Earth Policy Institute: Podcast
Lester Brown on Greenpeace Radio

Enviro legend Les Brown speaks about the early years of "the movement." Lester Brown visits Greenpeace on their radio program on July 18, 2011. Click here to see their iTunes podcast for more episodes

Direct download: Lester_Brown_on_Greenpeace_Radio_July_18th_2011.mp3
Category:Lester Brown on Radio -- posted at: 11:09am EST

Many countries are facing dangerous water shortages. As world demand for food has soared, millions of farmers have drilled too many irrigation wells in efforts to expand their harvests. As a result, water tables are falling and wells are going dry in some 20 countries containing half the world’s people. The overpumping of aquifers for irrigation temporarily inflates food production, creating a food production bubble that bursts when the aquifer is depleted. For full report, visit the EPI website.

Direct download: Growing_Water_Deficit_Threatening_Grain_Harvests.mp3
Category:Book Bytes -- posted at: 4:10pm EST

Our inefficient, carbon-based energy economy threatens to irreversibly disrupt the Earth’s climate. Averting dangerous climate change and the resultant crop-shrinking heat waves, more-destructive storms, accelerated sea level rise, and waves of climate refugees means cutting carbon emissions 80 percent by 2020.

The first key component of the Earth Policy Institute’s climate stabilization plan is to systematically raise the efficiency of the world energy economy. One of the quickest ways to increase efficiency, cut carbon emissions, and save money is simply to change light bulbs. For full report, visit the EPI website.

Direct download: Shining_a_Light_on_Energy_Efficiency.mp3
Category:Data Highlights -- posted at: 2:25pm EST

Heat waves clearly can destroy crop harvests. The world saw high heat decimate Russian wheat in 2010. Crop ecologists have found that each 1-degree-Celsius rise in temperature above the optimum can reduce grain harvests by 10 percent. But the indirect effects of higher temperatures on our food supply are no less serious. For full report, visit the EPI website.

Direct download: Rising_Temperatures_Melting_Away_Global_Food_Security.mp3
Category:Book Bytes -- posted at: 9:53am EST

During the years when governments and the media were focused on preparations for the 2009 Copenhagen climate negotiations, a powerful climate movement was emerging in the United States: the movement opposing the construction of new coal-fired power plants. 

Environmental groups, both national and local, are opposing coal plants because they are the primary driver of climate change. Emissions from coal plants are also responsible for 13,200 U.S. deaths annually—a number that dwarfs the U.S. lives lost in Iraq and Afghanistan combined. 

What began as a few local ripples of resistance quickly evolved into a national tidal wave of grassroots opposition from environmental, health, farm, and community organizations. Despite a heavily funded industry campaign to promote “clean coal,” the American public is turning against coal. In a national poll that asked which electricity source people would prefer, only 3 percent chose coal. The Sierra Club, which has kept a tally of proposed coal-fired power plants and their fates since 2000, reports that 152 plants in the United States have been defeated or abandoned. For report, visit the EPI website.

Direct download: The_Good_News_About_Coal.mp3
Category:Book Bytes -- posted at: 9:03am EST

After the earth was created, soil formed slowly over geological time from the weathering of rocks. It began to support early plant life, which protected and enriched it until it became the topsoil that sustains the diversity of plants and animals we know today. Now the world’s ever-growing herds of cattle, sheep, and goats are converting vast stretches of grassland to desert. For full report, visit the EPI website.

Direct download: Growing_Goat_Herds_Signal_Global_Grassland_Decline.mp3
Category:Book Bytes -- posted at: 9:00am EST