Living the Ecological Life on TV

From Bonnie in London: This is not a plug for TreeHugger TV, it is an unlikely idea for a reality TV show: take a family of four, move them into a dilapidated farm house in Cornwall England and watch them start trying to live an environmentally-friendly lifestyle. As improbable as it sounds for prime time viewing, it is happening: the show is called "It's Not Easy Being Green" and it can be seen on BBC2 for the next seven weeks.

In it we follow the trials and tribulations of the Strawbridge family as they build a new greenhouse with a self-sufficient heating system, set up solar-powered hot water and dig, mulch and compost. . Dick, the father is an energetic, cheery charactar who loves tinkering with the technical stuff. Brigit the mother is a "green and planet-loving" free spirit who is concerned about eating meat. The two teenagers are sceptical but good natured—gagging at the sight of sausages being made by hand. Luckily they are joined by friends such as an organic gardener and physicist who help them along with the serious aspects of the project.

The show is based on a true story. The Strawbridge family really did move to the depths of the English countryside a year ago with great plans to live self-sufficiently. The BBC has filmed them intermittently as they come to grips with the task ahead. Over the next two months we will be able to follow their progress in their new life.
As the father says "We're not preachy and it isn't all easy being green, but it's fun trying".

The critics are less sanguine . The Guardian said " I know it's bad and wrong that I hate the Strawbridges but I just can't help it". The Times, noting that Strawbridge says that he wants to have little impact on the planet, said " Who knows? The audience ratings may show that his wish has been granted".

Stay tuned next week for the arrival of the pigs

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