Living on Earth

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.

00:52:19 2022-08-05
Underwater explorer Craig Foster dives nearly every day in the near-shore waters of South Africa and it’s here that he befriended an octopus, a relationship captured in the documentary “My Octopus Teacher.” He’s coauthor of the 2021 book “Underw...
00:51:36 2022-07-29
A punishing drought in the Horn of Africa linked to climate change has led to mass famine, and some 19 million people in Ethiopia, Somalia, and Kenya don’t have enough to eat. Also, there are about 700 active oil and gas wells in the city of Los Angeles...
00:52:13 2022-07-22
President Biden responds to a lack of Congressional action on climate change with new executive orders but stops short of declaring a national climate emergency, disappointing some.  Also, painting tree trunks bright blue to raise awareness about defore...
00:51:33 2022-07-15
President Biden recently invoked the Defense Production Act to stimulate domestic production of clean energy technology including solar panels and heat pumps. And, how a seaweed supplement, currently in the experimental phase, may help reduce methane emis...
00:53:34 2022-07-08
To help curb the plastic pollution crisis, the US Department of Interior will phase out single-use plastic products sold and distributed in national parks and other federal public lands it oversees.  Also, the first successful Mars lander was Viking 1 in...
00:53:34 2022-07-01
In a major 6 to 3 decision with sobering implications for climate policy, the Supreme Court ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency overstepped its authority when it created guidelines for how utilities generate electricity. Also, rising seas and t...
00:54:15 2022-06-24
Extreme heat events such as India and Pakistan recently endured are among the deadliest impacts of climate change, and pregnant women and fetuses are among the most vulnerable to heat stress. Extreme heat is linked to complications of pregnancy including ...
00:53:36 2022-06-10
Threatened by draconian tariffs, the US solar industry has been largely frozen since April and laid off thousands of workers, stalling crucial progress towards climate goals. But on June 6th, President Biden signed executive orders temporarily suspending ...
00:54:55 2022-06-03
Australia is a leading coal and natural gas exporter and has stubbornly opposed major climate action for decades, even as climate disasters like fires, floods, and droughts have taken their toll. But now Australian voters have ushered in a more progressiv...
00:52:14 2022-05-27
In the past decade, the EPA has received over 98,000 reports of harm and over 2500 reports of pet deaths connected to the Seresto brand of pesticide-containing flea collars. But the EPA has never issued any warnings or recalls of these collars. Also, the ...
00:52:34 2022-05-20
The 6-3 conservative majority of the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to constrain climate action by the Environmental Protection Agency in a decision before the end of the SCOTUS term in June. Why a loss for EPA in this one case, West Virginia v. EPA, coul...
00:51:31 2022-05-13
With record low water levels that threaten hydropower generation, the federal government has decided to retain water in Lake Powell and release less to Lake Mead and beyond. But the Colorado River basin still faces a long-term water shortage that imperil...
00:52:35 2022-05-06
Whistleblowers say EPA endangers public health by being too cozy with industry and approving cancer-causing and other unsafe chemicals.    Also, "No Mow May." The movement to leave our lawnmowers in the garage for the month of May and give pollinators ...
00:51:35 2022-04-29
Electric vehicles are key to decarbonizing the transportation sector but most cars sold in the U.S. are still gas-powered. Even in Massachusetts, where a climate law requires net zero emissions by 2050, EV numbers are nowhere near where they need to be. ...
00:52:09 2022-04-15
The new James Webb Space Telescope is by far the most powerful space telescope ever built, able to see up to a hundred galaxies at once and detect the light emitted from some of the universe's very first stars while also checking planets near and far for...
00:51:36 2022-04-08
The U.S. solar installation business has been frozen suddenly in its tracks by a U.S. Department of Commerce investigation into whether China is evading tariffs on solar cells and panels. So at a time when there is more demand than ever for solar power, t...
00:51:30 2022-04-01
Higher levels of BPA plastic exposure while in the womb is associated with increased risk of asthma and wheezing in school aged girls, a new study has found. It’s the latest danger sign regarding the estrogen-mimicking chemical, which has also been link...
00:52:13 2022-03-25
European nations are taking a fresh look at nuclear power as a more secure and carbon-free source of energy than fossil fuels, compared to Russian oil and gas.  Also, during the March equinox in Antarctica, the eastern portion of the continent recorded ...
00:51:36 2022-03-18
Europe has vowed to quickly wean itself off Russian gas. Electric heat pumps could help and activists say invoking the Defense Production Act, to rapidly manufacture heat pumps for Europe, can weaken Putin’s fossil fueled war machine.  Also in light o...
00:51:35 2022-03-11
At a recent UN meeting in Nairobi, Kenya, delegates from over 170 countries committed to come up with an ambitious cradle-to-grave, legally binding agreement to tackle the global plastic pollution crisis. Also, northern California native tribes are now t...
00:51:35 2022-03-04
A more conservative Supreme Court has taken up a case that could significantly limit the tools EPA can use to curb greenhouse gas emissions from power plants, even though those rules don’t even exist. Why West Virginia v. EPA poses big risks to environm...
00:51:35 2022-02-25
The Congo Basin is home to one of the largest peatlands in the world and a massive repository of carbon dioxide. Locals have been sustainably hunting and fishing in the area for generations, but the threat of new development has scientists concerned.   A...
00:51:33 2022-02-18
For Black History month: Black Americans rose up from sugarcane slavery and built thriving communities along the lower Mississippi River, only to have the petrochemical industry move in and pollute the air, land, and water in what’s been dubbed Cancer A...
00:51:33 2022-02-11
The blocked Build Back Better budget bill contains half a trillion dollars of renewable energy and climate resiliency investments. So House Democrats now aim to include them in a revised budget reconciliation bill that can get all Senate Democrats on boar...
00:52:34 2022-02-04
A federal Judge revokes the largest offshore oil and gas lease sale in U.S. history by the Biden Administration, citing environmental concerns. What the legal battle says about how seriously the White House is taking its promises to phase out fossil fuels...
00:52:36 2022-01-28
Wildfires have been raging in South America’s Patagonia, where until recently fires were rare. But invasive species and heat, drought, and dry thunderstorms connected to climate change are altering the natural fire regime. Also, children and adolescents...
00:52:15 2022-01-21
When President Biden took office a year ago, he laid out bold goals to halt federal oil and gas drilling, reach carbon neutrality by 2050, and rectify environmental injustices. We’ll look at where progress has been made on these initiatives and where it...
00:53:19 2022-01-14
A conversation about how the Zen Buddhist practice of mindfulness can help us break out of a destructive cycle of consumption and live in harmony with the planet. Also, lead contamination in drinking water can have serious impacts on growing brains and e...
00:52:32 2022-01-07
Two leading naturalists who pioneered the field of conservation biology passed away at the end of December 2021. A look back on E.O. Wilson’s big idea to save half of the Earth for nature, and Tom Lovejoy’s gift for bringing people together to protect...
00:53:24 2021-12-31
From one woman’s dream of swimming with marine iguanas, to uncommon encounters with common rabbits, to a Native American tale of how the dog came to be our loyal companion, and much more, this Living on Earth holiday storytelling special features storie...