Green Resources

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Sustainability is meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. This is accomplished by finding a balance between businesses, the environment, and our society (people, planet, and profit).

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West, Midwest Prepare For Wildfire Season

May 27, 2018

Copyright 2018 Jefferson Public Radio. To see more, visit Jefferson Public Radio.

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Updated at 7:01 p.m. ET

Florida Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency in all 67 counties on Saturday in preparation for Subtropical Storm Alberto.

Johanna Humphrey has a crayon problem.

The Philadelphia resident ordered 24 boxes of crayons to hand out at her son's third birthday party. But retailer Amazon accidentally sent her twice that many and doesn't want the extras back.

"Parents don't need this many crayons in their house," jokes Humphrey as she takes photos of the boxes with her smart phone to list them on her local "Buy Nothing Project" Facebook group. Humphrey wants to give the extra crayons to a local teacher.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Grains are the bedrock of civilization. They led humans from hunting and gathering to city-building. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization, the fruits of three grasses provide the world with 60 percent of its total food: corn, wheat and rice. Aside from energy-rich carbohydrates, grains feed us protein, zinc, iron and essential B vitamins.

But rice as we know it is at risk.

The asteroid impact that ended the age of the dinosaurs also released so much carbon dioxide into the atmosphere that the planet warmed up by about 5 degrees Celsius — and the hot spell persisted for roughly 100,000 years.

That's according to a new study in the journal Science that offers a cautionary tale about how Earth's climate will react to the carbon dioxide that's being pumped into the atmosphere now by the burning of fossil fuels.

The teenager who threw fireworks into a canyon last year, starting a fire in Oregon's Columbia River Gorge that burned nearly 47,000 acres, has been ordered to pay $36.6 million in restitution — although the judge acknowledges that the boy won't be able to pay it in full.

The teen, whose name has not been released, was 15 at the time he threw the fireworks. Oregon's juvenile delinquency statute calls for restitution that equals the full amount of the victims' injury, loss or damage as determined by the court.

Updated at 5:27 p.m. ET

In the weeks since the Kilauea volcano began belching lava into Hawaii's residential areas, the fiery flow has destroyed dozens of structures and covered scores of acres on the Big Island. But authorities fear its destructive reach could ravage at least two more cornerstones of the state: its power supply and, a little less tangibly, its all-important tourism industry.

For the first time, scientists have videotaped sharks traveling a 500-mile-long "shark highway" in the Pacific, and they plan to turn it into a protected wildlife corridor in the ocean.

As Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt has moved to roll back a sweeping array of Obama-era regulations he's relentlessly cited his goal of providing "regulatory certainty."

In his first address to career employees last year he told the gathered room at the EPA, "Regulators exist to give certainty to those that they regulate. Those that we regulate ought to know what we expect of them, so that they can plan and allocate resources to comply."

There's going to be a changing of the guard in space. On Tuesday, NASA is launching two new satellites, collectively called GRACE, to replace two that have been retired after 16 years in orbit.

Lava from the Kilauea volcano is pouring into the Pacific Ocean off of Hawaii's Big Island, generating a plume of "laze" – which Hawaii County officials describe as hydrochloric acid and steam with fine glass particles — into the air. Officials say it's one more reason to avoid the area.

"Health hazards of laze include lung damage, and eye and skin irritation," says the Hawaii County Civil Defense agency. "Be aware that the laze plume travels with the wind and can change direction without warning."

Floods on the Mississippi River are getting more frequent and more severe. But scientists warn that the infrastructure meant to protect towns and farms against flood waters is making the problem worse.

A series of analyses have helped confirm what engineers have posited for more than a century: that earthen levees built along the river are increasing flood risk for everyone, and especially hurting those who live across from them.

California Game Warden Pat Freeling got the first tip off that something was wrong in Mendocino county back in mid-December, when he received an anonymous call from a disgruntled postal patron.

The tipster told Freeling that she'd gotten stuck in the post office line behind a man, shipping dozens of large cardboard boxes to east Asia. When asked what he was shipping, the man apparently told the caller that it was something very valuable, and gestured toward the coastline.

Foods that contains genetically modified ingredients will soon have a special label.

We recently got the first glimpse of what that label might look like, when the U.S. Department of Agriculture released its proposed guidelines.

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