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Earthworms

Host Jean Ponzi presents information, education and conversation with activists and experts on environmental issues and all things "green." Produced in the studios of KDHX Community Media in St. Louis, MO.
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Now displaying: February, 2018

Conversations in Green: host Jean Ponzi presents information, education and conversation with activists and experts on environmental issues and all things green.

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Feb 28, 2018

For any Catholic parish, a Fish Fry cooks up fun and some revenue during the season of Lent. At Holy Redeemer in the St. Louis suburb of Webster Groves, a portion of that green potential is being invested in Green education-by-example, led by two Moms.

              

Jamie Hasemeier, Earthworms guest (pictured right, photo by Dave Leuking), came to "Holy" with strong personal environmental values. She wants to contribute in every way to a healthy world for her four children - and for her fellow humans everywhere. When Jamie teamed with fellow Mom Lisa Reed, who runs the church's annual Fish Fry, she worked through several cycles of Lent to cook sustainability into those events.

Students educate guests about low-waste eating as they direct diners to correctly recycle and compost. Results of these efforts included less than 2 bags of landfill trash from each of 2017's Fish Fry evenings - that each served over 750. Green efforts continue growing!

Features in the St. Louis Review, an archdiocesan publication, and the St. Louis Green Dining Alliance blog helped boost attendance in 2017, when these dinners went Compostable. Trays going into yellow Compost bins are not Styrofoam - they are plastics made from plants.

Other parishes are acting on the Holy Redeemer Green example, set by Mothers who love Earth - and act on their faith.

Music: Rearview, performed live at KDHX by Belle Star

THANKS to Anna Holland, Earthworms skillful, tasteful engineer

Related Earthworms Conversations: Laudato Si, understanding Care for Our Common Home, with Franciscan Sisters of Our Lady of Perpetual Help (January 2016)

Dr. Peter Raven, science advisor to Pope Francis' Climate Change encyclical (June 2015)

Feb 14, 2018

Illinois tourism writers call it a "best-kept secret." Visitors review it as a great place to camp, hike and learn some things. Director (and Earthworms guest) Michelle Berg Vogel says its a working farm and an environmental education place. And in March, a Fungus Farm!

       

McCully Heritage Project, located in Kampsville, IL, is a nature haven at the Illinois-Mississippi Rivers' confluence. Its 940 acres are mainly forested, with native trees and plenty of native wildlife. Native - and visiting - humans thrive there too.

On Saturday March 3, folks who fancy gardening can learn an Agroforestry skill: growing mushrooms on logs. Green oak logs, innoculated with mushroom spawn, sprout Shitakes, and softwood logs support the growth of Oyster mushrooms. Both delicious, nutritious - and easy to produce. Fun with fungus, anyone?

           

Music: Redwing, performed live at KDHX by Currykorn

THANKS to Jon Valley, engineering this Earthworms edition

Feb 7, 2018

Heading west from St. Louis on I-64, just over the Missouri River bridge, bluffs rise and land rolls. There is a golf course (hard to see) and a corporate campus area. With a St. Charles County zoning change, a high-density 350 luxury home development could soon alter 200 of these bluff acres.

Conservationist and landowner Dan Burkhardt, guest for this Earthworms edition, was surprised in December to learn that bluff property owned by the University of Missouri was in a sale process to a home developer. His Katy Land Trust was formed to prevent just this kind of move. Adjacent to the Busch and Weldon Spring Conservation Areas - land purchased and given into care of the Missouri Department of Conservation in the 1950s and 70s respectively - the forested Missouri Bluffs acreage in question is currently zoned Agricultural.

      

The outcome of a public hearing on February 21 by the St. Charles County Planning and Zoning Commission is key to a requested zoning change to Medium- and High-Density Residential, to accommodate the proposed development. The Katy Land Trust is leading opposition to this change. Public comments will be considered in person, and via email before 2-21-18.

Burkhardt and his wife Connie farm their acreage near Marthasville, in a corridor of natural features, German cultural heritage, a thriving regional arts movement and public recreation that is anchored by Katy Trail State Park, with a link to St. Louis in process from Great Rivers Greenway.

Tourism in this heart of Missouri's wine country increasingly returns investments in these resources to all Missourians - and our visitors. Opponents of an intensive luxury housing development here note that that investment will return to very few, and diminish public benefits.

This is an important point for public input. As Dan Burkhardt says, Asphalt is the Last Crop.

Music: Deep Gap, performed live at KDHX by Marisa Anderson

THANKS to Anna Holland, Earthworms engineer

EARTHWORMS is produced as a volunteer community service. Views expressed by volunteer host are her own, and not intended to represent KDHX St. Louis Independent Media or any other organization. Guest views, and the organizations they represent, are clearly presented in each interview, and in accompanying texts.

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