Discovery is set to launch Planet Green, a 24-hour eco-centric network that will incorporate all things green and pro-environment, including cooking with Emeril Lagasse, a show on how to live a “green life” with Adrian Grenier, game shows, news and more.
The catch? The channel doesn’t launch until June 4. Before that time, however, Discovery’s online site, planetgreen.com, will offer some video on demand (VOD) sneak peeks. Some of the new programs will be shown on the site, like Greenovation and Mean Green Machines and Renovation Nation.
Planetgreen.com is such a brainstorm it’s a wonder it wasn’t discovered before. It was created by the same folks who built TreeHugger and brings together all of the things a responsible citizen wants to know about, all in one place.
The site is divided up into sections: Home and Garden, Food and Health, Fashion and Beauty, Work and Community, Travel and Outdoors, Transportation and Technology. It is laid out like a multi-leveled blog and is, of course, very web 2.0-friendly, meaning it is a community as well as an information hub.
Right now in the Fashion and Beauty section, you can discover where to buy organic denim, for instance. The Travel section explores better ways to visit great cities with a guilt-free conscience by suggesting you fly non-stop to cut out extra fuel. Food and Health offers healthy matzo recipes in time for Passover and teaches you how to make homemade yogurt.
In short, planetgreen is selling a lifestyle choice. It is more than just buying the right lightbulbs or driving a Prius. It is about clothes and makeup and choices. Sure, it starts to look like yet another way to cash in on a trend. You can’t walk into your neighborhood supermarket anymore without finding “green” this or “eco” that. You have to wonder if it isn’t just branding – getting us to spend our money and feel like we’re helping the environment along the way.
Perhaps it is a bit of that. Do we really need to wear organic denim and why? Are there toxins on our Levi’s? When will it become too much and therefore unfashionable? Will we look back on this decade and make fun of how much we were all longing to be “green”?
What is intriguing about planetgreen isn’t necessarily what it will do for the environment, although you never know, but it really is, more than anything, a tremendously informative and interesting site. It is yet more well-designed, engaging entertainment online. Discovery will just have to make its network as interesting as its website.
Discovery also has big plans to innovate moving into the next decade when they will air the epic series Frozen Planet in 2012. A co-production of the BBC National History Unit, Frozen Planet with be shot in high definition and will track animals as they exist in their natural worlds, with an emphasis on those who dwell in the Arctic and Antarctic.
But that’s a long way off. Discovery, it seems, will be the network to follow the Sundance Channel’s lead in providing timely programming on the environment and the ways we can all work towards effecting change.