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Public Radio's Environmental News Magazine (follow us on Google News)

Vermont's "Climate Superfund" Bill

 

Facing costly climate impacts such as the billion-dollar flood disaster of July 2023, Vermont is seeking to make fossil fuel companies pay. We discuss the state’s “Climate Superfund” bill and its potential influence.

 

Read More »

Facing costly climate impacts such as the billion-dollar flood disaster of July 2023, Vermont is seeking to make fossil fuel companies pay. We discuss the state’s “Climate Superfund” bill and its potential influence.

The Drowning South

 

Sea levels are rising everywhere due to climate change but not equally, and a recent Washington Post series called “The Drowning South” documents how the US southeast is experiencing an especially rapid rise. We discuss how communities near Mobile, Alabama and St. Tammany Parish, Louisiana are being affected.

 

Read More »

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Sounds of Soil

 

Sounds like the overlapping songs of birds can speak volumes about the biodiversity in an ecosystem, and now scientists are looking to use the tiny sounds made by earthworms, ants, and voles to study the health of soils. An ecologist explains why more varied sounds appear to indicate healthier soils, and the potential applications of listening for these sounds in the earth.

 

Read More »

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Eco Grief Among Scientists

 

2023 was the hottest year on record, at 1.48 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels. That’s just below the 1.5 C increase that the UN says is the limit to avoid the worst impacts of climate change. As the summer of 2024 approaches in the Northern Hemisphere, climate scientists are raising the alarm on dangerous impacts of ongoing heat waves. We discuss ocean heat waves and profound grief among marine scientists.

 

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Phantom Carbon Credits

 

Shell’s flagship carbon project in Canada generated millions of dollars in carbon credits based on greenhouse gas emission reductions that never took place. According to a study by Greenpeace Canada, the scheme was part of Shell’s billion-dollar Quest carbon capture project. While these phantom credits were legal from 2015 to 2021 under approved carbon tax rules, Shell’s actions raise questions about carbon capture practices in Canada’s lucrative fossil fuel industry. Researcher Keith Stewart describes the Greenpeace Canada probe.

 

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Animal Self-Medication

 

Recently, a paper was published in the journal Scientific Reports describes the case study of an orangutan who treated and healed his own wound. Zoologists have long seen behaviors of self-medicating in the animal kingdom, but until now it has rarely if ever been documented in scientific literature. Michael Huffman, an ecologist who reviewed the paper, discusses how some animals heal themselves.

 

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Nature and the Beat

 

From the chirp of a Katydid to the screech of a parrot, the sounds of nature are all around us and now can be used to help humans make music. Beast Box is a website that allows users to create their own unique songs using catchy beats and animal calls as the instruments.

 

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Celebrating 30 years of Living on Earth!

 

Host Steve Curwood in the Living on Earth studio

 

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Join the Living on Earth Book Club on October 13th!

 

Bestselling science journalist Ed Yong joins us to talk about his new book. Click here to learn more and register!

 

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Vermont's "Climate Superfund" Bill


Facing costly climate impacts such as the billion-dollar flood disaster of July 2023, Vermont is seeking to make fossil fuel companies pay. We discuss the state’s “Climate Superfund” bill and its potential influence.

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The "Little Sea" with a Big Champion


The Mar Menor or “little sea” lagoon on the coast of Spain faces impacts from mining, agriculture, and a booming tourist industry. Teresa Vicente helped pass a 2022 law granting the lagoon legal personhood to give it greater protection. She recently received the 2024 Goldman Environmental Prize for Europe and shares how she led a grassroots movement to protect this beloved lagoon.

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Sounds of Soil


Sounds like the overlapping songs of birds can speak volumes about the biodiversity in an ecosystem, and now scientists are looking to use the tiny sounds made by earthworms, ants, and voles to study the health of soils. An ecologist explains why more varied sounds appear to indicate healthier soils, and the potential applications of listening for these sounds in the earth.

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This Week’s Show
May 24, 2024
listen / download



Vermont's "Climate Superfund" Bill

listen / download
Facing costly climate impacts such as the billion-dollar flood disaster of July 2023, Vermont is seeking to make fossil fuel companies pay. We discuss the state’s “Climate Superfund” bill and its potential influence.

The "Little Sea" with a Big Champion

listen / download
The Mar Menor or “little sea” lagoon on the coast of Spain faces impacts from mining, agriculture, and a booming tourist industry. Teresa Vicente helped pass a 2022 law granting the lagoon legal personhood to give it greater protection. She recently received the 2024 Goldman Environmental Prize for Europe and shares how she led a grassroots movement to protect this beloved lagoon.

Uncovering the Truth About Beef and Deforestation

listen / download
The Brazilian cattle industry has led to massive land clearing in the Amazon rainforest. Investigative journalist Marcel Gomes set out to uncover which companies were involved and documented a direct link between the meatpacking company JBS and illegal deforestation in Brazil. He received the 2024 Goldman Environmental Prize for Central and South America for his work.

From the History Books

listen / download
This week, we look back to the Lacey Act of 1900, one of the first wildlife protection laws. We also note the founding of the Sierra Club and discuss how the conservation legacy of its first president John Muir has been complicated by his racist views on Native and African Americans.

The Drowning South

listen / download
Sea levels are rising everywhere due to climate change but not equally, and a recent Washington Post series called “The Drowning South” documents how the US southeast is experiencing an especially rapid rise. We discuss how communities near Mobile, Alabama and St. Tammany Parish, Louisiana are being affected.

Sounds of Soil

listen / download
Sounds like the overlapping songs of birds can speak volumes about the biodiversity in an ecosystem, and now scientists are looking to use the tiny sounds made by earthworms, ants, and voles to study the health of soils. An ecologist explains why more varied sounds appear to indicate healthier soils, and the potential applications of listening for these sounds in the earth.


Special Features

Field Note: "In Defense of Little Foxes"
Living on Earth Explorer-in-Residence Mark Seth Lender reflects on how experience and anthropocentrism color our perceptions of other species and how much we care about their well-being.
Blog Series: Mark Seth Lender Field Notes

Field Note: "Oh, Say Can You See?": Kingfisher on Long Island Sound
Living on Earth's Explorer in Residence Mark Seth Lender provides some context for his essay, "Oh, Say Can You See?" about a kingfisher on Long Island Sound.
Blog Series: Mark Seth Lender Field Notes


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...Ultimately, if we are going prevent large parts of this Earth from becoming not only inhospitable but uninhabitable in our lifetimes, we are going to have to keep some fossil fuels in the ground rather than burn them...

-- President Barack Obama, November 6, 2015 on why he declined to approve the Keystone XL Pipeline.

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