Best Eco-Reality TV Shows

By Allyson Koerner 

Who doesn’t love reality television? Well, maybe there are a few of you out there, but for some of us, it is our guilty pleasure! From “The Real Housewives of New York City” to “Hoarders” and “Jersey Shore,” watching “real” people has become a major phenomenon over the years. One of the newest trends on TV is eco-reality shows where we can sit down and learn how to protect the environment. Pick up the remote and tune into some of our top choices! 

Animal Activism
Need some adventure in your life? Then the action packed “WHALE WARS” is for you. Currently in its third season, the show documents the Sea Shepherds’ Whale Defense Campaign, a.k.a. “Operation Waltzing Matilda,” and their attempts to stop Japanese ships from hunting whales in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary located in the Antarctic waters. You can watch the crews sail across the seas in their three vessels named the Steve Irwin, the Ady Gil and the Bob Barker while they risk it all and fight for the lives of whales. The show began airing on June 4, but no worries, the 13 episode season is still on. Check out “WHALE WARS” Fridays at 9 p.m. EST on Animal Planet. If you missed some episodes, watch full episodes and clips online to catch up! 

Home Design
If you need some eco-friendly design tips then check out “Red Hot & Green” on HGTV. Hosted by carpenter, Carter Oosterhouse, and professional designer, Nicole Facciuto, you can learn how to transform rooms with eco-friendly flair. Plain and boring rooms turn into exciting eco-friendly environments. Check out HGTV’s schedule to see when “Red Hot & Green” airs. Also, you can watch full episodes online to learn some great tips! 

Nature Enthusiast
Looking for a unique type of reality TV? Check out Discovery Channel’s “Planet Earth” and “LIFE.” These shows don’t star your usual reality TV stars, but creatures and life from our environment. Watch never-before-seen animal behaviors and locations from across the world! “LIFE” is a 10-part series airing Sundays on Animal Planet at 8 and 9 p.m. EST. It includes shows about reptiles, amphibians, mammals, plants, insects and much more. “Planet Earth,” narrated by actress and conservationist, Sigourney Weaver, is an 11-part series about the mountains, the deep ocean, the Great Plains and other magnificent parts of nature. “Planet Earth” aired in 2006 and can be purchased on DVD.  Also, you can watch amazing clips online from both “Planet Earth” and “LIFE.” 

Food Junkie
Need some new recipes to add to your recipe box? Check out “Future Food” airing on Planet Green. World renowned chefs and “molecular gastronomists,” Homaro Cantu and Ben Roche, take cooking to the next level. They redefine food while coming up with new ways to help the environment. As successful restaurateurs, Cantu and Roche improve the environment in unique ways such as cooking up edible packaging peanuts, instead of Styrofoam peanuts that take years to break down. This is just one of their creative ideas! Check Planet Green’s schedule to see when “Future Food” is on in your area or watch clips online! 

Are you someone who needs to change your wasteful ways? Check out the Sundance Channel’s original series “THE LAZY ENVIRONMENTALIST” hosted by Josh Dorfman. Currently in its second season, Dorfman searches for environmental skeptics who happen to be experts in fields such as fashion, business, food, education and design. He goes to great lengths to try and persuade them into becoming eco-friendly. Dorfman shows people how living green can meet the demands of their professional and private lives. He tries to change wasteful ways “one couch potato at a time.” “THE LAZY ENVIRONMENTALIST” airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. EST. You can watch clips online. 

These are just a few eco-reality TV shows. If you’re looking for others check out Planet Green, Sundance Channel, Discovery Channel and Animal Planet, which provide more great green reality TV!