There are 7 billion people on this planet today needing water, food and shelter. There will be another billion in 12 years. How many humans can the earth sustain? Steve Scher talks with Alan Weisman about strategies to ease the human impact on earth. Weisman has written “Countdown: Our Last, Best Hope For A Future On Earth.”
A relatively small county council election in Washington state’s far northwest corner could play a major role in the future of the US coal industry.
The Whatcom County council could end up casting the deciding votes to permit the controversial dock for the Gateway Pacific Terminal, which would transfer coal from trains onto ships bound for Asia. It would be the largest coal export terminal on the West Coast.
Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 4:29 pm
Loggers are packing up and leaving timber sales uncut across the Northwest. It's another effect of the partial government shutdown. Timber companies say even if a deal is reached soon at the nation's capitol, the effects from the logging hiatus could be felt all the way into next spring.
Timber companies received letters from the Forest Service telling them to cease operations. That's because the employees who oversee and inspect timber sales were furloughed.
Bernie Krause was an early pioneer of electronic music. Eventually his interests turned to the chorus of the outdoors. He started recording soundscapes and has amassed an extensive collection of nature sounds. Studying those sounds has given him insight into how animals communicate with one another and the origins of music. In this interview with Anne Strainchamps, Krause describes and plays some selections from his unique collection of sounds.
Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 11:56 am
Washington officials say they’re disappointed but not surprised by news that the federal government likely will miss several more cleanup deadlines at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation.
At Hanford, radioactive sludge stews in aging underground tanks not far from the Columbia River. A 1989 agreement created the timeline for treating that caustic gunk. But the task has proven extremely difficult: A waste treatment plant has been plagued by whistleblowers, critical federal investigations, cost overruns and delays.
Correction 10/9/2013: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that Lake Natron was 402 miles wide. The lake is 402 square miles.
A lake in Tanzania has come into the spotlight recently thanks to a series of eerie photographs released by photographer Nick Brandt. In his book, “Across the Ravaged Land,” Brandt shows the world what happens to some wildlife when it’s submerged Lake Natron, and it’s not pretty.
When a 19-year-old man lured a giant Pacific octopus from its lair off Alki Beach in West Seattle last year – legally, it turned out – a small group of activists were aghast that the charismatic cephalopod wasn’t protected.
The buzzword “sustainable” has been around for years — so long that it’s nearly begun to lose its meaning. In order to chart a true sustainable future, we need to make changes to our lifestyles that are more drastic than simply composting or bringing reusable bags to the grocery store.
Erik Assadourian and Annie Leonard are co-authors of the book “State of the World 2013: Is Sustainability Still Possible?” They spoke on September 16 at Town Hall. The talk was moderated by Grist founder Chip Giller.