tv Global 3000 PBS April 27, 2016 12:30am-1:01am PDT
>> "global 3000" goes to china. the country needs more children to help care for an aging population. and we travel along the mekong in cambodia in search of the last river dolphins. but first, what happens when baby-making becomes a business? the history of in vitro fertilization began just 37 years ago. the first baby conceived through in vitro fertilization. in july 1978, the birth of louise joy brown made headlines around the world. baby-making still requires an egg and a sperm cell. but apart from that, there's now a dizzying array of methods for human conception.
assisted reproductive services are a booming business and north america is its biggest market. revenue is expected to double to 17 billion euros annually in the coming years. >> there's life in this tank. deep-frozen fertilized egg cells, early-stage embryos. the ct fertility clinic's main asset. noah's life originated in a tank like that one. his parents paid $150,000 for him, and the same amount again for his brother tristan, two bright and healthy children. they live with their parents david and georges in a fashionable townhouse in mid-manhattan. the couple chose their mother from candidates listed in ct
fertility's catalogue. together they show us how it worked. potential egg donors introduce themselves personally via video. ct fertility pays donors $8000 for their eggs. >> hi. my name is courtney. i was told i should make a video and kind of tell you guys more about myself, so i figured i'd talk about why i want to be an egg donor. >> ancestry, religion, education, health -- the women reveal almost everything about themselves. the customer is king. >> we both have blue eyes, so we wanted to have a donor that had blue eyes just because the color is a recessive gene passed on from the woman. we wanted someone intelligent, someone pretty tall, someone who had good health history.
>> this is where michael doyle works -- the doctor with whom david and georges conceived their children. dr. doyle produced embryos using the fathers' sperm and implanted them in the uterus of a surrogate mother. that's legal in many parts of the u.s. in european countries such as denmark and germany, it's a criminal offense, punishable by up to three years in prison. that's why carsten from denmark has come to the u.s. dr. doyle does what his country doesn't allow. carsten is nervous. he's about to learn the results of the genetic tests. >> of course, they test for the most common genetic diseases and also they test for the sex, and we prefer to have boys, because there are lots of girls in our families. >> the 15 embryos produced in the lab through in vitro
fertilization, or ivf, are pre-sorted. only the embryos with the best genetic test results will be implanted. dr. doyle tells carsten about the results. >> there are two beautiful boy embryos that we've chosen, and there are other ones that we're evaluating and testing, but that's what we're going to transfer. >> good. so we get whatever we want. >> exactly what you want. for some people, making conscious decisions, even if they're very highly informed, is uncomfortable and makes some people feel that we may be going up a slope toward a judgement of other human beings that makes them uncomfortable. our philosophy is to give our patients as much information and as much choice with regard to the selection of the egg donor, which gets you to selection. that's unavoidable. >> ads like this, for clinics that let you choose your child's sex, are common across the u.s. this is banned in places like germany and denmark and it's
controversial in the u.s. >> gender is not a disease. gender is not a disorder. why would medicine start to get involved with helping people fulfill their preferences or their biases or their sexism? >> new york university in new york city. prestigious institutes like this are where the fertility clinics prefer to look for their raw material -- egg cells from intelligent, attractive women. the more elite the university, the more they pay. donors have to undergo hormone treatment that can pose serious health risks. as many mature egg cells as possible are then retrieved surgically. >> here, it's the market. and that means the rich do what they want. that means people who have money from europe wind up being here. it's not that they don't do it. they just come here and get it
done. >> carsten says hello to tracia, the surrogate mother. for about $30,000, she's willing to carry and give birth to his children. the fertilized eggs of another woman are about to be implanted -- male twins. dr. doyle explains the procedure to them both. tracia has signed a contract to give the twins she'll be bearing to carsten after they're born. >> and so they're right here in the middle of the uterus, and i hope the next time we look with an ultrasound. >> catheter's all clear. >> awesome. >> 30 seconds and now we're pregnant. waiting for all these years, and then suddenly. >> if the pregnancy doesn't take, it's not the end. carsten has 12 more embryos in frozen storage. assisted reproduction is booming business in the u.s. >> it does cost a high amount of money. many people don't have that
money. and unfortunately that means that some people, like anything in life, if you can't afford it, you can't do it. >> a lot of planning and money went into creating noah and tristan, and they're being raised in a happy and affluent family. but what happens when such planning doesn't lead to success? >> you raise expectations. i bought an egg from a person at a very prestigious university, and you turned out to be someone who just works in a supermarket. this is a defective good. are you going to treat the baby like a product rather than as a person? >> in the u.s., the first dissatisfied customers are already suing for compensation in court. >> almost six million babies have been born worldwide through ivf. that number is also likely to increase in china, where couples are now allowed to have two children, rather than one.
>> yichen's life almost ended before she was born. she's now three years old. she nearly became a victim of china's one-child policy -- her parents already had a son. in august 2012, family planning officials and local authorities picked up her mother xu li, detained her for 30 hours and gave her a choice -- abort the fetus in her sixth month of pregnancy or pay a fine of about 35,000 euros. >> they were inhumane. they were so cruel and so horrible to me. i begged them to let me go. i promised to pay a fine after the birth. they said that was impossible and that they'd force me to have an abortion. >> xu li and her husband borrowed money -- about 12,000 euros. in the end, xu li was freed and
yichen was born, but many other chinese families have suffered a worse fate. >> it's incredible that something like this can still happen in the 21st century. >> a propaganda video. its message -- there are too many chinese. in 1979, china launched its one-child policy, hoping to prevent famine and accelerate economic growth. there were exemptions for ethnic minorities, for instance. but violating the law often meant merciless intervention. >> punishing violations of the one-child policy with fines isn't enough. we need a law that allows abortions. if other methods fail, we must implement forced abortions. >> the chinese state laid claim to total power, including over women's bodies. neighborhood committees distributed contraceptives. a bureaucracy monitored couples. as a result of the one-child policy, today there are an
estimated 100 million to 200 million fewer chinese. but this led to other problems. china has many more boys than girls. girls are more likely to be aborted, especially in rural areas. experts say there's a shortage of millions of girls -- the mothers of the future. population experts like huang wenzheng have long been issuing warnings. india's population pyramid is healthy in comparison. in china, fewer and fewer young people have to care for increasing numbers of elderly. huang wenzheng wants financial incentives for families because ending the one-child policy probably won't suffice. if the birth rate remains this low, in 140 years, china's population only 300 million. >> china should immediately remove all limits on births and instead encourage them. but even then, i'm pessimistic about china's demographic development. >> children's kung-fu in a department store.
little yi is just watching, but she too will have to fight her way through life without a sibling. her parents don't want a second child, although they're now allowed to have one. members of the one-child generation are often pampered by their parents and grandparents. they're china's little princes and princesses. but they bear a great burden. later on, yi will have to care for her grandparents and parents on her own. the family lives here just outside beijing. they're middle-class, have their own apartment, car and career plans. and they can afford only one child. yi likes to dress up as a princess. she's going to get an extremely good education, but no brother or sister. her mother, zhang yin, has health concerns, but that's not her only reason. >> we want to give our daughter the best we possibly can.
if we have another baby, we'll have to lower our sights for both of them. and we don't want to do that. >> on the one hand, it would affect my wife's work. and on the other, there are our parents, especially our fathers. they're getting older and they need us. but with a second child, we'd need them to help us. >> yichen's and chenrui's parents are also feeling the financial pressure, but they've never regretted having a second child. they've always wanted their children not to grow up alone. they believe the local authorities only wanted the money anyway. now they're demanding it back in court and say the authorities shouldn't have treated them the way they did. and they want to set an example.
>> even if we lose in court, i still believe that this is a way for us citizens to defend our rights. that's why i decided to sue the authorities. >> xu li and her husband say family planning is a private matter. and they want their children to have the freedom to make their own choices as adults. ♪
>> my name is eclou serges. i go to school in the coastal town of grand popo in benin. i'm in my sixth year there. there are 36 students in my class. i'll take my exams in a year. i want to qualify for university and study journalism. i like modern music. on the road that links cotonou, the capital of benin, to togo. these are the oranges that my aunt sells to customers at her refreshment stand. my uncle works as a mechanic. this is his workshop where he repairs motorcycles.
this is my mother. she's a housewife in grand popo. her name is acolatier apolis. this is my father. his name is eclou daniel. he's a driver in grand popo. he gets up early in the morning and i don't get to see him every day. he's strict with us so that we'll do well in school and we can make something of ourselves. to wash, i go to the well, lower a bucket into it and then i can
shower. we're on the beach here. there are flowers everywhere, but also litter that pollutes the environment and the sea. the plastic waste products get washed out to sea and kill the turtles. the turtles mistake them for food. >> 16 years since the start of the millennium -- 16 years of life. global is visiting young people around the world who were born in the year 2000. >> i love dancing.
>> what's important to angel from the seychelles? and what does simon love about life in buenos aires? >> join us on our series "millennium teens." you'll find all the details online. it's estimated that up to 14 million different animal species exist on earth. more than 100 species become extinct every day. in our global ideas series, we meet people who are working to preserve biodiversity. the mekong river is the lifeline of southeast asia. it flows more than 4000 kilometers, providing water and sustenance for both humans and animals. in cambodia, the mekong is also home to river dolphins, but their numbers are dwindling. we went to cambodia to find out more.
>> we're searching for the last of the mekong's dolphins. here in cambodia, where the river is still wild and untamed, a small group of about 80 irrawaddy dolphins still exists. our boatsman needs keen eyes. now, during the dry season, the many shoals can be dangerous. bent tree roots show the force the floods develop in the rainy season. >> we change boats in kratie. several years ago, the cambodian government turned this section of the river into a dolphin conservation area. the fishermen had to change course to eco-tourism. >> instead of fishing, i now take tourists to see dolphins. i don't earn less than i did as
a fisherman. i hope more tourists come. that would be good for our community. it would create lots of new jobs. >> and here they are -- the mekong's irrawaddy dolphins. their snoutless heads look more like those of whales than dolphins. and they don't jump. visitors shouldn't expect them to put on a show, like flipper. they live on crustaceans, but are happy to get a morsel of fish as our guide shows us. and fortunately for their fans, the aquatic mammals have to surface regularly to breathe. >> it's incredible. there aren't many places where you can see animals like these. they're really near the boat. they're hard to photograph because they move so fast. it's a bit of a game for them. but it's a great opportunity to see them up close.
>> quite a way downriver, on cambodia's border to laos, there's a second conservation area. there are said to be four irrawaddy dolphins here. river guards regularly patrol the area. the worldwide fund for nature supplies them with fuel and a gps device. the guards are delegated by the surrounding villages and fishing community. their job is to enforce the protection of the dolphins, especially against the illegal methods employed by some fishermen. >> we're right on the border. those bottles indicate a gillnet. unfortunately on the laotian side, so we can't seize it. these nets are very dangerous for dolphins. they can get tangled up in them and die an agonizing death by asphyxiation.
some fishermen also use electric stunners and explosives, which are also lethal for dolphins. >> but the dolphins now face a new and even greater threat. the might of the mekong also awakens economic desires. cambodia's neighbor laos wants to build several dams and generate hydroelectric power. the bitterly poor country would like to become the battery of southeast asia. the don sahong dam is to be built with malaysian assistance directly on the border. we aren't allowed to film at the dam's construction site in laos. but this infrastructural work on the cambodian side gives a hint of what it will look like when the machinery moves in. >> i represent 600 families, more than 3200 people in all.
i'm very worried. if our neighbor laos dams the mekong, rotting biomass will have a serious impact on the quality of our water. the dolphins will disappear, and so will the fish. in the dry season, we'll have too little water. when they open the floodgates during the rainy season, it will be dangerous for humans and animals near the riverbank. >> conservationists are organizing the protests. many village leaders from the region are here. the 200 or so participants are staging a demonstration on the water. the protests haven't had much effect so far. laos intends to stick to its plans to build the dam. it's not just the dolphins that are threatened, but also the fish. in cambodia, they're a staple food and the most important source of protein. experts fear the dam will impede
the migration of many mekong fish species. that would deprive fishermen on the mekong of their livelihood. for generations, they've been setting out on the river at dawn to cast their nets. the mekong is also needed on land. the clean water it provides is essential, especially during the dry season. prun sarot grows cabbage, pumpkins and cucumbers in her vegetable garden. and the soil is always thirsty. >> we use water from the river for our fruit plantations, as drinking water for the family,
to do laundry and lots more. when i think about it, for everything. >> and when the temperatures rise to 40 degrees celsius, the mekong can be the last resort for escaping the heat. we've reached the end of our journey on the mekong in phnom penh. the river is also a main artery here in the capital. damming the river could strangulate that artery. many fear its impact would be irreversible. >> if the dan sahong dam is going to be built, with the negative impact including the quality of water, including the density of fishery and so on, we could not address it. we could not recover back the number of fish. because the habitat of dolphins
has been 1000 years old. >> the mekong would be poorer without its dolphins and their welfare mirrors the survival of the entire ecosystem. >> join us on the next edition when we take a look at the environmental impact of coal. this past december, the world decided to put the breaks on global warming. what does that mean for the coal industry? funds worth billions are pledging to divest from coal companies. this and more, next time on "global 3000." [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org]
and as if to remind visitors that they've left spain and entered the united kingdom, international flights land on this airstrip, which runs along the border. car traffic has to stop for each plane. still, entering gibraltar is far easier today than back when franco blockaded this border. from the late 1960s until the '80s, the only way in was by sea or air. now you just have to wait for the plane to taxi by, and bob's your uncle. the sea once reached these ramparts. a modern development grows into the harbor, and today half the city is built upon reclaimed land. gibraltar's old town is long and skinny, with one main street. gibraltarians are a proud bunch, remaining steadfastly loyal to britain. its 30,000 residents vote overwhelmingly to continue as a self-governing british dependency.
within a generation, the economy has gone from one dominated by the military to one based on tourism. but it's much more than sunburned brits on holiday. gibraltar is a crossroads community with a jumble of muslims, jews, hindus, and italians joining the english, and all crowded together at the base of this mighty rock. with its strategic setting, gibraltar has an illustrious military history, and remnants of its martial past are everywhere. the rock is honeycombed with tunnels. many were blasted out by the brits in napoleonic times. during world war ii, britain drilled 30 more miles of tunnels. the 100-ton gun is one of many cannon that both protected gibraltar and controlled shipping in the strait. a cable car whisks visitors from downtown to the rock's 14,000-foot summit. from the top of the rock, spain's costa del sol arcs eastward,
and 15 miles across the hazy strait of gibraltar, the shores of morocco beckon. these cliffs and those over in africa created what ancient societies in the mediterranean world called the pillars of hercules. for centuries, they were the foreboding gateway to the unknown. descending the rock, whether you like it or not, you'll meet the famous apes of gibraltar. 200 of these mischief-makers entertain tourists. and with all the visitors, they're bold, and they get their way. yeah? you can have it. you can -- you can -- you can -- here on the rock of gibraltar, the locals are very friendly, but give them your apples. legend has it that as long as these apes are here, the british will stay in gibraltar.
[rk gospel music] (male narrator) memphis, tennessee. it has been written if music were religion that memphis would be jerusalem and sun studio, its most sacred shrine. and you are here with reverend john wilkins. - i'm reverend john wilkins, glad to be here at sun studio on this afternoon. me and my band and my three daughters, tangela, alfreda and tiwana. from memphis, tennessee. born and bred here out there by the airport when it wasn't too many airplanes back in 1943. [laughter]