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The Green Desk

95bFM's long-running green issues feature Green Desk, with Mitch Fuller.

The Green Desk: A Green Covid Response with Greenpeace's Amanda Larsson: March 31, 2020

The Green Desk - a Green Covid19 Response: March 31, 2020 The Green Desk - a Green Covid19 Response: March 31, 2020, 20.48 MB
Tue 31 Mar 2020

With finance minister Grant Robertson announcing billions of dollars to combat the effects of Covid-19 and the subsequent recession, some have seen this as an opportunity to change the way live, work and interact with our planet. Bronwyn spoke to Amanda Larsson from Greenpeace about their proposed Green Covid Response, which urges the government to invest this money into clean transformative industries and uplifting marginalised communities.

No doubt you have seen the stories about the positive impacts on the climate as a result of a world under rāhui. Whether it be pollution levels in New York reduced by nearly 50%, or a 40% drop in coal use by China's six largest power plants, the global pandemic has curbed carbon emissions in ways that climate activists have been trying unsuccessfully to do for decades. However in the long term, the International Energy Agency warns that Covid-19 could cause a slowdown in world’s clean energy transition. Bronwyn began by asking Amanda how we can ensure pollution levels don't just bounce back once the pandemic is over.

There is currently an online petition calling for Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to adopt the Green Covid Response, with a goal of 10,000 signatures.

The Green Desk: The eClean Bioreactor for cleaner rivers with Ngārie Scartozzi: March 24, 2020

The Green Desk: The eClean Bioreactor for cleaner rivers with Ngārie Scartozzi, March 24, 2020 The Green Desk: The eClean Bioreactor for cleaner rivers with Ngārie Scartozzi, March 24, 2020, 18.17 MB
Tue 24 Mar 2020

This week Bronwyn spoke to tutor and PhD student at University of Canterbury, Ngārie Scartozzi about her "eClean bioreactor" technology which cleans contaminants from water bodies. She has just received a grant of $150,000 from Astrolab and has 12 weeks to build a prototype of the bioreactor which has been the focus of her research for the past 15 years. A key focus of Scartozzi's work is integrating mātauranga Maori with scientific research.

She began by telling us what started her off on this journey.

The Green Desk: Sustainable Business Network's GulfX project with Phil Jones: March 17, 2020

The Green Desk: Sustainable Business Network's GulfX project with Phil Jones: March 17, 2020 The Green Desk: Sustainable Business Network's GulfX project with Phil Jones: March 17, 2020, 25.74 MB
Tue 17 Mar 2020

Today on the Green Desk, Bronwyn had a kо̄rero with Phil Jones from the Sustainable Business Network about their GulfX project which aims to restore the mauri of the Hauraki Gulf. The recently published State of our Gulf report highlighted the increasingly dire state of the marine park.  Some of the more shocking statistics of the included the occurrence of ten mass mortality events due to fish and shellfish in the gulf in the past ten years, and nine toxic algal blooms. This is due in part to the fact that 3,730 tonnes of nitrogen flow into the Firth of Thames from rivers in Hauraki each year. Crayfish are also functionally extinct in the Gulf, despite once being one of its most abundant species.

While overfishing is undeniable a serious cause of biodiversity loss, the GulfX project chose to focus on some of the lesser-known terrestrial sources of environmental degradation such as sediment, plastic and heavy metals. 

Phil began by telling Bronwyn what we mean when we talk about the Hauraki Gulf:

 

The Green Desk: Whitebait Sustainability and Regulation with Hans Rook: March 10, 2020

The Green Desk: Whitebait Sustainability and Regulation with Hans Rook: March 10, 2020 The Green Desk: Whitebait Sustainability and Regulation with Hans Rook: March 10, 2020, 24.11 MB
Tue 10 Mar 2020

Whitebait fritters are a nationally iconic delicacy. But if we aren't careful, soon there may not be enough of the fish left to fill those fritters. 

'Whitebait' is really just a catch all term for the juveniles of six species of fish. Five of these are migratory galaxiids, specifically inanga, banded kōkopu, giant kōkopu, kōaro and shortjaw kōkopu. The sixth species is common smelt. Recently, three of these species were updated to the threat status of "at risk/declining" and a fourth being labeled as threatened.  It’s not surprising then, that in a 2018 nationwide survey, 90% of respondents said changes were needed to make New Zealand’s whitebait fishery sustainable. 

Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage believes the answer is through regulation and has made a number of proposals which are currently open to public submission. These include the creation of whitebait refuges, removing traps from nets, and shortening the whitebait fishing season. 

Bronwyn spoke to dedicated conservationist Hans Rook about his thoughts on the sustainability of whitebait fisheries, as well as the proposed regulations. Rook has worked in conservation for 42 years, and has been involved in the creation and protection of whitebait spawning sites since 1987. His unique approach has seen the Hawke’s Bay become the only place in the country to have an increasing whitebait population. 

He began by telling us about the life cycle of the fish species that we know as whitebait.

 

The Green Desk: The nationally critical shore plover with Rebecca Diederichsen, March 03, 2020

The Green Desk: The nationally critical shore plover with Rebecca Diederichsen, March 03, 2020 The Green Desk: The nationally critical shore plover with Rebecca Diederichsen, March 03, 2020, 26.76 MB
Tue 3 Mar 2020

This week on the first Green Desk of the year, new producer Bronwyn Wilde interviews with Rebecca  Diederichsen from Kotahi Aviary,  a captive breeding facility for the critically endangered shore plover bird. Formed in 2018 by the Department of Conservation and local Hawke's Bay philanthropist Andy Lowe, the aviary is the third of its kind in the country. With seven resident birds, its goal is to breed 40 chicks a year for release onto offshore islands.  Rebecca, the sole employee at the aviary, talks about some of the successes and challenges of the project so far.

If you’re thinking - what on earth is a shore plover!?!? Then you’re probably in the same boat as a lot of New Zealanders. An endemic shorebird, they are very much in need of the spotlight, as there are only around 250 birds left. Rebecca begins by telling us a bit more about what exactly a shore plover is.

The Green Desk: December 10, 2019

The Green Desk: December 10, 2019 The Green Desk: December 10, 2019, 21.61 MB
Tue 10 Dec 2019

Earlier this year on Green Desk, Mitchell Fuller spoke to Hugh Wilson from the Hinewai reserve. In July this year there was a film made about the reserve and about Hugh Wilson, the Manager. 
 the Fools and Dreamers film made by Happen Film can be found on YouTube at  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3VZSJKbzyMc&fbclid=IwAR3XF9C5LJ7U1q0no7f4u6Ozt_VCVVmQFDf1zyuHfLAL7wAjINhexPnLf1Q )

We thought we would revisit this story from earlier this year. Mitchell and Hugh discuss the carbon credits system available at Hinewai which has become increasingly popular with large businesses allowing them to offset unavoidable greenhouse gas emissions. The system has allowed the reserve to expand and encompass a significant area on the peninsula which has rejuvenated naturally without planting and minimal pest control. Mitchell begins by asking Hugh a little bit about the history of the Reserve and how its arrived at where its at today. 
 

The Green Desk: December 3, 2019

The Green Desk: December 3, 2019 The Green Desk: December 3, 2019, 19.87 MB
Tue 3 Dec 2019

This week on Green Desk, Mitch speaks Cawthron Institue’s Dr Susie Wood who is leading
the Lakes380 Project. Currently Lakes380 is the largest undertaking of data collection on
Lakes done in New Zealand possibly the world, making use of the best technology in the
world. Mitchell and Susie discuss the scale of the project and the processes involved with
such a large undertaking. To begin, Mitch asks Susie to explain what Lakes380 is.

Tomato Pill: The First Natural Male Fertility Pill w/ Sam Hunter November 19, 2019

Tomato Pill: The First Natural Male Fertility Pill w/ Sam Hunter November 19, 2019 Tomato Pill: The First Natural Male Fertility Pill w/ Sam Hunter November 19, 2019, 20.48 MB
Tue 19 Nov 2019

Male infertility is a serious issue in Australia and Aotearoa and there is currently no medical solution besides ‘getting healthy’ to solve it. It is an issue that isn’t discussed enough throughout society and is responsible for 50% of infertility in couples. This week on Green Desk Mitch speaks to Ateronon founder Sam Hunter about the Tomato Pill. Sam has been on a mission to create the first ever naturally occurring male fertility pill which was based off the information and statistics about the benefits of the mediterrenean diet. He has since developed the tomato pill which has enhanced the bioavailability of the lycopene in tomatoes to increase grade A sperm in men by up to nearly 50%. To begin, Mitch asks Sam what gives the tomato the ability to help with male infertility.

 

The Green Desk: November 12, 2019

The Green Desk: November 12, 2019 The Green Desk: November 12, 2019, 29.13 MB
Tue 12 Nov 2019

At the Green Desk today, Oscar Perress talks to Dr Julia Albrecht about the Tiaki Promise and about making a sustainable future for the tourism industry. Tune in to find out more! 

 

The Green Desk: November 5, 2019

The Green Desk: November 5, 2019 The Green Desk: November 5, 2019, 16.88 MB
Tue 5 Nov 2019

This week on Green Desk, Mitchell speaks to Tūpuna Maunga Authority Manager Nick Turoa about the recent planting of 3000 native species on Ōwairaka. Mitch and Nick discuss the TMA’s plans for the ecological restoration of Tūpuna Maunga and their next steps in removing the exotic species on  Ōwairaka. To begin, Mitch began by asking Nick about the establishment of the Tūpuna Maunga Authority, their role and aspirations for Tāmaki Makaurau’s Maunga.