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48 minutes | Nov 22, 2021
Trace Material Live: The Plastics Inferno
Over the course of this season, we’ve told stories of iconic plastic objects like Tupperware and Bakelite and looked at how this material has woven itself into our culture and our bodies. We’ve traced how we found ourselves in the plastics age, but what comes next?To help us envision the future plastics, we invited Pete Myers to speak with us in our first ever live taping of Trace Material. Pete is the founder and chief scientist at Environmental Health Sciences (which publishes the famous Environmental Health News) and Adjunct Professor of Chemistry at Carnegie Mellon University. Pete has decades of experience in the chemistry of plastics, particularly with a class of chemicals called endocrine disruptors––a term he coined in the early 90s and explored in the best selling book he co-authored called “Our Stolen Future."We know the 3 R’s (reduce, reuse, recycle) and explored the myth of plastics recycling in this season of the podcast. In this episode Pete makes his argument for a new set of R’s: rethink, redesign, reform. Subscribe and listen to the episode on Apple, Spotify, Stitcher, or anywhere you listen to podcasts.Have you enjoyed this season? Let us know on Apple Podcasts Trace Material is a project of Parsons Healthy Materials Lab at The New School. It is hosted and produced by Ava Robinson and Burgess Brown. Our project director is Alison Mears, and our research assistant is Olivia Hamilton. Trace Material was made possible by funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Our theme music is Rainbow Road by Cardioid. Additional music from Blue Dot Sessions.
25 minutes | Sep 22, 2021
The Social History of Plastics
We're looking back at the stories we've told on this season of Trace Material. How did we find ourselves living in the plastics age and where might we go from here? Be sure to go back and listen to any episodes you may have missed this season! For more information, head to our website at healthymaterialslab.org/podcast, or give us a follow on Instagram @healthymaterialslab and Twitter @parsons_HML. If you've been enjoying this season, please take a moment to rate and review us on Apple Podcasts.
27 minutes | Sep 8, 2021
Our Plastic Future
More than any other generation, Gen Z’s lives have been marked by climate change and climate anxiety. In this episode of Trace Material, we speak to young climate activists to understand how they’re imagining a future away from plastics and a materials designer working to make that future a reality. For more information, head to our website at healthymaterialslab.org/podcast, or give us a follow on Instagram @healthymaterialslab and Twitter @parsons_HML. If you've been enjoying this season, please take a moment to rate and review us on Apple Podcasts.
29 minutes | Aug 25, 2021
The Guilt Eraser
The nation’s first plastic bag ban in Suffolk County, NY set off panic in the plastics industry. How did industry create the myth of recycling and squash potential bag bans?We speak to Assemblyman Steve Englebright, who sponsored the bag ban in 1988, about the decades long fight to ban plastic bags in Suffolk County and the tactics used by the plastic industry to thwart these bans. Plus, Kara Napolitano from SIMS Municipal Recycling Facility in Brooklyn offers us a new way to think about plastics recycling. For more information, head to our website at healthymaterialslab.org/podcast, or give us a follow on Instagram @healthymaterialslab and Twitter @parsons_HML. If you've been enjoying this season, please take a moment to rate and review us on Apple Podcasts.
35 minutes | Aug 11, 2021
Dance Against the Incinerator
The push to promote disposable plastics created mountains of new waste that will never biodegrade. The burden of that waste has been placed almost entirely on the shoulders of low-income communities of color. This week, activists share a story of community opposition to the construction of a garbage incinerator in the Ironbound neighborhood of Newark during the 1980s, and their ongoing fight for environmental justice. For more information, head to our website at healthymaterialslab.org/podcast, or give us a follow on Instagram @healthymaterialslab and Twitter @parsons_HML. If you've been enjoying this season, please take a moment to rate and review us on Apple Podcasts.
23 minutes | Jul 28, 2021
Out of the Factory
The connections between vinyl chloride and diseases like cancer were first understood inside the factory setting. Workers were quite literally on the frontline. But today we're taking you outside the factory walls and into fenceline communities and suburban homes.For part one of this story, listen to The House of Documents.For more information regarding PVC and vinyl chloride, head to our episode page.
30 minutes | Jul 14, 2021
The House of Documents
In the 1970s, workers in PVC factories across the country began getting sick with a rare form of liver cancer. While the plastics industry claimed they were unaware of what was causing that cancer, internal documents told a different story. Today we’re telling a story about corporate concealment, cancer, and of course, plastic.
34 minutes | Jun 30, 2021
Mi Sueño Tupperware
In post-war America everything that people touched––paint, fabric, dishes, jewelry––could be made of plastic. But how did this first generation living in a plastic world learn to accept it as part of their daily lives?
23 minutes | Jun 16, 2021
The Fourth Kingdom
Our story starts at the turn of the twentieth century, when the natural materials everyday objects were made from were becoming scarce. Enter the era of the inventor, it was time to forge new materials and build a new world.
3 minutes | Apr 7, 2021
Season 2 Trailer
Here's a first listen of Trace Material Season 2: Stories from the Plastics Age, coming your way June 16th! We were curious: what will future societies think of us when they dig up relics of our present day?
15 minutes | Oct 14, 2020
Looking Back at Hemp
This will be our last episode of Season 1. We’re taking a look back at all we’ve learned over the last 12 episodes. We’ve traced the story of hemp from its colonial roots in America, through the war on drugs, and legalization. The future of the plant is wide open. And we hope as we all build it together, the past can be reckoned with instead of being pushed aside in favor of profit.
15 minutes | Sep 30, 2020
A New Dawn in New Castle
In this episode, we’re heading to New Castle to see how the folks at DON are building a hemp industry from the ground up to support their vision of healthy, affordable, accessible housing.
36 minutes | Sep 15, 2020
Talking Shop with Alex Sparrow
Alex Sparrow is repairing centuries old buildings across the UK, and in doing so, laying the groundwork for a carbon neutral future. As you may have guessed, he’s doing it with HempLime. Alex literally and figuratively wrote the book on HempLime construction and we were lucky enough to Talk Shop with him.Take a listen as Alex shares his wealth of experience from across the pond in the UK to help us understand what might be possible to grow the superstar HempLime material building industry right here in the US.
27 minutes | Sep 2, 2020
Talking Shop with Blake Eagle
On this week’s episode, we’re heading back to the Sun Valley to Talk Shop with Blake Eagle. Blake is a contractor who, after years of exposure to the unhealthy materials of standard practice building, decided to construct Idaho’s first HempLime home for his family. Blake shared with us the benefits of building with HempLime and the difference living with it has made to him and his family.
33 minutes | Aug 19, 2020
Talking Shop with Cameron McIntosh
This week we’re Talking Shop with Cameron McIntosh, the owner of hemp/lime construction company Americhanvre. Cameron is a leader in the emerging US HempLime landscape and in this episode, he chats with HML co-director Jonsara Ruth about how his past work with ceramics and working at a plant nursery led him to hemp.
33 minutes | Aug 5, 2020
Talking Shop with Mattie Mead
For our first ever Talking Shop episode, HML Director Alison Mears spoke with Hempitecture co-founder and CEO Mattie Mead.Based in Ketchum, ID, Hempitecture built the United States’ first public use hemp building as well as many private residences. Along with his co-founder, Mattie was on the 2020 Forbes list of 30 under 30 in manufacturing and industry. Mattie and his partners at Hempitecture hosted the first US Hemp Building Summit in 2019. Listen now to hear his exciting and innovative take on building with hemp!
12 minutes | Jul 22, 2020
The Natural Building Omnivore
This episode features Chris Magwood, who is our neighbor to the North. He talks to us about the industry's successes and struggles and what he hopes for the future. But...we don't just talk about hemp, Chris is a natural building omnivore and you'll never be able to guess the other plants he uses to build houses!
20 minutes | Jul 8, 2020
In this episode we’ll drop in on a HempLime construction workshop that we at Healthy Materials Lab hosted alongside CoExist Building, a HempLime company from Pennsylvania. HML Directors Alison Mears and Jonsara Ruth will take us through the basics of building with hemp and we’ll pay a visit to CoExist’s farm in Blandon, Pennsylvania to hear about their hemp house on wheels.
17 minutes | Jun 24, 2020
This episode we’re back in the Bluegrass State talking brass tacks with farmers who are dealing with the growing pains of a burgeoning hemp industry. We hear from the folks at Harrods Creek Farm in Goshen, Kentucky about the pitfalls and stumbling blocks they’ve encountered as they scale up an industrial hemp operation on their small farm.
17 minutes | May 20, 2020
The Green Path
In Episode 4, we turn to Winona LaDuke. Winona is a two-time Vice Presidential nominee, an internationally renowned environmentalist...and a hemp farmer.With Winona's help, we’re backing up a little bit to look at the context of the American hemp boom. We know hemp has the potential to change our world, but what is it exactly about our world that needs to change? Part of what Winona thinks needs to change is our dependence on fossil fuels. Peter Hille, President the Mountain Association for Community and Economic Development would agree. He explains how extractive economies have ravaged Eastern Kentucky and lays out what a just transition for Appalachia will look like.
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