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Playlist: Science Saturday

Compiled By: Tom Maloney

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Big Picture Science (Series)

Produced by Big Picture Science

Most recent piece in this series:

Headed for Trouble

From Big Picture Science | Part of the Big Picture Science series | 54:02

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The stone heads on Easter Island are an enduring mystery: why were they built and why were they abandoned and destroyed? The old ideas about cultural collapse are yielding to new ones based on careful investigation on the ground - but also from above. What surprising explanations have we found and are we off base to think that ancient societies such as the Easter Islanders or the classical Egyptians were, in the end, failures? Can what we learn from these histories help predict which societies will survive?

Guests:

Originally aired September 30, 2019

Climate One- Weekly Feed (Series)

Produced by Climate One

Most recent piece in this series:

20230127: Blue Carbon: Sinking it in The Sea, 1/27/2023

From Climate One | Part of the Climate One- Weekly Feed series | 58:58

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When most of us think about using nature to remove carbon dioxide from the air, we think of trees. Yet blue carbon, a new name for storing carbon dioxide in coastal and marine ecosystems where it can no longer trap heat in our atmosphere, may have even greater potential. Salt marshes and mangroves have carbon-capturing capacity that may surpass that of terrestrial forests and they are found on every continent except Antarctica. Emily Pidgeon, Vice President of Ocean Science and Innovation at Conservation International explains, “In some cases these ecosystems can have up to four or five times more carbon on a per unit area than we see in some of the ecosystems that we traditionally think of as being carbon rich, like the forests of the Amazon or other carbon rich terrestrial ecosystems.”  

The efficient sequestration of carbon can also make the loss of the coastal ecosystems especially devastating for the climate. At least half of the world's mangroves and a third of the world’s salt marshes have been lost. Seagrasses, for example, currently cover less than 0.2% of the ocean floor, but store about 10% of the carbon buried in the oceans each year. When those ecosystems are lost, they release that sequestered carbon dioxide back into the atmosphere. Pigeon says, “Actions on a small area can have a disproportionately large impact from a climate mitigation point of view.” 

One way to incentivise preservation of these ecosystems is by assigning monetary value to them. That’s exactly what Ralph Chami of the International Monetary Fund advocates. After learning about whales’ role in oceanic carbon cycles, he observed, “Here's a whale and it’s providing a carbon sequestration service on behalf of humanity. If she could speak our language, what would be the wage that she would demand? He did the math and pegs the value of each whale’s carbon services over its lifetime at around $3 million. 

Chami also applied a calculation to the value of seagrass and came to a staggering figure. “If you were to use the average price of carbon of last year, which is about $60, the total value of carbon services of seagrass is over $2 trillion. Not billion. Trillion.”  

The importance of these coastal ecosystems stretch beyond their climate benefits. For example, mangroves are an integral part of many communities. Vlinder is a firm aiming to help companies achieve their net-zero goals by developing mangrove restoration projects. Their Founder and Co-CEO, Irina Fedorenko-Aula, explains, “It’s about protecting people from sometimes very violent, extreme weather events. Having the healthy mangrove forest in front of the villages is literally a question of life and death.” 

Mangrove restoration projects also provide economic opportunities to communities that often have few. Fedorenko Aula elaborates, “You basically have regions that are usually poor and usually depressed and usually struggle from unemployment. And suddenly, you have investment that creates a lot of jobs.” 

It’s one thing to propose an ecosystem restoration project; it’s another to actually implement it. From making sure the community is on board to getting the right materials to the right place at the right time of year, there is no shortage of challenges. But Isabella Masinde, CEO of Umita, a project management company in Kenya, says that when one community sees how their neighbors are benefiting, they are quickly persuaded.Masinde describes how one community reacted when they saw satellite pictures of degraded parts of the mangrove forest, “We are going to be finished if we don’t have this ecosystem restored.”


World Ocean Radio (Series)

Produced by World Ocean Observatory

Most recent piece in this series:

RESCUE, part 3: Observation and Science

From World Ocean Observatory | Part of the World Ocean Radio series | 05:21

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This week we continue the multi-part RESCUE series with a call for better communications of ocean science: translation, packaging, distribution and presentation to the millions around the world who live by and rely on the ocean for survival. The RESCUE series is outlining a new plan for the ocean and a new perspective to enable a new set of actions for the future.

About World Ocean Radio
5-minute weekly insights dive into ocean science, advocacy and education hosted by Peter Neill, lifelong ocean advocate and maritime expert. Episodes offer perspectives on global ocean issues and viable solutions, and celebrate exemplary projects. Available for syndicated use at no cost by college and community radio stations worldwide.

Bioneers - Revolution From the Heart of Nature (Series)

Produced by Bioneers

Most recent piece in this series:

247: Democracy vs. Plutocracy Part One: Behind Every Great Fortune Lies a Great Crime, 2/1/2023

From Bioneers | Part of the Bioneers - Revolution From the Heart of Nature series | 28:30

Thom_hartmann_small In this first part of a two-part program, we travel back and forth in time to explore the battle between democracy and plutocracy. In today’s new Gilded Age of rule by the wealthy, rising anti-trust movements are challenging the stranglehold of corporate monopoly. With leading democracy defenders Thom Hartmann, Stacy Mitchell and Maurice BP Weeks.

A Moment of Science (Series)

Produced by WFIU

Most recent piece in this series:

AMOS 23.025: Why Are Parrots So Smart?, 2/3/2023

From WFIU | Part of the A Moment of Science series | 02:00

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This Week in Water (Series)

Produced by H2O Radio

Most recent piece in this series:

This Week in Water for January 22, 2023

From H2O Radio | Part of the This Week in Water series | 06:05

H2o_logo_240_small A “carbon con”? A new study disputes the benefits of carbon offsets.

Tipping points are scary inflection points of climate disaster, but new research outlines three positive ones that could save us.

Eating freshwater fish could serve up a dose of toxic PFAS chemicals.

This device can redirect lightning bolts.

Spectrum: World of Science & Technology ~ from DW (Series)

Produced by DW - Deutsche Welle

Most recent piece in this series:

Science unscripted 01/24/2023

From DW - Deutsche Welle | Part of the Spectrum: World of Science & Technology ~ from DW series | 30:00

52861954_7_small Two ways to boost your mood (daily), a skill that’ll up your dating game, and a cannabis investment you shouldn't make.

Living Planet: Environment Matters ~ from DW (Series)

Produced by DW - Deutsche Welle

Most recent piece in this series:

Living Planet 01/27/23

From DW - Deutsche Welle | Part of the Living Planet: Environment Matters ~ from DW series | 29:59

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Uganda's controversial oil pipeline plans move forward (from EcoAfrica)

Julius Mugambwa & Tabea Mergenthaler;sp: Isaac Mugabi


Studio chat with Planet A's Aditi Rajagopal about petrochemicals in beauty products

Sam Baker

 

 


 

Is an electric vehicle worth it?

Anupama Chandrasekaran

The Pulse (Series)

Produced by WHYY

Most recent piece in this series:

476: The Hidden Powers of Fungi, 1/27/2023

From WHYY | Part of the The Pulse series | 59:01

3000x3000_itunes_thepulse_1_small On this rebroadcast of the Pulse, when you hear the word fungi, chances are mushrooms come to mind: button mushrooms, maybe portobellos, or chanterelles. But so much of the fungi kingdom is invisible — underground — and many say under appreciated. Fungi are vital to life on the planet, but scientists are really just beginning to understand their many functions and possibilities. On this episode, we explore the role of fungi in nature, in medicine, and in our lives. We’ll talk about sustainable design that utilizes mycelium, discuss how fungi form networks that communicate information, and look at an experimental and unapproved fungi-based treatment people are using to regain their sense of smell. Heard on this Episode: - Mycologist and mushroom entrepreneur Paul Stamets talks about growing mushrooms in your own backyard. - Biologist Merlin Sheldrake discusses the important role of fungi as the planet’s “brilliant decomposers,” and explains why he loves the idea of having fungi all around us — and inside of us. - We visit Vedge Restaurant in Philadelphia to get a crash course on preparing mushrooms from Chef Rich Landau (Pro tip: hold the salt until the very end!) He explains how to cook with different mushrooms, and recalls a time when portobello mushrooms were an expensive rarity. - Designer Danielle Trofe talks about the lampshades she grows from mycelium. They’re light, velvety to the touch, sturdy, and yet completely biodegradable. - Foraging for mushrooms was a “national sport” in the Czech Republic where Barbora Batokova grew up. Now, she brings her love of mushrooms to fans online, where she goes by “Fungiwoman.” Her sites feature beautiful photos of mushrooms that she finds in the wild, as well as explanations and tips for identification.

Constant Wonder (Series)

Produced by BYUradio/KUMT/KBYU-FM

Most recent piece in this series:

Constant Wonder - Storyteller Kevin Kling, A Life of Humor and Humility

From BYUradio/KUMT/KBYU-FM | Part of the Constant Wonder series | 52:50

Cw_badge_small Storyteller Kevin Kling has overcome trauma and learned to live with disability, without ever losing sight of the hilarious–even in the horrible. We follow him from his mischievous childhood to his empathetic and inspiring performances around the world. He still laughs often, and so will you, during this episode of the "Constant Wonder" podcast.

Guest: Kevin Kling, author, playwright, and storyteller

Planetary Radio (Series)

Produced by Mat Kaplan

Most recent piece in this series:

Juno Journeys to Jupiter’s Moons

From Mat Kaplan | Part of the Planetary Radio series | 28:50

Ganymede-juno-2021-240x240_small Dive into the latest discoveries about Jupiter’s moons Ganymede, Europa, and Io with Scott Bolton, the principal investigator for NASA’s Juno mission. We share analysis of the data collected by the spacecraft and look forward to upcoming exploratory missions to Jupiter’s moons from ESA and NASA. Stick around for this week’s What’s Up and our space trivia contest. Discover more: at https://www.planetary.org/planetary-radio/2023-juno-journeys-to-jupiters-moons