climate change

Peter McGowan / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Ninety-seven percent of scientists agree: climate change is happening, we’re largely to blame, and the effects are not as far off as you might think. What effects, you ask? Well, there's increasingly frequent and intense heat waves, drought, torrential rains. There's melting glaciers and rising sea level. Now, new research add some less intuitive climate change impacts.

Naomi Oreskes' work as a science historian has pulled back the curtain on a small group of scientists and others who have deliberately worked to obscure the true risks of tobacco smoke, CFCs (remember the ozone hole?), and greenhouse gas emissions. Now, she and co-author Erik Conway have turned to science fiction to spread their message about the urgent need to address climate change. Living Lab had a few questions about that choice.

Naomi Oreskes
Wikimedia Commons

Science historian Naomi Oreskes stumbled upon what has become one of the most contentious facts of our time: the nearly unanimous consensus that humans are causing climate change. She subsequently uncovered a small group of scientists who’ve helped sew doubt about climate change, the ozone hole, even the link between smoking and lung cancer.

Most Caribbean coral reefs are now covered with more algae and sponges then coral.
Heather Goldstone / WCAI

Coral reefs may look benign but, really, they're war zones. Pollution and climate change have tipped the scales against corals, in favor of sponges.

Can't talk about politics or religion at Thanksgiving dinner? No problem. Talk about cranberries, instead.

Cape Cod Times

Sea level rise and erosion have become defining features of coastal living in New England. Islands are particularly vulnerable.

Natural gas often co-occurs with oil and is burned off by oil producers.
Varodrig / Flickr

Methane. It's the other greenhouse gas - less common and shorter-lived than carbon dioxide, but also a much more potent heat trapper.

Brayton Point Power Station in Somerset, MA is New England's largest coal-burning power plant.
Heather Goldstone / WCAI

Two men who used a lobster boat to block a 40,000 ton coal shipment headed for Brayton Point Power Station will not face criminal charges.

Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences in Boothbay, Maine, recently moved into a new $30 million LEED-platinum certified campus.
Heather Goldstone / WCAI

Like everything, scientific research comes with environmental impacts - from energy-demanding labs to abandoned spacecraft. Is what we learn worth it?

Olli / flickr

While we agonize over the future of human civilization in the face of climate change, a decade-old theory raises a different question: Would civilization ever have arisen without global warming?

Dan K / Flickr

Ask not what salt marshes can do for you (they're already doing plenty, and paying dearly for it), but what you can do for salt marshes.

Anthony Leiserowitz

The vast majority– an estimated 97 percent or more - of climate scientists are in agreement that the planet is warming and it's largely because of human activities. So why aren't Americans buying it?

The USDA's new Northeast Regional Climate Hub could help Massachusetts' cranberry growers adapt to climate change.
Heather Goldstone

Seven new Climate Hubs established by the U.S. Department of Agriculture aim to help secure our food supply in the face of rapidly changing climate conditions.

Manomet Center for Conservation

STEM seems to be everywhere these days. To most, the acronym stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. In Sandwich, the buzzword has an additional, slightly different, meaning:

STrategies for Engaging Minds.

What are those strategies? Basically, it boils down to something educators call inquiry- or project-based learning, with a healthy dose of the technology that pervades modern life.


Living Lab first aired on June 25th of last year. In our excitement about our fisheries coverage, The Long Haul, we completely missed our own first anniversary.

We're making it up now (better late than never, right?) by sharing a couple of our favorite interviews from our first year on the air. Enjoy, and thanks for a great first year!

Pteropods, Art, and Climate Change