environment

North Inlet - Winyah Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve. Aerial view of meandering tidal creeks and extensive pristine marshes in North Inlet Estuary. Vicinity of Georgetown, South Carolina.
NOAA Photo Library [CC BY 2.0] via Flickr

In their new book, A Wholly Admirable Thing (2018, Evening Post Books), Virginia and Dana Beach chronicle ten stories that showcase the rise of the Coastal Conservation League to one of the country’s most tenacious and innovative conservation groups. The book highlights transformational initiatives undertaken by the Conservation League over three decades in partnership with community activists up and down the South Carolina coast.

Bradley Fuller / South Carolina Public Radio

For many composers, getting started on a symphony can be a serious challenge. Johannes Brahms famously spent some twenty years completing his first such work.

But for South Carolina composer Meira Warshauer, inspiration was a bit easier in coming. She found it in the world around her.

“I knew that I wanted to write something about the Earth,” Meira says. “Really, since the first Earth Day in 1970, I’ve been an environmentalist.”

Pondering Plastic - Wildlife, Bans and Trash

Mar 26, 2019
Voldemort, a loggerhead being treated at the South Carolina Aquarium's Sea Turtle Hospital
Victoria Hansen/SC Public Radio

He weighs less than five pounds, but Zazu had big belly problems when he was rescued off the Isle of Palms coast nearly three months ago.  The tiny, green sea turtle had eaten plastic, all kinds of plastic; part of a balloon, clear sheets of plastic and material from a grocery bag. 

The juvenile  turtle is the 23rd patient admitted to the South Carolina Aquarium’s sea turtle hospital because of sea debris.  He swims in a private tank next to 17 others now in recovery, including a 260 pound loggerhead named Voldemort who got caught up in crab traps nearly a year ago.

Protestors against offshore drilling gathered last month outside Charleston's Federal Courthouse
Victoria Hansen

It’s a campaign promise made during an ad last fall as he treaded water in the Atlantic Ocean.  Now Congressman Joe Cunningham is swimming hard against the powerful currents of Washington, as he tries to make good and protect the South Carolina coast from offshore drilling.

The first time politician announced Tuesday he will introduce the, "Coastal Economies Protection Act", as soon as he gets back to Washington, to prevent opening the Atlantic and Gulf Coast to drilling and seismic air gun blasting. 

As electric cars increase their range, which in new models is around 150 miles between recharges, and offer more variety of models, which is also on the way, they will become even more common, experts say.
mmurphy [CC0 1.0] via Pixabay

Traffic can be pretty noisy, but one component of the nation’s traffic is growing quietly.  The component is the electric car.  Sold by Chevrolet, Nissan, Tesla and other makers, Nissan alone has sold a quarter-million electric vehicles since 2011.    Mac Martin, who sells the electric Leaf model by Nissan, says it’s so quiet the manufacturer actually installed a speaker to project artificial speed-up and slow-down noises so that pedestrians will  be aware of their presence. 

Drew Wynne at a party.  He died while using a paint stripper containing methylene chloride at his business.
Wynne family

His voice sounds excited, yet hesitant.  Brian Wynne has just learned the Environmental Protection Agency will take action on a proposed ban from the Obama administration that would keep a potentially deadly chemical from being used in paint strippers commonly found on store shelves.  He met with the EPA chief two days ago, sharing the story of his younger brother from Charleston who died after being exposed to that very chemical, methylene chloride.

North Inlet - Winyah Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve. Aerial view of meandering tidal creeks and extensive pristine marshes in North Inlet Estuary. Vicinity of Georgetown, South Carolina.
NOAA Photo Library/Flickr

Earth Day is held each April to remind people of the importance of caring for our world, according to USC Environmental Health Sciences Professor Joe Jones.  He practices what he preaches, as he regularly takes his students outdoors to pick up trash that has washed into a campus creek from Columbia’s Five Points area, where many students eat and drink.  He tells them that if trash could wash from one part of town to another, it could also get into the Congaree River and thus to the coast, and, ultimately, wash up on the shores of other countries. 

Climate change might leave a bad taste in your mouth. Literally.

Apr 6, 2017

The conversation about food and climate change often centers on how a warming climate will affect the quantity of food we can harvest. But as it turns out, a warmer world could change the quality, even the flavor, of our favorite foods, too — from the maple syrup that we slather on our pancakes to the tea that we brew before work.

“Tea is similar to maple syrup, in that it needs specific environmental conditions for an ideal harvest,” says Selena Ahmed, an assistant professor of sustainable food and bioenergy systems at Montana State University.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA, it is estimated that radon is responsible for more than 21,000 lung cancer-related deaths. As part of Radon Action Month, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) is providing free kits for residents to test their homes for the invisible, odorless, tasteless gas.

Much Of South Carolina Now In Drought

Jul 12, 2016
Courtesy of the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources.

Nine months after October’s historic floods, parts of South Carolina are in a drought. The state Drought Response Committee designated most of the central, south and western counties in threat of a drought Friday. Four counties in the Northwestern part of the state are much drier and are considered in moderate drought. Dennis Chastain from Pickens has been on this committee for 14 years.  

“I don’t think I have ever seen a drought cycle develop and deteriorate as quickly as this has,” he said. “Pastures are not just dry, they are scorched. The grass actually looks dead.”

DHEC Materials Exchange

Mar 4, 2015

The Department of Health and Environmental Control has taken numerous steps in helping South Carolina residents go green and their Materials Exchange database is no exception.

Repurpose Plastics

Mar 3, 2015

With all the misconceptions and misinformation about the recyclability of some plastics, the best way to help the environment is to reduce the use of those single time use plastic containers and repurpose the plastics you already have.

Plastic Myths

Mar 2, 2015

Plastics are everywhere and misconceptions abound when it comes to the recyclability of these plastics!  While many of us believe that all plastic containers are recycled into new plastic containers, the reality is that most likely, your recycled plastic becomes new secondary products like textiles, parking lot bumpers, or other products that are themselves not recyclable.

Denim Crafts

Sep 26, 2014

Denim is a versatile fabric.  It looks great, fits everybody, and holds up over time.  But there will come a time when you favorite jeans are too worn to wear.  Before you throw them out, think about ways that you can use the fabric!

Eggs- Why do we refrigerate?

Sep 22, 2014

If you’ve ever traveled overseas, then you may be aware that many countries do not refrigerate eggs like we do in the US.  Have you ever wondered why?

Lexington Drain Tagging

Sep 15, 2014

Lexington County is looking for a few good volunteers this month to help tag storm water drains.  Did you know that rainwater runoff is the leading cause of pollution in our waterways?

Mitigating Home Hazards

Sep 3, 2014

Being aware of what hazards may exist in your home is the first step to creating a healthy living environment, but what should you do to mitigate these hazards?

Home Health Hazards

Sep 2, 2014

There are many toxins like household cleaners and environmental hazards that could impact the air quality and healthfulness of your home, but there are things that you can do to improve your living conditions. Visit Sierra Club Green Home for more information.

Green on Campus

Aug 28, 2014

Students across the state are heading back to college campuses to begin the fall semester. Make sure your student is green on campus this year.

Downsize Your Stuff

Aug 18, 2014
Cathy Bradberry
South Carolina Public Radio

  For many of us, it can be a real struggle to live green, but one good way to get started is by downsizing what you already own.