Ep.6: Traces in the soil


Plastic pollution also affects the soil, the thin layer of ground that feeds all of us. For a long time, this terrestrial plastic has been overlooked. Now scientists are starting to investigate the extent and impacts of plastic pollution in the soil and in the ground. What do we know about them? In this episode, Anja talks to artist Saša Spačal from Slovenia, soil biologist Matthias Rillig from Germany, Brazilian environmental scientist Abel Machado and geologist Reinhold Leinfelder. She learns more about the potential impacts and traces plastic leaves behind in the ground.

Music: Dorian Roy and Blue Dot Sessions
Cover art: Maren von Stockhausen
Thanks to: Julie Comfort, Brooke Watkins, Sedat Gündoğdu, Sam Athey, and Joachim Budde for editing the German post on RiffReporter

>>>Transcript with links and media

Ep.5: Message from Midway


Chris Jordan has taken some of the most iconic pictures to shape our image of plastic pollution. He traveled to Midway Island on his quest to photograph the evasive “Great Pacific Garbage Patch”, which is really a soup of microplastics. There, he documented albatross chicks who had died with their guts full of plastic. His images went viral, but they also haunted him so much that he decided to return to the island. In this episode of the podcast, Chris tells Anja how working on his film “Albatross” transformed him and his view on tackling plastic pollution.

Music: Dorian Roy and Blue Dot Sessions
Cover art: Maren von Stockhausen
Thanks to: Markus Knigge, Kim Gruetzmacher of the Berlin Ocean Dinner, Ines, Susie, Volkart, Sara, Craig, Wicki and James at the Sonic Soirée Berlin, and Christiane Schulzki-Haddouti for editing the German post on RiffReporter

>>>Transcript with links, images and tweets

Ep.4: Plastic vs. the Climate?


Plastic pollution might be the most visible environmental issue we face today. But there are other kinds of pollution, and they are far harder to see. One of the most dangerous is the huge amount of greenhouse gases that we emit into the atmosphere. In this episode, Anja explores the connections between plastic pollution and climate change. She talks to ocean expert and publisher Nikolaus Gelpke, youth activist Lilly Platt, oceanographer Sarah-Jeanne Royer and climate expert Gunnar Luderer to understand whether plastic and climate are buddies or enemies. As with many relationships: It’s complicated.

Music: Dorian Roy and Blue Dot Sessions www.sessions.blue/
Cover art: Maren von Stockhausen
Thanks to: Eleanor Platt, Ines Blaesius, Kathleen Mar, Sasha Chapman, Christian Schwägerl, Marcy Trent Long of Sustainable Asia, Melanie Bergmann, Laura Markley, Simon Hirsbrunner, Martin Wagner, Kennedy Bucci, Alicia Mateos, Sam Athey.

>>>Transcript with links, tweets and pictures to this episode

Ep.3: Millions of waste pickers


Anja calls up Dr. Jenna Jambeck and Amy Brooks from the University of Georgia on a research trip in Vietnam. In many Asian countries, a booming economy is coupled with more people using throw-away items. Informal recyclers and waste pickers who have traditionally sorted the waste cannot keep up. But, like millions of people around the world, they depend on waste as a resource for their livelihoods. How can the systems be reformed without leaving the people behind? To find out, Anja calls Dr. Sonia Maria Dias, a garbologist from Brazil.

Music: Dorian Roy and Blue Dot Sessions
Cover art: Maren von Stockhausen
Thanks to: Ines Blaesius, Luisa Beck, Daniella Cheslow, the Wiego staff, and Karl Urban for editing the German version on RiffReporter

>>>Transcript, links and pictures to this episode

Ep.2: Plastic, the size of a virus



In this episode of the Plastisphere, Anja goes on a lab tour with Alexandra ter Halle from Paul Sabatier University in Toulouse. The chemist and her team were the first to detect nanoplastic in the open ocean – plastic so small that it is comparable in size to a virus. What do we know about these very tiny pieces, and how do researchers try to detect and understand them?

Music: Dorian Roy and Blue Dot Sessions sessions.blue/
Cover art: Maren von Stockhausen
Thanks to: Ines Blaesius, Luisa Beck, Tim Howard, Melanie Bergmann, Deborah Blum and the Knight Science Journalism Program at MIT

>>>Transcript, links and pictures to this episode

Ep.1: Welcome to the Plastisphere



In this introduction to the Plastisphere podcast, Anja takes the listener on a journey back in time, from a remote plastic beach on the Big Island of Hawaii to the factory of a big chemical producer making bioplastics. She shares what she has learned about the issue of plastic pollution in the past years.

Music: Dorian Roy and Blue Dot Sessions
Cover art: Maren von Stockhausen
Thanks to: Ines Blaesius and Susie Kahlich of the artipoeus podcast
German article on RiffReporter – thanks to Marcus Anhäuser

>>Transcript of this episode