On average, Americans spend 25 minutes commuting to work. Opting for public transit helps reduce your carbon footprint for that time, but all that commuting can get boring. If you're the type of commuter who always wears headphones, one way to make good use of the time you spend in transit is to take advantage of electronic resources like podcasts and lectures.
Navigating the sheer amount of audio (and video) content available can be overwhelming, so we've compiled a list of podcasts in a variety of categories to get you started. Whether you're looking for general environmental information or specific, or whether you'd like something super-green or just a little green, there's something here for you.
"Living on Earth": This weekly podcast from Public Radio International has been produced since 1991 and covers a variety of environmental topics related to culture, the economy and technology. During each episode, the host, Steve Curwood, talks with environmental experts and journalists about current environmental issues and issues we may face in the future.
NPR's Environment Podcast: Looking for a roundup of environmental news? This podcast from National Public Radio aggregates their environmental science reporting from many of their news programs. This podcast is only 30 minutes, but will sum up NPR's environmental coverage for the week. If you're interested in climate change, also check out NPR's "Climate Connections" podcast, which is a collaboration with National Geographic.
Sierra Club Radio: This half hour weekly program from the Sierra Club will provide you with interviews with plenty of interesting people (authors, celebrities, activists, etc.). Staff of Sierra Magazine also offer ideas for green living. Recent episodes cover all sorts of topics including clean energy, green colleges and wild foods you can find in your neighborhood.
"The Environment Report": Want quick bits of environmental news? Michigan Radio's "The Environment Report" is a weekly podcast that provides you a piece of environmental news in only four minutes. The news service explores the relationships between our everyday lives and the natural world through a variety of topics spanning everything from water quality to wildlife to cleaning products.
Food & Gardening Podcasts
"Earth Eats - Real Food, Green Living": Indiana Public Radio's "Earth Eats" offers a balance of news and recipes related to local and sustainable food in each weekly podcast. Each 30-minute episode offers interviews with farmers, chefs and others involved in the food movement, who will often give you suggestions for cooking at home.
"Gardening with GLT's Dean of Green": Starting a backyard garden this year? If so, this podcast is for you. Produced by Illinois State University's WGLT radio station, "Dean of Green" hosts Don Schmidt and Laura Kennedy offer plenty of gardening advice. Listeners can submit their questions and problems, which Don will answer on the show. Each episode is only 9 minutes long, so you'll probably be able to fit in more than one on your commute.
"Farmer.Food.Earth": Cooking Up a Story, a website offering short videos about organic food, gardening, food politics and more now offers a video series called "Farmer.Food.Earth" which focuses on connecting food to the farmers who grow it and the land they grow it on. Episode lengths vary, as does their content. Some provide recipes, others interviews, but all seek to find the story of food. Note: This is a video series, so it might be better suited to a tablet or smartphone.