Over the past fifty years, around 17% of the Amazon rainforest has been destroyed, according to the World Wildlife Fund, but as this week’s guest on Sea Change Radio explains, with fires and deforestation out of control, the situation could get even worse before we see any significant improvement. We speak to Christian Poirier of Amazon Watch to get a clearer picture of this largely man-made disaster in Brazil. While some steps to control the fires have been made recently by the Brazilian government, rampant deforestation continues unabated. Poirier gives us a closer glimpse into the agribusiness giants that are involved in the devastation, what his organization is doing to help stop it, and tells listeners what they can do to get involved in the struggle. Then, we take a peek into the Sea Change Radio archives and hear Kevin Walker talk about what he calls our grand food bargain.
What can we do to be better citizens, better consumers and better advocates for the planet? Fighting waste and saving forests are a good place to start. This week on Sea Change Radio, we first talk to California Assembly member Ash Kalra about his new bill to save tropical forests. California may not have rainforests of its own, but Kalra explains how we are all playing a role in their destruction and how we all have an obligation to help save them. Then we hear from Stefan Kalb about his company, Shelf Engine, which helps grocery stores eliminate waste. We learn how stores usually handle their perishables and how Shelf Engine intends to change all this.
This week on Sea Change Radio, we dig into our archives to learn more about the activities of two nonprofits that focus on saving rainforests. Our first guest, Topher White, is making a difference using dormant cell phones. His organization, Rainforest Connection up-cycles defunct phones with solar charging technology and then places them strategically in rainforests all over the world to monitor human activity like poaching and deforestation. Then we hear from Paul Salaman, the CEO of the Rainforest Trust, as he talks about the organization’s efforts to defend fragile ecosystems, the technologies they use to monitor the species they protect, and their methods for engaging indigenous peoples to ensure the preservation of vulnerable species.
Monoculture. It displaces native plant and animal species, it leads to long-term soil quality degradation, and, in tropical areas, it often means the razing of those beautifully bio-diverse, carbon-capturing rain forests. Our guest today on Sea Change Radio is Rhett Butler, the founder of the popular non-profit environmental science and conservation website, Mongabay. Read the show transcript