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earthrise
Series three, episode six
Eco-tourism to safeguard whale sharks; a low-energy building material made from hemp; and Lebanon's trash mountain.
Last Modified: 11 Aug 2012 07:48

The whale shark is the largest of the ocean's fish, weighing up to 20 tonnes. Preferring the warm waters of the tropics, these marine giants pose no threat to humans, feeding mainly on plankton. They are approachable creatures – docile enough to allow the occasional swimmer to hitch a ride. Although they are a vulnerable species, they continue to be hunted for their meat in parts of Asia.

But as Gelareh Darabi discovers when she visits the fishing town of Donsol in the Philippines, there is growing recognition that whale sharks are worth far more alive than dead.

Cement, a vital component of concrete, is responsible for five per cent of the world's total CO2 emissions – more than the entire aviation industry. 'Hempcrete' does all that concrete can do, but it also absorbs CO2 in its manufacture, making it carbon-negative.

Joyce Ohajah travels to Oxfordshire in the UK to find out more about a material that could help reduce the huge carbon footprint of the construction industry.

In Lebanon, trash is everywhere. In the city of Saida, a mountain of garbage on the coast has become a kind of national symbol. On stormy days, trash from Lebanon washes up on the shores of Cyprus. Denise Maroney, a Lebanese-American theatre producer and her troupe are raising awareness of the scale the problem, and encouraging Lebanese people to do something about it.

Zeina Aboul-Hosn takes a seat in the final performance, to see how the audience reacts.

 
earthrise airs each week at the following times GMT: Friday: 1930; Saturday: 1430; Sunday: 0430; Monday: 0830.

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Source:
Al Jazeera
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