Dennis del Castillo & Mercedes Lu – Peruvian Environmental Issues

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In this edition of Radio Curious, we visit Dennis del Castillo and Mercedes Lu, two environmental activists from Peru. I met with them in Lima, Peru on February 5th, 1998. Dennis del Castillo, who holds a Ph.D. from Mississippi State University in soil science and in this interview describes contemporary environmental problems in the Peruvian Amazon Basin. In the second half of this program we visit with Mercedes Lu, a scientific technician, who described some of the problems resulting from copper mining that occurs along the coast of southern Peru. We began our conversation when I asked Dennis del Castillo to describe the potential of the Peruvian Amazon Basin.

Dennis del Castillo recommends “The Losing Ground,” by Erik P. Eckholm.

Originally Broadcast: April 3, 1998

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Nicols Fox – Watch What You Eat

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Spoiled: The Dangerous Truth About a Food Chain That Has Gone Wild

In this Halloween, 1997, edition of Radio Curious, I spoke with Nicols Fox, the journalist who has written a terribly scary book called “Spoiled: The Dangerous Truth About a Food Chain That Has Gone Wild.” It’s truly disgusting; all those little microbes that will make you retch and die. The food you prepare at home can poison you; when you eat at a restaurant, the food they serve you can make you retch.

Nicols Fox recommends “Water,” by Alice Atwater.

Originally Broadcast: October 31, 1997

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Blanche Boyd – Self-Styled Outlaw Lesbians

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Terminal Velocity

The concept of memoir versus fiction leads many authors to transform their personal experiences and life to fiction. Blanche Boyd is a native of South Carolina and a Professor of Literature at Connecticut College. She is also the author of the book entitled, “Terminal Velocity.” This is a book about a group of self-styled lesbian outlaws in the 1970s. We discussed the relationship of memoir and fiction, and how it applies to her work.

Blanche Boyd recommends “Cathedral” & “To the Waterfall,” both by Raymond Carver.

Originally Broadcast: August 19, 1997

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Marc Lappe – Roadside Spraying, For Better or Worse

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Spraying of herbicides to kill weeds and/or plants that are considered by some to be pests is a phenomenon of the 20th century. These sprays, in many cases, pollute the water we use in our homes; they destroy and sometimes permanently alter not only the growth cycle of what we are intending to kill, but also other plants, animals, and sometimes people. Dr. Marc Lappe was a widely recognized Ph.D. toxicologist who has studied the effects of the use of the sprays. He was the founder and a director of The justify for Ethics and Toxics, located in Gualala, California. He was also the former director of the California State Hazard Evaluation System. He’s been a fellow at the Hastings justify for the Study of Bioethics in New York, published 112 articles and eleven books on the subject of toxicology. Dr. Marc Lappe died in May, 2005.

www.cetos.org

Marc Lappe recommends “Break Out, ” by Dr. Marc Lappe.

Originally Broadcast: February 5, 1997

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Laura Cheek – At Home in Glacier Bay

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Some of the most studied glaciers in the world are found in Glacier Bay National Park located in southeastern Alaska. These expansive ice sheets cover approximately ten percent of the earth’s surface and hold eighty percent of the world’s fresh water, ninety-nine percent of which can be found in Greenland and Antarctica. Due to gravity’s pull, glaciers shape and scour the landscape moving land and vegetation great distances as they slowly slide downward toward the sea. This glacial movement has created rich farmland, vast deposits of gravel and sand, and concentrated valuable metals, depending on where they glaciers have traveled. Glaciers also create deep valleys and fjords, like the kind seen in Glacier Bay National Park in Alaska. Laura Cheek was a national park ranger at Glacier Bay National Park in 1996 when this program was recorded. As part of her job, she boarded tour ships in Glacier Bay to discuss glaciers, what they’re like and how they’re formed.

Laura Cheek recommends “The Island Within,” by Richard Nelson.

Originally Broadcast: August 14, 1996

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Jonathan Harr – Toxic Water, A Book

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A Civil Action

Woburn, MA, is a small, blue-collar community just north and west of Boston. In the 1970s, some children in Woburn, MA, became sick and died from childhood leukemia. Some adults in that town developed rare forms of cancer. All of these people live very close to each other. Their illnesses were traced to two contaminated water wells that provided the water to their homes for drinking and bathing. As a result, one of the most complicated personal injury lawsuits was tried in the US Federal District Court in Boston. In this program of Radio Curious, I spoke with author Jonathan Harr, who wrote “A Civil Action,” the horrendous story of the people who became sick and the subsequent trial.

Jonathan Harr recommends any books by Charles Dickens.

Originally Broadcast: November 22, 1995

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Dr. Ron Epstein – Genetically Modified Food

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Genetically engineered food products are an issue that concerns many. In more recent years, Mendocino County has gone so far as to pass a resolution legally prohibiting their growth in the county. My guest in this program, recorded in the late summer of 1995, is Ron Epstein, a philosophy professor at both the Buddhist University in Talmage, CA and San Francisco State University. He has given considerable consideration to the problems of genetic engineering of the plants and vegetables that we eat.

Dr. Ron Epstein recommends “Algeny,” by Jeremy Rifkin.

Originally Broadcast: September 18, 1995

 

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Dr. Donald Perry – A Ride Through a Rain Forest in Costa Rica

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Life Above the Jungle Floor

In the middle of the Costa Rican rain forest, about an hour west of San Jose, Costa Rica, on the east side of the continental divide, you can find the Rain Forest Aerial Tram located on a private rain forest reserve. It’s a series of small, open-air cars that hold about five people each held together by a three kilometers long cable. The tramcars carry visitors through, above and below this portion of the Central American rainforest canopy. The Rain Forest Aerial Tram was the brainchild of Dr. Donald Perry, a biologist trained at the University of California at Los Angeles, who, beginning in 1970, has specialized in the study of the flora and fauna of the Central American Rainforest. In April of 1995, I visited the Rain Forest Aerial Tram with Dr. Perry.

Dr. Donald Perry recommends “Life Above the Jungle Floor,” by Dr. David Perry.

Originally Broadcast: April 1, 1995

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Judi Bari – Conversation with an Earth First! Leader

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Until the mid-1990s, the Redwood Industry dominated much of North Coast economy. In the mid-1990s, due to a number of circumstances particularly involving Pacific Lumber Company and Charles Hurwitz, industry advocates collided with environmentalists in a final hurrah. Few figures among the environmentalists carry as much name-recognition and power as did Judi Bari. In this program, recorded in March of 1995 at the height of the conflict, Judi Bari and I discussed the position of Earth First!

Judi Bari recommends “J. Edgar Hoover,” by Kurt Gentry.

Originally Broadcast: March 27, 1995

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Prof. Alberto Kattan – Argentinian Environmental Issues in 1993

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The late Professor Alberto Kattan, a Professor of Law at Buenos Aires University and one of the foremost litigators of environmental issues in Argentina, is my guest on this archive edition of Radio Curious. In our conversation originally broadcast in March 1993, we discussed the future of the penguins that he was and endeavoring to protect, dolphins, the use of 245T, and problems with the tobacco industry in Argentina.

Originally Broadcast: March 7, 1993

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