Most of us think of sand as a necessary ingredient for any beach vacation. Yet those seemingly insignificant grains of silica surround our daily lives. Every house, skyscraper and glass building, every bridge, airport and sidewalk in our modern society depends on sand. We use it to manufacture optical fiber, cell phone components and computer chips. We find it in our toothpaste, powdered foods and even our wine (both the glass and the wine, as a fining agent)! Is sand an infinite resource? Can the existing supply satisfy a gigantic demand fueled by construction booms? What are the consequences of intensive beach sand mining for the environment? Based on encounters with sand smugglers, corrupt politicians, unscrupulous real estate developers and environmentalists, this investigation by award-winning director Denis Delestrac takes us around the globe to unveil a new gold rush and a disturbing fact: the “sand wars” have begun.
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National Geographic Specials - How to Build a Beating Heart
Delve into the cutting-edge field of tissue engineering to see how scientists are attempting to harness the body’s...
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Three families face the difficult decision of whether or not to be tested for Huntington’s disease – a degenerative neurological illness that is akin to having ALS,...
In the vast wilderness of northern British Columbia, the Sacred Headwaters is one of the largest bear sanctuaries in the world.
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The fast and maneuverable de Havilland Mosquito was a crucial element in the victory of the Allied Forces in World War II. But because of its wooden...
This nature series takes you beneath the surface of the ocean and into some of the greatest aquatic environments of the world. Discover mysterious marine locales and remarkable coral...
Space Suite I
A star dies in a supernova explosion, and curtains of light - the aurora borealis - dance before our eyes. Galaxies collide. Comets flash across the sky. The moon arcs across night’s...