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Stephen Tchudi and Susan Tchudi
Exploring Ecosystems--Environmental, Social, Technological
5 days ago
Climate Girls Changing Our World
KZFR programmer and polymath Gayle Kimball, author of over twenty books, spoke with us about her newest book, Climate Girls Changing Our World. She interviewed 54 young women in seven continents and found a vigorous, inspired, inspiring and dedicated climate activists. We asked her about how climate change issues vary in such areas as Africa, Asia, Europe, and North America and how these young people are acting on them. She also shared her view of what these climate activists have in common, including family birth order, motivation, commitment, and career ambitions
Jan 13, 2021
Let It Snow!!!!!
This program focused on the Sierra Nevada snowpack, which supplies about one-third of California’s water and serves as a vast winter reservoir. We spoke with Sean de Gusman of the Department of Water Resources. He is chief of DWR’s Snow Supply and Water Forecasting Section and is responsible for measuring the Sierra snowpack and figuring out how much water it contains. We asked him how he measures the snowpack. He told us about the extraordinarily complex process that involves physical, on-the-scene measurements at Phillips Station in the Sierra, 120 electronic sensing sites, airplane and satellite determinations, and more. At the close of the program, we read excerpts from a Wikipedia article on the great flood of 1862, when above average snowpack coupled with spring rains turned the Sacramento valley into a vast lake. Read the press release that sparked this interview: https://water.ca.gov/News/News-Releases/2020/Dec-20/December-2020-Snow-Survey See the actual data at cdec.water.ca.gov.
Jan 6, 2021
Good News for a New HYear
Often on this podcast we bring you some discouraging words about the environment, though generally with some concrete solutions. Although 2020 was a pretty terrible year on many fronts, there was, in fact, some positive news on the environmental front and in this program, we offered good news from around the world. We don’t want to minimize the crisis. According to the World Wildlife Foundation, “Humanity has wiped out 60% of mammals, birds, fish and reptiles since 1970, leading the world’s foremost experts to warn that the annihilation of wildlife is now an emergency that threatens civilization.” While that statistic is chilling and heartbreaking, there are some good news stories, and we provided some from here in the US, from Canada, from around the world on topics ranging from preserving Marmots and Tasmanian Devils to solar cars and how reading labels can save the earth.
Dec 21, 2020
Our guest on this program was Melina Watts, who has written a fascinating novel called Tree, a piece of magical fiction written from the perspective of a Live Oak! We read the book and loved it, finding it engaging from both a spiritual and ecological perspective. She read several passages for us and helped us understand not only her purpose in writing the book, but the complexities of maintaining its point-of-view, from acorn to full grown oak. Along with telling us the oak's story, Melina includes fascinating ecological details about the flora, fauna, and hardships of the Topanga valley. It is available from Amazon.
Dec 14, 2020
Bidwell Parks and the Homeless
We interviewed Anna Moore and Lise Smith, members of the Bidwell Parks and Recreation Commission in Chico. Our interview was sparked by an excellent letter they wrote to the Chico Enterprise Record, regarding homeless camping in Bidwell Park. Unlike many, they do not call for the homeless to be rousted; instead they urge the city to create a campground where the homeless can safely live. The City thus far has dodged the issue, and Chico's newly installed conservative City Council is looking toward enforcement and issuing misdemeanor citations rather than helping the homeless. In addition to exploring this issue, Lise and Anna also filled us in on other issues facing the commission, from access to fire danger to funding.
Dec 2, 2020
We spoke with Ron Stork, Senior Policy Advisor, Friends of the River in Sacramento. He joined Friends of the River as Associate Conservation Director in 1987 and became the Senior Policy Advocate in 1995 as a national expert in flood management, federal water resources development, hydropower reform, and Wild & Scenic Rivers. A couple of years ago we spoke with him about raising of Shasta Dam, being foisted on California by the federal government and opposed by both environmental groups and the Winnimem Wintu native Americans. He gave us his thoughts on recent Trump administration efforts to push ahead with that project. We also asked him about something closer to home: a recently-released self-study of the state of the Oroville Dam issued by the Department of Water Resources. The dam came within a whisker of breaking in high flows in 2017 and resulted in the evacuation of 280,000 people and billions of dollars in rebuilding expenses. The report claimed the dam is in good shape, but that "acceptable" weaknesses persist, to be addressed if "cost effective."Butte County Supervisor declared this report to be "The fox guarding the hen house.
Nov 24, 2020
Health Care for All
We had two guests on this podcast, both strong advocates for universal, single-payer health care. Bruce McLean has lived and worked in Butte County since 1990 and has been on the Board of the Butte County Health Care Coalition (now North State Medicare 4-All) since 2016. Paul O’Rourke-Babb, is a nurse practitioner and co-chair of NorCal Physicians for a National Health Program. They opened the interview with “Health Care 101,” describing the many problems with our current health care system and explaining why they think a single-payer or Medicare-for-All system is desperately needed. They discussed a recent health care resolution passed by the Chico City Council and then spoke about the state of the health-care-for-all bills in Congress as well as and options for improved health care insurance in California. Learn more at North Care Medicare for All or Physicians for a National Health Program. Listen to or download the program: Click Here.
Nov 21, 2020
In this episodl we spoke with Cheri Chastain, who Chair of the Chico Climate Action Commission and with Molly Marcussen associate planner for the City of Chico. They told us about recent proposals/recommendations of the Commission, which include the Chico Bicycle Master Plan, improving ZEV (zero emission vehicle) infrastructure to allow for a 25% shift from combustion vehicles to ZEVs by 2030, working with waste haulers and other stakeholders to meet the goals of SB 1383 and divert 75% of organic waste from the landfill through an expansion of composting services and edible food waste diversion and expanding the tree canopy by 700 trees by 2022 and 4,500 trees by 2030 to sequester carbon, decrease temperatures, save energy, and improve air quality within Chico. Read more about their work at _https://chico.ca.us/climate-action-commission_
Oct 18, 2020
Climate Action Chico
In this program, we spoke with Cheri Chastain. She is Chair of the Chico Climate Action Commission, which is overseeing the update of Climate Action Plan for the City of Chico. She is also Campus Sustainability Manager for Chico State. We discussed the role of the Climate Action Commission, its work updating the Climate Action Plan, how the community has been involved, and the challenges facing both the Commission and the City generally.
Oct 9, 2020
Resource Conservation and Forestry
This week we inteviewed Wolfy Rougle, who serves the Butte County Resource Conservation District as a Forest Health Watershed Coordinator under a grant from the Department of Conservation. Her projects include developing the Butte Forest Plan, helping local landowners put "good fire" on the ground through a Prescribed Burn Association, tree planting, and writing grants to develop the next wave of watershed health projects in the county. Learn more at bcrcd.org.
Sep 30, 2020
Change in Chico
Our ecosystem in this program is the complex one of Chico, and our guest on the phone was She is a Chico native and went to Butte College, and then Chico State to get her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, working at local businesses along the way, as well as as a Behavior Health Education Specialist. She has been the business manager for Chico Chai and is currently working as a case manager helping people transition out of homelessness. She spoke about housing, infill development vs urban sprawl, public safety, homelessness and climate change. Her emphasis is on making connections among all problems--for example, homelessness as related to social services, public safety as related to urban sprawl, public transportation and the environment.
Sep 13, 2020
Urban Forest Management
We spoke with Richie Bamlet. the Urban Forest Manager for the City of Chico. In addition to being responsible for the care and management of trees in Chico, he is responsible for thinking about the future of trees as we face climate change. We were particularly interested in learning about trees able to grow comfortably now in our area will will change. He is experimenting with trees that grow 700 miles south of us to discover possible new species.
Sep 2, 2020
Deschooling and Community Education
Our guest was Matt Hearn, educator and community organizer from East Vancouver, British Columbia. He describe the "Solid State Project," that helps immigrant young people create cohorts to, in turn, create viable and humanistic businesses. We also discussed the broader concept of "deschooing," which, in opposition to compulsory education, gives students control over what they learn.
Aug 20, 2020
Traditional Ecological Knowledge
Our guest was Ali Meders-Knight, a member of the Mechoopda Tribe and an artist, activist, and educator. She has a vision to educate people in traditional ecological knowledge (TEK). She discussed how TEK differes from western scientific knowledge in terms of landscape management and described her programs to certify people in TEK and to see this knowledge put into large-scale practice. Learn more at TEKChico.org.
Aug 11, 2020
STEALING THE ELECTION
Our guest on this program was the wonderfully outspoken Harvey Wasserman, advocate for solar power, anti-nuclear-power advocate and crusader on many other issues. In this interview, he focused on the possible theft of the 2020 presidential election, with a trifecta of voter registration, voter suppression, and inaccurate vote counts. He argues that Trump and his workerbees are very much attempting to the steal the election and have a very good chance of doing so.
Aug 6, 2020
Radical Moral Reform
Our guest on this program was Patrick Newman, longtime Chico activist, a frequent contributor to the letters page of our local papers, and a man dedicated to solving homeless issues in Chico in humane, progressive ways. As part of our Radical Change series we invited Patrick to speak out on the issues that he sees most important for our time. He opened with a blockbuster question, “Has civilization ever had a functional moral compass?” He offered a detailed, philosophical explanation of putting an end to unnecessary suffering as the key to a “deep moral/reform and awaking.”
Jul 27, 2020
Never Waste a Good Crisis
We interviewed Paul Ehrlich, author of The Population Bomb and founder of the Millennium Alliance for Humanity and the Biosphere, and Dan Blumstein, professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at UCLA. Using a phrase created by Winston Churchill at the close of World War II, they argue that Covid-19 gives us an opportunity to rethink crucial environmental issues, including the use of animal vaccines and our over reliance on fossil fuels. They also advocated the idea of a "shadow cabinet," where people not in power shadow and present alternatives to the actions of those in power.
Jul 22, 2020
Radical Medical Reform
As part of our series on Radical Change we interviewed two guests on the topic of Radical Medical Reform. First we spoke with Norma Wilcox of Northstate Medicare for All, who spoke about our broken health insurance system and why Medicare-for-All/Single Payer is the best remedy. We then spoke with David Welch, retired nurse, about a range of problems, including for-profit hospitals, factory medicine, pay for health care workers, and medical training.
Jul 16, 2020
In this program, Susan Tchudi spoke with Dr. Clair Brown, Professor of Economics and Director of the Center for Work, Technology, and Society at the University of California, Berkeley. The program is part of our series on Radical Change. Claire is an advocate of a Buddhist Economy, a holistic economic approach, where the economy delivers a high quality of life in a sustainable world. Buddhist economics integrates sustainability, equity, and compassion.She is the author of Buddhist Economics: An Enlightened Approach to the Dismal Science, published in 2017.
Jul 8, 2020
In this program, we spoke with Eartha Shanti, longtime activist. We discused her views on: 1. The Life Killer culture. A culture that rewards who kills the most. 2. The Great Awakening. A time of realization that the Earth is our Mother and we must take care of her. That all life, human, animal, plant, planetary, is sacred. 3. Age of Restoration. Restoration of our forest planet; local control of local resouorces, unity and love of life, one hectare of land for each family, and support for each person to blossom and share. 4. Life Giver Culture. The opposite of the life killer culture.
Jul 1, 2020
Concerned Citizens for Justice: Radical Change
In this episode, activists George Gold and Marty Dunlap of Concerned Citizens for Justice (Chico, CA), spoke about radical reform for policing. Although their comments were focused directly on Chico, their recommendations for change apply from small towns to large cities. They spoke of police budgets, use of force, transparency, accountability, citizen oversight, de-escalation, and more. Ecotopia is a production of KZFR 90.1, community radio for the northern Sacramento Valley, the foothills, and beyond.
Jun 29, 2020
This episode introduces our new series on RADICAL CHANGE, where guests give us their best, most imaginative, and even outlandish ideas for changing the culture in which we live. Now is not the time for timid or compromised calls for action. In this podcast we provide an overview of topics to be taken up in more detail in future programs: social justice, climate change, homelessness, and healthcare. For more details go to ecotopiakzfr.com.