Greenery and foliage on the shore of a body of water. | Featured image for "Earth Focus"

Future of Food: San Diego

The U.S. is the largest importer of seafood, with 91 percent of our seafood coming primarily from China. As the global demand for food is expected to double by 2050, researchers are turning to aquaculture to look for ways to breed, raise and harvest seafood in sustainable — and scalable — fish farms off the U.S. coast to improve our access to quality seafood without the carbon footprint of imported fish. This segment explores efforts to build the first open-ocean fish farm in the United States. Proponents say we could have the ability to farm as much as the total global wild catch within an area the size of Lake Michigan. Experts weigh in on whether innovation in aquaculture is outpacing federal regulation and threatening local fishing culture.

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Adaptation to Global Water Shortages

Anticipating future water needs, two regions on opposite sides of the world turn to technology for answers. Western Morocco, near the Sahara Desert, is currently facing unprecedented drought and groundwater mismanagement. But an ancient method of gathering moisture from fog is being taught to 13 villages, allowing people to have a level of local control over their most basic need. In Central Valley, California, the food basket of the world uses nearly 80 percent of the entire state's water supply.

Future of Food

Communities and innovators all over the world are creating new sustainable food sources that are resilient to climate change and growing populations. In Madagascar, we see how villagers are closing off marine areas to allow the fish supply to replenish at a natural pace. In San Diego, California, aquaculturists are exploring open ocean farming as a more sustainable model for the fishing industry.

Urban Habitat

Los Angeles is one of the biggest biodiversity hotspots in the world, despite its smog, urban sprawl and snarling freeways. At least 20,000 native and non-native plant and animal species are thriving despite human interference, and in some cases because of it. How can people help make urban habitats more welcoming to non-human urban dwellers?

Fueling Change: Oil Extraction in Alaska and California

The global demand for oil and gas has long-lasting impacts on the communities that supply it. In Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, powerful native communities are at odds over an oil exploration and drilling plan that will boost their economy but have long-term consequences on native species and their environment. In California’s Kern County, the mayors of two neighboring towns face off on the economic benefits and health risks of oil production and their vastly different visions for the most sustainable path to the future.