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Public Radio's Environmental News Magazine (follow us on Google News)

Listener Letters

Air Date: Week of


CURWOOD: And now some words of response from you, our listeners. Patrick Lilly hears us on KRCC in Colorado Springs. He wrote to applaud our report on hemp farming. But he noted that we failed to mention that the Federal prohibition of marijuana immediately followed the invention of the hemp decorticator. Now, that's a machine which would have alleviated labor-intensive harvesting. Mr. Lilly writes, "This invention would have resulted in a great resurgence in the popularity of hemp as a fiber for clothing and other uses, but no one was ever allowed to use it. As Miss Piggy would say, 'What a coincidence!'"

Sandy Mitchell, a listener to KUOW in Seattle, was pleased to hear our coverage of environmental problems in Asia. But he added, "I was slightly appalled that your expert from Harvard was advocating we sell China nuclear technology, when there are far more effective and far safer technologies."

Louise Fabiani, a Montreal listener, heard our profile of chicken farmer Joel Salatin on Vermont Public Radio. A long-time vegetarian, she's intrigued with his philosophy of raising poultry in portable pens. Writes Ms. Fabiani, "Sure, the output is smaller than a factory farm's, but that's the point. If fewer people demanded meat at least once a day, the perceived need for dollar-cheap but environment-costly meat would decrease, and maybe the factory farm would go the way of legalized child labor."

And finally, our apologies to Boy Scouts everywhere. Vic Shelburne, a professor at Clemson University, and listener to WEPR in Greenville, South Carolina, wrote to correct commentator Andy Wasowski. A recent essay of his stated that a Boy Scout could receive a merit badge in forestry without learning about a single native tree. "Not true," writes Professor Shelburne, a scoutmaster for nearly 20 years. "The first requirement in this relatively difficult merit badge is to prepare a field notebook, make a collection, and identify 15 species of trees and wild shrubs in a local forested area. And that's just the first requirement."

Well, please help us keep brave and clean, but be friendly. You can call our listener line any time at 800-218-9988. That's 800-218-9988. Or write 8 Story Street, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138. Our e-mail address is LOE@NPR.ORG. Once again, LOE@NPR.ORG. And check out our web page at www.loe.org. Tapes and transcripts are available for $12.



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