, show viewers how each week’s issue fits into the bigger environmental picture. New green products and alternative ideas are put forward to transform the impact that humans have on the world.
Big Ideas for a Small Planet starts by looking at fuel. Joel Woolf, alternative-fuel enthusiast and investor of Veg Powered Systems, drag races his truck fuelled by the vegetable oil from a fried-chicken tailgate party. Colette Brooks, a fanatic for muscle cars and Prada shoes, leads a bio-diesel PR campaign that hooks up clients with diesel cars around the country. And Indy Racing League’s Jeff Simmons prepares for his next season by test-driving a car that runs on 100% ethanol.

The second episode of the programme looks at building. Visionary architect Michelle Kaufmann builds a Glidehouse, an ultra-sustainable modular prefab dream home, for a couple looking to enjoy life off the grid. Architect Carlton Brown defies all odds and builds a low-income sustainable housing project in Harlem. And MIT genius Mitchell Joachim demonstrates his Fab Tree Hab living house made from intertwined trees, creating a spectacular living space of the future.

The following episodes look at other topics, including furnishings, eating, paper and plastics, and working, and consider environmentally-friendly ways to act and live.

Big Ideas for a Small Planet is an original, new documentary series that provides ideas that may transform our everyday lives.

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