Hot Cities

BBC WORLD NEWS – Saturday 24 October, 10.10pm

The world’s biggest cities are on a collision course with disaster. With over-flowing populations they are on the front line of the relentless and destructive advance of climate change. According to the United Nations, half the world’s population now lives in the city. This is expected to rise to 75% by 2050. As the effects of climate change begin to unfold, it is these cities that are going to feel the effects. Equally it is these cities that are causing the damage, emitting 75% of the world’s carbon. Most changes to the climate are incremental. They creep up on us slowly and inevitably. Temperatures rise and fall – but the trend is ever upwards even if, paradoxically, some seasons and places get colder, windier and wetter. Sea levels rise, not just because ice sheets collapse but because seas are getting warmer, and warm water expands. How will the megacities cope, is violence inevitable? Will climate change drive migration, and if so will ever expanding cities accelerate climate change? Travelling from Nigeria to Alaska, from Bangladesh to Australia – in eight new films Hot Cities raises the important questions.