Segment 504

Whitefish Range, Back to Organics, Lake Apopka

State(s) featured in this episode: Florida/Montana

A widely based coalition of local interest groups campaigns for permanent protection of forests, watersheds and wildlife habitat in a critical northern Montana landscape. Small-scale farmers in Montana learn how to grow crops organically with helpful support from advisers with the Natural Resources Conservation Service. Crop dusters commonly spray a toxic brew of pesticides on farmworkers in the fields, and the impact on the environment and the health of many people in Lake Apopka, Florida is obvious (co-produced with Earthjustice).

Related Segments

Segment 807

Under the Magnuson-Stevens Act, commercial fishermen in the Gulf of Mexico use individual fishing quotas to manage red snapper catches sustainably and with far less risk.

State(s) featured in this episode: Florida / Mississippi / Texas
Segment 704

The nation’s most important conservation and recreational access program has protected areas in almost every state and county, but it could soon expire without action by Congress.

State(s) featured in this episode: Montana
Segment 703

Forest plantations in Florida are managed with prescribed fires that benefit wildlife and the owner’s bottom line.

State(s) featured in this episode: Florida
Segment 804

In Montana, conservationists, landowners, business leaders and government officials consider the importance of the most important yet least-known and understood conservation and access program in the U.S. – the Land and Water Conservation Fund. Farmers in Oklahoma use cover crops and smart pasturing of livestock to reduce their use of chemical fertilizers, improve water quality, and increase their bottom line. Researchers are finding useful purposes for recycled urine.

State(s) featured in this episode: Montana / Oklahoma
Segment 703

Private landowners in Pennsylvania work with government support to provide critical forest habitat for threatened populations of bats. Along the Meramec River near St. Louis, residents try to break the costly cycle of flooding, cleaning up and re-building by adopting more natural solutions to flood mitigation. Managing forest plantations in Florida, landowners use prescribed fires to reintroduce a natural process that results in healthier ecosystems for wildlife as well as better forest and ranching operations.

State(s) featured in this episode: Florida / Missouri / Pennsylvania
Segment 504

In northern Montana, former adversaries join together in a diverse coalition to support a new management plan and more wilderness for a spectacular stretch of mountains.

State(s) featured in this episode: Montana
Segment 503

With waste from a new industrial hog farm threatening the purity of the nation’s first national river, citizens raise the alarm and score a victory with a lawsuit. Farmers in Iowa and Illinois adopt new practices to prevent runoff of chemicals and waste that would pollute the Mississippi River. Running out of space in Yellowstone National Park, bison are re-located to Indian reservations in Montana where they can build new populations of wild herds (produced with Earthjustice).

State(s) featured in this episode: Illinois / Iowa / Montana
Segment 403

Wilderness Anniversary: Marking the fiftieth anniversary of the Wilderness Act, we explore its origins and success in protecting more than 100 million acres of unspoiled natural wilderness, a distinctly American achievement. There are still many more areas of wild nature that deserve protection, and the Wilderness Act remains an essential law in the cause of conservation.

Arkansas Oil Pipeline: In March, 2013, a rupture in a buried oil pipeline surprised suburban homeowners in Mayflower, Arkansas by flooding their streets with crude oil. Many of them didn’t even know there was a pipeline under their yards. To find out more about this event, we offer a two-part investigative story co-produced with Inside Climate News, a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporting unit.

Fungi Fuel: We meet a scientist in Montana who searches the globe for botanical specimens, discovering fungi and bacteria in the tissues of some plants that can be converted into a diesel-like fuel.

State(s) featured in this episode: Arkansas / Montana
Segment 401

Tiny Fish: Big Deal:
Researchers on the Oregon coast study the role that forage fish play in the food chain. Sometimes called “bait fish”, sardines, anchovies, smelt and other small fish are vitally important in sustaining larger species – including sea birds, salmon, and marine mammals like sea lions. Humans also catch forage fish, mainly for animal feed, and there’s growing concern that large-scale commercial harvesting of forage fish comes at the expense of other marine life, potentially with catastrophic results.

Wild Olympics: Spectacular Olympic National Park is the centerpiece of the verdant Olympic Peninsula in northwest Washington State, right up against the Canadian border. There’s now a bill in Congress that would add more protection to the forests and watersheds around the park, and we explore why there’s wide support for the proposal among the people living there.

Biofuel from Cornfield Residue: In another report on emerging second-generation biofuels, we travel to Iowa where farmers are discovering there’s growing demand for the residue in their cornfields – stalks, leaves, husks and cobs – left on the ground after the corn is harvested, That residue, called “corn stover”, is biomass that can also be converted into ethanol.

Fire Ants: Everybody wants to eradicate biting, invasive fire ants, but scientists say they can learn a great deal by studying the social structure of these insects. New research shows that the widespread success of fire ants has been assisted when humans disturb natural areas with roads and development.Tiny Fish: Big Deal, Wild Olympics, Biofuel from Cornfield Residue, Fire Ants

State(s) featured in this episode: Florida / Iowa / Oregon / Washington
Segment 301

Critical aquifer underneath the Great Plains
Farmers and ranchers work with NRCS advisers to find ways to conserve the Ogallala Aquifer, a vast expanse of prehistoric water now threatened by overuse

Trout in the classroom
Students in the Sierras in California help to restore threatened Lahontan cutthroat trout by raising the fish from eggs and releasing them in an approved stream

Yellowstone grizzlies achieve dramatic recovery
While the need for continued listing under the Endangered Species Act is still debated, grizzly bears have multiplied under federal protection since 1975, re-occupying areas where they had been absent for decades

State(s) featured in this episode: California / Kansas / Montana / Wyoming