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PRI's Environmental News Magazine

The Sound Ring

 

Maya Lin’s Sound Ring—a large, wooden sculpture installed at Cornell’s Lab of Ornithology—plays the sounds of species and habitats that are on their way to silence. Emmett Fitzgerald talks to John Fitzpatrick, Director of Cornell’s Lab of Ornithology about the structure and the significance of these endangered soundscapes.

 

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American Catch

 

Though commercial fishing is a multi-billion dollar business in America, the country’s seafood supply is slipping from American hands with much of the catch headed overseas. Paul Greenberg, author of the new book American Catch, tells us about the unraveling of America’s seafood industry and what can be done to save it.

 

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Tibetan Monks Saving Snow Leopards

 

Snow Leopards are among the most endangered of the world’s big cats, but now Tibetan monks are giving the leopard hope. (Camera trap photo of a snow leopard on the Tibetan plateau (photo: Panthera))

 

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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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Antarctic Volcano

 

Many scientists are concerned about the impact global warming is having on Antarctica, and now scientists from Washington University in St. Louis have discovered a new kind of threat lurking beneath the vulnerable West Antarctic ice sheet—an active volcano. (Photo: Doug Wiens)

 

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Otters and Climate Change

 

Sea Otters are known for their playful demeanor and cuddly appearance, but scientists at the University of California at Santa Cruz think that the cuddly creatures could help reduce the amount of carbon in the atmosphere. (Photo: Imtiaz333 Flickr Creative Commons)

 

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Climate Departure Date

 

A group of scientists at the University of Hawaii have figured out a way to project when the climate at a given location will move outside the range of anything we’ve known in modern times. It’s sooner then you think.

 

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Nicaraguan Canal

 

The first ships sailed down the Panama Canal in 1914. Now, nearly one hundred years later, Nicaragua has an agreement with a Chinese company to build a canal of its own to link the Pacific and Atlantic. (photo: Tim Rogers)

 

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The Great Lakes and Climate Change

 

In the last 30 years the largest fresh water lake in the world in terms of surface area, Lake Superior, has warmed nearly six degrees Fahrenheight. The increased temperature is a boon to some fish but warmer water is also more suitable for some species.

 

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Ecology and the Deadly Ebola Epidemic

West Africa is the middle of the worst Ebola outbreak in recorded world history. There have been over 3,000 reported cases and the death toll is now over 1,550. We delve into the epidemic, the prospects of a vaccine and how habitat loss may be one reason why we are seeing so many diseases jumping from animals to humans in recent years.

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Scotland Launches the World's Largest Tidal Power Project

Scotland is a world leader in tidal and wave power research and hopes to produce all of its energy from sustainable low-carbon sources by 2020. Calum Davidson, the Director of Energy and Low Carbon with Scotland’s Highlands and Islands Enterprise explains their novel project to install the world’s largest tidal turbine array and how will help supply green energy to the U.K. and Europe.

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The Sound Ring

Maya Lin’s Sound Ring—a large, wooden sculpture installed at Cornell’s Lab of Ornithology—plays the sounds of species and habitats that are on their way to silence. Emmett Fitzgerald talks to John Fitzpatrick, Director of Cornell’s Lab of Ornithology about the structure and the significance of these endangered soundscapes.

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This Week’s Show
August 29, 2014
listen / download


Ecology and the Deadly Ebola Epidemic

listen / download
West Africa is the middle of the worst Ebola outbreak in recorded world history. There have been over 3,000 reported cases and the death toll is now over 1,550. We delve into the epidemic, the prospects of a vaccine and how habitat loss may be one reason why we are seeing so many diseases jumping from animals to humans in recent years.

Scottish Independence from High-Carbon Energy and the U.K.

listen / download
As Scots get ready to vote on whether or not to leave the United Kingdom and become independent, Scotland’s future is in flux, especially with regards to its ambitious climate goals and huge renewable energy potential that conflict with plans to extract billions of barrels of oil and gas from the North Sea. We spoke with WWF Scotland’s Director, Lang Banks, about the future of Scotland’s energy and how independence might affect it.

Scotland Launches the World's Largest Tidal Power Project

listen / download
Scotland is a world leader in tidal and wave power research and hopes to produce all of its energy from sustainable low-carbon sources by 2020. Calum Davidson, the Director of Energy and Low Carbon with Scotland’s Highlands and Islands Enterprise explains their novel project to install the world’s largest tidal turbine array and how will help supply green energy to the U.K. and Europe.

Recycling the Union Jack?

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With Scotland set to vote on its independence, Living on Earth’s resident British producer Helen Palmer asks what might happen to the iconic Union Jack flag if Great Britain were to lose the Scots.

Beyond the Headlines

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Canaries in the coalmine aren’t the only birds to warn us of danger. In this week’s look Beyond the Headlines, Peter Dykstra tells us about how sick birds can show signs of environmental hazards. He also reports ravens are coming back to New York City and remembers the last known passenger pigeon.

The Sound Ring

listen / download
Maya Lin’s Sound Ring—a large, wooden sculpture installed at Cornell’s Lab of Ornithology—plays the sounds of species and habitats that are on their way to silence. Emmett Fitzgerald talks to John Fitzpatrick, Director of Cornell’s Lab of Ornithology about the structure and the significance of these endangered soundscapes.

Bats Seeking Water

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For thirsty bats in the Madera Canyon, the quest for water is everything. Writer Mark Seth Lender watches in pitch blackness as bats drink from a desert pool.


Special Features

Listener Haikus
To honor Earth Day 2014 we asked you - our listeners - to tap your own creative muse and send us your haiku. The topic could be anything Earth Day inspired. The response was tremendous. In fact, we received more haiku than we could put on the air. Fortunately we can share them with you here.
Blog Series: Living on Earth

Arctic Reveal
Mark Seth Lender makes it to Greenland in his second dispatch from the arctic for Adventure Canada.
Blog Series: Mark Seth Lender: Farthest North


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"One of the things in childhood that seems to shape environmental behaviors in adulthood is parents taking their kids mushroom picking and berry picking: selecting a natural resource for consumption seems to be something that leads to environmental behavior in adulthood."

-- David Sobel Professor of Environmental Studies at Antioch University

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