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Youth Climate Activism and Environmental Politics Explored in New Season of Acclaimed Environmental Series EARTH FOCUS from KCET, Link TV And Thomson Reuters Foundation

From Illegal Gold Mining in Peru to Our Nation’s Surprising Green Senator Harry Reid,

The New Season Premiering September 8 Looks at the Politics of the Environment


Burbank, Calif. – KCET, Southern California’s home for award-winning original public media programming, and Link TV, the national independent non-commercial satellite television network, today announced the episode lineup for the new season of Link TV’s acclaimed original environmental series EARTH FOCUS in partnership with the Thomson Reuters Foundation and the Laboratory for Environmental Narrative Strategies (LENS) at UCLA. EARTH FOCUS features investigative reports about our changing environment and how it affects people around the world. In the new season, EARTH FOCUS examines “the politics of the environment” including youth climate activists around the globe, the transition away from coal in South Africa, gold mining in Peru, and a feature-length documentary on the environmental politics of the New West highlighting the work of Nevada’s legendary Senator Harry Reid. The new season of EARTH FOCUS premieres on Tues., Sept. 8 at 8 p.m. PT on KCET in Southern California, on Wed., Sept. 9 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Link TV nationwide (DirecTV 375 and DISH Network 9410), and on Sun., Sept. 13 at 3:30 p.m. ET/PT on WORLD Channel, with streaming on and

Launched in 2007, EARTH FOCUS is the longest-running investigative environmental news program on U.S. television. The series provides audiences with urgent global environmental coverage on key issues such as endangered species, climate change, environmental health and sustainable practices. With three new episodes focused on international environmental politics co-produced by the Thomson Reuters Foundation and KCET, EARTH FOCUS continues its commitment to educate audiences about the global issues impacting our planet.


This season will conclude with a fourth episode, a special 90-minute documentary, “The New West and the Politics of the Environment,” set to air on Tues. Sept. 29 at 8 p.m. PT on KCET in Southern California and Wed., Sept. 30 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Link TV nationwide (DirecTV 375 and DISH Network 9410). Co-produced by KCET and LENS at UCLA, this special episode focuses on the iconic Nevada Senator Harry Reid, and how he built the foundations of a green new deal.

The new season of EARTH FOCUS will air as follows (*schedule subject to change):

“The Youth Climate Movement Around the World” – Tues., Sept. 8 on KCET and Wed., Sept. 9 on Link TV

In 2019, sixteen children from across the world including Greta Thunberg filed a historical, global lawsuit petitioning the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child to hold five of the world’s leading economic powers accountable for inaction on the climate crisis. All 16 young people are alarmed by the changes they see in their homelands. This episode includes an interview with Greta and in-depth profiles of four of these young environmentalists: Alexandria Villaseñor in California, Carl Smith, in Alaska, Ayakha Melithafa in South Africa and Litokne Kabua in the Marshall Islands.

EARTH FOCUS “The Youth Climate Movement Around the World” features Alexandria Villaseñor from Paradise, California. Image courtesy of Thomson Reuters Foundation.

“Coal Mining in South Africa” – Tues., Sept. 15 on KCET and Wed., Sept. 16 on Link TV

South Africa faces a stark reality as the continent’s largest greenhouse gas emitter. More than 80% of power generation comes from coal, with 11 coal power plants turning the province of Mpumalanga into one of the most polluted areas of the world. As the world moves away from fossil fuels and major global investors pull out, renewable energy fights to forge the future. The tension is palpable among the government, coal producers, workers, and the environment in a post-apartheid South Africa facing pressing developmental challenges of unemployment, poverty and inequality.

EARTH FOCUS “Coal Mining in South Africa.” Image courtesy of Thomson Reuters Foundation.

“The Price of Gold in Peru” – Tues., Sept. 22 on KCET and Wed., Sept. 23 on Link TV

When Peru’s President Martín Vizcarra came to power in 2018, one of his first priorities was to gain control over the devastating outbreak of illegal gold mining operations. In February 2019, the government launched Operation Mercury, a decisive action to shut down an entire town built around an illegal gold mine. This episode follows chief environmental prosecutor Karina Garay as she works with the police, army and navy in destroying illegal mines and arresting miners in protected areas, while retraining illegal miners and persuading them to join the formalized mining operations.

EARTH FOCUS “The Price of Gold in Peru.” Image courtesy of Thomson Reuters Foundation.

“The New West and the Politics of the Environment– Tues., Sept. 29 on KCET and Wed., Sept. 30 on Link TV

A quiet, little-known revolution is taking place in American environmental politics in a most surprising place—Nevada. In this feature-length documentary, EARTH FOCUS tells the story of Harry Reid, a politician who grew up in an Old West mining town, saw the possibility of a New West emerging in Nevada and rode that change to power. Reid used power in new ways to settle water wars with respect for Native Americans, protect endangered species and wilderness, and usher in a just transition to renewable energy.

EARTH FOCUS “The New West and the Politics of the Environment” features Nevada Senator Harry Reid. Image courtesy of UCLA LENS.

EARTH FOCUS supports Link TV’s mission to connect viewers to the world. Celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2020, Link TV brings Americans closer to people and events beyond our borders. Leveraging its strong relationships with international producers, it has become a place for powerful human stories, high-quality international journalism, documentaries, and scripted dramas. Link TV is a passport for the globally engaged. By conveying diverse perspectives and unfiltered viewpoints, Link TV works to bridge divides and facilitate conversation, understanding, empathy and change on important global topics. Live streaming takes place daily at from 3:00pm-11:00pm Pacific (6:00pm-2:00am Eastern), showing Link TV’s broad range of quality content for free.

The new season of EARTH FOCUS is part of programming focused on this election cycle, where PBS SoCal and KCET explore the past, present and future of our democracy. KCET and PBS SoCal will bring you NewsHour‘s unbiased coverage of the conventions and the debates, FRONTLINE‘s investigative reports on the candidates and Washington Week‘s analysis. All-new KCET Original documentaries will spotlight California’s changing population, values and social movements. Local election coverage both on-air and online at and deciphers and explains the propositions and measures viewers will find on the ballot and how they will impact the city and state.

Join the conversation on social media using #EarthFocus


EARTH FOCUS​ is supported by generous institutional funders. The ​EARTH FOCUS​ series was created by ​Raisa Scriabine.


On-air, online and in the community, KCET plays a vital role in the cultural and educational enrichment of Southern and Central California. KCET offers a wide range of award-winning local programming as well as the finest public television programs from around the world. Throughout its 54-year history, KCET has won hundreds of major awards for its local and regional news and public affairs programming, its national drama and documentary productions, its quality educational family and children’s programs, its outreach and community platforms and its website, KCET is a donor-supported community institution. For additional information about KCET productions, web-exclusive content, programming schedules and community events, please visit Select original programming from KCET is also available for streaming on Apple TV, Samsung devices, YouTube, Amazon and Roku platforms. For more information please visit KCET is a content channel of the Public Media Group of Southern California.


Founded in 1999, Link TV is an independent viewer-supported media organization dedicated to providing programs that engage and inform its audiences with unique perspectives, and empower them to become involved in the world.  Reaching more than 31 million U.S. satellite households nationally (DIRECTV channel 375 and DISH Network channel 9410), Link TV connects American viewers with people at the heart of breaking events, organizations at the forefront of social change and the vibrant cultures of an increasingly global community. Select programming from Link TV is also available for streaming on Apple TV, YouTube and Roku platforms. For additional information about Link TV productions, web-exclusive content and program schedules, please visit


The Thomson Reuters Foundation is the corporate foundation of Thomson Reuters, the global news and information services company. As an independent charity, registered in the UK and the USA, we work to advance media freedom, foster more inclusive economies, and promote human rights. Through news, media development, free legal assistance and convening initiatives, we combine our unique services to drive systemic change.


The Laboratory for Environmental Narrative Strategies (LENS) is an incubator for new research and collaboration on storytelling, communications, and media. LENS begins with the idea that the environmental, sustainability, and justice challenges that we face are as much cultural and political as they are scientific and technological. At LENS, scholars investigate environmental stories across cultures and contexts, research the impact of environmental media and communications, teach multimedia storytelling, and collaborate to create new environmental narratives.