sustainability

#397      29 min 10 sec
Embracing the finite: Making our way in an era of dwindling natural resources

Prof. Peter Vitousek

Ecologist Prof. Peter Vitousek explores how living in the Anthropocene, a time in which human activity has become the key driver of planetary health, will force us to make our way with diminished natural resources. Peter also asks what we can learn from the historical experience of Pacific Islanders, whose cultural and agricultural practices were shaped by a profound understanding that their immediate horizons were in fact the very limits of their worlds. Presented by Dr Andi Horvath.

#386      36 min 43 sec
Global warming's companion crisis: Reactive nitrogen and its threat to human and planetary health

Prof Mark Sutton

Environmental physicist Prof Mark Sutton explains how our fast growing "nitrogen footprint" from agriculture and industry is reaching crisis levels as reactive nitrogen pollutes our air and soil and is a direct threat to human health. A leading researcher and advisor on nitrogen policy, Prof Sutton argues that smarter nitrogen management is not only a health and environmental priority but will prevent continued enormous economic losses. Presented by Dr Andi Horvath.

#364      32 min 09 sec
The end of sustainability: Realism and resilience in managing our natural resources

Prof Robin Craig

Environmental legal scholar Prof. Robin Craig argues that the doctrine of sustainability in managing our natural resources fails to take into account an emerging age of ecological uncertainty. Instead, notions of sustainability and sustainable development need to make way for approaches based on resilience thinking, which attempts to factor in and adapt to coming large-scale social and ecological shifts brought about by climate change. Presented by Eric van Bemmel.

#351      33 min 31 sec
Weeds girdle the globe: The marauding march of invasive plant species

Prof Roger Cousens

Plant population specialist Prof Roger Cousens talks about how the spread of undesirable plants, or "weeds", has dramatically redefined the world’s natural landscapes and coastlines, and what this means for us economically, aesthetically and environmentally. Presented by Dr Andi Horvath.

#338      41 min 04 sec
Man about town: Neil Brenner on reframing our cities and their global impact

Prof Neil Brenner

Renowned urban theorist Neil Brenner argues that the widespread notion we live in an “urban age” as people move increasingly into cities is fundamentally flawed. He also suggests that “urbanization” be redefined to include the profound impact of city growth on ever more distant hinterlands. Presented by Peter Mares.