1,194 episodes

As the planet we call home faces a climate emergency, Living on Earth is your go-to source for the latest coverage of climate change, ecology, and human health. Hosted by Steve Curwood and brought to you by PRX.

Living on Earth World Media Foundation

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As the planet we call home faces a climate emergency, Living on Earth is your go-to source for the latest coverage of climate change, ecology, and human health. Hosted by Steve Curwood and brought to you by PRX.

    Black History Special: Flooded Out By Racism, One Step Further: The Story of Katherine Johnson, and Soil: The Story of a Black Mother’s Garden.

    Black History Special: Flooded Out By Racism, One Step Further: The Story of Katherine Johnson, and Soil: The Story of a Black Mother’s Garden.

    In this Black History Month special, “father of environmental justice” Dr. Robert Bullard is calling for justice for the community of Shiloh, Alabama, which has suffered repeated flooding ever since a highway was widened and elevated in 2018, causing destruction to homes that Black landowners have proudly kept since the Reconstruction era. 
    Also, Katherine Johnson was an African American trailblazer who while living under Jim Crow in the south worked at NASA as a mathematician and helped put a man on the moon. Her daughter Katherine Moore shares her mother's story.
    And poet Camille Dungy transformed her sterile lawn in white Fort Collins, Colorado into a pollinator haven teeming with native plants and the wildlife they attract. Her book Soil: The Story of a Black Mother’s Garden recounts that journey alongside a world in turmoil amid the coronavirus pandemic, police violence and wildfires.
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    • 52 min
    $250 Billion in Costs from Plastics, Exxon Sues Climate Investors, The Crochet Coral Reef and more.

    $250 Billion in Costs from Plastics, Exxon Sues Climate Investors, The Crochet Coral Reef and more.

    Hormone-disrupting chemicals in plastics take a yearly economic toll in the hundreds of billions of dollars in the U.S. alone, according to a recent study. Pediatrician Leonardo Trasande discusses the research and explains why PFAS, phthalates, BPA and flame retardants in plastics are so harmful to human health. We also examine the lax regulations around chemicals and plastics and explore ways that people can individually and collectively reduce plastic use and exposure.
    Also, ExxonMobil recently sued activist investors in federal court in Texas for a repeated effort to bring a climate resolution to a vote at the company’s annual shareholder meeting. The company has persisted even though the activists have withdrawn the petition, raising concerns about a chilling effect on investor engagement.
    And to raise awareness about the threats facing coral reefs, crafters everywhere are picking up their crochet hooks and contributing to a worldwide “Crochet Coral Reef.” The curator of the Pittsburgh Satellite Reef at the Carnegie Museum of Art describes what it’s like to stand inside the exhibit and how it came together. 
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    • 52 min
    Green Cooling and Heating for Public Housing, Ice Skating on the Rideau Canal, Journeys to the Depths of the Ocean and more.

    Green Cooling and Heating for Public Housing, Ice Skating on the Rideau Canal, Journeys to the Depths of the Ocean and more.

    To help address the climate crisis the city of Boston is piloting the replacement of natural gas with ground-source heat pumps in a public housing project. The technology also brings clean air, cooling and heating to historically disadvantaged tenants, advancing environmental justice.
    Also, the warmer winters of climate disruption are bringing shorter and shorter skating seasons on the Rideau Canal in Ottawa, Canada. We head into the Living on Earth archives for a taste of days gone by, when reporter Bob Carty hit the ice to meet locals enjoying the serenity of a skate along the canal.
    And the oceans cover 70 percent of our “blue planet” yet remain largely unexplored because of the intense pressures at depth. But there are some intrepid few who have descended into this “underworld” and lived to tell of its marvels.
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    • 52 min
    Biden Pumps Brakes on Gas Exports, Renewable Power Surge in China, Journey to a Melting Glacier in Antarctica and more

    Biden Pumps Brakes on Gas Exports, Renewable Power Surge in China, Journey to a Melting Glacier in Antarctica and more

    The Biden Administration has paused new export permits of liquefied natural gas over concerns that these enormous facilities would emit millions of tons of greenhouse gases every year. We discuss why LNG exports have been rising in recent years and the impact they are having on the Gulf Coast and the global climate.
    Also, China surged ahead of other countries in 2023 to add 66% more wind power than it had before and bringing online as much solar energy as the entire world had developed in 2022. We examine the geopolitical and economic implications of China’s dominance in the renewable energy sector.
    And Thwaites Glacier in Antarctica holds enough ice that its melting could raise sea levels worldwide by 2 feet, but it’s so remote that until recently no one had ever approached where it meets the sea. Elizabeth Rush was a writer-in-residence on board the first research icebreaker to visit Thwaites and chronicles the journey and witnessing the glacier’s unraveling in her new book The Quickening: Creation and Community at the Ends of the Earth. 
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    • 52 min
    SCOTUS Could Strip Agency Power, The New Climate Denial, Phoenix Trees and more

    SCOTUS Could Strip Agency Power, The New Climate Denial, Phoenix Trees and more

    Two cases in front of the Supreme Court are looking to restrict federal agency power by overturning the longstanding Chevron Doctrine. Environmentalists fear this could limit the ability of federal agencies to set strong environment and climate regulations.
    Also, a recent report finds that social media platforms like YouTube are amplifying and sometimes profiting from new forms of climate denial that falsely claim it’s too late to act on the climate crisis. We explore how climate disinformation has evolved from attacking science to attacking solutions.
    And nearly all the tall coast redwoods in California’s Big Basin Redwoods State Park burned in a 2020 wildfire. But within a few months the charred trunks had grown a fuzz of healthy green shoots. A new paper documents how the trees were able to regenerate using energy reserves stored for many decades.
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    • 52 min
    Feds Power Up EVs, Climate Deception, and Joe Manchin, 3rd Party Candidate?

    Feds Power Up EVs, Climate Deception, and Joe Manchin, 3rd Party Candidate?

    The U.S. Department of Transportation recently granted more than $600 million to states and communities across the country to roll out new EV charging stations and tune up existing ones. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg joins us to discuss the connections between EV charging access, environmental justice, and economic growth.
    Also, when scientists began to warn in the later half of the twentieth century that burning oil, gas, and coal could bring severe consequences for our planet, they touched a nerve in the powerful fossil fuel industry. In this second installment of our series on climate change disinformation, we dive into how the fossil fuel industry infiltrated the political sphere and scientific community to block climate action.
    And a potential third-party presidential run by West Virginia Democratic Senator Joe Manchin could influence the outcome of the 2024 election. Inside Climate News reporter Phil McKenna is back on the campaign trail in New Hampshire with this report about Senator Manchin’s support of fossil fuels and the climate concerns of New Hampshire voters.
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    • 52 min

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