environment

Let’s Talk Climate Change And The Rio Grande

Jun 1, 2021
Marisa Demarco / KUNM


  Let’s Talk New Mexico 6/3 at 8 am: The Rio Grande is swelling right now, but looks can be deceiving. Climate change is drying out this lifeline in the high desert. The river is a highly managed water system, so flows are supplemented and the impacts of global warming aren't always immediately visible. But climate change is taking its toll, and local managers say those miles-long dry patches we’ve been seeing could grow larger and last longer. The annual flows may drop even further, leaving thirsty cottonwood trees, parched ecosystems and dry farms.

Creative Commons, Wiki

 

New Mexico is one of the fastest-warming states in the country, according to a 2016 report issued by the Union Of Concerned Scientists. In this year’s legislative session several bills addressing climate change were introduced by lawmakers. Not all of the measures were rejected. They didn’t all pass, either.  KUNM caught up with environmental reporter Laura Paskus from New Mexico PBS about the urgency of climate change problems in our state and how local elected officials are responding .

Courtesy: Shoshone-Bannock Tribes

 

Tribes in the Mountain West reached resolutions in two long standing environmental disputes this week. The victories for the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes and the Navajo Nation could signal a shift toward accountability for corporate polluters operating on tribal lands.

The Sony Handycam, of all things, foretold what may soon be a massive mine on public lands in Nevada.

In the early 1990s, the camcorder became the first product to use lithium-ion batteries commercially. Since then, the technology has been used to power our laptops, smartphones, and now electric vehicles and homes.

No More Normal: We Need A Plan

Nov 1, 2020
Eric J. Garcia / El Machete Illustrated

The final presidential debate of 2020 got passing marks because the candidates managed to take turns. But rarely did they roll out the kind of action plans the moderator was looking for. She kept asking: If elected, what will you do about this big problem we are facing? Still, candidates did not venture into specifics. We think that was by design. The strategy was, make debate No. 1 so bad that by the time debate No. 2 comes around, expectations are so low, everyone will just be grateful it’s not incoherent shouting and call it good. But in a time with multiple crises pressing down on us, specific plans can pull people together, provide direction and alleviate anxiety. So that’s what this episode is all about. What do you want to hear candidates talking about? What kinds of plans and policies do you wish they were outlining before the public?

No More Normal: What's At Stake

Oct 11, 2020
Bert Benally

Let’s take a breath. In episode 12, we try to fend off that wild pandemic election news cycle we’ve been living inside of, which can feel like a deluge of disorganized tragedies and failures. And we put the focus on what’s hanging in the balance these next couple of weeks as we cast our ballots.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

During the presidential debate a week ago, moderator Chris Wallace asked President Trump to denounce white supremacy. Trump sidestepped the question and instead told a white supremacist group to “stand back and stand by.” The next day, I caught up with Art Simoni, who once would have called himself conservative, and who was my editor when I was a student reporter nearly 20 years ago.

Transcript:

No More Normal: Disappearing Acts

Jul 27, 2020
Leslie Granda-Hill / 2020

This week, we get into what has disappeared from our lives—good or bad—during the pandemic. Episode 2 is all about what’s going, going, gone, maybe for good. We learn of attempts to erase people from the Census. We talk to Sen. Martin Heinrich about the erosion of our civil liberties. We reflect on what’s fading from our relationships and mental wellness. We hear from a COVID-19 survivor, so the realities of the virus don’t slip away. We examine the consciousness of community and the loss of a collective future with an international futurist. We reflect on a disappearing chicken and what life was like pre-pandemic. And we try to see and hear a vanishing Rio Grande.

Marc Cooper via Flickr CC

In episode 37, we're talking about companies and federal officials squeezing through changes to environmental regulation, oil and gas leases, and laws about anti-pipeline demonstrators while the nation's been focused on the pandemic.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

Council District 2 in Albuquerque is home to the city’s oldest neighborhoods, the ones people often think of when they’re talking about the character of this place. That’s areas like Martineztown, Barelas, Duranes, Downtown, San Jose, Well’s Park. Voters there are choosing who will represent them on the Council, which has a lot of say in how those neighborhoods grow—and which companies get to move in. KUNM spoke about balancing the past and the future with a longtime Council incumbent and the newcomer gunning for his seat in a runoff election.

Planting Trees To Cool Down ABQ's South Valley

Oct 22, 2019
May Ortega | KUNM

Areas with less vegetation tend to be hotter than places with more greenery. That’s according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which also says folks can reduce high temperatures in their area by planting more trees.

Climate Strikers Demand Action

Sep 20, 2019
Bryce Dix / KUNM

Around a thousand people walked out of classrooms and workplaces in Albuquerque Friday as part of the global climate strike to call for action on climate change. KUNM caught up with the strikers at Robinson Park.

Let's Talk Plastic Bag Bans

Apr 16, 2019
Ennor via Flickr / Creative Commons License

Let's Talk New Mexico 4/18 8a: Bans on plastic are sweeping the nation, and New Mexico is no exception. Santa Fe banned plastic grocery bags several years ago. Albuquerque just limited single-use plastics in grocery and retail stores. Businesses and consumers are having to adapt to a new normal that emphasizes the re-useable over the disposable. Do you take reusable bags to the grocery? Are concerned about how a plastic bag ban will hurt your business' bottom line or your customers’ pocketbooks? We want to hear from you! Email LetsTalk@KUNM.org or call in live during the show.

Austin Fisher | Rio Grande Sun / Courtesy of the Rio Grande Sun

Española residents didn’t know about drinking water contamination for months. Thursday city officials issued a warning about high levels of nitrates in the city’s water that could be harmful to children and pregnant women and possibly fatal for infants.

Public Health New Mexico’s May Ortega spoke with Austin Fisher who broke the story this week for the Rio Grande Sun. He says test results show contaminant levels are lower now than they were in the fall.

Airman B. Snyder via The National Archives Catalogue / public domain

Holloman Air Force Base is the site of some incredibly high levels of groundwater contamination. Laura Paskus broke the story for NMPoliticalReport.com this week.

Kevin MacDonald of our media partner New Mexico PBS asked her his top questions in a Facebook Live chat on Wednesday. 

Green-Collar Jobs In N.M.

Jan 28, 2019
Andy Swapp / Mesalands


Let’s Talk New Mexico 1/31 8a: Politicians are promising to boost the economy in New Mexico and slow our warming climate with renewable energy and green jobs. It’s being called a Green New Deal. People in New Mexico have heard talk of this before. So what's worked? What hasn't? How about our new governor, and our congressional leaders—many of whom campaigned on green jobs? What green economy promises do you want to make sure don’t die on the vine?

Deb Haaland Promises To Fight Climate Change

Nov 7, 2018
Marisa Demarco / KUNM

Democrat Deb Haaland won New Mexico’s race for the open First District U.S. House seat.

Woody Hibbard via Flickr / Creative Commons License

Let's Talk New Mexico 9/13 8 am: What do you do to keep the environment clean? Do plastic bans, eating less meat, taking fewer plane trips or carrying reusable silverware really matter? We'll talk about how to make choices that are good for the environment. We'll also look at lessons from tribes and communities across the region that have lived sustainably for generations. 

Courtesy of Advance at UNM

 

From wildfires to heavy storms that bring flash floods, weather extremes from year-to-year that stem from climate change are impacting the region’s wildlife, according to a local scientist.

The Sevilleta Long Term Ecological Research Program, based in Central New Mexico, was just awarded a multimillion-dollar grant to study the long-term effects on our environment.

Rivers Struggle Around The State

Jul 5, 2018
Marisa Demarco / KUNM

People around the state are used to seeing the flows in local rivers fluctuate. But this year, sandbars have started to widen and connect, and riverbanks are growing by yards. In some places down South, it’s completely dry for miles. KUNM caught up with journalist Laura Paskus of the New Mexico Political Report in a dry patch of the Rio Grande on Thursday morning. 

Nuclear Waste Storage Proposal Faces Stiff Opposition

May 24, 2018
Foro Nuclear via Flickr / Creative Commons License

A Florida-based energy company faced heavy opposition Tuesday night from Albuquerque locals who are against a proposal to store spent nuclear fuel from nuclear power plants at a facility near Carlsbad.

Women Call For Action On Many Injustices At March

Jan 22, 2018
Marisa Demarco / KUNM

People took to the streets all over the world, around the country and here in New Mexico for a second year of women’s marches. The concerns they raised were broad, including protecting the environment, fighting systemic racism, health care access, police violence and immigration reform. 

In Deep Water

Jan 10, 2018
Laura Paskus / NM PBS

As severe drought returns to New Mexico, farmers and skiers alike fret over the state’s lack of snow. Meanwhile, on a cold, cloudy Monday morning in Washington, DC, attorneys for New Mexico, Texas, Colorado and the United States government grappled over the muddy waters of the Rio Grande.

Mike Tungate via Wikimedia / creative commons license

The Bernalillo County Commission will hold another public meeting Tuesday on Santolina, a controversial 22-square mile residential development planned for an area west of Albuquerque.

Trump's Border Wall Proposal Faces Lawsuit

Apr 17, 2017
pixel2013 via Pixabay - https://pixabay.com/en/america-mexico-border-elections-1999384/ / Creative Commons

The Center for Biological Diversity filed a lawsuit against President Trump’s administration last week targeting a plan to build a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico. The group is calling for the federal government to investigate the wall’s environmental impacts. 

Mexico/New Mexico borderland, NASA Landsat, courtesy UNM MAGIC

Afternoon Freeform Tuesday 4/4, 3p: We continue our series of conversations with presenters at the interdisciplinary environmental justice forum Decolonizing Nature: Resistance, Resilience, Revitalization that takes place April 19 - 22, 2017 at the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque.

Inside Energy / Inside Energy

After thousands protested for months on the North Dakota prairie, the Dakota Access Pipeline is moving forward under President Trump.  But the battle over this controversial project continues in court.

A new documentary looks at multiple instances of tribal resistance to energy development called Beyond Standing Rock.  It's produced by Inside Energy, a public media project focused on America's energy issues. 

LISTEN: New Mexico Under Trump's Energy Policies

Mar 29, 2017
San Juan Citizens Alliance/EcoFlight

KUNM Call In Show 3/30 8a: President Trump signed an executive order this week rolling back environmental regulations. It ends a moratorium on coal mine leases and eases restrictions on methane flaring by the oil and gas industry, among other things. We'll explore what this means for New Mexico. Are environmental regulations hurting or helping the economy here? What is the government's role in protecting the environment? We'd like to hear from you. Email callinshow@kunm.org or call in live during the show. 

The Encampment

Mar 23, 2017
Ann Arbor Miller/Minnesota Public Radio News / used with permission

The Encampment Friday 3/24 8a: For almost a year, hundreds of people continuously occupied a strip of land along the Missouri River in North Dakota, in the hope that the mere fact of their presence would help change the course of America’s energy future. 

Water Protectors Send A Message To Wells Fargo

Jan 25, 2017
Marisa Demarco / KUNM

President Donald Trump signed an executive action on Tuesday approving the Dakota Access Pipeline, which water protectors have been working to stop for months. In Albuquerque on Wednesday, people gathered outside the tall Wells Fargo bank Downtown to try and stanch the flow of money to the project known as DAPL. 

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