Monday, January 25, 2010

Haiti & Davis Superfund Site

Haiti Then and Now. As you've probably learned, on January 12th, Haiti suffered a catastrophic earthquake, followed in later days by forceful aftershocks. Democracy Now! reports that at least 150,000 have been buried; the death toll could top 300,000. According to the US Geological Survey, Haiti will remain at risk for aftershocks for months to years. On today's show, Dr. Chuck Walker, Professor of History and Director of UC Davis's Hemispheric Institute on the Americas joins us to discuss Haiti's past, current, and future situation. (Photo courtesy of DesPardes)

Davis EPA Superfund Site. Located just next to the new Target shopping center on Second street in Davis is the Frontier Fertilizer EPA Superfund site. The location became a superfund site back in the 1970s when residual pesticides were dumped by employees of the Frontier Fertilizer company. Steve Deverel, from HydroFocus Inc., came on to talk about the history of the site and what is currently being done to remediate the chemical contaminants that are still present. Check out the Frontier Fertilizer Superfund Oversight Group to find out more. (Photo courtesy of the Frontier Fertilizer Superfund Oversight Group)

Listen. Use the player below to listen to the show, or click "divShare" to get the mp3.

Music Playlist:
"Don't You Let Nobody Turn You Round" by Silver Light Gospel Choir (Art of Field Recording, Vol. 1 on Dust to Digital)
"Perfect" by Two Sheds (Strange Ammunition on Loud Mouth Soup)
"Ti Chans (Pou Ayiti)" by Masters of Haiti (Rough Guide to the Music of Haiti on World Music Network)

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Bay Area Subsistence Fishing & Farm Poetry

Subsistence Fishing in the Bay Area. In the San Francisco Bay Area, many people, especially but not exclusively low-income people of color, fish for food to feed their families. But local pollution has contaminated fish near many urban areas, threatening those who eat the local catch. On Local Dirt, Torm Nompraseurt, a state organizer for the Asian Pacific Environmental Network and a resident of Richmond for more than thirty years, explains why subsistence fishing tends to be so economically and culturally important for those who do it. He explains that individuals respond differently to information about the risks -- and that for some, ceasing to fish doesn't seem to be a viable option.

Farm Poetry. Dori Stone (former Local Dirt host!) and Austin Smith share poems about agriculture and a few thoughts on how farming and poetry fit together in their lives. Dori reads her newest poem, "Happy Hour," and Austin reads "Instructions for How to Put an Old Horse Down" and "Song of the Lark." Austin's poetry has been published by Parallel Press, Longhouse, and ZYZZYVA, while Dori's non-fiction Beyond the Fence: A Journey to the Roots of the Migration Crisis was published by Food First last year.

Listen with the player below or click "divShare" to get the mp3.

Music Playlist:
"Bring Me Li'l Water Silvy" by Leadbelly (In The Shadows Of The Gallows Pole on Tradition)
"What Am I Gonna Do (With The Rest Of My Life)" by Merle Haggard (Live From Austin, TX: Merle Haggard on New West Records)
"Just One Kiss" by Beau Jocque and the Zydeco Hi-Rollers (Roots Music: An American Journey on Rounder)

Monday, January 11, 2010

Full Circle Farm and Gleaning in Davis!

Full Circle Farm. Owned and operated by seven farm managers, Full Circle Farm is a small-scale farm just outside of Davis, CA. Marisol Lopez, one of the farm managers, came on to talk about the history of Full Circle, their Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program, the animals they keep and more. To learn more about Full Circle Farm and their CSA, you can check out their website. Note: due to computer failure, the interview is cut-off near the end. Recorded in May 2009.

Gleaning in Davis. Last year, Maggie Lickter and Liz Fitzgerald received and $10,000 grant to expand and improve gleaning/urban harvesting efforts in Davis. Recently, they've joined forces with the northern California gleaning organization Village Harvest, working together to simultaneously end food waste and food scarcity. On Local Dirt, they explain why gleaning is such a smart (and fun) form of activism, what goes into organizing a Davis glean, and how listeners can help. On their webpage, you can sign up to volunteer, share a tree/crop, lend storage space, or give money.

Listen to the show with the player below, or click "divShare" to get the mp3.

Soda fountain machines harbor fecal bacteria, study finds by Rosemary Black, NY Daily News
Three approved GMOS linked to organ damage, an Op-Ed piece by Rady Ananda,

Music Playlist:
"Sleeper" by Laura Gibson (Beast of Season on Hush)
"Dink's Song" performed by Roger McGuinn, Pete Seeger, and Josh White, Jr. (Treasures From the Folk Den on Appleseed)
"Two Doves" by Dirty Projectors (Bitte Orca on Domino)
"Monday Mornin' Blues" by Mississippi John Hurt (Mississippi John Hurt Memorial Anthology on Genes)

Monday, January 4, 2010

Appalachian Radio and Community Gardening

Covering Coal on the Radio. WMMT Mountain Community Radio in Whitesburg, KY serves a community whose members are seldom portrayed accurately in the mainstream media, says station manager Cheryl Marshall. On Local Dirt, Cheryl discusses the needs and interests of the station's audience. She explains how the coalfield station covers coal-related issues, acknowledging that coal plays a variety of roles in the lives of WMMT listeners. To hear WMMT, listen to the stream online or find a specific past show of interest to you. (Originally aired June 9, 2009.)

- "Religion Shaping Mountain-Top Removal Debate in Appalachia Coal Country" by Peter Smith for the Louisville Courier-Journal

Community Gardens. Tim Quick, the outgoing coordinator for the UC Davis Experimental College (EC) Community Gardens, came on to talk about community gardening, the history of the campus EC Garden, how the EC Garden has changed in the past several years and how people can get involved in gardening at the EC Gardens. To find out more visit the EC Garden Davis Wiki Page or the EC Garden official site. Thank you, Tim, for your amazing work in the past four years!

To hear the show, listen here or click "divShare" to get the mp3.

"Kneebone" by Joe Armstrong & Group (The Alan Lomax Collection: Southern Journey, Vol. 13 - Earliest Times on Rounder)
"How Mountain Girls Can Love" by The Stanley Brothers (Bluegrass - Best of the Best with various artists)
"Holy Babe" by Kelly Pace, Aaron Brown, Joe Green, Paul Hayes, and Matthew Jones (Where Will You Be Christmas Day on Dust to Digital)
"Only The Lonely" by Roy Orbison (Black & White Night on Orbison Records)

Friday, January 1, 2010

WorldWide Opportunities in Organic Farming

Natalie and Dani are still on break, so we pulled together yet another show from our archived interviews from 2008 and 2009.

WWOOF stands for
World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms. Tuesday's show is a compilation of students experiences WWOOFing across the world.

WWOOF, Nepal. Austin Smith, a student at UC Davis, talks about his experience WWOOFing on a rice farm in Nepal back in 2006. Austin talks about the culture, politics and landscape of Nepal.

WWOOF, Thailand. Katie Cooper, also a student at UC Davis, talks about her experience WWOOFing in Thailand. Katie also worked on rice farm, an organic farm, but also enriched her experience teaching English with her host family as well. Katie talks about the culture, food and family traditions of Thailand. To learn more about Katie's experience, you can check out her blog.

Listen to the show with the player below, or click '
DivShare' to download the mp3.

Vilsack questions USDA's climate change modeling by Jacqui Fatka (Farm Futures)

Music Playlist:
"Danny Callahan" by Conor Oberst (
Conor Oberst)
"Hard Travelin'" by Woody Guthrie (
Hard Travelin': Asch Recordings, Volume 3)