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Green Time TV, Feb 2016: Safety for People and the Environment

on Sun, 01/17/2016 - 6:40pm

Protecting people and the environment can be two sides of the same coin. February Green Time episodes present efforts attempting to integrate the two.

Fission reactors produce very expensive energy, require a huge amount of water, and have risks that are seriously understated. In the first February Green Time, host Don Fitz and Bob Criss, Earth and Planetary Sciences, Washington University, discuss uranium mining and other problems associated with nuclear power, including mine tailings, radioactive waste from processing and fabricating fuel and disposal of used fuel rods. There are also issues with nuclear proliferation and black market sales of nuclear material. They explore the “peaceful atom” as a cover for nuclear weapons, what thorium reactors would be like, and the elusive potential of fusion power. How likely are we to find a cheap source of eternal energy?

Why might we be skeptical of claims that there is enough fossil fuel to last for centuries? During the second February Green Time, host Don Fitz and William Pickard, Department of Electrical and Systems Engineering at Washington University, look at why wind and solar power would have great difficulty providing sufficient global energy, especially due to the “intermittency” challenge. If we need to store energy, why not just put it in batteries? They explore the concept of pumped storage plants and why the government is not being massively proactive in meeting the challenge. What is necessary to get things moving to ensure sufficient energy in the future?

The third February Green Time features Sierra Club members Laura Neuman-Howe and Jeff Howe discussing energy efficiency upgrades in their home with host John Hickey. They explain the energy efficiency changes they have made and how it has impacted their energy use. They look at its effects on utility bills and rebates and assistance that are available to home owners. In particular, what can the audience learn about making homes more efficient?

During the fourth February Green Time episode, Rev. Rodrick Burton, of the New Northside Baptist Church, and Romona Williams, of Metro St. Louis Coalition for Inclusion & Equity (M-SLICE) discuss climate change and environmental justice with host John Hickey. They cover the Berean District Climate Change Initiative and work of M-SLICE. This includes the way congregations can fight climate change and the importance of these efforts to the African American community. Why is the higher rate of asthma in the black community an environmental justice issue?

February shows include the movies The Atom Comes to Town, Coal Plants for 5th Graders (and Some Congress Members), Get Outside with Sierra Club Outings, Somerhalder: Let’s Move Beyond Coal, and Cost of Coal: Siobhan Washington.

Green Time appears at noon on Saturdays in St. Louis on Channel 24-1 and at 8 pm on Mondays in St. Louis on Channel 24-2, Springfield on Channel 39, Joplin on Channel 36 and Marshfield on Channel 17. Green Time programs air on these dates:

  • February 6 & 8: “Can Nukes Be Safe?,”

  • February 13 & 15: “Energy Storage,”

  • February 20 & 22: “Residential Energy Efficiency and Our Homes.”

  • February 27 & 29: “Climate Change & Black Communities.”

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