Beneath Cambodia’s troubled history with the Khmer Rouge lies a complex agricultural legacy that reaches back centuries. Once the symbol of a thriving region, we see how a prolonged El Nino brought drought and increased human conflict, and how the ruthless Pol Pot and his Khmer Rouge looked back to the temples at Angkor Wat and their proud agricultural heritage to motivate the atrocities of the Cambodian genocide. Producer Miles Traer speaks with mental health and water science experts to see how hundreds of years of agriculture have shaped the region. Traer shares his own thoughts on the relationship between food and conflict, and how he sees the standard historical narrative breaking down within Cambodia’s borders.
Student reporter Reade Levinson travels to Mongolia in hopes of witnessing a practice known as sky burial, in which bodies of the dead are prepared for the afterlife. But as Reade learns in her journey, in Mongolia the forces of urbanization, modernization, and environmental change may be threatening this sacred ritual.
This piece is a collaboration between Generation Anthropocene and the Stanford Storytelling project.
As we hear over and over again, environmental issues are mounting, and the stakes are huge. So how might big data be used to tackle the issues of sustainability, climate change, habitat loss, and species extinction? And even more than that, can it offer us new ways of engaging in a relationship with nature? This episode comes from the Raw Data podcast, produced by our own Mike Osborne and Leslie Chang.
THIS EPISODE WAS PRODUCED BY LESLIE CHANG, MIKE OSBORNE, AND MILES TRAER.
When the Conference of the Parties meets in Paris in the coming weeks, it will mark the 21st time the nations of the world have met to try to strike a deal to combat climate change. Given existing tensions between nations, and given that each country has a unique capacity to contribute to a comprehensive deal, we ask the question, “how can we measure success at the Paris negotiations?” Stanford researcher Aaron Strong and New York Time reporter Andy Revkin walk us through the history of previous negotiations to explore what went wrong, what we’ve learned, and why many are so optimistic about Paris. They point out the areas where progress has already been made and where the potential sticking points lie. As anthropogenic climate change continues to affect the world around us, success in Paris might look a little different than people have previously thought.