Host Ira Glass tells the stories of two professors, each making a calculation that no one had made before. One gets acclaim.
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There's a part of Brazil that was almost all rainforest until the 1970s, and over the next few decades a million people moved in, cutting down the forest and building towns and cities. Monte Reel was the South American correspondent for the Washington Post in the mid 1990s, when he started hearing rumors of a "wild man," the last member of a tribe, who lived completely alone in this area's remaining forest. Reel's book about the quest to find and save this man is called The Last of the Tribe.
As adults battle over how climate change should be taught in school, we try an experiment. We ask Dr Roberta Johnson, the Executive Director of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, who helps develop curricula on climate change, to present the best evidence there is to a high school skeptic, a freshman named Erin Gustafson.
Back in November, two weeks after he was elected president, Barack Obama delivered a pre-taped speech to an international conference on global warming that was convened in Los Angeles by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. It wasn't Obama's most important speech, but the effect it had on the audience was profound—mostly because they heard it through the haze of the last eight years.
Host Ira Glass and Albert Donnay read a true ghost story that appeared in a medical journal in 1921. After a "Mrs H" and her family moved into an old rambling house, strange apparitions started appearing...until her brother-in-law figured out the real cause of the ghostly presences.
Host Ira Glass talks with sailor and researcher Captain Charles Moore about a gigantic area in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, as far away from land as you can get, that is filling with plastic trash. There are five spots like this on the world's oceans.
Host Ira Glass talks with people who've been hit by lightning. They describe what happened at the moment the bolt struck ... and how they came to view it later.
When Eustace Conway was 17, he abandoned his normal life and decided to move to the woods.
Host Ira Glass, on the beach with Chris McKinney, a boy scout who is single-handedly trying to stop erosion on one stretch of beach in Mason Neck State Park in Virginia.
Professor Stephen Pyne.