The Joy Trip Project | Reporting on the Business, Art & Culture of the Sustainable Active Lifestyle
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Capital Region Business Journal, Kids in Nature, Outdoor Recreation, philanthropy / 04.03.2010

Eight-year-old Savanna Lee is discovering wonderful things about the world around her. “I learned that there’s a whole bunch of stuff under the water,” she said, “things like bugs and beetles, not just fish. It’s exciting!” A student at Glendale Elementary School in Madison, Savanna is among many local children that benefit from an environmental education program offered by the Aldo Leopold Nature Center. Every Monday afternoon for ten weeks of the year Savanna and her classmates explore nearby forests, streams and marshlands. Called Nature Nuts, the course creates safe and enjoyable outdoor experiences for area youth whose families cannot afford traditional after-school activities.
Assignment Earth, This American Land / 03.03.2010

Last year the only known wild jaguar in the United States was captured in a trap and euthanized by Arizona Wildlife authorities. The death of this big cat, called Macho-B, triggered a federal investigation that found violations of the procedures that are meant to protect endangered species. But at the heart of this case are a number of federal wildlife protections that were tossed out in favor of the “Secure Fence Act.” In this edition of the This American Land we take look at the ecological impact of a 600-mile barrier along the Mexican boarder. Ostensibly to keep immigrants from illegally entering the U.S. this border fence is also preventing the migration of several animal species. Our jaguars here depend on a source population in Mexico that are dispersing up to the United States looking for habitat, looking for mates, looking to establish new territories,” said Randy Serraglio of the Center for Biological Diversity. “And if they can’t get through that border wall, they’re not gonna come here.”
Commentary, philanthropy / 02.03.2010

For more than a year now it’s been my pleasure to bring you the stories behind the selfless causes of people trying to make the world a better place. The mission of the Joy Trip Project is to explore the lives of those who blend their passion for adventure with their desire to work for the benefit of others or toward the preservation of life on our planet. In my own way I hope that I have contributed to the success of their causes by bringing them to your attention and encouraging you to participate. So in the spirit of that mission I’m pleased to announce a new Joy Trip Project initiative. On August 29, 2010 I will join a small group of climbers to ascend the summit of Mount Fuji in Japan. Organized by the non-profit Love Hope Strength this event aims to raise money and awareness for the fight against cancer. Fuji Rocks! is the lasted in a series of climbs that feature a base-camp live music concert along with a drive to register new bone marrow donors to the national database of those willing to help a leukemia patient in need of a bone marrow transplant. It is my plan that with your help over the next five months The Joy Trip Project will raise $6,000 to $10,000 for this cause and register at least 1,000 new donors.
Music, Podcast / 28.02.2010

An interview with Love Hope Strength executive director Shannon Foley

A couple of weeks ago I got an email from my friend Maitri. A friend of hers was in serious trouble and she wanted my help. "I’d seen her the day before and everything was fine. And she said, 'I think my husband has leukemia'." Maitri said. "And they’ve checked him into the UW cancer ward." Here in Madison the University of Wisconsin is home to one of top research facilities in the county the Carbone Cancer Center. With very little notice Maitri’s friend was immediately admitted to the affiliated community hospital. "I was most surprised with how quickly it happened and how urgently the medical profession had to respond," Maitri said. "Sunday I was at church with her. She went home after church. Her husband said 'I have some pain in my legs. I think I’ll go to the doctor tomorrow.' And she said 'Let’s give the nurse on call a quick phone call and just make sure this is fine.' The nurse said you need to go to the emergency room now. We went and they were ready to check him into the hospital that afternoon. So one minute fine, leg cramp, next minute checked into the UW Hospital ward." "With leukemia,"I said. "Correct," she said.
Assignment Earth, Video / 27.02.2010

Tougher Drilling Rules on Public Land

Produced by Melinda Binks and Rebecca Hunting Drilling on public land supplies 27 percent of the nation’s natural gas. But producing this relatively cheap, clean burning fuel comes at a cost. “We’re having traditions disrupted,” said Steve Belinda, of the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership. “Places where extended families would spend two weeks hunting and camping together, all of the sudden they show up and they’re in the middle of some energy development with big trucks and noise and tons of roads.” This edition of Assignment Earth takes a look at new regulations enacted by the Obama administration that require an environmental impact report to be filed in advance of drilling on public land. Question: Should the recreational use and preservation of public land supercede oil and gas drilling that could speed the recovery of our economy and reduce our dependence on foreign sources of energy?
Assignment Earth, Environmental Protection / 26.02.2010

There’s a new media organization dedicated to environmental reporting. Assignment Earth creates compelling news stories on issues related to wildlife conservation, industrial pollution, destruction of natural habitats and the ecological impact of climate change.  Distributed online, and on Public Broadcasting Service stations nationwide  under the title This American Land, AE programs aim to educate viewers on these issues, encourage other reporters to cover similar stories, and to energize public debate.