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tv   Global 3000  PBS  May 17, 2016 7:30pm-8:01pm PDT

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anchor: today, global 3000 focuses on drug use around the world, like afghanistan, where addicts undergo treatment. uruguay has legalized cannabis. and, we check out the internet, where you can order new, dangerous drugs with a click of a mouse. a drug-free world by 2008 was once a goal. the war on drugs has failed. there is an annual turnover of 380 billion euros. it is possible to access new substances over the internet and
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a large number of them are synthetic cannabinoids. reporter: they look harmless enough and come in packets like candy. they arson that it drugs that are said to enhance the party experience and boost energy. they can be bought online and are described as compounds or "bath salts." it is difficult for legislators to keep up. in germany, incense containing synthetic cannabinoids is popular. we ordered a bag of "jamaican gold." it says, for experienced users only.
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these drugs sold well in areas where access is not as easy as in the city. synthetic drugs are taking over from natural substances. he works for a company called "chill out." >> there are main groups and stimulants over the last 20-30 years and it has push out classic narcotic substances. that is still a trend. the term, "bath salts," is used for things that contain cocaine. it can have a psychedelic effect.
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reporter: the herbal blends and colorful packaging can be legal. it does not mean they are not dangerous. the so-called incense is filled with chemical waste products and overdoses are frequent. instead of "chilling out," many experience panic attacks on a horror trip that could last for days. they do not just affect the mental well-being. >> in germany, we have seen an increasing number of people in hospital or going to hospitals because they get seizures, which seemed to be a typical side effect of some blends. it varies a great deal and it depends, of course, on the dose and what you get. many factors. in some cases, users die.
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>> some share experiences on online forums. the substance we bought cropped up frequently. one man said that he experienced seizures and numbness. he was moved to the hospital with a suspected mild stroke. but, what exactly do the legal highs contain? we sent purchases to a clinic in western germany. this is the only place that is experiencing this regularly. up to 400 a year. apart from time and waste products, there is a new substance. what did she find in the samples?
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>> this is a diagram of the analysis and here is what we have identified, a substance that is very new and i could not find anything about it online. we do know that comparable substances with a similar makeup are around 40 times stronger than cannabis. reporter: cannabinoids are manufactured in chinese laboratories and turned into a consumable drug. the customer is, effectively, the guinea pig. >> i think it would make sense to offer a service in germany where users can have it checked, like in austria and switzerland. you would be able to warn users directly and prevent some of the more major problems.
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reporter: there were 25 deaths in germany officially attributed to legal highs. it is clear that there needs to be more information out there for the public. anchor: more public information is needed for other drugs. alcohol is highly addictive and has a negative effect on society. heroin comes in second place, followed by tobacco. cannabis is listed as eighth. 180 million people consume it worldwide and it is illegal to sell in most countries. that is now changing in uruguay.
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reporter: he heads up the first state-controlled cannabis club. until recently, this would have been a criminal offense. selling marijuana was illegal. this has changed everything. >> the politics of "peace of mind." we faced huge legal problems. then, it is a quality issue. if it is expired -- >> uruguay allowed small amounts of cannabis for personal consumption and everything this was something of a revolution and, now, the state regulates.
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everything is coordinated by the national drug board. >> this unbalanced approach said that, by reducing supply, i reduced a man's. -- reduce demand. it is a little crazy. in our part of the world, this is known as the "war on drugs." it is not only failed. it has generated more harm than the drugs. we want to take a new approach to the drug problem. we want to break the illicit market and the drug trafficking links. at the same time, we want to preserve some rights. >> those who want to use cannabis have several options.
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they either become members of a club or they can grow 6 plants. soon, they can buy 10 grams a week, if they are registered and are 18. uruguay has produced a modified cannabis plant that allows knowledge of where plants come from, which allows the government to regular the market. >> we have to produce two times each. the government knows that more licenses will be needed and the stock will probably run out. i saw this as a dream opportunity. if uruguay is smart, it could develop an industry.
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reporter: in a couple of months, the users will be able to buy cannabis at the store. it will cost the equivalent of one euro, which drug dealers will not be able to keep up. all users will have to be registered and there will be no point for the tourists to go to uruguay. >> there will be supply and demand. reporter: still, the authorities are not expecting support from the international community. >> there are international entities, countries, regions that ignore science and remain convinced that the world free of drugs is the best option. so, i cannot understand how switzerland, for instance,
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dispenses heroin to citizens and look in horror at uruguay, who seem to regulate their market a different way. >> it may be too commercial. it offers a chance to restrict the illegal trade in cannabis. >> marijuana is cultivated across the world and, extensively in afghanistan. raw opium cultivation is on the rise. opium poppies grow and they are not only produced for export.
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many afghans are heavily addicted and the government is starting to do something about it. >> a singular mission in life -- feeding the addiction. the effort to help begins with physical force. health ministry workers collect the addicts from the streets. abdul has come along peacefully. he is a longtime user. >> i do not do a job and that is why i do drugs. i have seven children. >> it is a dangerous undertaking that incurs the wrath of drug dealers who are hardened criminals. they are trying to give addicts a fighting chance to get clean. >> as more people become
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addicted throughout the country, we do the best we can to collect users and bringing them to the hospital. >> they are easy to find and many of them are under the bridg es. sum due on jobs and spend all of their earnings on drugs. -- some do oddjobs and spend all of their earnings on drugs. more than 1 in 10 cannot shake the habit. the overwhelming majority are men. 800 of them are undergoing therapy here. the government has converted an army base into a center. after a few days, he is finally keeping this down.
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the conditions here are not what they expected. >> it is difficult here. i do not have a toothbrush or toothpaste. the is no soap, and towel -- there is no soap or handtowel. >> the doctors say that he should feel better soon. many are skeptical on whether they can turn the hard-core addi cts away from a life of drugs. he has been looking for a job for 7 years. >> i never want to take drugs again. without the work, i am scared that i will return to this. the government must create jobs. if i had one, i would have no reason to take drugs.
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>> some are too far gone to understand why they are here and the treatment lasts 45 days. afterwards, an earnest attempt is made to find jobs for the patient. it is not an easy task. . >> they take the lives of human people and put them into misery. these are the future of the country. reporter: about 25 patients share a room. there are vitamins and antibiotics for some who have been addicted for decades. >> i was shooting up here.
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i could not find any other spot on my body. i am pleading to god, either let me die or free me from this addiction! reporter: he has been here for more than three weeks. he used to work as a builder. he is enjoying one of his best days in years. his doctors brought him musical instruments. the addi can forget the horrors of their first days herects -- addicts can forget the horrors of their first days here. >> it takes a great deal of patients. this is a cold shower and it relieves the pain for 1-2 hours.
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>> soccer is a popular diversion. he has faith in god and the government he will find a job again. at the moment, it seems that anything is possible. >> if i see a dealer who wants to sell me drugs, i will tell myself that he is my worst enemy and fight him with every ounce of strength i have. >> he has three more weeks in this protective environment and his best air t would be a decent job. -- his best therapy would be a decent job. in reality, the chances are slim. >> now, to the global idea series. we had to the coast of myanmar, who is experiencing political transformation for some time, opening themselves up to the
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outside world with the hopes that tourism will boost the economy and a booming construction projects seems inevitable. protection zones are being created. we join scientists working on this project. reporter: the archipelago is the home of an ethnic minority whose name means "dive into the sea." they discover the underwater world and they are traditionally no matter moving along the western coast. for 50 years, this region was
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cut off from the rest of the world because the military dictatorship. now, it is an exciting development for the marine biologists. >> interesting. very low visibility. yet, many families are represented. so, yeah, quite surprising to see in an area where a layer of sediment across the top of the coral is. >> biologists are conducting an expedition. robert is here with a team of scientists to assist. the scientists need to establish
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how intact the coral reefs are before deciding how to best protect the area. they are collecting shells and fish. a sea rich in marine life is essential for the future of the next generation. most of them no longer live the traditional lives of nomads. their lives still revolve around catching fish. >> when i was young, my family lived on a covered boat and we finished. -- fished. we went on to the islands to collect and there was an abundance of everything. we would go into town and trade for rice and everything else that we needed.
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reporter: these days, fishing is more difficult. she does not have any children to help her. she still goes out daily and catches 1-2 kilos of fish and does not venture out as far as she used to. for scientists, every dive tells a story and it does not always make for good reading. lucrative fish are missing. a process of fishing with dynamite has had a devastating impact on the coral here. over 15 years, destructive fishing methods have reduced fish stocks by up to 90%.
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>> 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, another one, 33. 33 boats. these guys can precipitate a fishery crash easily. >> in terms of the archipelago, we have not passed the tipping p oint yet. everybody we talked to, the fisherman, they say they catch rate and the quality of the catch has declined since the boats started appearing 5-6 years ago. >> in thailand, overfishing has devastated coastal areas and
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they are working with the local authorities and fishermen to save myanmar from the same fate. this will be monitored by the islanders themselves. >> there is just over 4000 and some of the best in the archipelago. some of the coral is around 80% cover and it is very important in the area for the livelihood of the local people here, especially during the wet season, when they cannot go out far because the monsoon. reporter: there are 800 islands and many of them are untouched.
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no scientist or tourist has ever set foot here, until now. the garbage of modern civilization is already being washed up here. >> food containers. this plastic breaks down. ultraviolet light makes it fragile and it breaks it down to small particles. they do not break down entirely. so, it becomes small enough for fish to ingest and mistake for plankton. reporter: marine biologist will spend time analyzing all the data and they are setting up
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more protection zones that are urgently needed. >> with it being closed off for so many years, there was an expectation that the archipelago was going to be pristine and there were going to be fish everywhere. once people got into the water and started looking at these, they found the opposite. unfortunately, it is not the pristine world that a lot of people had in mind. still, there is plenty of beautiful sites that we are trying to protect now. anchor: that is all from global 3000 today. we are back next week with more interesting topics. we like hearing from you, so write to us.
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[folk 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 the memphis dawls. [music continues] - hi, i'm jana misener and i play with memphis dawls. we're from memphis, tennessee, believe it or not. i play cello and i sing. and we've got two other chicks who are awesome who also sing and play some instruments. krista wroten combest plays pretty much everything. she plays violin and keys, mandolin. holly cole plays guitar.

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