Waste Not Why Not

Waste Not Why Not

A science podcast on sustainability and about how NOT to save the environment. We look at some of the misinformed ways people try to protect the planet, and what we should be doing instead. Hosted by Nature N8 (Nate Maynard), an environmental researcher working on energy, ocean, and waste issues. Produced by Ghost Island Media in Taipei, Taiwan.... Show More

Episodes

What is it like working for giant corporations? What is it like holding corporate executives responsible for their impact on society? Nature N8 sits down with Christine Bader, former head of CSR for Amazon, and before that, a long-term employee at BP.    We discuss how Christine’s experiences in Indonesia, China, and the U.K. led her to revelations about sustainability and work culture, and where we can begin to think about the lif...

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Cannabis is legal for recreational use in eleven U.S. states and allowed for medical use in another 33. After decades of criminalization, what does the blooming cannabis industry mean for sustainability?   Nature N8 sits down with Dr. Jeff Chen, a doctor and entrepreneur who specializes in cannabis research and commercialization. We’ve heard that hemp can strengthen concrete, be used in automotive manufacturing, or even make super ...

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April 22, 2020 21 min

It’s our one-year anniversary! Hurray! We were launched last year on Earth Day as a sarcastic podcast fighting against greenwashing. The show has since become so much more.   For this special episode, Nature N8 looks back on his journey with our new production assistant, Yu-Chen. They interview almost everyone who had a hand in creating Waste Not Why Not, and find out what it really means to work on a science podcast. 

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The Honorable Dr. Jane Lubchenco was the appointed Administrator of NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) from 2009 to 2013 under U.S. President Obama. This episode, Dr. Jane discuss with Nature N8 the responsibility of scientists, her intense four years administering NOAA, and the future of the ocean.  Fellow disciples of the ocean: it’s here! Our interview with the “ocean goddess” herself is finally here! This ep...

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April 6, 2020 18 min

At AAAS, N8 and Emily spoke to the Honorable Dr. Jane Lubchenco, former head of NOAA under US President Obama and current Ocean Goddess. But wait! That’s next episode. First, what even is NOAA?!   This week, Nature N8 talks about the US “ocean department”: its Frankenstein birth, its role in the GDP, and how its latest leader weathered through 770 tornados, 70 hurricanes and tropical storms, 6 floods, 3 tsunamis, and a partridge pe...

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We’ve spent the past couple decades trying to get through to climate skeptics, but WHY exactly are conspiracy theories so credible for some people? This week, Nature N8 chats with Professor Stephan Lewandowsky about the psychological nature of science denialism. Professor Lewandowsky is the chair of Cognitive Psychology at the School of Experimental Psychology, University of Bristol. He has studied people’s belief in conspiracy the...

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March 11, 2020 12 min

After many educational chats with science educators, N8 makes an educated guess… Maybe he’s a science educator too!  This week on Waste Not Why Not, N8 talks about what he learned from AAAS (the American Association for the Advancement of Science), reflects on his trip back home, and what this all means for his new found purpose in science communication. 

Support “Waste Not Why Not” on Patreon. Follow us on Twitter @wasteno...

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March 2, 2020 56 sec

We’ll be back next week with brand-new episodes.  Nature N8 and producer Emily Y. Wu have just returned from a two-week trip to the U.S. We spoke to a lot of really interesting people and can’t wait to share these episodes with you.  We spoke to the former head of NOAA under US President Obama. A cognitive scientist on the rejection of science. A doctor who founded the first cannabis lab at UCLA. An ex-CSR person who worked at both...

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February 17, 2020 15 min

It’s common to blame climate change on population growth. Even Dame Jane Goodall recently said so. Nature N8 used to be a population control advocate. He explains why he changed his mind. 

Support “Waste Not Why Not” on Patreon. Follow us on Twitter @wastenotpod. Send questions to ask@wastenotwhynot.com. Subscribe to “Waste Not a Newsletter" on Substack.

EPISODE CREDIT | Allison Chan, producer, editor | Nate Maynard...

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There’s a $35 million problem in the fight to reduce marine plastics. It’s called “The Ocean Cleanup.” You have seen the video clips: a young hero invents a solution to ocean plastic. But is it that simple? Today, Nature N8 breaks down the high tech high-seas cleanup device. We also hear from Irene Hofmeijer, founder of a social enterprise in Peru that’s been cleaning up coastlines. They played a key role in banning single-use plas...

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January 14, 2020 15 min

Treating yourself with carbon offsets is apparently soothing for climate anxiety. (With 2020 vision?) Nature N8 calculates his carbon footprint and shops for the cheapest offset. But the retail therapy concludes that carbon offsets are very... off.    

FOOTNOTE | Carbon Footprint Calculator | The Global Footprint Network | The Gold Standard  

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December 30, 2019 27 min

We take another sip from our earlier episode about straws. Since then, Taiwan has introduced its plastic straw ban. But paper straws are still not the solution to our beverage needs. At the end of the episode, we also have our first listener question!  Nate was interviewed about the plastic straw ban.

Support “Waste Not Why Not” on Patreon. Follow us on Twitter @wastenotpod. View show notes. Send questions to ask@waste...

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December 15, 2019 11 min

Two major things happened this week: 1/ COP (Conference of the Parties - ie the only time countries meet to negotiate climate agreements) just wrapped up in Spain. 2/ Youth climate activist Greta Thunberg was named TIME Person of the Year. Today, we discuss something in between. Every year at COP, young activists continue to be at the front of the conversation. This episode, we meet a climate activist from Taiwan who’s attendance a...

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Anyone can say we need radical change to address the climate crisis, but there’s only one Professor Naki (Nebojsa Nakicenovic). He’s even worked with Ban Ki-Moon. Professor Naki is an economist who - for the past 50 years - has been tackling the climate crisis through the lens of technological change and economic development. He’s the former deputy general of IIASA in Vienna (Int’l Institute for Applied Systems Analysis) and was a ...

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November 24, 2019 45 sec

A whole new season of Nature N8 drops next week. To hold you over, here’s 45 seconds of N8 talking - because we know you’ve missed his voice.  Homework for this week: Get two people to subscribe to the show. We’re on Apple, Spotify, and everywhere else. Here’s our show page to show your friends so they can pick their favorite player: https://ghostisland.media/#wnwn

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October 29, 2019 59 min

How do you start a “green” company? How do you make it scale? How do you make sure it’s financially and environmentally sustainable? These are some of the questions we covered on WNWN’s first live show! Held in Taipei on August 31st, we talked with Godfrey Ngai, CFO of Xing Mobility - an electric vehicle battery company going after two thirds of the worlds vehicles. Melody Hsu - co-founder of ViaSweat - an active-wear brand trying ...

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October 14, 2019 12 min

The US and Europe are dumping trash on developing countries, right? China broke recycling, right? Wrong! Since China stopped taking in foreign recyclable waste, people have been freaking out, but, things are a bit more complicated than you think.In this episode, Nature N8 breaks down the top three myths surrounding the global trash trade and charts a way forward to fix our recycling systems.

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Climate Week, some call it the most important week of the year, and best of all, Nature N8 was there this time. Each year NGOs, lobbyists, government officials, spies, flock to NYC to call for greater climate action. In this special bonus episode, hear from N8 on what really went down. Subscribe on Patreon (https://www.patreon.com/wastenotwhynot) to hear the full episode.

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Ever wonder why recycling was better when you were a kid in America? Well, it was. This episode, a trash wizard named Alex Danovitch joins N8 to talk trash in the US. The steady corporate growth of trash has tracked Alex’s career closely as he co-founded one of only four non-profit waste management facilities in the US. Meanwhile, waste haulers went public, and the US’s actual recycling rate went down, and overseas. Alex and N8 tal...

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This week Nature N8 goes on “Taiwan Insider” to explain how Taiwan turned a 70% waste collection rate into a 60% recycling rate in less than a generation. Starting with an explanation in 60 seconds of how Taiwan fixed its trash problem, N8 and “Taiwan Insider” host Andrew Ryan then go on to talk about garbage trucks, podcasts, and WNWN itself.      

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