Planet Forward on PBS and on the Web

April 18, 2009 at 9:41 pm Leave a comment

planetforward

Planet Forward is an innovative, viewer-driven program that debuted on the web and then moved to television, in a primetime PBS special on April 15th (watch the show), just a week ahead of Earth Day, and them moved back to the web. Hosted by Emmy Award-winning CNN veteran Frank Sesno, Planet Forward is driven by the power of ideas, as citizens make their case for what they think about the nation’s energy future. Panelists are Carol Brenner, President Obama’s Energy advisor; Shai Agassi – Better Place founder and CEO; Hunter Lovins – founder and President of Natural Capitalism Solutions; James L. Connaughton Executive Vice of Constellation Energy Group, former chairman of the George W. Bush White House Council on Environmental Quality.

The discussion starts online, then builds to a new kind of television show, which in turn drives the online conversation. It’s web to television and back again. An ongoing conversation driven by issues, and made possible by new and creative media technologies.

The Planet Forward web site will revolve around citizen and expert submissions, reflecting a wide range of interests, expertise and opinion.

The television show features the best online submissions, which are discussed and debated by a diverse panel of experts, scientists, business leaders and policymakers in a nationally televised PBS special, taped in front of a live audience at The George Washington University. The special features A-list experts, scientists, policymakers and business leaders, as well as citizen journalists selected from the Planet Forward website.

Contributions to the Planet Forward web site will be accepted on an ongoing basis, for a continuing debate on the web about fossil fuels and whether we should move away from their use. March 29th, 2009, was the deadline for submitting content to be considered for possible use on the April 15th PBS TV special (check local listings for exact show times). We are now calling for content submissions for our upcoming web sequel, debuting May 21st; the deadline for entries is May 15th.

The first Planet Forward program explores the feasibility of moving rapidly away from fossil fuels. Dispensing with the old top-down model of public affairs programming, in which experts expound to voiceless viewers, Planet Forward’s emphasis is bottom-up, with citizens leading and driving the conversation. Seeking to engage a young and diverse audience, Planet Forward is working with several universities and local public television stations to create a groundswell of engagement and local activity. Planet Forward is public affairs for the next generation – think innovation, not pontification.

Planet Forward is a co-production of the Public Affairs Project at The George Washington University and Nebraska Educational Telecommunications in collaboration with Public Agenda and Sunburst Creative Productions.

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Entry filed under: Political Action, Renewable Energy.

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