Contrary to the goals of the MTV's current Green Crusade, the most recent MTV "Real World/Road Rules" challenge -- which has yet to air -- seems to pit competing teams against each other in an effort to wreak the most havoc on Panamanian rainforests.
The devastation left behind once the shoot wrapped, was described in a recent article from the Tree Climber's Coalition. They say MTV left the formerly pristine area riddled with trash, unstruck sets, and even discarded scripts for the so-called "reality" series.
Apparently when MTV execs see green, they're not looking at the environment.
Calls to MTV were not immediately returned.
From Tree Climbers Coalition.Org:
Now, it can legitimately be argued that all of this, being on privately owned property, was subject to the whim of the property owner and any agents to whom the owner might have given permission to do whatever they wished. Nevertheless I can assure all of you that had this been done in any urban/suburban neighborhood, almost anywhere else, the neighbors would have been justified in entering a legal complaint against the landowner. 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.
So just what have we had here?
First, a crowd of people that have shown no respect at all for local culture and custom, their attitude proclaiming the idea that "We are more important than any of you, don't need you, and can do whatever we want. We don't even have to acknowledge your presence."
Second, a TV entity that wants to fool the world with a reality show supposedly taking place on a deserted and remote tropical island, that, in fact, has houses within several hundred yards on either side of their production site, and is on an island that is the hottest tourist spot in almost all of Panama.
Third, a group that leaves its trash on the side of the road with no regard for the natural beauty of the place.
Fourth, a group that will indiscriminately cut down whatever part of the forest is necessary in order to accommodate its objective, whether for construction or simply because it might be in the way.
Fifth, A group that set foot and conducted activities on a small and protected island without regard for the fact that the island has been declared "off-limits" to human visitation.
Sixth, their low-flying helicopter and airplane was a serious interruption of the tranquility of the forest. There are a lot of monkeys and birds inhabiting this part of the forest and every time the helicopter would come over, these local residents would become seriously agitated. I doubt that MTV knew, or cared, that these animals were there.
Seventh, they left without cleaning up the mess they had created.
Eighth, they did all of this with the obvious cooperation of the Policia Nacional.
Ninth, MTV's behavior in this situation has been rampantly inconsistent with their self-proclaimed "MTV Green Crusade". I sense a bit of hypocrisy and I question their commitment toward being "green".
Article and pictures here.
How nice. I'm gonna sit back and wait for all the Big Oil haters to come forth and protest. I'm gonna sit back and wait for all the envirocrats to call for a boycott of MTV's The Real World/Road Rules programs. I'm gonna sit back and wait for the Sierra Club to issue a statement condemning MTV and it's TV crews.
But I'm not gonna hold my breath.