Protecting Our Environment, with Gina McCarthy

“Earthrise.” December 1968. Credit: NASA.
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About This Episode

What will it take to keep Earth habitable for humanity? Neil deGrasse Tyson finds out when he interviews the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, Gina McCarthy. You’ll learn how the EPA is using computational toxicology and roboticized programs to test 30,000 toxic chemicals and their interactions at the same time, reducing costs and helping businesses redesign products to be non-toxic. Discover the secret behind the successful blue Energy Star label, an EPA program designed to reduce greenhouse gasses, and the EPA’s controversial plan to put park benches with solar powered, air quality sensors in communities around the US. In studio, Neil is joined by co-host Maeve Higgins and “Dot Earth” blogger Andrew Revkin, who has been covering environmental issues for The New York Times for over 20 years. Neil and Andrew examine the impact of 1968’s Earthrise photo, taken by the crew of Apollo 8, on the early environmental movement. Also up for discussion: the difficulties measuring Arctic sea ice, air quality in China, and whether Earth will suffer a runaway greenhouse effect like Venus. Naomi Oreskes, author of Merchants of Doubt, calls in to explain why some scientists deny climate change, and Bill Nye explains why we should think of the Earth not just as our home, but our house.

NOTE: All-Access subscribers can listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: Protecting Our Environment, with Gina McCarthy.

 

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