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Earth Day: Around the Nation

Earth Day was first celebrated on April 22, 1970, one year after an oil spill off the coast of Santa Barbara, Calif. leaked 100,000 barrels of oil into the ocean. At the time, it was the largest oil spill in U.S. history. Since then, the day has been claimed by environmentalists as a time for activism, education, and celebration of the environment.

In honor of the 41st Earth Day, we have collected some recent environmental, science, and nature reporting from the public media landscape.

Watch a special from WNET in New York that investigates the state’s natural water ways and drinking water sources.

Watch the full episode. See more THIRTEEN Documentaries.

San Francisco’s KQED is celebrating the planet for the entire month of April in what they’re calling “Earth Celebration 2011”. One report in the series takes a look at California’s water budget.

QUEST on KQED Public Media.

Facebook recently opened its first custom built data center in Prineville, Ore., which boasts environmentally friendly features such as LED lighting and natural ventilation. But, as OPB reports, environmentalists are not pleased that the data center runs on coal.

When it comes to environmentalism, sometimes the obvious purchases and practices are the greenest. Marketplace’s Kai Ryssdal and Freakonomics Radio’s Stephen Dubner discuss “conspicuous conservation”, when people show off the various ways in which they are protecting the environment.

Listen to an interview from KPBS with Annie Leonard, author of “The Story of Stuff”. Leonard spent a decade traveling the globe and tracking where stuff comes from and where it goes.

In 2008 the state of Massachusetts passed an act mandating an 80% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. A new study suggests that residents still have a long way to go in reaching their goal. Read a report from WCAI’s Climatide blog.

NOVA’S most recent episode focuses on where we get our power, how we use it, and the role emerging technologies that will fuel the future.

Watch the episode here:

Watch the full episode. See more NOVA.

The town of Vienna, Va. hoped to encourage people to reduce their carbon footprint in small ways at their green expo, as WAMU reports.

In 1960, Texas author John Graves published his first book, “Goodbye to a River”. It was an account of a canoe trip down the Brazos River and how the proposed dams along the waterway would affect the area. Listen to an interview with Graves on KERA’s Art&Seek blog.

This year Earth Day falls on Good Friday, when Christians around the world commemorate the crucifixion of Jesus Christ three days before Easter. New Hampshire Public Radio’s Word of Mouth talks to Denise Turcotte, Sister of Holy Cross from Manchester, about the connection she sees between Earth Day and Good Friday.

And, in a five-part series, Robert Krulwich of Radiolab explains carbon emissions from carbon’s point of view, explaining why carbon is so eager to bond with oxygen:

WHYY in Philadelphia asks residents to grade power sources, and finds a complicated story.

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