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PRI's Environmental News Magazine

Shrinking Bears Ears

 

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s interim report recommends that Bears Ears National Monument’s 1.3 million-acre area be shrunk. The Antiquities Act that allows Presidents to create National Monuments but has no mechanism for Presidents to reduce or undo them. Bears Ears National Monument contains many sacred and historical sites for Native Americans and Living on Earth host Steve Curwood and Tracy Coppola, a Senior Legislative Counsel with Earthjustice, discuss the politics at play and the future for Bears Ears.

 

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Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s interim report recommends that Bears Ears National Monument’s 1.3 million-acre area be shrunk. The Antiquities Act that allows Presidents to create National Monuments but has no mechanism for Presidents to reduce or undo them. Bears Ears National Monument contains many sacred and historical sites for Native Americans and Living on Earth host Steve Curwood and Tracy Coppola, a Senior Legislative Counsel with Earthjustice, discuss the politics at play and the future for Bears Ears.

Gulls Hunting Spider Crabs

 

Seagulls don’t have the best of reputations; people even call them “rats with feathers” and some think they’re rather stupid. But Living on Earth’s Explorer in Residence Mark Seth Lender disagrees and marvels as Herring Gulls and Black-backed Gulls skillfully hunt for spider crabs on the Connecticut Shore.

 

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Houston Hurricane Risks

 

The tanks and refineries of the massive oil and gas infrastructure that Texas is famous for leave the city of Houston at risk for devastation and massive loss of life from storm surge flooding should a major hurricane hit.Yet despite this vulnerability, there are ways to reduce risk.

 

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Trump Moves to Drill in ANWR

 

President Trump has moved to open up for oil drilling America's biggest and wildest protected area, the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). Mr. Trump is also reviewing 27 National Monuments to see if changes in size or status are necessary, provoking concern from conservationists.

 

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Narco Deforestation

 

Narcotics smuggling through Central America has led to the loss of as much as 1 million acres of forest over the past decade, as illegal cash from cocaine trafficking is sometimes laundered by clearing forests for cattle ranching and other legitimate ventures. This threatens some of the most remote, biodiverse forest in Central America and the people who have lived there for thousands of years.

 

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Minds, Machines and Evolution

 

How machines learn is a growing branch of consciousness studies and one of the subjects addressed by analytic philosopher Daniel Dennett in his new book, “From Bacteria to Bach and Back: The Evolution of Minds.” Dennett discusses the origin of life, the evolution of language and why we should worry about our increasing dependence on the machines that have made modern life so convenient and simple.

 

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Hummingbirds in the Canyon

 

Watching hummingbirds in Arizona's Madera Canyon gave Mark Seth Lender an up close view of their interactions, and a chance to take spectacular photos.

 

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Tibetan Monks Saving Snow Leopards

 

Snow Leopards are among the most endangered of the world’s big cats, but now Tibetan monks are giving the leopard hope. (Camera trap photo of a snow leopard on the Tibetan plateau (photo: Panthera))

 

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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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Shrinking Bears Ears

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s interim report recommends that Bears Ears National Monument’s 1.3 million-acre area be shrunk. The Antiquities Act that allows Presidents to create National Monuments but has no mechanism for Presidents to reduce or undo them. Bears Ears National Monument contains many sacred and historical sites for Native Americans and Living on Earth host Steve Curwood and Tracy Coppola, a Senior Legislative Counsel with Earthjustice, discuss the politics at play and the future for Bears Ears.

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Science Note: Crab Shells Fight Malaria

Despite a century of research, malaria remains a major health threat, killing as many as half a million a year. Now Chinese scientists have found crushed crab shells mixed with a common chemical and sprayed over reservoirs effectively kills mosquito larvae, as Living on Earth’s Don Lyman reports.

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Houston Hurricane Risks

The tanks and refineries of the massive oil and gas infrastructure that Texas is famous for leave the city of Houston at risk for devastation and massive loss of life from storm surge flooding should a major hurricane hit.Yet despite this vulnerability, there are ways to reduce risk.

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This Week’s Show
June 16, 2017
listen / download


Shrinking Bears Ears

listen / download
Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s interim report recommends that Bears Ears National Monument’s 1.3 million-acre area be shrunk. The Antiquities Act that allows Presidents to create National Monuments but has no mechanism for Presidents to reduce or undo them. Bears Ears National Monument contains many sacred and historical sites for Native Americans and Living on Earth host Steve Curwood and Tracy Coppola, a Senior Legislative Counsel with Earthjustice, discuss the politics at play and the future for Bears Ears.

Beyond the Headlines

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Peter Dykstra returns and with host Steve Curwood notes antibiotic-resistant bugs in sea turtles on the Great Barrier Reef and hogs in rural Denmark. Then, they reflect on the anniversary of crusade of “Smoky” Joe Barton, a U.S. Congressman who viewed the Obama administration’s response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill as a “shakedown” or BP, and sought an apology.

A Tale of Two Numbers: Exxon’s Alleged Climate Fraud

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New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman says he has evidence that ExxonMobil misrepresented its climate risks to investors by using two different sets of books for its climate accounting. Exxon says it has done nothing wrong at the same time that investors and the public are putting pressure on the company to be more forthcoming about climate risks.

Science Note: Crab Shells Fight Malaria

listen / download
Despite a century of research, malaria remains a major health threat, killing as many as half a million a year. Now Chinese scientists have found crushed crab shells mixed with a common chemical and sprayed over reservoirs effectively kills mosquito larvae, as Living on Earth’s Don Lyman reports.

Saving Fancy Fish

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Hawaiian dive expert Robert Wintner, known as ‘Snorkel Bob’, has campaigned for 11 years to stop the capture of wild reef fish for the aquarium trade. Now the state of Hawaii has passed a bill to ban the trade there, and Wintner says he’s cautiously optimistic Governor David Ige will sign it.

Gulls Hunting Spider Crabs

listen / download
Seagulls don’t have the best of reputations; people even call them “rats with feathers” and some think they’re rather stupid. But Living on Earth’s Explorer in Residence Mark Seth Lender disagrees and marvels as Herring Gulls and Black-backed Gulls skillfully hunt for spider crabs on the Connecticut Shore.

Houston Hurricane Risks

listen / download
The tanks and refineries of the massive oil and gas infrastructure that Texas is famous for leave the city of Houston at risk for devastation and massive loss of life from storm surge flooding should a major hurricane hit.Yet despite this vulnerability, there are ways to reduce risk.


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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