Apr 9, 2012 9:19 AM EDT
For a day of rest, Sundays sure are exhausting. Not that we're complaining, but good Lord! Things were already crowded with regular network offerings… Read more
Examining wildlife in the Arctic and Antarctic.
Premiered: March 18, 2012
Overwhelming evidence collected during the filming of Frozen Planet shows the speed with which climatic changes are occurring. The movement of the glaciers in Greenland is a prime example of this. The Greenland glaciers are the world's second largest ice sheet. Using extraordinary time-lapse photography, Meltdown is able to show how they are moving towards the sea - at an astonishing rate of 120 feet a day, almost fast enough to view with the naked eye.
The Poles are warming at up to five times faster than the rest of the Earth. If this continues, it won't just affect the people and wildlife that lives there - it will affect the planet as a whole. From pioneering camera techniques, to satellite imagery and scientific experimentation and prediction, Meltdown looks to the future of not just the landscape of the poles, but also to those that live within them.
Today science is the only significant human activity allowed in Antarctica: robot submarines are sent deep beneath the ice in search of new life-forms, which may also be found in a labyrinth of ice caves high up on an active volcano. Above, colossal balloons are launched into the purest air on earth to detect cosmic rays.
We reveal the extraordinary riches and wonders that have kept people coming to the Polar Regions for thousands of years. Most Arctic people live in Siberia. On the coast, traditional people still hunt walrus from open boats, but today's settlers are drawn to the Arctic by its abundant minerals. Above, the spectacular Northern lights can disrupt power supplies so scientists monitor it constantly.