ABC Owned Television Stations, in partnership with National Geographic, present “Our America: Climate of Hope,” premiering on television and streaming platforms the weekend of April 17-18. The hour-long special brings together the station group’s trusted meteorologists across the country with National Geographic Explorers and research to look at the impact of climate change and the innovations and ingenuity being applied to address the change. The special will air in the ABC Owned markets of New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Houston, San Francisco, Raleigh-Durham and Fresno, and on Hulu.
In 2020, the U.S. experienced more billion-dollar disaster events than any other time in history, including wildfires, hurricanes, drought, flooding and heatwaves. Communities across ABC Owned markets experienced historical climate-related disasters—from the worst wildfire season across West Coast California to historic freezing weather in Texas that left millions without power and running water.
ABC Owned Television Stations’ meteorologists, at the front lines of the extreme weather in their markets, and National Geographic Explorers, together with National Geographic research, project the future of U.S. cities over the next 50 years. Participating experts include ABC7/WABC-TV New York chief meteorologist Lee Goldberg and WABC weather anchor Sam Champion, 6abc/WPVI-TV Philadelphia chief meteorologist Cecily Tynan, ABC7/WLS-TV Chicago meteorologists Cheryl Scott and Larry Mowry, ABC13/KTRK-TV Houston chief meteorologist Travis Herzog, ABC7/KGO-TV San Francisco meteorologists Drew Tuma and Sandhya Patel, ABC7/KABC-TV Los Angeles chief meteorologist Dallas Raines, ABC11/WTVD-TV Raleigh Durham meteorologist Brittany Bell, ABC30/KFSN-TV Fresno meteorologist Kevin Musso and National Geographic Explorers Victoria Herrmann and Lillygol Sedaghat.
“Our communities are living with the reality of climate change—whether it’s floods, wildfires or extreme weather. And yet, just as we came together to fight COVID-19, we can come together to fight climate change,” said Anna Robertson, vice president for Content & Partner Innovation, ABC Owned Television Stations and an executive producer of the special. “By bringing together the weather teams that our viewers turn to every day after day with our partners at National Geographic, we can inform and empower viewers with stories of hope, inspiration and innovation toward a better future.”
“When we say that the planet is changing, we mean that it is changing in a way that is affecting you, your family, your neighbors and all of our communities. Knowing the challenges that people face today on a local level is crucial to better understanding what solutions we’ll need for tomorrow and beyond. This type of coverage also reflects National Geographic’s continued evolution of its storytelling about the planet, focusing on solutions and possibilities,” said Michael Tribble, vice president of Integrated Storytelling at National Geographic.
The special focuses on two of the biggest environmental challenges facing communities—coastal flooding and wildfires—while also looking at the disproportionate impacts on communities of color. In addition, the special will profile cutting-edge innovations, youth environmental leaders, and practical solutions to reduce climate change.
Segment highlights include the following:
- On the Front Lines of Extreme Weather – ABC Owned Television Stations’ meteorologists across the country reflect on the changes they have seen in their communities because of extreme weather. With the help of National Geographic projections, they look ahead to what their cities could look like in 2070 and share how they have changed their lives because of climate change.
- Rising Risk: Our Shrinking Coastlines – Life along U.S. coastlines is rapidly changing, from consistent flooding to coastal erosion of beloved landmarks. The segment shows the disproportionate impact on low-income and communities of color. ABC Owned Television Stations’ meteorologists detail how the changing climate is reshaping life along U.S. coasts and the innovations that will enable us to live with this rising risk, from subway and tunnel barriers to flood-proof Starbucks and floating fire stations.
- Charred Landscape, Dirty Air: Living with Extreme Fires – The segment examines the increasingly destructive wildfires and the challenges it poses to life, property and public health and spotlights the people helping adapt to the increasing threat.
- Food for Thought: Farms Go Urban and Indoors – Explores the intersection of agriculture, technology and the city center, highlighting new trends bringing the farm closer to urban tables and the impact it has on communities and the food chain. From vertical farming to meat and eggs grown in a lab to the innovations helping communities to go local, reduce meat consumption and restore land across America.
- Change of Habits: The Waste Journal – National Geographic Explorer Lillygol Sedaghat and the founders of The Jar Method coach two ABC7/KABC-TV Los Angeles reporters, Sophie Flay and Ashley Mackey, through the “Zero Waste Challenge,” experimenting with how they can reduce their waste and save some money along the way.
- Climate Heroes: The World of EcoTok – Viewers meet climate leaders such as EcoTok, the remarkable Gen Z youth leaders of TikTok who campaign for climate actions, sustainability and youth engagement one TikTok at a time. Social media environment leaders add to the conversation, educating viewers about how social media can manifest real change. Youth leaders such as Jamie Margolin, the young founder of Zero Hour, discuss how her youth-led movement provides training and resources for new young activists and organizers wanting to act around climate change.
“Our America: Climate of Hope,” airs on WABC-TV New York, Saturday, April 17 (1:00 p.m. EDT); KABC-TV Los Angeles, Saturday, April 17 (9:00 p.m. PDT); WLS-TV Chicago, Sunday, April 18 (11:00 p.m. CDT); WPVI-TV Philadelphia, Sunday, April 18 (1:00 p.m. EDT); KGO-TV San Francisco, Saturday, April 17 (9:00 p.m. PDT); KTRK-TV Houston, Sunday, April 18 (12:00 p.m. CDT); WTVD-TV Raleigh Durham, Sunday, April 18 (12:00 p.m. EDT); and KFSN-TV Fresno, Saturday, April 17 (9:00 p.m. PDT).
Viewers can also stream “Our America: Climate of Hope” by downloading the following ABC Owned Television Stations’ Connected TV Apps: ABC7/WABC-TV New York, ABC7/KABC-TV Los Angeles, ABC7/WLS-TV Chicago, 6ABC/WPVI-TV Philadelphia, ABC7/KGO-TV San Francisco, ABC13/KTRK-TV Houston, ABC11/WTVD-TV Raleigh-Durham and ABC30/KFSN-TV Fresno and on streaming platforms Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, and Roku.