Chris Cherniak

Co-host of KPCW's This Green Earth.

Ways to Connect

Nell and Chris spoke with Nicholas Markels, a recent Park City High School graduate and winner of the Edison Award for his bio-degradable multi-function plastic spoon, fork, knife utensil called a Sporknife. Nick created and submitted 3-D images, engineering designs, and a photograph of the prototype he had built.
By designing a single, pull apart plastic utensil made from corn-based plastic, Nick hopes to entice businesses to choose his product for its cost effectiveness and environmental benefits.

Last year, legislators passed a bill that established the Utah Inland Port Authority. It will cover some 16,000 acres, or 25 square miles of land just west of the SLC airport; half of it north of I-80 and the other half south. The port will be comprised of warehouses, manufacturing facilities and distribution centers. Proponents of the port say it’s a unique economic opportunity that will bring jobs and connect the state directly to the flow of international trade. But opponents say, not so fast.

During photosynthesis, all plants emit low-levels of infrared light. Now, through the use of satellite technology, scientists are beginning to observe and quantify the health and wellness of forests through this combined flouresence. Troy Magney with the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory helped co-author a paper discussing this science and it's findings. He joins Chris Cherniak and Glen Wright to discuss the work and what it might mean to forest management.  

Can Summit County's forests be managed to sequester more carbon? Over half of the county is forested, and with forests under stress from climate and invasive species, what can be done to promote growth, reduce the threat of wildfires, and provide renewable energy? Summit County Councilman Glenn Wright and host Chris Cherniak discuss the issue and potential answers.   

John Lin, a professor of atmospheric sciences, discusses a new study that shows that the processes that create ozone pollution in the summer can also trigger the formation of air pollution in the winter. This unexpected finding suggests that certain efforts to reduce harmful wintertime air pollution may actually be backfiring. 

Jeff Bousson, Climate Program Manager for Summit Community Power Works, stops by to discuss the group's upcoming programs and activities associated with energy efficiency, energy waste, and renewable forms of electricity.

During the second segment of This Green Earth, Kelly Nokes, an attorney with the Western Environmental Law Center, joined Chris and Nell to discuss "cyanide bombs," or M-44 devices used to poison native wild predators such as coyotes on public land as well as private property. Kelly shared the current legal status of these and proposed legislation to discontinue their use.  

During the first half of the show, Nell and Chris learned about the Wasatch Wildlife Watch, a massive citizen science effort using camera traps to gather data about wildlife in the Wasatch Front and track how they are impacted by humans. Dr. Mary Pendergast, from Wild Utah Project, and Austin Green, with the University of Utah, joined Chris and Nell to share the details and how listeners can get involved as volunteers.

During today's show, Nell and Chris spoke with Daisy Fair, manager of Copper Moose Farm, about the upcoming 2019 season and the open house on Saturday that will kick it off.  Daisy discussed the subtleties of organic and biodynamic growing and shared some of the best practices used at the farm.  She also shared the news that Copper Moose Farm is now home to a rookery of Great Blue Herons.  

In the second half of the program, author John Ross talks about his new book, The Promise of the Grand Canyon: John Wesley Powell’s Perilous Journey and His Vision for the American West.

Today on This Green Earth, a study on wild bees. A groundbreaking, two-year study in southern Oregon found a greater abundance and diversity of wild bees in areas that experienced moderate and severe forest fires compared to areas with low-severity fires.

In this special "Best Of" edition of This Green Earth, Chris and Nell speak with author Earl Swift who discusses how the rising ocean is slowly making a unique island in the Chesapeake Bay disappear, making its 400 residents the first possible climate change refugees in America. 

In a special "Best Of" edition of This Green Earth, the first part of the program features how climate change is threatening America's National Parks, especially in the west. Chris and Nell visit with author Stephen Nash.

The third and final guest was Naomi Smith a sophomore at Park City High School, who gave a recap of the student-led Climate Strike at the Capitol Building in Salt Lake City, why she attend, and what she intends to do next.

The second guest on the show was Lauren Lockey, giving an overview of local non-profit Sage Mountain Rescue and their work providing sanctuary to rescued farm animals and educating about the impacts of eating meat and animal mistreatment.