The next couple of years will be crucial for governments to take action on climate change. In this edition we hear why and what’s being done about it.
We meet Hilda Heine, a global leader on climate change and President of the Marshall Islands; we’ll look at how Americans recycle and find out why it’s not good enough for China; Economist Michael Greenstone explains how air pollution shaves two years off of the average life expectancy; A team of Israeli students create a new variation of falafel with spirulina, a kind of microalgae, that could be a sustainable food solution of the future; and we check out the environmentally friendly sounds of the Colombian band, Bomba Estereo.
(Photo: The leaves of a Russian River Valley pinot noir vineyard begin to turn colour near Sebastopol, California. A cool spring and mild summer have contributed to a later-than-usual harvest and a bumper crop of premium wine grapes throughout the state of California. Credit: George Rose/Getty Images)
The Friendship Edition
El Salvador is one of just a handful of countries where abortion is banned in all circumstances. The ban is so comprehensive, that every miscarriage is considered suspicious and at least a dozen Salvadoran women who say they suffered a miscarriage are serving lengthy jail terms. Professor Michelle Oberman, a leading scholar on legal issues around pregnancy, tells the story of two such women who had recently been freed from prison.
Also: The story of two Somali girls in Boston who formed a friendship through writing poetry together; the tale of an unlikely bond between a guard and a prisoner at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp; We hear from a Syrian superfan of the 90s hit TV programme ‘Friends’; and Marco Werman visits a local school in Boston to hear from some very young news consumers.
(Teodora Vasquez hugs her parents shortly after being released from the women's Readaptation Centre, in Ilopango, El Salvador where she was serving a sentence since 2008. Credit: Marvin Recinos/Getty Images)
The Lungs of the World
The fate of the Amazon is in jeopardy. Logging, cattle ranching, and soya bean farming are threatening its very existence. But the threat doesn’t end there; carbon dioxide coming from cities thousands of miles away is altering tropical forests and the climate on a much larger scale. In this special edition we travel to Brazil to find out why the fate Amazon is more consequential than ever and meet some of the people fighting to preserve it.
(Claudio da Silva and the Guajajara Guardians of the Forest ride up the Caru River to investigate a report of illegal cutting on Guajajara land. Credit: Sam Eaton/The World)
The US opioid epidemic is a major public health crisis that has affected many communities across the United States. We’ll hear from an expert in addiction psychiatry who thinks that doctors bear much of the blame.
Also: What do you do if opioid drugs don't stop the pain? Acupuncture may be the answer; We look at how supervised injection is already saving the lives of heroin users; the Toronto police department launched a social media campaign, reminding people that marijuana is legal in Canada and not a cause for emergency calls; the US and Mexico join forces to crack down on the illicit drug trade; and the story of Steve Hupp's transformation from bank robber to shaman.
(Boston Calling producer Daniel Ofman stands next to a bus stop advertisement of Naloxone, a nasal spray that can counteract and potentially save someone from an opioid overdose. Credit: Diego Lopez/The World)
"Brain Drain" is what happens to a country when its best and brightest minds leave and don't return. The flip side of this is called "Brain Gain." But even when countries benefit from new arrivals, they don’t always make it easy for them.
We meet Maria Merza, working hard to overcome bureaucratic and social obstacles standing in the way of her education. Also: We visit a school in California that provides classes for parents as they drop their children off in the morning; We look at new training programmes for skilled trade jobs, aimed at immigrants; Also, Francenette SaintLouis Défonce was a nurse in Haiti, but the US won’t recognise her qualifications or experience; Finally, Harvard University student Jin Park pushes the boundaries of who can become a Rhodes Scholar.
(Ayat Alfares, left, is a “super senior” at Grace M. Davis High School in Modesto, California. Sarah Yousif, right, graduated from the school when she was 21 years old. Both students came to the US as teenagers and began high school later than most of their classmates. Credit: Maria Merza/The World)