236 episodes

Host Jean Ponzi presents information, education and conversation with activists and experts on environmental issues and all things "green." Produced in the studios of KDHX Community Media in St. Louis, MO.

Earthworms KDHX

    • Natural Sciences

Host Jean Ponzi presents information, education and conversation with activists and experts on environmental issues and all things "green." Produced in the studios of KDHX Community Media in St. Louis, MO.

    Naturalist Graphic Novel Updates Rockstar Biologist Memoir

    Naturalist Graphic Novel Updates Rockstar Biologist Memoir

    When E.O. Wilson, one of the greatest biologists of all time, wrote his memoir Naturalist in 1994, could he have imagined his work illustrated to reach a 21st century visual audience? Today, he does!
          
    KDHX host Jean Ponzi flips the cover with conversation and full-color VIEWS of the new graphic adaptation of Naturalist (November, 2020 - Island Press), in a special KDHX Earthworms Live edition with guest Jim Ottaviani, author of this evolution of a science classic.  
    What did it take to translate the work of a lifetime into comic form? Ottaviani's comic writing opus spans almost every scientific discipline! Earthworms digs into his Naturalist collaboration with illustrator C. M. Butzer and the book's legendary subject, with rigor, humor and plenty of ants.
    Please strongly consider buying Naturalist, and any other publications, from your local independent bookstore!
    THANKS to Earthworms tech team: Andy Coco, Andy Heaslet, Jon Valley and Ronnie Wisdom for hatching out this Earthworms Live!
    Related Earthworms Conversations: Rule of Five, Landmark Enviro-Case from Supreme Court (June 2020)
    One Health for People, Animals, Earth - Dr. Sharon Deem (June 2020)
    Nature's Best Hope? Entomologist Doug Tallamy says WE are! (February 2020)

    • 59 min
    Reclaiming Gaia: Artist Jenny Kettler Tangles with . . . Plastic

    Reclaiming Gaia: Artist Jenny Kettler Tangles with . . . Plastic

    Artists can see beauty in peril - so we can move beyond the grip of a problem like Plastic Pollution. Artist Jenny Kettler shows a way through in her photo exhibition Reclaiming Gaia, and this Earthworms conversation.
            
    She shows plastic bags caught in bushes fluttering like tattered veils, a pregnant women shaded by a single-use bottle, and cyanotype sun-developed patterns made by rain. A hand-made book alternates pages of organza fabric with rice paper, inviting the viewer to explore the delicate "spaces between" perceptions. One print that Kettler buried in Forest Park for a year as a kind of archeological quest, motivated a change from gloss to matte photo paper when she realized the glossy stuff is laminated to plastic!
                            
    Jenny Kettler fuses vision, awareness, and urgency as keys to unlock barriers of our thinking, to open our hearts.
    View Reclaiming Gaia at Stone Spiral Gallery, 2506 Sutton in Maplewood, next door to Stone Spiral Coffee. Opening reception by reservation to stay COVID-safe, October 24. Closing reception November 22, reservations accepted via Facebook.
    Jenny Kettler recently earned her MFA from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville. She is an Adjunct Professor of art at Lindenwood University, and teaches at Laumeier Sculpture Park.
    THANKS to Andy Heaslet, Earthworms greenly conscious engineer, with support from Jon Valley and Andy Coco.
    Related Earthworms Conversations: Live without Plastic? Jay Sinha says YES! (Jan 2018)
    Chalk Art, Street Art, Woman-Powered Art RIOT (May 2018)
    Artist Takes on Plastic and Invasive Bush Honeysuckle (May 2018)

    • 35 min
    A World Without Us? Thoughts from Alan Weissman, author of that idea

    A World Without Us? Thoughts from Alan Weissman, author of that idea

    Thirteen years ago, acclaimed journalist Alan Weisman both envisioned and researched the idea of a worldwide disease that would decimate our species - and change the course of our impacts on all other Earthly life. What was he thinking?
             
    Today, like so many of our kind, Weisman is sequestered in one place, envisioning work he was planning to do - on a new book about hope for all this - while sitting out 2020, in the company of his fellow humans.
    Alan Weisman's first guest stop with KDHX Earthworms celebrated his 1998 report on sustainable technology in a remote Brazilian burg: Gaviotas, A Village to Change the World. In 2013 his book Countdown: Our Last Beast Home for Future on Earth and KDHX Earthworms were both honored with Global Media Awards by the Population Media Center. On our goes-around-comes-around planet, this conversation explores our pandemic present,through a spirit of common perseverance.  

    THANKS to Andy Heaslet, Earthworms engineer, with assistance from Jon Valley and Andy Coco.
    Related Earthworms Conversations: An Ecologist's Journey to Make Peace with the Anthropocene (Nov 2019)
    Storytelling, Deep Listening: Antidotes to Toxic Public Discourse (July 2019)
    Renewal - Andres Edwards on our Connection to Nature (May 2019)

    • 41 min
    Diversifying Power: Jennie C. Stephens Advocates Energy Democracy

    Diversifying Power: Jennie C. Stephens Advocates Energy Democracy

    What kind of leadership do human societies need right now? What areas of focus are most germaine to addressing climate change?
           
    This Earthworms conversation explores these questions with Jennie C. Stephens, Northeastern University professor and director of the School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs, and author of the new book DIVERSIFYING POWER - Why We Need Antiracist, Feminist Leadership on Climate and Energy (Island Press, September 2020).
    Stephens advocates for - and shares examples of national and local leadership in - an Energy Democracy focused enough to supplant the literal power structure of the fossil fuel Polluter Elite. With an appreciation for compassion and empathy as essential leadership qualities, Stephens recognizes the critical value of a new order to democratize the dynamics of society and the energy empowering us all. 
                                   
    THANKS to Andy Heaslet, Earthworms engineer, supported by Jon Valley and Andy Coco.
    Related Earthworms Conversations: Envision Charlotte (North Carolina) Rolls on Circular Economy (March 2020)

    • 35 min
    Grow Native! Celebrates 20 Biodiversifying Years

    Grow Native! Celebrates 20 Biodiversifying Years

    A 1999 vision seeded by two Missouri women sprouted, the next year, as a tax-supported program from our state's Department of Conservation. Flourishing today in a non-profit's fertile soil, Grow Native! stands like a swath of Big Bluestem and Blazing Star as one of the strongest native plant programs around.  
           
    Carol Davit, Executive Director of the Missouri Prairie Foundation, tells how a diversity of forces grew success. Like the many "weeds" native to this idea, Grow Native! spread to include plant growers, seed producers, home and professional gardeners, and garden centers, statewide. Now housed within MPF, Grow Native! continues expanding beyond a tax-supported agency's state lines, cultivating ecological landscapes in Kansas, Iowa and Illinois.
    Perhaps unique in the U.S., the Grow Native! inclusion of public education, professional development, and lively marketing covers the critical human roles so the plants and habitats they create can speak for themselves. Native plants will grow on you!
    Check out Carol Davit's pean to prairies, for TEDx Gateway Arch. 
    THANKS to Andy Heaslet, Jon Valley and Andy Coco, Earthworms mighty cohort of audio engineers.
    Related Earthworms Conversations:
    Nature's Best Hope? Ecologist Doug Tallamy says WE ARE (Feb 2020)
    Lawn Alternatives with Neil DeBoll of Prairie Nursery (Aug 2017)
    Natives Raising Natives: Inspiration from Butterflies and People (May 2017)
     

    • 45 min
    Wires over Wildlife: Power Lines as Biodiversity Connectors

    Wires over Wildlife: Power Lines as Biodiversity Connectors

    Think of the acres, the running miles under power lines that connect us all to the electricity we want and need. Now see, under these lines, vibrant habitat: running corridors of native plants growing food and reproductive cover for beneficial insects, birds, and more. This kind of land-use transformation is real.
                
    Wires Over Wildlife, a cost-share and expert-advisory program, works with utilities and owners of power line rights-of-ways from our Missouri Department of Conservation. Jason Jensen, Private Lands Conservation Unit Chief, leads a team of MDC experts in negotiating WOW agreements and supporting WOW partners in making these management changes work. 
    MDC has negotiated the first WOW agreement with a rural electric cooperative, Grundy Electric Coop. Jensen talks with Earthworms host Jean Ponzi about how this kind of agreement works, why this first coop agreement is significant, and how ecological management can save money, decrease chemical use and mowing, and restore the biodiversity bloom to power line rights-of-way across our state.
    Jensen is also on the statewide Feral Hog task force. Hear how MDC is working to tackle this major invasive species issue. 
    THANKS to Earthworms engineers: Andy Heaslet, Jon Valley and Andy Coco. Virtual podcasting takes a team!
    Related Earthworms Conversations:
    Biodiversity for Corporate Lands? (May 2020)
    Richard Louv: Our Wild Calling (Oct 2019)

    • 29 min

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