The Tipping Points: highlighting severe global environmental impacts

“The Tipping Points: 6 Places on Earth Where Climate’s Changed” is a TV series that premiered in the U.S. on October 19th, on the Weather Channel.

This international production focuses on environmental tipping points, which refer to critical thresholds in a system where the future state can be altered by just a small change. In the series, the tipping points are determined based on where human activities have led to crossing that critical threshold. For example, the Sahel and West Africa region could see even drier conditions if the Gulf of Guinea experiences strong warming, which would disrupt the seasonal onset of the monsoon season.

The Sahel and West African region is one of six featured, with a total of twelve tipping points identified throughout the series (see figure below). The show interviews climate scientists from around the world and offers a look at the environmental impacts, both current and anticipated, suffered by communities as a consequence of climate change.

Tipping Points Map

Tipping Points Map

Dr. Michael Marshall is one of many scientists featured in the series, on the topic of “Africa Droughts and Floods” where he discusses the implications of deforestation in the Congo on local climate. Marshall is currently a researcher geographer with the United States Geographical Society (USGS), but will soon be joining ICRAF in the New Year.

The TV series is broadcast in English, German, and Dutch key broadcasters include NITV, NBC Universal/The Weather Channel, The Knowledge Network, TV Ontario, VTR Belgium, VPRO Holland, The ARD Group, The Australian Network, Discovery Europe, and ARTE.

Information for this article was retrieved from the Tipping Points website

Dr. Michael Marshall’s professional profile

Broadcaster websites

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