Environment

  Scientists say extreme weather and climate change are current crises – not issues down the road.

In today’s Congressional Corner, New York representative Paul Tonko tells WAMC’s Alan Chartock that anti-intellectualism among leaders is harming the country.

  One of New Jersey’s seemingly innumerable quiet seaside towns, Toms River became the unlikely setting for a decades-long drama that culminated in 2001 with one of the largest legal settlements in the annals of toxic dumping. A town that would rather have been known for its Little League World Series champions ended up making history for an entirely different reason: a notorious cluster of childhood cancers scientifically linked to local air and water pollution.

For years, large chemical companies had been using Toms River as their private dumping ground, burying tens of thousands of leaky drums in open pits and discharging billions of gallons of acid-laced wastewater into the town’s namesake river.

The story is told in Dan Fagin's book, Toms River: A Story of Science and Salvation - winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction.

    

  Alan Weisman is the author of the critically acclaimed New York Times best seller The World Without Us. In his new book, Countdown: Our Last, Best Hope for a Future on Earth? the award-winning journalist traveled to more than 20 countries to ask what experts agreed were probably the most important questions on Earth--and also the hardest: How many humans can the planet hold without capsizing? How robust must the Earth's ecosystem be to assure our continued existence? Can we know which other species are essential to our survival? And, how might we actually arrive at a stable, optimum population, and design an economy to allow genuine prosperity without endless growth?

People for Positive Action, an advocacy and environmental action group in Plattsburgh, hosted a “People’s Summit on Energy and the Environment” at SUNY Plattsburgh Tuesday evening.

A people’s Summit on Energy and the Environment is planned in Plattsburgh next week.

  

  Project Native is a non-profit environmental education organization committed to growing native plants, maintaining a native butterfly house and wildlife sanctuary, and promoting stewardship of the local landscape.

For the past three years Project Native has hosted a successful day-long environmental film festival. This year, the festival will kick off Saturday, March 29th at 7pm at The Mahaiwe in Great Barrington with a special screening of Revolution, an award-winning film by Rob Stewart, director of Sharkwater.

On Sunday, March 30th Project Native will once again host a full day of environmental films at the Triplex Cinema in Great Barrington. As in years past, the day will start at 10:00 am with a film for children and families.

    Some scientists predict the sea will rise one and a half meters before 2100, but rapidly melting polar ice caps could make the real amount much higher. In the coming century, intensifying storms will batter our coasts, and droughts and heat events will be annual threats. All this will occur as population grows, and declining water resources desiccate agriculture. What will happen when the United States cannot provide food or fresh water for the overheated, overcrowded cities where 80 percent of Americans currently live?

    World climate change deadlines are rapidly approaching.

In today’s Congressional Corner, New York representative Paul Tonko tells WAMC’s Alan Chartock that the situation is dire nationally and internationally.

    In his new book, The Frackers, journalist Gregory Zuckerman tells us the back-story. Far from the limelight, Aubrey McClendon, Harold Hamm, Mark Papa, and other wildcatters were determined to tap massive deposits of oil and gas that Exxon, Chevron, and other giants had dismissed as a waste of time.

By experimenting with hydraulic fracturing through extremely dense shale—a process now known as fracking—the wildcatters started a revolution. In just a few years, they looked to relieve America’s dependence on imported energy, triggered a global environmental controversy—and made and lost astonishing fortunes.

    In Cows Save the Planet, journalist Judith Schwartz looks at soil as a crucible for our many overlapping environmental, economic, and social crises. Schwartz reveals that for many of these problems—climate change, biodiversity loss, droughts, floods, wildfires, rural poverty, malnutrition, and obesity—there are positive, alternative scenarios to the degradation and devastation we face.

In each case, our ability to turn these crises into opportunities depends on how we treat the soil. Drawing on the work of thinkers and doers, renegade scientists and institutional whistleblowers from around the world, Schwartz challenges much of the conventional thinking about global warming and other problems.

Schwartz says Cows Save the Planet is a primer on soil's pivotal role in our ecology and economy, a call to action, and an antidote to the despair that environmental news so often leaves us with.

    Judy Wicks is an entrepreneur, author, and public speaker working to build a more compassionate, environmentally sustainable and locally based economy. Her memoir Good Morning, Beautiful Business: the Unexpected Journey of an Activist Entrepreneur and Local Economy Pioneer was published in March.

Judy is founder of Philadelphia’s landmark White Dog Café known for its leadership in the local food movement. She founded several non-profits including Fair Food Philly and the Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia, and cofounded the nationwide Business Alliance for Local Living Economies.

Tonight, at 5:00 pm, Hawthorne Valley Farm in Ghent will host “A Declaration of Interdependence,” a new speaker series celebrating local living economies in the Hudson Valley and Greater Berkshire Region. They will be honoring Judy and she will also be speaking at a Re>Think Local event on Wednesday at Noon at the Barn at Buttermilk Falls Inn in Milton.

    As thousands flock to Lake George each year to enjoy its pristine waters, perhaps few understand they have the members of the LGA to thank for those clean and clear waters. The Lake George Association is the leading citizen group responsible for conserving Lake George.

Never ones to let a teaching opportunity to pass, the Association has partnered with the Hyde Collection as part of their “My Summer Place” programming, they will be offering several “floating classrooms.”

The Floating Classroom with the Lake George Association will include a Hyde educator, and a teaching artist to learn about Lake George and the area where George O’Keeffe created her works. The program will include drawing lessons, one near the location of the Stieglitz property, as well as an up- close look at the water of Lake George.

To learn more about the LGA and their floating classrooms, we welcome Kristen Rohne, their Education Coordinator.

    Doctor and social activist Paul Farmer is one of the most passionate and influential voices for global health equity and social justice. In his new book, To Repair the World, he encourages young people to tackle the greatest challenges of our times.

    Lynne Cherry is a children's author and illustrator, and Producer/Director of Young Voices for the Planet - a film series featuring young people who are making a difference by shrinking the carbon footprint of their homes, schools, and communities. She will be speaking at SUNY New Palt's Sustainability Day on April 20th.

    Craig Childs’ book Apocalyptic Planet: Field Guide to the Everending Earth has won the 2013 Orion Book Award in recognition of its success in addressing the human relationship with the natural world in a fresh, thought-provoking, and engaging manner.

Speaking for the jury, Orion Magazine associate editor Hannah Fries said, “A mixture of adventure, science, and engaging storytelling, Apocalyptic Planet demonstrates an open-mouthed awe of the earth in all its dynamism, a spirit of passionate curiosity, and a fresh and humbling way of thinking about the planet and our place within its grand, catastrophic life.”

Craig Childs and Amanda Fries join us.

4/11/13 - Panel

Apr 11, 2013

  Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, news man Ray Graf and executive editor of the Poughkeepsie Journal, Stu Shinske. Joe Donahue moderates.

Today's topics include:
• The latest news from the lower Hudson Valley
• The Economy vs. the Environment
• Viewers Give up on Television
• Trust in Cruise Ships in down sharply

Al Gore - "The Future"

Feb 14, 2013

    Former Vice President of the United States Al Gore has a new book out entitled, The Future: Six Drivers of Global Change.

We will talk with him about the environment, his thoughts on fracking in New York State, and about his recent payday for selling his television network.

EarthAction is a global network of over 2,000 organizations in 161 countries, along with legislators, individuals, and journalists, taking action together to create the political will for a more just, peaceful, and sustainable world.

Environmental leader and professor of law at Vermont Law School, Gus Speth, will present his new book, America the Possible, when he speaks tonight in Great Barrington about the future of the United States economy, a system having reached an impasse, evidenced in the headline-making extreme weather patterns, the loss of America's middle-class, and exploding ecological catastrophes.

WAMC

Work began Wednesday  in the western Massachusetts town of  Pelham to remove a public safety threat and at the same time provide an ecological benefit to the region.  WAMC”s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

Environmental officials, and others celebrated as work began to remove a stone dam on the Amethyst Brook. It will result  in better water quality and open a corridor for the migration of aquatic wildlife, according to  Wendi Weber, the northeast regional director for the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service.

We welcome Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author, Edward Humes and talk about his latest book, Garbology: Our Dirty Love Affair With Trash.

http://www.massaudubon.org/

Environmentalists in Massachusetts are concerned over a controversial bill they say could effectively eliminate endangered species protections in the State. WAMC’s Berkshire Bureau Chief Lucas Willard Reports…

Sponsor of Senate Bill 1854, Gale Candaras says that the rumors and ideas circulating about her proposal to enforce landowner protections by amending the state’s Natural Heritage & Endangered Species laws are misleading.

A community of more than 5000 young farmers and activists, the Greenhorns are committed to producing and advocating for food grown with vision and respect for the earth. They are the subject of a film and new book, which will be presented as part of the Curiosity Forum in Cambridge, NY on Friday night. We learn more from Deb Foster and Luke Deikis.

We speak with Richard Louv about his book, The Nature Principle: Reconnecting with Life in a Virtual Age, now out in paperback.

As we pay close attention to the debate over hydrofracking this morning – and all week — on WAMC, we now turn to an interview between our Alan Chartock and Dennis Holbrook, executive vice president and chief legal officer of Norse Energy Corporation. Holbrook has spent nearly four decades in the energy industry and has served as a director of the Independent Oil and Gas Association for the past 25 years. Holbrook describes the chemical mix used in the fracking process.

Joe Donahue and Alan Chartock are joined in studio by Natalie Merchant, guitarist, Gabriel Gordon, Frack Action Communications Director John Armstrong and pediatrician and activist, Dr. Larysa Dyrszka. To find out more information about the issue, the rally and concert - go to NYagainstfracking.org.

Story Musgrave

May 10, 2012

Story Musgrave was a NASA astronaut for over 30 years and flew on six spaceflights. He performed the first shuttle spacewalk on Challenger's first flight, was a pilot on an astronomy mission, conducted two classified DOD missions, was the lead spacewalker on the Hubble Telescope repair mission and on his last flight, he operated an electronic chip manufacturing satellite on Columbia.

Kevin Smith, Chairmen of the Woodstock land Conservancy; Patty Goodwin, President of the Woodstock Land Conservancy; and Laurie Ylvisaker, Maverick Board member, Woodstock Land Conservancy supporter and Vernal Fling committee member, join us to talk about this year's Vernal Fling honoring Congressman Maurice HInchey.

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