BBC FOUR - Autumn highlights 2004
Minerals and Matters
from the Centre of the Earth
Life is a geological lottery the success of civilisations
around the world has largely depended on the cards dealt out hundreds
of millions of years ago.
Geologist Iain Stewart takes viewers on a guided
tour of the Mediterranean's top holiday destinations to discover why
and how the first civilisations developed.
From the pyramids of Egypt and the thermal springs in
Turkey, to the art and food of Italy, well-known landmarks take on a
whole new significance under Iain's eagle eyes.
Locked up in the rocks around unsuspecting tourists
is a complete human history from ancient hunter-gatherers to
21st-century beach bums.
A BBC production (former working title Geology of Civilisation).
The Curse Of Oil
Oil is arguably the world's most precious resource,
but the oil industry must go to political, ethical and environmental
extremes to ensure a continuous supply.
This new three-part series investigates the severe
consequences of the relentless search for 'black gold'.
Baku To Baghdad looks at BP's new pipeline that will
skirt an incredible five war zones, and reveals why the world will go
to astonishing lengths to avoid dependence on the Middle East.
Poverty To Plenty explains why oil revenue often doesn't
reach the poor.
Virgin Snow And Oil spotlights the Bush administration
and explains just why it still despite world-wide protest
refuses to endorse the Kyoto Agreement.
A Paladin Invision production.
It is taken for granted, yet the world would be
bereft without it. Few people ever consider the overwhelming importance
of light, or understand its complex nature.
Light Fantastic, presented by Simon Schaffer,
reveals the enormous impact that light, and how it is understood, has
had on the development of every aspect of today's society.
From Stone Age temples and the Islamic Renaissance to
the Catholic Church and the work of Isaac Newton, Light Fantastic traces
initial understanding of the phenomenon of light, and reveals how the
rationality of light led to the Age of Enlightenment.
The series explores perspective, astronomy and cosmology,
and unveils the role of light in the discovery of modern medicine.
The origins of photography and cinema are investigated,
as are the development of the light bulb and the X-ray, which ultimately
led to the destructive power of the atom bomb.
Yet light can also create life it powers plants
by photosynthesis and has untold influences on biology and reproduction.
By pressing the red button on their television remote
control at the end of each programme, interactive viewers can access
a star-gazer's guide to the November night sky.
Using a mix of video, stills and graphics, the subject
matter will also change each week to reflect the themes of the series.
A BBC production.