Craig Colten

Louisiana State University

Guest

Professor of Geography at Louisiana State University, editor of Geographical Review and author of An Unnatural Metropolis: Wresting New Orleans from Nature

Craig Colten on KCRW

Since the great flood of 1927 killed hundreds of people, the Army Corps of Engineers has built 2000 miles of levees to tame the Mississippi.

Can Man Control the Mighty Mississippi River?

Since the great flood of 1927 killed hundreds of people, the Army Corps of Engineers has built 2000 miles of levees to tame the Mississippi.

from Which Way, L.A.?

The Mississippi watershed is the world's third largest after the Amazon and the Congo.

Has Flood Control Led to a False Sense of Security?

The Mississippi watershed is the world's third largest after the Amazon and the Congo.

from To the Point

More from KCRW

66 million years ago, an asteroid caused Earth’s Fifth Extinction, destroying the dinosaurs and most other life forms. Now Earth is facing another extinction, as fish, plants and animals vanish forever. But this time, it’s not the asteroid, it’s us. This week, hundreds of people, both young and old, took to the streets in cities all over the world to begin weeks of protest called the Extinction Rebellion. In the natural course of evolution, the decline and disappearance of a life form takes thousands of years. In the course of a human lifetime, not even one species might disappear. But now, some 28,000 species are vanishing all of a sudden. Elizabeth Kolbert of the New Yorker magazine has written a book called “The Sixth Extinction.” She says, “Extinction rates are hundreds, perhaps thousands, of times higher than what is known as the background extinction rate that has pertained over most of geological history.” In her words, “You should not be able to see all sorts of mammals -- to name just one group -- either going extinct or on the verge of extinction. And that is a tipoff that something very, very unusual, and I would add, very dangerous, is going on.” “We’re running geological history backwards. Fossil fuels that were created over the course of hundreds of millions of years buried a lot of carbon underground. We’re now combusting it, putting that carbon back into the atmosphere over a matter of centuries. So we’re taking a process that hundreds of millions of years to run in one direction and then, in a matter of centuries, running it in another direction.” We’ll hear what that means now and for the future of life as we know it.

from To the Point

Presidential campaigns aren’t just on TV anymore, they’re on countless digital platforms.

from To the Point

Despite mounting evidence, Republicans in the House and the Senate are defending President Trump or keeping their heads down. Veteran GOP conservatives accuse them of sacrificing morality for short-term political gain. Meantime the Trump Administration calls the impeachment inquiry “unconstitutional,” while legal scholars point out that it’s part of Article II. And how did Ukraine, an obscure former Soviet republic, become so important? Money.

from To the Point

More adults are living with their parents now than they have in more than a century. It’s a third of all adults under 34. But in Los Angeles, it’s more than 40% .

from Greater LA

The two international giants are linked in inextricable ways, and yet Americans’ understanding of China consistently lacks nuance.

from Scheer Intelligence

When Gavin Newsom signed AB387 into law today, he ended 16 years of unsuccessful attempts by daycare providers statewide to unionize.

from KCRW Features

A bone-chilling documentary about Roy Cohn, Donald Trump’s mentor, reveals the all-American evil that brought us modern-day politics.

from Scheer Intelligence

P eople like Becky Dennison are working to address to one  of America’s most urgent crises with a straightforward approach.

from Scheer Intelligence

Climate change is an existential crisis. If Americans cut just one hamburger from their diet every week, it would be like taking 10 million cars off the road every year. After cutting energy use, less meat and more plant-based food add up to the easiest--and healthiest--way to reduce your carbon footprint. From the land and water needed to raise feed and the methane produced at the end of digestion, “Cattle are actually mini fossil-fuel, greenhouse gas producers.” So says Sujatha Bergen, head of health campaigns at the NRDC. As her title suggests, eliminating beef from your diet--in addition to pork and lamb-- is also better for you. She explains the trade-offs for helping to reduce climate change and says, “Starting with your fork is much less daunting for many people.”

from To the Point