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SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT: Living on Earth is holding a special symposium on our oceans and our future, and you are invited. Join host Steve Curwood, Blue Planet champion Carl Safina and UMass Boston ocean law and management expert John Duff Friday afternoon on August 12th on Nantucket Island. Please call 617-287-4122 or click here for more information.

High Tech Hunt for Methane Leaks

 

As federal and state governments attempt to reduce methane leaks from oil and gas operations, scientists are still trying to figure out just how much of it does escape from pipes, valves, tanks, and gas wells. The Allegheny Front’s Reid Frazier takes a road trip with researchers trying to pin down leaks in one of Pennsylvania's biggest drilling areas, and reports on the high tech detection methods scientists and companies are employing.

 

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The Hour of Land

 

Author Terry Tempest Williams calls the US national parks “breathing spaces” for the American public. Her new book The Hour of Land creates a series of lyrical portraits of national parks that hold personal significance. Terry Tempest Williams considers the national parks places of refuge vital for the enjoyment of the public, and explains her choice to protect some Utah land from oil and gas development.

 

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Nesting Turtles at Home in Suburbia

 

Habitat loss, the dangers of roadways, and other hazards have reduced the population of the locally threatened Blanding’s turtle in the Northeast. But a nonprofit has teamed up with local residents to safeguard the nests that mother Blanding’s turtles make in their neighborhoods, often in the landscaping of homeowners.

 

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When Mother is a Hungry Bear

 

A skinny polar bear walks slowly along the shore of Akpatok Island in Hudson Strait. Her cubs are nowhere to be seen, and her body bears signs of a fight. Living on Earth’s Resident Explorer Mark Seth Lender watches her painful progress and wonders what she’s feeling.

 

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Gardeners Create a Bountiful Backyard and Find Love

 

With nurturing, even a degraded backyard can yield a delicious bounty of produce -- and maybe even true love. In their book, Paradise Lot, gardeners Eric Toensmeier and Jonathan Bates tell their personal stories of finding romance and growing a food forest of perennial plants.

 

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Finding New Tyrannosaurs

 

Sixty-five million years ago, T. Rex was the biggest carnivore on earth – and to this day it looms large in our imaginations. But science is finding this iconic tyrant was but one of more than two dozen other species of tyrannosaur, a diverse group that came in all sorts of shapes and sizes--and researchers expect to find even more species.

 

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Migrations Off Schedule

 

The monarch butterflies are late, the wildebeest have turned around, and the North Atlantic right whales are missing. What’s going on with the world’s great animal migrations?

 

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Climate Departure Date

 

A group of scientists at the University of Hawaii have figured out a way to project when the climate at a given location will move outside the range of anything we’ve known in modern times. It’s sooner then you think.

 

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The Great Lakes and Climate Change

 

In the last 30 years the largest fresh water lake in the world in terms of surface area, Lake Superior, has warmed nearly six degrees Fahrenheight. The increased temperature is a boon to some fish but warmer water is also more suitable for some species.

 

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America’s Deadly Power Plants

Pollution from power plants in Ohio and Pennsylvania in 2015 caused up to 4,400 premature deaths across the country, according to a new study. And the health damages of these 77 plants cost an estimated 38 billion dollars, mostly in already disadvantaged communities.

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The Value of National Parks

Research from Harvard and Colorado State Universities finds that Americans value maintaining the National Parks system through their taxes at over 30 times its annual appropriations. We explore why Americans care so deeply for these iconic places and how to put their future and protection on a sustainable financial footing.

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The Hour of Land

Author Terry Tempest Williams calls the US national parks “breathing spaces” for the American public. Her new book The Hour of Land creates a series of lyrical portraits of national parks that hold personal significance. Terry Tempest Williams considers the national parks places of refuge vital for the enjoyment of the public, and explains her choice to protect some Utah land from oil and gas development.

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This Week’s Show
July 22, 2016
listen / download


America’s Deadly Power Plants

listen / download
Pollution from power plants in Ohio and Pennsylvania in 2015 caused up to 4,400 premature deaths across the country, according to a new study. And the health damages of these 77 plants cost an estimated 38 billion dollars, mostly in already disadvantaged communities.

Beyond the Headlines

listen / download
The Republican National Convention mostly ignored global warming and the environment; meanwhile the GOP platform proposes dismantling the EPA, and calls coal an “abundant, clean, affordable reliable” energy source.

High Tech Hunt for Methane Leaks

listen / download
As federal and state governments attempt to reduce methane leaks from oil and gas operations, scientists are still trying to figure out just how much of it does escape from pipes, valves, tanks, and gas wells. The Allegheny Front’s Reid Frazier takes a road trip with researchers trying to pin down leaks in one of Pennsylvania's biggest drilling areas, and reports on the high tech detection methods scientists and companies are employing.

Emerging Science Note: Walking Fish

listen / download
You might imagine that amphibious fish, like mudskippers, which spend time in water and on land, would be a rare phenomenon. But Australian researchers now say that the evolution of amphibious fish is more common than we thought. In fact, 130 species of fish from 33 families have evolved amphibious behavior, as Living on Earth’s Don Lyman reports.

The Value of National Parks

listen / download
Research from Harvard and Colorado State Universities finds that Americans value maintaining the National Parks system through their taxes at over 30 times its annual appropriations. We explore why Americans care so deeply for these iconic places and how to put their future and protection on a sustainable financial footing.

The Hour of Land

listen / download
Author Terry Tempest Williams calls the US national parks “breathing spaces” for the American public. Her new book The Hour of Land creates a series of lyrical portraits of national parks that hold personal significance. Terry Tempest Williams considers the national parks places of refuge vital for the enjoyment of the public, and explains her choice to protect some Utah land from oil and gas development.


Special Features

A River Town in Transition

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Wrangell, Alaska is a small, isolated town at the mouth of the mighty Stikine River and a former a timber capital. But since the saw mills shut down in the ‘90s, the small town has reinvented itself as a tourist destination and a commercial fishing hub. Since both of these industries are dependent on the Stikine, some locals worry that a mining development upriver could put the whole town’s livelihood at risk.
Blog Series: Alaskan River Riches

Cowee, North Carolina

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Living on Earth is giving a voice to Orion magazine’s longtime feature in which people write about the place they call home. In this week’s edition, songwriter Angela-Faye Martin uses her words and music to picture her North Carolina valley on the edge of the Great Smoky Mountains.
Blog Series: The Place Where You Live


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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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