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After 20 months of negotiations, the United States and six other countries have struck a nuclear deal with Iran. We get local reaction from Los Angeles’ powerful Iranian community. Then, a recent report finds that Seattle and Portland face the threat of a massive earthquake. How scared should residents be? Also, Harper Lee’s Go Set a Watchman hits bookshelves. The instant bestseller is forcing readers to reconcile with a racist Atticus Finch. We look at the history of the book and the beloved character. Then, state and city water agencies are doing their best to create compelling marketing campaigns to get you to stop using so much water. What’s working? And finally, some California farmers are growing tropical fruits. Can mangoes and bananas really grow here?

LA Responds to the Iran Nuclear Deal 8 MIN, 41 SEC

After 20 months of negotiations, Iran and six nations led by the United States reached a historic deal to curb Iran’s nuclear capability. Iran has agreed to a number of concessions, including getting rid of 98% of its enriched uranium and allowing the International Atomic Energy Agency access to certain facilities. In exchange, sanctions will eventually be lifted.

President Obama said the agreement is “not built on trust, it is built on verification.”

There’s been strong reactions both for and against the deal, which still needs to be ratified by Congress.

The deal has Los Angeles’ large Iranian community talking, too. Sam Yebri, an attorney and president of 30 Years After, an Iranian-American Jewish civic organization, shares some of the thoughts and feelings of local Iranian-Americans.

Sam Yebri, 30 Years After (@30YearsAfter)

Fearing ‘The Really Big One’ 9 MIN, 55 SEC

A New Yorker story titled “The Really Big One” has rattled residents in Portland and Seattle. It’s a meticulous and terrifying piece of science journalism about a quake that will eat the entire Pacific Northwest.

Lucy Jones, US Geological Survey (@DrLucyJones)

‘The Really Big One’: An earthquake will destroy a sizable portion of the coastal Northwest. The question is when.

Inside Harper Lee’s ‘Go Set A Watchman’ 8 MIN, 20 SEC

For more than half a century, Atticus Finch has been a model of integrity and tolerance for millions of readers. Now that’s changed. In Go Set a Watchman, Harper Lee’s follow up to To Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus has turned into a racist.

The novel is finally on sale and it promises to be a huge best seller.

We take a closer look at the book and the strange story of how Go Set a Watchman came to be.

Charles Shields, Author


Charles J. Shields

Branding the Drought 13 MIN, 38 SEC

You might have heard that there’s a drought. With mandatory conservation for all Californians, politicians and water officials are doing their best to get people to change their behavior and save water.

Water conservation campaigns range from cute to sexy. But just how smart is the advertising?

Two communications experts weigh in on how to convince Californians to be waterwise.

Sasha Strauss, Innovation Protocol / USC (@SashaStrauss)
Mike Rudin, Armed Mind (@mikerudin)

Be cool, save water

Why Some Farmers Are Growing Tropical Fruits in Dry California 5 MIN

When you think of mangoes, papayas, bananas and other tropical fruits, you don’t picture them being grown in California. They need the humidity and heat of a tropical climate to thrive.

But a small group of Southern California farmers is trying to change that. They’re growing crops never thought possible in the continental United States. How sustainable are these crops? And who is buying them?

Katherine Spiers, LA Weekly; Producer of Smarth Mouth (@katherinespiers)

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