The Science of Sustainability

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Greening Man

Greening Man

Burning Man is going green. QUEST heads out to the Nevada desert to see how clean tech CEOs are tapping into this counter-culture art festival.

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Sharks of the San Francisco Bay

Sharks of the San Francisco Bay

Great white sharks outside the Golden Gate Bridge may get all the attention, but a new tagging program seeks to unlock the secrets of the considerable shark population inside the bay.

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NASA Flying Car Challenge

NASA Flying Car Challenge

Flying cars are usually the stuff of science fiction, but a group of engineers at NASA is hoping to change that. They're sponsoring a technology contest to revolutionize small planes – and it's open to the general public.

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The Salty Water Solution

The Salty Water Solution

Is desalination the solution to the California's chronic water woes? Four Bay Area agencies think it might be — and are studying whether to build the largest desalination plant in the country.

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Science of Bridge Safety

Science of Bridge Safety

After the Loma Prieta earthquake in 1989, almost all of the Bay Area's toll bridges underwent major upgrades. Yet even with the focus on retrofitting, there are still 40 Bay Area bridges that rate lower than the one that collapsed in Minneapolis. How do we know which bridges are safe?

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Quest for Longevity

Quest for Longevity

Americans have made an enormous leap in life expectancy over the past century. Now, Bay Area scientists are looking to extend lifespan, and "healthspan" to 100 years and beyond.

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What's in your Shampoo?

What's in your Shampoo?

Just how safe is your shampoo, eye liner or aftershave? No one really knows. In an effort to shed more light on the ingredients in everyday cosmetics and toiletries, California lawmakers passed the Safe Cosmetics Act, which takes effect this year. It requires manufacturers to report all toxic or carcinogenic ingredients to the state and lets the public decide what is safe.

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Graywater Guerrillas

Graywater Guerrillas

Over the last few years we've all been asked to tread more lightly on the planet – use less energy, less gasoline and less water. Now a growing movement of do-it-yourself-eco plumbers are testing the limits of just how green you can get before running into trouble with the law.

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Big Plans for Big Oil

Big Plans for Big Oil

As Chevron hatches expansion plans for one of California's largest oil refineries, Richmond's Green Party mayor considers the future of her city, and the state.

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Eco Golf Anyone?

Eco Golf Anyone?

Golf courses may look green, but they aren't that kind of "green." For many environmentalists, golf courses take away valuable habitat and use too many resources. But there's a movement afoot to make them more eco-friendly.

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Harnessing Power from the Sea

Harnessing Power from the Sea

Although not yet widely used, many believe tidal power has more potential than wind or solar power for meeting alternative energy needs. Quest radio looks at plans for harnessing power from the sea by San Francisco and along the northern California coast.

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The Science of Making Decisions

The Science of Making Decisions

Have you ever looked at your credit card bill and thought you needed to have your head examined? Stanford University is using complex brain imaging to study how humans make shopping decisions, and are finding that emotions play a large role in everyday purchases.

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Wi-Fi Revolution (radio)

Wi-Fi Revolution (radio)

Silicon Valley is planning what will be the country's biggest wireless network, serving 40 cities and 2.4 million people. How will it work, and what are the real costs?

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Cleaning Up Hunters Point

Cleaning Up Hunters Point

The Hunter's Point Naval Shipyard bears traces of a toxic — and historic– military legacy. It could also be the site of the new 49ers stadium. But cleaning up this 500 acre Superfund site is costly and time consuming.

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Abandoned Boats

Abandoned Boats

Abandoned boats in the San Francisco Bay and Delta do more than take up space in marinas and harbors. They can become a wellspring of pollutants, including leaking battery acid, oil, fuel, and lead from paint. But what do you do with these rusting relics?

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Reconsidering Nuclear Power

Reconsidering Nuclear Power

Not long ago, nuclear power was unthinkable among environmentalists, particularly in California, where a moratorium on new power plants has put a lid on the industry for thirty years. But that sentiment may be changing.

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Legacy of Salt

Legacy of Salt

QUEST radio takes a look at the largest wetlands restoration in the West– the South Bay Salt Ponds Restoration Project. It will take decades and cost up to $1 billion to roll back the clock to the Bay's pre-industrial conditions.

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Sniffing Out Indoor Air Pollution

Sniffing Out Indoor Air Pollution

Most people think of their house as a sanctuary from toxic air, but indoor air pollution can be at least as potent — and often much more so — as what you breathe outdoors.

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Falcon Fascination (radio)

Falcon Fascination (radio)

Two pairs of Peregrine falcons are carrying out their mating season under the gaze of thousands of observers, online and in two Bay Area cities. QUEST Radio reports.

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Relaxing the Rules on Toxics Reporting

Relaxing the Rules on Toxics Reporting

For 20 years, U.S. factories that put toxic chemicals into the air and water had to report them to the federal government and the public. The Bush Administration recently lowered those requirements by rewriting E.P.A rules. QUEST radio reports.

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