16 episodes

Science was revolutionized by Newton’s laws of motion. But how can we revolutionize our ideas?

Laws of Notion is a podcast by the Institute for Science & Policy at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, where we push against our preconceived beliefs and think critically about the world around us.

Each season, we’ll tell a story about an issue facing a community, where there are no easy answers. Listen to explore the interconnections between science, policy, and our human nature.

Laws of Notion The Institute for Science & Policy

    • Science
    • 5.0 • 42 Ratings

Science was revolutionized by Newton’s laws of motion. But how can we revolutionize our ideas?

Laws of Notion is a podcast by the Institute for Science & Policy at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, where we push against our preconceived beliefs and think critically about the world around us.

Each season, we’ll tell a story about an issue facing a community, where there are no easy answers. Listen to explore the interconnections between science, policy, and our human nature.

    Water, Under Pressure: Liquid Gold (S2 Ep1)

    Water, Under Pressure: Liquid Gold (S2 Ep1)

    A 40-year-old calculation on the back of an envelope fuels something of a gold rush in Colorado’s San Luis Valley. But instead of gold, the attraction is water. And the plan is to move it and sell it to Colorado’s growing – and thirsty – metro areas on the Front Range.
    But how much water is there really? And how do we decide who gets it and who doesn't? This is episode one of Water Under Pressure, a podcast about the increasing demands on water in Colorado. And how the choices we make now could tear us apart or help us to navigate our uncertain future. 
    Learn more about the podcast at waterunderpressure.org.
    Sign-up for the Institute for Science & Policy’s mailing list.
    Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube.
    If you like our work, consider making a tax-deductible donation. 
     
    The Institute for Science & Policy is a catalyst for thoughtful dialogue, working toward solutions on society’s greatest challenges with scientific thinking, empathy, and inclusivity. The Institute is a project of the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. The podcast was produced in partnership with House of Pod. 
    Episode Credits:
    Reporting, writing, hosting: Kristan Uhlenbrock
    Reporting, writing, production: Cat Jaffee
    Production: Ann Marie Awad 
    Additional reporting and fact-checking: Nicole Delaney and Kate Long
    Theme music: Alex Paul, Birds of Play
    Episode composition: Jesse Boynton with tracks from Epidemic Sounds 
    Sound design: Ameeta Ganatra
    Marketing: Tricia Waddell
    A special thanks to Trent Knoss and George Sparks

    • 28 min
    Water, Under Pressure: A Right (S2 Ep2)

    Water, Under Pressure: A Right (S2 Ep2)

    One of the most controversial pieces of real estate in the San Luis Valley isn’t because of anything it’s got above ground, but because of the water below it. Water is needed for all living things to survive. It can also be controlled and has been by civilizations for millennia. So how is it decided where the water goes and what it can be used for? 
    In order to understand this, we must understand how water rights work.
    This is episode two of Water, Under Pressure, a podcast about the increasing demands on water in Colorado. And how the choices we make now could tear us apart or help us to navigate our uncertain future.
    Learn more about the podcast and people featured at waterunderpressure.org.
    Sign-up for the Institute for Science & Policy’s mailing list.
    Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube.
    If you like our work, consider making a tax-deductible donation. 
    The Institute for Science & Policy is a catalyst for thoughtful dialogue, working toward solutions on society’s greatest challenges with scientific thinking, empathy, and inclusivity. The Institute is a project of the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. The podcast was produced in partnership with House of Pod. 
    Episode Credits:
    Reporting, writing, hosting: Kristan Uhlenbrock
    Reporting, writing, production: Cat Jaffee
    Production: Ann Marie Awad 
    Additional reporting and fact checking: Nicole Delaney and Kate Long
    Theme music: Alex Paul, Birds of Play
    Episode composition: Jesse Boynton with tracks from Epidemic Sounds 
    Sound design: Ameeta Ganatra and Seth Samuel
    Marketing: Tricia Waddell
    A special thanks to Trent Knoss and George Sparks

    • 25 min
    Water, Under Pressure: Trailer

    Water, Under Pressure: Trailer

    This year, we’re taking you deep into the world of water. Where values, science, law, and our identity collide, as communities in Colorado face tough choices about this dwindling vital resource. Stay tuned for Water, Under Pressure, a five-part podcast about the increasing demands on water in Colorado. And how the choices we make now could tear us apart or help us to navigate our uncertain future.  Learn more about the podcast at waterunderpressure.org.
    Sign-up for the Institute for Science & Policy’s mailing list.
    Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube.
    If you like our work, consider making a tax-deductible donation. 
     
    The Institute for Science & Policy is a catalyst for thoughtful dialogue, working toward solutions on society’s greatest challenges with scientific thinking, empathy, and inclusivity. The Institute is a project of the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. The podcast was produced in partnership with House of Pod. 

    • 3 min
    Coal at Sunset: The Decision (S1 Ep1)

    Coal at Sunset: The Decision (S1 Ep1)

    There's a popular saying in Craig, Colorado: "Coal keeps the lights on."
    But in 2020, the electrical utility Tri-State Generation & Transmission Association announced that it would close its coal-fired power plant and coal mines in Craig by 2030. The news was like an earthquake. Hundreds of jobs would be lost. The town now faces the prospect of massive economic disruption as its primary industry disappears.
    In our first episode, we travel to Craig and hear from the CEO at the center of that decision, a coal worker bracing for change, and one local business owner who's already looking for ways to reinvent the town's identity. What will Craig do now?
    To explore more from this episode, visit https://coalatsunset.org/episodes/episode-1-the-decision/
    Host: Kristan Uhlenbrock
    Guests: 
    • Duane Highley, CEO, Tri-State Generation & Transmission Association
    • Jennifer Holloway, Executive Director, Craig Chamber of Commerce
    • Kirstie McPherson, owner, 518 Wine Bar & The Find
    • Graham Roberts, environmental supervisor, Trapper Mining Inc.
    Coal at Sunset: A Colorado Town in Transition was created by the Institute for Science & Policy at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science and was produced in partnership with House of Pod.
    To hear bonus clips and find additional resources, visit https://coalatsunset.org/

    • 31 min
    Coal at Sunset: The Cost (S1 Ep2)

    Coal at Sunset: The Cost (S1 Ep2)

    In our second episode, we travel inside the Craig coal-fired station to learn more about the science and economics of coal amidst a rapidly changing renewable energy landscape. For centuries, society has relied on coal because it's been dependable. Reserves can be stored indefinitely and burned as needed to meet electricity demand in any weather, any time of day.
    But coal has been losing ground to renewables like wind and solar for decades as the prices of cleaner, greener technologies have come way down. And now, Colorado has made greenhouse gas reductions a priority. Coal is no longer the market driver it once was.
    Energy is a global challenge. But the transition is well underway. What will the state reasonably be able to achieve over the next decade? And what will that mean for our electricity?
    To hear bonus clips and additional resources for this episode, visit https://coalatsunset.org/episodes/episode-2-the-cost/
    Host: Kristan Uhlenbrock
    Guests:
    • Tim Osborn, plant manager, Craig station
    • Suzanne Tegen, Assistant Director, Center for the New Energy Economy at Colorado State University
    • Bob Rankin, Colorado State Senator, District 8
    Coal at Sunset: A Colorado Town in Transition was created by the Institute for Science & Policy at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science and produced in partnership with House of Pod. 
    For more, visit https://coalatsunset.org/

    • 29 min
    Coal at Sunset: You Knew (S1 Ep3)

    Coal at Sunset: You Knew (S1 Ep3)

    Why is Colorado phasing out coal? Simply put: Planet Earth is warming up. Fast. For decades, scientific evidence has pointed to significant human influence on our climate, dating back to the Industrial Revolution. Burning fossil fuels like coal releases significant amounts of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, accelerating global warming. 
    Climate change increases the volatility in our systems. And the catastrophic effects are already being felt. The U.S. has experienced a record-breaking number of weather disasters in recent years, including droughts, hurricanes, and wildfires. 
    In 2019, the Colorado legislature took its boldest step yet toward addressing climate change. House Bill 1261 committed Colorado to a 50% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions by 2030 and a 90% reduction by 2050. Almost every sector would be affected.
    Electrical utilities, like Tri-State would need to generate more of their power from renewables like wind and solar. The bill signaled the beginning of the end for coal plants in the state.
    For others, the bill was seen as an overreach and another example of the glaring rural-urban divide in America today.
    How do we balance the need to protect the planet with the need to protect livelihoods?
    To explore more from this episode, visit https://coalatsunset.org/episodes/episode-3-you-knew/
    Host: Kristan Uhlenbrock
    Guests:
    • Waleed Abdalati, Director of the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences at the University of Colorado Boulder
    • Ray Beck, retired Moffat County commissioner and former mayor of Craig
    • KC Becker, former Colorado Speaker of the House
    • Jennifer Holloway, Executive Director of the Craig Chamber of Commerce
    Coal at Sunset: A Colorado Town in Transition was created by the Institute for Science & Policy at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science and produced in partnership with House of Pod.
    To hear bonus clips and find additional resources, visit https://coalatsunset.org/

    • 34 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
42 Ratings

42 Ratings

Lumen user ,

Amazing podcast!

A terrific series that explores complex public problems. Highly recommend!!

Mai Nguyen the Earthling ,

Informative and Insightful; truly amazing

I have always been passionate about the environment and curious about the good/bad effects that we as humans have on our planet Earth. This thoughtfully produced podcast shines an honest and wholesome light on not just the coal industry, but most importantly shining a light on the people caught in the transition as well. I learned a lot and felt such a connection to the lives of the individuals interviewed in this amazing podcast. Thank you for documenting this, truly.

ilovemoose456 ,

Honest, thoughtful reporting

Finally, an energy transition story that centers both the science of climate change AND the real people affected by the sunset of coal. Thank you for crafting such a nuanced, complicated story that captures this challenging but necessary moment in history.

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