Dear EarthTalk:We’ve been hearing for years how producing red meat is bad for the environment while consuming it is bad for our health. How do other types of meat, fish, dairy and vegetable proteins stack up in terms of environmental and health impacts? -- Julia Saperstein, via e-mail
"Socially Responsible", its a catchword used by many businesses these days whether they want to promote their environmental friendliness, political awareness or by the way they treat their employees. "We talk to the author of a new book who says there are many issues to consider when deeming a business socially responsible, both for the consumer and for the companies themselves. In some cases, there are uncomfortable tradeoffs, it’s nearly impossible to fulfill every ideal. And then there’s making a profit still a necessity, even if you’re eco-friendly.
How energy efficient is the Granite State? A new reports says not very, at least in terms of our buildings. Three years after Governor Lynch issued a Climate Action Plan, which included a call for more efficient homes and offices, UNH researchers find the state is way behind where it had hoped to be. We're examining what the problems are, as well as the prospects for future improvement.
Dear EarthTalk: I recently saw an article extolling the virtues of natural gas as an abundant, inexpensive and domestically produced automotive fuel. Is this going to be the automotive fuel of the future and how green is it? -- Jason Kincaide, New Bedford, MA
Yesterday, in a 5-4 vote, the U.S. Supreme Court decided to uphold most of President Obama's signature health care law. The decision came with mixed reactions in New Hampshire. Some applauded the ruling while others plotted political revenge. Both Democrats and Republicans have called it a political 'leg up' for their hopes in November, but only time will tell who is right? Today we'll look at this decision, how it will affect Granite Staters and how it may play out politically both nationally and here in New Hampshire.
Dear EarthTalk: Renewable energy production in the solar and wind markets currently receives about $7 billion in government subsidies annually, but is still not competitive against fossil fuels on a large scale. To what extent should the U.S. continue to prop up these industries as they compete against dirty energy?-- Jack Morgan, Richmond, VA
Dear EarthTalk: How do I learn about what pesticides may be on the food I eat?-- Beatrice Olson, Cleveland, OH
Along with the rise in the popularity of organic food has come an increased awareness about the dangers lurking on so-called “conventionally produced” (that is, with chemical pesticides and fertilizers) foods.
Fifty years ago, Rachel Carson's book, "Silent Spring", woke the world up to the perils of chemicals that promised food crops free of disease and insects, and time outdoors free of mosquitoes. The book is credited with starting the modern environmental movement. It was the birdwatchers that first alerted the scientists about robins literally falling from the sky soon after DDT was sprayed, as well as longer-term declines in birds higher on the food chain.