The Science of Sustainability

Tag: agriculture

Tobacco Gets a Makeover as New Source for Biofuel

Tobacco Gets a Makeover as New Source for Biofuel

Is a new biofuel a win for renewable energy or the far-reaching arms of the tobacco industry?

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Ho-Chunk Nation Promotes Native Edible Plants

Ho-Chunk Nation Promotes Native Edible Plants

Bill Greendeer has been letting indigenous plants return to his farm in southwest Wisconsin. The native plants are abundant and edible.

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Lessons from a Global Garden: Growing More Food with Less

Lessons from a Global Garden: Growing More Food with Less

Farmers and community gardeners from around the world gather in Mendocino, California to explore a method for growing more food on less land — that reduces the need for precious resources.

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Searching for Memories on an Altered Landscape

Searching for Memories on an Altered Landscape

While prairie is converted to cropland at a breakneck pace, one conservation biologist in Nebraska is finding an alternative way to jog the collective memory of the Great Plains landscape.

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During Drought, Pop-Up Wetlands Give Birds a Break

During Drought, Pop-Up Wetlands Give Birds a Break

As California's drought gets worse, farmers and conservationists are teaming up to create temporary wetlands for birds migrating on the Pacific Flyway.

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Groundwater Wars: Potatoes versus Trout

Groundwater Wars: Potatoes versus Trout

In a state with more than a quadrillion gallons of groundwater, central Wisconsin residents have watched water levels in streams and lakes drop for years– where did the water go?

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Meet the Natives: Wild Bees

Meet the Natives: Wild Bees

The United States is home to some 4,000 native bee species. In this video, entomologist Claudio Gratton explores whether these wild pollinators can keep agriculture buzzing as honeybee populations struggle to survive.

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Farmers Fight Back Against Toxic Algal Blooms

Farmers Fight Back Against Toxic Algal Blooms

Agricultural runoff is the leading cause of recurring algal blooms in Lake Erie. Now farmers are inviting researchers onto their fields to figure out why — and what they can do about it.

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Tough and Tasty: Recasting a Resilient Weed as a Wild Edible

Tough and Tasty: Recasting a Resilient Weed as a Wild Edible

Find out why some residents of a drought-plagued state are welcoming a weed to their gardens—and their dinner plates.

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How Flooding Fields Could Alleviate Water Supply Stress

How Flooding Fields Could Alleviate Water Supply Stress

A new approach to small-scale water "banking" could relieve stress on both the water supply and levees in California's San Joaquin Valley.

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Water Banks: A Hedge Against Shrinking Supplies in a Changing Climate

Water Banks: A Hedge Against Shrinking Supplies in a Changing Climate

For years, farms and cities have pumped water out to meet their needs. But now, as water supplies dwindle, there’s a major movement afoot to put some water back.

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Heat and Harvest – the documentary

Heat and Harvest – the documentary

A half-hour documentary on how climate change is challenging California’s $30 billion agricultural industry. Co-produced by KQED and the Center for Investigative Reporting.

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Dry and Salted

Dry and Salted

Salty groundwater is ruining almond crops in the Central Valley, and scientists expect sea level rise to worsen the problem. This video is part of the Heat and Harvest series, co-produced by KQED and the Center for Investigative Reporting.

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California's Farm Belt Didn't Dodge the Summer Heat Wave

California's Farm Belt Didn't Dodge the Summer Heat Wave

Autumn is here, so says the calendar. Living on the coast, it might be easy to think that California escaped the heat wave suffered by much of the nation this summer. While that may be true for most of the large coastal population centers, it was a different story for much of the state's interior farm belt.

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Heat and Harvest: Calif. Farms on a Climate Collision Course

Heat and Harvest: Calif. Farms on a Climate Collision Course

New pests, a shrinking water supply and rising temperatures will alter agriculture in California.

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Heat, Salt and Pests Threaten California Fields

Heat, Salt and Pests Threaten California Fields

California's warming climate is having a big impact on farmers. Find out more from our multimedia series, "Heat and Harvest."

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Farmworkers Pay a Heavy Price for California's Bounty

Farmworkers Pay a Heavy Price for California's Bounty

California farmworkers work long days for about $7.50 an hour to pick fruit in orchards doused with nitrogen fertilizers. A UC Davis study released in March found that nitrates from fertilizers and dairy waste have contaminated groundwater supplies. Because farmworkers live near the fields they work in, they're at high risk for nitrate-contaminated drinking water.

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California's Deadlocked Delta: Is Carbon Farming the Future?

California's Deadlocked Delta: Is Carbon Farming the Future?

California’s Delta has a rich agricultural legacy, but farming there can be a risky business. Dozens of farms have been flooded over the past half century as aging levees have collapsed. Now, scientists are encouraging farmers to switch to a new crop. Instead of growing vegetables, they’d grow something that has all but disappeared in the Delta: wetlands.

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California's Deadlocked Delta: Can We Bring Back What We've Lost?

California's Deadlocked Delta: Can We Bring Back What We've Lost?

California's Delta is a far cry from what it once was. About 97% of its historic marshes have been lost and scientists aren’t quite sure what the Delta once looked like. Now, a Bay Area group is working to reconstruct it through ecological detective work.

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California's Deadlocked Delta: Can it Be Fixed?

California's Deadlocked Delta: Can it Be Fixed?

The Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta has been the subject of a decades-long water war, but most Californians have never heard of it. Why is it so important? And can the state ever break the water deadlock?

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