Plastic Pollution in Ocean

Photo credit: Conserve Energy Future
Photo credit: Conserve Energy Future

In today’s show we offer two related features:
Plastic Pollution in the Arctic, Green Chemistry  (start time: 7:48) Try to wrap your brain around this statistic: by mid-century the mass of plastic in the oceans will weigh more than the total mass of fish if we continue with ‘business as usual,’ according to the World Economic Forum. Plastic debris, ranging from plastic water bottles to fish nets to invisible fragments, is choking seabirds and mammals all the way up to the Arctic, and quite possibly harming human health. How On Earth host Susan Moran recently attended the Arctic Frontiers conference in Tromso, Norway, where she interviewed one of the speakers, Jenna Jambeck, an environmental engineer at the University of Georgia. Dr. Jambeck directs the Center for Circular Materials Management, where researchers are designing materials and processes that both reduce waste and, like nature itself, reuse waste.

Photo credit: Chris Jordan
Photo credit: Chris Jordan

Grassroots Efforts Curb Plastic Pollution (start time: 20:24) In case you’re wondering what’s land-locked Colorado and your daily life got to do with plastic pollution in the ocean, our guest, Vicki Nichols Goldstein, founder and executive director of the Inland Ocean Coalition, discusses regional and national campaigns to curb plastic waste. The Suck the Straws Out campaign is one of many. You can get involved, starting with attending the Colorado Ocean Coalition‘s Blue Drinks happy hour on Feb. 15 in Boulder.

Hosts: Chip Grandits, Susan Moran
Producer: Susan Moran
Engineers: Maeve Conran, Chip Grandits, Evan Perkins
Executive Producer: Susan Moran

Listen to the show here:


Green Chemistry


There’s a lot of attention right now on creating environmentally friendly technology, non-toxic and sustainable manufacturing, but as Dr. John Warner explains it, it all has to start with the chemistry.

John Warner is a chemist, professor and co-founder of the Warner-Babcock Institute for Green Chemistry.   He speaks profoundly about learning methods from nature to create safer, more resilient and more elegant chemistry.  John was also the recipient of this year’s Perkin Medal, one of the highest honors in the field of chemistry.

Warner-Babcock Institute for Green Chemistry
John Warner at Bioneers

Executive Producer: Jane Palmer and Kendra Krueger
Producer: Kendra Krueger
Engineer: Kendra Krueger
Headlines: Beth Bennett, Jane Palmer

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