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PRI's Environmental News Magazine

The 2015 Goldman Environmental Prize Winners

 

Every year the winners of the Goldman Environmental Prize are announced just in time for Earth Day, and this year each received $175,000. For the past quarter century the prize has celebrated the efforts of individuals from each of the five most populated continents plus the island nations to protect their communities’ natural resources. Recipients Howard Wood of Scotland, Marilyn Baptiste of Canada, and Jean Wiener of Haiti discuss their personal connections to the environment and how their grassroots activism was a step towards ecological preservation.

 

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The Guardian Newspaper Climate Campaign

 

Before he retires this year, the Guardian Editor in Chief Alan Rusbridger wants this UK paper with a readership of more than 7 million to focus forcefully on climate change. Not only will the journalists cover from every angle, the paper will advocate for climate activism, as this is the most vital story in the world and arguably the hardest of our time to convey.

 

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The Mother of Endocrine Disruption Science

 

Theo Colborn may have waited until her 50s to get her PhD, but she still became a trailblazer in the field of environmental health. Theo died last December, and in this season of Earth Day fellow scientist and collaborator Laura Vandenberg celebrates Theo's career and her contributions to scientific knowledge.

 

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The Invaders

 

There are many theories as to why our ancestral cousins, the Neanderthals, died out: everything from climate change to lack of intelligence. But Pat Shipman, a retired Professor of Anthropology, has a new theory. She argues in her new book The Invaders that modern humans are the most successful invasive species of all time, and we can thank our canine companions for this competitive edge over Neanderthals.

 

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Herbicides Can Boost Antibiotic Resistance

 

Herbicides are designed to kill weeds, but those chemicals can spread through the environment, interacting with other organisms including bacteria and humans. And a new study published in The American Society for Microbiology, suggests that these exposures can affect antibiotic resistance and could serve as a cautionary tale for herbicides’ broad effects on our public health and ecosystem.

 

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Defending Darwin

 

The University of Kentucky, is located in the heart of the Bible Belt, a region with many Fundamentalist Christians who are skeptical of the theory of evolution. Today, Jim Krupa is a biology professor at UK who has taught evolution to thousands of students, some of whom believe that the idea of evolution, as posited by Charles Darwin, is fraudulent and the Earth and its creatures are only about 6000 years old. Prof. Krupa says that despite opposition from some students, he’s following in the footsteps of UK educators who have defended academic freedom and scientific fact.

 

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Deepwater Disaster Three Years On

 

Just three years ago, the Deep Water Horizon oil spill poured 200 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico. Now, a team of chemists, engineers, and biologists is attempting to assess the damage to the Gulf ecosystem.

 

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Turkish Development Threatens Marine Life

 

Recent protests in Turkey were sparked by the government's plans to pave over a public park. Journalist Sulmaan Khan joins host Steve Curwood to explain how rapid development in Turkey is causing a host of environmental problems. (photo: bigstockphoto.com)

 

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Cape Wind in Doubt

 

Wind turbines in the Irish Sea. The United States has yet to establish offshore wind, but countries in Europe have taken the plunge (photo: Andy Dingley)

 

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To Survive a Drought, Fix the Price of Water

The drought keeps hammering California – a lack of rain and snow is just part of the problem. Rules and traditions for sharing the scarce resource also make a solution elusive. Governor Jerry Brown has rolled out mandatory restrictions on domestic water consumption. Farms consume the majority of California’s water each year, and though allocations have been cut, California’s antiquated water rights system allows many of them to get that water for cheap.

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Beyond the Headlines

In this week’s trip beyond the headlines with Peter Dykstra, we discuss how the oil fracking era might be switching from boom to bust, a climate change-denial stance is seemingly a prerequisite for Republican Presidential candidacy, and how climate deniers still reference a 40 year old, minority theory of global cooling.

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The 2015 Goldman Environmental Prize Winners

Every year the winners of the Goldman Environmental Prize are announced just in time for Earth Day, and this year each received $175,000. For the past quarter century the prize has celebrated the efforts of individuals from each of the five most populated continents plus the island nations to protect their communities’ natural resources. Recipients Howard Wood of Scotland, Marilyn Baptiste of Canada, and Jean Wiener of Haiti discuss their personal connections to the environment and how their grassroots activism was a step towards ecological preservation.

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This Week’s Show
April 24, 2015
listen / download


To Survive a Drought, Fix the Price of Water

listen / download
The drought keeps hammering California – a lack of rain and snow is just part of the problem. Rules and traditions for sharing the scarce resource also make a solution elusive. Governor Jerry Brown has rolled out mandatory restrictions on domestic water consumption. Farms consume the majority of California’s water each year, and though allocations have been cut, California’s antiquated water rights system allows many of them to get that water for cheap.

The ELF Gains Traction

listen / download
ELF stands for Electric, Light and Fun. And as Living on Earth's Helen Palmer reported in 2013, the ELF is a novel invention: a solar and human-powered, covered tricycle designed to help cultivate a commuting revolution, and combat climate change. It's now two years since it's kickstarter campaign was funded, and the ELF has been gaining traction.

Poetweets: Science Communications in Verse

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Poetry inspiration can come from anywhere, even social media, and to celebrate Earth Day and poetry month, we fashioned some prominent science communicators’ tweets into verse using Poetweets, a website that arranges 140 character selections from tweets into line and meter, with a nod to science.

Beyond the Headlines

listen / download
In this week’s trip beyond the headlines with Peter Dykstra, we discuss how the oil fracking era might be switching from boom to bust, a climate change-denial stance is seemingly a prerequisite for Republican Presidential candidacy, and how climate deniers still reference a 40 year old, minority theory of global cooling.

The 2015 Goldman Environmental Prize Winners

listen / download
Every year the winners of the Goldman Environmental Prize are announced just in time for Earth Day, and this year each received $175,000. For the past quarter century the prize has celebrated the efforts of individuals from each of the five most populated continents plus the island nations to protect their communities’ natural resources. Recipients Howard Wood of Scotland, Marilyn Baptiste of Canada, and Jean Wiener of Haiti discuss their personal connections to the environment and how their grassroots activism was a step towards ecological preservation.


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

Alaskan River Riches At Risk From Mining In Canada

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With many untouched wild rivers and sensible fishing regulations, Alaska has some of the healthiest salmon fisheries in the world. But as Emmett FitzGerald reports, new gold and copper mines upstream in Canada have the fishing community in Southeast Alaska very concerned about what toxins could be released into the rivers.
Blog Series: Alaskan River Riches


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You know, Alaska is the jewel of the world when it comes to fisheries management. This state is second to none, and that's because you don't see dams on our rivers. You don't see a lot of development that will have a negative impact.

-- Mike Erikson, CEO of Alaska Glacier Seafoods

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