Health, Science, Environment

Health, science, and environment news

Your Call: The natural and cultural history of rain

1 hour ago

On the January 26th edition of Your Call, we’ll have a conversation with award winning environmental journalist Cynthia Barnett about her new book “Rain: A Natural and Cultural History.”

Aspen Baker / resized and cropped

Aspen Baker is on a mission to help people listen to each other. Baker’s the founder of Exhale, an Oakland-based non-profit she formed in 2000 after she had an abortion. Baker grew up in a born-again Christian family and abortion wasn’t something she ever thought would happen to her. Until it did. 

Your Call: Working to reduce violence in the Bay Area

Jan 25, 2016
Used under CC license, Flickr user Dfsmith

On the January 25th edition of Your Call, we are going to be discussing these programs working to make a difference in the Bay Area to halt gun violence and provide victims of violence with resources to keep them from the revolving cycle of gang violence. 

Your Call: Tim DeChristopher's peaceful uprising

Jan 19, 2016

On the January 19th edition of Your Call, we’ll have a conversation with environmental justice activist Tim De Christopher.

Your Call: The resource curse

Jan 18, 2016


On the January 18th edition of Your Call, we’ll have a conversation with Professor Leif Wenar about his new book Blood Oil: Tyrants, Violence, and the Rules that Run the World.

Dawn Gross, MD, PhD has been caring for people with life-threatening illnesses for over a decade. She is committed to revolutionizing the way we talk about — and prepare for — death.  On her special KALW series Dying To Talk, she and her guests will create a safe space to transform the experience of end-of-life conversations from dread to discovery.

Courtesy of Scott Kildall/ Waterworks


Chava Kronenberg is on a manhole hunt.

“Oh! Wow! There it is! We have a winner!” she exclaims near the intersection of Geary Boulevard and 5th Avenue in San Francisco.

Environmental Defense Fund


On the January 12th edition of Your Call, we’ll discuss the methane gas disaster in Southern California.

There are hidden costs attached to almost everything we buy. T-shirts, mortgages, and hamburgers.  In the book “The Value of Nothing: How to reshape market society and redefine democracy,” Raj Patel argues that even a hamburger may have hidden ecological and social costs of as much as $200. 

Your Call: The healing power of nature

Jan 10, 2016

On the January 11th edition of Your Call, we’ll have a conversation about the benefits of nature on our mental health.

The brave new world of play!

Jan 7, 2016
Chris Hambrick

On a warm and sunny Wednesday afternoon I meet Curt Wear at Lincoln Square Park in Oakland’s Chinatown. Wear is the President of Community Playgrounds, and he builds and installs playground equipment in parks like this one.

On the December 21st edition of Your Call we'll discuss our unquestioned faith in DNA testing.

On the December 15th edition of Your Call, we’ll have a conversation about the Paris climate summit. In a landmark deal, for the first time, 195 countries have agreed to limit the rise in global temperatures to less than 2 °C.

On the December 10th edition of Your Call, we'll discuss which countries and cities are leading in renewable energy development. Green power is a major talking point at this week's Climate Change Summit in Paris but who is leading the charge to reduce their emissions?

Todd Whitney

Despite the recent rain and projections that El Niño is on its way, there’s little chance that the storms will end California’s drought. At least, Governor Brown’s not counting on it.

Your Call: Exxon's history of climate denial

Dec 8, 2015

On the December 9th edition of  Your Call, we’ll discuss Exxon's role in funding science that denies the impacts of climate change. An email from an in-house climate scientist reveals Exxon may have known about the dangers of climate change as early as 1981.

Angela Johnston

If you took walk along the Pillar Point Harbor in Half Moon Bay on a typical winter weekend, it would be buzzing with activity.


"Great white shark - Cal Ripfin" by George Probst, CC license, resized and recropped


If you want to see great white sharks in the Bay Area, the best place to go is the Farallon Islands. It’s about a two hour boat ride from the Berkeley Marina. 27 miles offshore.

Josh Koonce, used under CC license/ Resized from original

On the December 8th edition of Your Call, we're talking about the role cities play in combating climate change. 

MTC's Vital Signs

  On the December 7the edition of Your Call, we kick-off our week-long climate coverage by discussing sea level rise in the Bay Area. 

Your Call Weekly Kudos: December 4th, 2015

Dec 4, 2015

Every week on Your Call's Friday Media Roundtable, we ask the journalists on our panel to recommend great reporting they've seen this week.

Your Call: The Paris COP 21 UN climate summit

Dec 3, 2015

On the December 4th edition of Your Call, it’s our Friday media roundtable. This week, we’ll discuss coverage of the Paris UN Climate Conference.

A doctor for your video game addiction

Dec 2, 2015
CC License Flickr User RebeccaPollard. Cropped.

There’s debate among mental health practitioners about whether to consider compulsive video gaming a "disorder" that requires psychiatric help. But one thing they do agree on is that too much gaming can be detrimental to the wellbeing of young people.

On the December 1st edition of Your Call we’ll have a conversation with professor Marion Nestle about her new book "Soda Politics: Taking on Big Soda (and Winning)."  

On the November 30th edition of Your Call, we’ll talk about effective suicide prevention. Bids are now being accepted to construct suicide nets for the Golden Gate Bridge, a project that is estimated to cost 76 million dollars. Could that money have greater impact if put toward mental health services? What is the right balance between helping people who are on the edge and making sure they don’t get there in the first place?  It’s Your Call, with Hana Baba, and you.

On the November 11th edition of Your Call, we’ll have a conversation with the Norwegian surgeon Dr. Mads Gilbert about his new book Night in Gaza. Dr Gilbert chronicles his daily experiences in Al-Shifa hospital during Israel’s 2014 assault on Gaza.

Saving water, one flush at a time

Nov 10, 2015
Catherine Girardeau

Nobody at my house is very handy, so when there are plumbing issues, we go for the workarounds: like plunging, and putting buckets under leaky faucets to catch the drips and using the buckets to flush the toilets. 

Ray Bouknight / flickr

  On the November 5th edition of Your Call, we’ll talk about how California is weathering the drought. 

Breast Cancer Action

In the 1940’s a woman’s chances of getting breast cancer was one in twenty. Now it’s one in eight, despite the billions of dollars spent on awareness and the search for a cure.


Two sisters, Kathryn Sibley and Madelyn Blair, walk into the Dragonfly Ink Studio to get a touch-up on their matching tattoos. You can sense their excitement—they’re not scared of the needle and they’re not scared of the pain.