I Want My Green TV: From Louisiana Disasters to the Tiger Trade


This week Green TV showed us two kinds of eco-disasters. An HBO drama tackled the environmental devastation in New Orleans and Planet Green exposed crimes against tigers.

“Treme” Shows Perseverance in the Face of Nature’s Fury

HBO’s New Orleans drama Treme may not seem like a straightforward choice for “I Want My Green TV.” But with everything that’s been going on in the Gulf with the BP Oil Spill, it’s hard not to think about the hardships the fine citizens of the Big Easy have endured over the last few years.

After all, the spill is not the first man made disaster to happen in New Orleans in 2005. Yes, Mother Nature sent Katrina but she didn’t build the insufficient levees. And there certainly are government agencies that could have chipped in then (and now) to help rebuild faster, more efficiently, and much more in tune with ongoing local environmental concerns – Brad Pitt and his Make it Right housing development aside.

Treme takes place in the aftermath of Katrina, and this week’s episode, “All on a Mardi Gras Day,” celebrated Fat Tuesday – almost six months to the day of the devastating hurricane. The show rode a lot of emotional ups and downs as characters embraced the spirit of the day while reconciling the recent devastation of their homes and families.

Every week, the series shows the delicate balance between the ugly truth of a city ravaged by environmental fury and the beauty of the healing power of human perseverance. As John Goodman’s character pointed out to his daughter, “It’s good to get out and see the destruction. It’s good. Get off the isle of denial every once in a while and be reminded how much of this city is still wrecked.”

Planet Green Doc Exposes Illegal Tiger Trade

This past weekend, Planet Green premiered the award-winning documentary, Dangerous Trade. In the hour-long film, a team of eco-crime investigators from the Environmental Investigation Agency (a sort modern day Green “Mod Squad”) investigate the seedy underworld of illegal tiger trades in China.

What they find is infuriating, horribly sad, and highly profitable. And there lies the reason why it doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon. According to the doc, China is the largest consumer of tiger products for skins, taxidermy, and medicine. And apparently the military turns a blind eye to the issue for their own profit and political reasons.

Ironically, this is the Chinese Year of the Tiger and with three subspecies already extinct and only an estimated 3,100 of the glorious animals left in the world – yes, we said the world – ending the illegal tiger trade is more important than ever. This fall there will even be a Global Tiger Summit in Russia (who knew?!) to commit to taking action toward saving the tiger.

We’re guessing somewhere that Tony is screaming, “that’s grrrrrrreat!”

Tune in next time to see what’s cropping up on green TV.

Image: Tryburn