FROM THIS EPISODE
It’s been three years since the lead crisis in Flint, Michigan began. They’re still drinking bottled water there. In LA County, there are places with even higher rates of lead contamination, and in areas you wouldn’t expect, like wealthy San Marino.
In the last couple of years, the Silver Lake Reservoir was a large, empty concrete hole. But as record snowpack levels in the Sierra are starting to melt, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power is turning on the valves to start refilling the reservoir ahead of schedule.
Steven Pete has never felt pain, not even when he broke more than 70 bones in his body. Pam Costa feels pain constantly, even wearing clothes hurts. She has a rare condition that makes her skin feel like it’s always on fire. Pete and Costa both live in Washington State and are helping scientists identify a cure for pain without using opiates.
Heritage grains are the ancient, unadulterated varieties of crops like wheat, barley and rice. More farms are growing them now because they have stronger flavors and they’re drought tolerant. Many LA restaurants have been eager to incorporate them into some of their dishes.
More From Press Play with Madeleine Brand
The decline of American manufacturing During the presidential campaign, Donald Trump called out a steel manufacturer for closing a plant in Indiana and moving it to Mexico. The plant still closed and jobs were lost. We speak with a reporter who spent a year documenting the closing of the plant, and tells the story of one woman who worked her way up to supervisor and then had to train her Mexican replacement.
Why is it so hard to publish stories critical of powerful men? One of the main reasons the Harvey Weinstein stories didn’t get out sooner was that the Hollywood press couldn’t -- or wouldn’t -- publish them. KCRW’s Kim Masters has a story about another big executive: Amazon’s Roy Price.
Can Kevin de Leon unseat Sen. Dianne Feinstein? California Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de Leon announced his challenge to Senator Dianne Feinstein. He is capitalizing on a fury in the state against the president, and painting Feinstein as too accommodating of Trump.
NorCal fires: Melted motorcycles, raining embers The Northern Californian wildfires are some of the worst in the state’s history. They’ve killed more than 30 people and many are still missing. More than 160 acres have been scorched. Winds are spreading the flames, and air quality in the Bay Area is as bad as Beijing’s.
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