MTV Cuts Down Rainforest for Reality TV Show

After the Viacom-owned network finished filming their new treasure-hunt themed “Real World/Road Rules Challenge” on a remote, uninhabited island in the Republic of Panama, locals returned to find their beach tattered and abused.

The television show, which premieres on September 17th, took over the neighboring, inhabited island in militant style by hiring the local police to prevent residents from accessing a public beach. As it turned out, according to local witnesses, MTV had cleared a small patch of rainforest to build a tiki-hut structure near the beach, developed an access road through the forest, and installed generators and lighting on the beach.

Since the beach was guarded by armed officers, the locals only heard rumors of the destruction until they were able to go back to the beach after filming had finished. “I have seen the aftermath of a tornado and this was almost as bad,” read the account, written by Jmaher and Michael Drake. “A large plot of rainforest had been cleared, a pristine Caribbean beach had been trashed, and the creators had simply packed up and left. A family of what appeared to be ‘squatters’ had already moved into one of the buildings left behind.”

At the time of the writing, MTV had not yet announced the premiere of the television show. The authors deduced that the network had been behind the commotion after finding papers with MTV’s logo among other garbage littering small village’s the streets. The nearby uninhabited island (which the show’s contestants ravaged for hidden treasure) had not been visited by the writers, so we’ll have to watch the show to see how that island fared. All this comes after MTV’s recent efforts to encourage teens to go green.

“Perhaps I have been unjustified in my criticism and, if so, I will offer my apologies whenever it becomes obvious that I have been unfair,” the lengthy piece reads, nearing conclusion. “In the meanwhile I will continue to show my irritation for what I perceive Mtv to have done to a beautiful area of rainforest and beach.”

A trailer for the upcoming television show can be found here.

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[via sustainablog]

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