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The SustainUW Podcast

The SustainUW Podcast

By UW-Madison Office of Sustainability
The SustainUW Podcast is created and hosted by student interns from the UW-Madison Office of Sustainability. Each episode explores a different question related to sustainability as it impacts the UW-Madison campus and the broader community. Guests include professors, student activists, campus staff, and other experts who help hosts uncover the complicated story of sustainability. This podcast examines common narratives of environmentalism and questions the status quo, seeking to understand what’s up with sustainability and where we should go from here.
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Green Paths: Lori Peppard, Second Harvest Foodbank
In our latest episode of the Green Paths series, host Eliza Lindley speaks with Lori Peppard, who is a service area representative at Second Harvest Foodbank. From teaching in California to working for the Red Cross, Lori has had a wealth of experiences that have brought her to this stage in her career. Listen in as Eliza talks with Lori and traces her path to a career in hunger relief--which also has close ties with various aspects of sustainability.  About the Green Paths series There a million options when it comes to where to work, what kind of work to do, and which of the countless, pressing environmental issues to focus on. When it all feels so fuzzy and overwhelming, where we do we even begin? In this series, host Eliza Lindley talks with people who have built successful environmental careers in their own lives. How did they start out in their field? Where are they today? And what was the often non-linear squiggle of experience that got them there?
May 18, 2022
Wicked Problems: Food Systems and Sustainable Diets
What makes for a sustainable food system? How do we balance our personal and cultural food habits with our impact on the planet and each other? And what is a "sustainable diet" anyway? In this episode of the Wicked Problems series, hosts Rose Adler-Rephan and Kylie Thomasen speak with two special guests from UW–Madison: Tom Bryan, who is a teaching faculty member in the Organic Agriculture certificate and a Greenhouse Supervisor at the Greenhouse Learning Community; and Brad Boley, who is a faculty member in the Department of Food Science and leads a research program in food chemistry and health.
April 15, 2022
Hot Topics: Wolf Hunting in Wisconsin
Gray wolves elicit conflicting reactions in American culture, from awe and reverence to fear and hatred. They are also a hot topic lately, as different groups and political forces argue about whether they should be included on the federal endangered species list and whether states like Wisconsin should allow hunting seasons for them. But how did the gray wolf get on the endangered species list in the first place? And why do some Wisconsinites, and Americans in general, seem trigger-happy when it comes to wolves? In this episode of Hot Topics, hosts Norma Behrend-Martinez and Grace Martin explore the state of the wolf hunt in Wisconsin as well as the deeper cultural and environmental history of wolf-human relationships. Assisted by UW–Madison Professor Adrian Treves, they also delve into the deep insight and fundamentally different philosophies offered by indigenous perspectives on wolves. 
March 01, 2022
Green Paths: Tim Lindstrom, Office of Sustainability Intern Program Manager
In our first episode of the Green Paths series, host Eliza Lindley speaks with Dr. Tim Lindstrom, who is the intern program manager for the UW–Madison Office of Sustainability as well as an instructor in the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies. We'll hear about Tim's journey from Kansas City to Sweden to Madison, and how Tim's varied experiences, educational background, and personal interests finally landed him in his current position.  About the Green Paths series There a million options when it comes to where to work, what kind of work to do, and which of the countless, pressing environmental issues to focus on. When it all feels so fuzzy and overwhelming, where we do we even begin? In this series, host Eliza Lindley talks with people who have built successful environmental careers in their own lives. How did they start out in their field? Where are they today? And what was the often non-linear squiggle of experience that got them there? 
December 13, 2021
Wicked Problems: Single-Use Plastics
Plastic: it's everywhere, it's incredibly useful, and it offers certain accessibility advantages--but it's a huge sustainability issue. In our first episode of the Wicked Problems series, hosts Rose Adler-Rephan and Kylie Thomasen explore the thorny tradeoffs that we face with single-use plastics.  Series Description When it comes to sustainability, wicked problems seem to be everywhere. As the Harvard Business Review explains, “A wicked problem has innumerable causes, is tough to describe, and doesn’t have a right answer.” In each episode of this series, we’ll discuss the issues, impacts, and controversies of a sustainability-related problem in hopes of helping you deal with them in your everyday life.
November 15, 2021
New Series, New Hosts: Introducing Season Two
Welcome back to The SustainUW Podcast, hosted by student interns at the UW–Madison Office of Sustainability! For our second season, we're delighted to bring you a new approach and a new set of hosts. Over the coming year, we'll be dividing our episodes into three series: Wicked Problems, Green Paths, and Hot Topics. Learn more about each of these series in today's introduction episode and meet the whole podcast crew!
October 27, 2021
Adventures in Fermentation (bonus episode)
Host Marina Minic takes listeners on a delightfully zany yet informative trip through her adventures with fermentation, from cheese to yogurt to kombucha. Come along for the ride--and try out her kombucha recipe when you're done! 
July 27, 2021
Earth Day Activism (bonus episode)
We all know that Earth Day commemorates our planet and offers people an opportunity to dedicate themselves to living more sustainable lives. But what's the history of Earth Day, and how has that history intersected with a broader history of social and environmental activism, especially on college campuses? In this bonus episode, hosts Catie McDonald and Marina Minic explore these questions and interview students at an Earth Day rally on the UW–Madison campus. 
June 02, 2021
Farmers, Markets, and Justice
What is the history of farmers markets and how can they be used as a tool for justice? What is direct trade and how does it differ from Fair Trade? In this episode, which was made in collaboration with the Social Justice Hub, hosts Marina Minic and Arushi Gupta discuss markets and trade with special guests: Alfonso Morales, who is Vilas distinguished achievement professor at UW–Madison and managing director at Farm2Facts; and Aureal Ojeda, entrepreneur and founder of Outwoken tea, a direct trade tea supplier.
May 26, 2021
A Conversation with Carolyn Finney
In this rich and wide-ranging conversation, storyteller, cultural geographer, and "accidental environmentalist" Carolyn Finney speaks with hosts Hannah Kasun and Savannah Holt about race, history, environmental belonging, "colorblindness," and much more. Dr. Finney is the author of Black Faces, White Spaces: Reimagining the Relationship of African Americans to the Great Outdoors (UNC Press, 2014) and is artist-in-residence and the Environmental Studies Professor of Practice in the Franklin Environmental Center at Middlebury College.
May 11, 2021
Student Athlete Leaders for Sustainability, ft. Claire Carlson (bonus episode)
With 23 teams and 900 athletes, the Wisconsin Badgers are a huge part of the UW–Madison experience. But that big athletics enterprise also means a lot of resource use and a significant opportunity for sustainability interventions. In this bonus episode, hosted by Catie McDonald and Hannah Kasun, we explore a new student athlete sustainability organization called SALS, or Student Athlete Leaders for Sustainability. Our special guest on this episode is Claire Carlson, a member of the lightweight rowing team who offers insight into why she loves working with SALS and what she's looking forward to in its future. 
April 14, 2021
Greenwashing and St. Patty's Day (bonus episode)
Not everyone celebrates St. Patty's day, but it's hard not to notice the green color suddenly washing over many of our cities and towns. In Chicago, they even dye the river green. But what about that other kind of greenwashing--where companies claim "eco" or "organic" labels but don't really back up their claims? In this bonus episode, hosts Norma Behrend-Martinez and Catie McDonald share their St. Patty's traditions and then offer a quick but detailed overview of greenwashing and how to avoid it. 
March 22, 2021
American Indian Activism (ft. Kasey Keeler)
What were you taught in grade school or high school about American Indians? For many of us, the Native Nations in the United States were historicized, relegated to quick and often deeply problematic anecdotes set in the distant past. But of course, this dynamic obscures the lives of present-day American Indians and their ongoing role in shaping the places in which they live. In this episode, hosts Norma Behrend-Martinez and Catie McDonald look to vital examples of American Indian activism that have occurred across the United States in recent years, and particularly pay attention to examples that touch on environmental concerns. They are joined in this episode by special guest Kasey Keeler, who is a faculty member in Civil Society and Community Studies and American Indian studies at UW–Madison.
February 24, 2021
Valentine's Day—Yay or Nay? (bonus episode)
When it comes to Valentine's Day, are you a heart-flutterer or an eye-roller? Would you prefer chocolate and roses or an "emo party" with friends? Hosts Savannah Holt, Norma Behrend-Martinez, and Marina Minic debate the pros and cons of Valentine's Day, and along the way ask: can it be sustainable as well as sweet?
February 13, 2021
Local Food Systems (ft. Molly DeVore and Chris Brockel)
What does food access and food security look like in Dane County, Wisconsin? What sort of organizations and nonprofits grow and distribute food to those who need it, and how have they adapted during the pandemic? In Episode 3 of our first season, hosts Hannah Kasun and Marina Minic discuss local food systems, and along the way speak with two special guests: Molly DeVore, who is the Urban Agriculture Director of FHKing, a group of UW–Madison students interested in sustainable agriculture; and Chris Brockel, who is the FEED Kitchens manager and who coordinates a food recovery and distribution project called Healthy Food for All. 
December 21, 2020
Gatekeeping the Great Outdoors (ft. Sheamus Johnson and Midy Aponte)
What figures and ideas have shaped the way we understand the "great outdoors" in the United States? And how have established narratives about the great outdoors obscured privilege, racism, and BIPOC histories while celebrating conservation and wilderness? In Episode 2 of our first season, hosts Hannah Kasun and Norma Behrend-Martinez explore the complicated legacies of figures like John Muir, Gifford Pinchot, Henry David Thoreau, and Theodore Roosevelt, whose influence extends to the present. To deepen this discussion, Episode 2 features two special guests: Midy Aponte, who is a communications specialist and former Executive Director of the American Latino Heritage Fund of the National Park Foundation; and Sheamus Johnson, PhD student and teaching assistant at UW–Madison who has taught a variety of environmental studies courses.
November 22, 2020
Low-Waste Holidays (bonus episode)
Hosts Savannah Holt and Marina Minic share ideas on how to make the holiday season more sustainable. According to Use Less Waste, people in the USA produce approximately 25 million tons more garbage from the end of November to the beginning of January than they do the rest of the year. Savannah and Marina address the issue of waste, how to combat food waste, fun ideas for presents, alternative gift wraps, and more!
November 16, 2020
Voting in Wisconsin (bonus episode)
Description:   In this bonus episode, hosts Marina Minic and Cassie Sanford dive into the world of voting in Wisconsin in 2020. They talk about who will be on the Wisconsin ballot and then focus on all of the logistics like registering to vote, requesting an absentee ballot, and voting in person. This episode is filled with many important dates, which we'll highlight again below: Oct. 15 - Nov. 1: Register to vote in clerk’s office or satellite office October 20: First date city clerks can offer early in-person voting October 29: Last day to request an absentee ballot by mail October 30: Last day to register to vote, OR you can register to vote on Election Day at your polling place Tuesday, November 3rd: Election Day Important Links: Events on the UW–Madison campus regarding voting Absentee Ballot return options in Madison, WI Information about the referendums on the Madison, WI Ballot
October 16, 2020
Sustain-a-Bash and University Housing sustainability, ft. Malorie Garbe (bonus episode)
In this bonus episode, hosts Natalie Tinsen and Brooke Bowser speak with the new Sustainability Coordinator for University Housing, Malorie Garbe, about how her career led her to UW–Madison and why she's excited for this year's virtual Sustain-a-Bash events, which are happening from September 30-October 7, 2020!
October 01, 2020
What is Sustainability? (ft. special guest Missy Nergard)
Sustainability is a contemporary buzzword, but what does it really mean? How are environmental, social, and economic sustainability interrelated? And what's happening with sustainability on the UW–Madison campus? In Episode 1 of our first season, hosts Savannah Holt and Catie McDonald dive into the concept of sustainability before welcoming to the show Missy Nergard, who is the Director of Sustainability at UW–Madison. Have a listen to hear about Nergard's philosophy and approach to campus sustainability, and why she thinks UW–Madison is such an exciting place to be. 
September 01, 2020
The SustainUW Podcast Trailer (Season One)
What's the SustainUW Podcast all about? Have a listen to our trailer and then subscribe!
August 28, 2020