As part of our series on Leaders in Energy and Climate Solutions, we talk to architect and building scientist Monica Rokicki-Guajardo, founder and CEO of Better Building Works. Later in the show, we think about beauty and goodness, and how they’re related. Perhaps some evil things are also attractive, but are they beautiful?
The USDA’s Rural Energy for America Program announces the recipients of this year’s awards – seeds well sown in this case. Chesterfield County, Virginia wants to build a 30 MW solar farm. But, the dead zone of toxic algae along the Gulf Coast keeps growing – while back East refineries explode and coal trains wreck. We also listen to a bird story about immigration – Cocky Cockatoo wants to stop the Central American flycatchers at the border, proclaiming that “Nets Work.” Finally, can places like Europe and N. America, whose populations have formed from eons of immigration, say who the “true people” of their lands are?
A single individual is a multiplicity of types and relations. I am one thing and many things. How I understand my sameness and difference in regard to other beings in the biosphere has profound moral implications – just as a society’s understanding of its unity and diversity has deep political implications. News: the American medical profession makes another plea for action, saying that our climate crisis is a health emergency. The expansion of tick populations is one serious case in point. Also: how natural lighting makes us healthier and happier, and how energy efficiency helps the political fight for climate action.
Life puts a constant demand on us to make decisions about control. It’s sometimes good to control things and sometimes bad. When it comes to other people, our respect for their autonomy requires “persuasion” rather than coercion, threat, or force. But, persuasion might still be a form of control, if it’s pushing buttons inside people that they themselves don’t even have control over. We also cover hot news from Europe, a coal-surpassing milestone for American renewables, the surprising impact of buildings, and a great climate action website for kids. In our story, Fern & Meredith “partly” learn a lesson about trying to control teenagers.