Recent comments

  • BURN: An Energy Journal   6 years 8 weeks ago

    I am a professional environmentalist. I have a basic question about the Deepwater Horizon spill. Was it any worse environmentally, or maybe even better, than if the same oil had been taken to shore, refined, and burned in cars? Essentially, once the oil is no longer stored underground, it, or its components, are deposited in the water, air and land either way. If it were transported and refined, there would have been further emissions incurred from processing it. The eventual products of combustion likely include some toxins not present in the original oil. So, it seems to me that the real "environmental disaster" is removing the oil from the ground every single day, not the question of whether it ends up in the Gulf or combusted into the air. Am I wrong? I appreciate any answers.

  • The Metropolitan Opera in April 2012   6 years 8 weeks ago

    You are correct that Opera News states the start time for the final two Wagner operas at 11:00 a.m. That is a national feed time, but individuals stations have the flexibility to offset the start time to disrupt other programming as little as possible.

    Here at WXXI we have made a commitment to start all the operas at 1:00 p.m. unless the opera is longer than 5 hours - which is the case with the final two Wagner operas. Therefore both the April 21st and April 28th operas will begin at 12:00 noon.

    Once the Metropolitan Opera season ends, all other operas (Lyric Opera of Chicago, San Francisco Opera, Houston Grand Opera) will be scheduled to start at 1:00 p.m.

    Glad to know that you enjoy the opera broadcasts.

    Ruth Phinney, WXXI-FM Classical 91.5 Program Director

  • The Metropolitan Opera in April 2012   6 years 8 weeks ago

    Opera News AND comments on last week's broadcast indicate that this Saturday's "Die Walkure" will begin at 11 a.m.

  • With Heart and Voice ® Program 1217   6 years 8 weeks ago

    The arrangement was made by Richard Wienhorst. You'll find the complete playlist information on our website:
    Thanks for listening to With Heart and Voice!

  • With Heart and Voice ® Program 1217   6 years 8 weeks ago

    The April playlists are posted on this site:
    You'll find all the information about the music, composers, performers and recordings.
    Thanks for listening to With Heart and Voice!

  • Burn: An Energy Journal "Hunting for Oil, Risks, and Rewards"   6 years 8 weeks ago

    TO: Alex Chadwick, et. al.,

    RE: Burn: An Energy Journal

    Thank you for addressing this absolutely critical family of issues! I have mixed feelings about the first episode, which I have now heard twice. My concerns are that the listener is left without any sense that there's a problem, or anything that should compel them to do anything. We are left with the feeling that:

    1. Everything's OK
    2. Next time, just do nothing
    3. Go ahead and eat Gulf seafood
    4. More big oil discoveries are coming any day now... and our hero's, the brave and hard-working little guys are going to save us
    5. Even if we don't find enough oil, some new technology will save us. Don't worry, and don't do anything -- other people (and they're really crafty and smart, really!) are working on it, and they will solve the problem.
    6. In fact, the most worrisome part for me is that THE PROBLEM(S) are never defined, and never addressed.

    The enormity of these issues: When we toss Climate Change, Peak Oil, and Overpopulation into the same big bowl, we get a really nasty salad that no one wants to taste, and very few want to even try to address. I hope you can stay on the task, and get to the bottom of this in future broadcasts. So far, you've only scratched the very surface, and the essential oil of the matter lies much deeper than that.

    Here are a few more specific comments:

    While I believe it is effective to have a non-scientist narrate and ask the questions -- to appeal to all the non-science listeners -- I also believe a number of important questions were either not asked, or were edited out. From a science point of view it was very poor investigative journalism. Comforting, calming, perhaps mind-numbing, but this falls WAY short on the investigative journalism scale.

    Regarding the Gulf oil spill, listeners are left with the impression that all the anxiety, worry, and risk taken in the aftermath was just a warm blanket, and that we really need not worry at all. A few animals were killed, but in the end, all is well, really, no problem. The best thing to do is -- nothing.

    There were no questions asked (or at least reported) on a wide range of related topics, including those about all those lighter, more toxic elements that just "disappeared" through evaporation -- what became of those? How about all the surfactants and emulsifiers dumped into the Gulf to break up the oil into smaller droplets -- what are the effect of all those chemicals dumped into the water? When the algae and bacteria are feeding on all that lovely food we injected into their environment, what are the effects of such a bloom? In fresh water we get such blooms when nutrients (often in the form of farm manure runoff) get into lakes, and the enormous bloom of microbes depleted the water of oxygen, and kills off many other species, producing fish kills, and a dead zone that can take months or years to recover. We are left with the feeling that all we did was open the doors to a wonderful bounty, a marine feast, and that all we have to do is sit pretty, and do nothing. Really? I think there are a LOT of other questions here.

    Then we are told to go ahead and eat lots of seafood and shellfish from the Gulf, as there seems to be no problem or risk...except the one professor who found evidence of toxic effects in crabs, but that was not explored much at all. Sure would have been nice to explore that controversy in a bit more depth.

    Then we hear all about the great news of a large discovery of oil. We are left imagining that the next big discovery could be right around the corner, and as long as those tough little wildcats are out there drilling enough holes, we have nothing to worry about -- there's no coming energy crisis coming, and we can go ahead and buy that gas-guzzling Hummer and keep driving our long commutes to work and play -- no need to insulate our homes and businesses, or change our lifestyles in any way -- everything's fine.

    Of course, we have to be pretty good at connecting the dots about all of the big oil and gas companies pulling out of oil exploration on continental North America. Why would they all go invest their money elsewhere? Could it be that they know pretty darned well that there are no huge oil finds left here? Yes -- it could be that, exactly.

    Then we look at the price of gas and oil, and the global supplies -- are we running out of oil (right now)? We are told that no, we're not, but we are running out of the easy oil. Truth is, we are scraping the bottom of the barrel and are now trying to refine the gunk left over, like tar sands and heavier, dirtier crude oil and kerogen, which takes more energy, pollutes far more, and has devastating consequences for the environment where the extraction and refinement take place. We're also forced to go further off shore, and deeper and deeper. All to fuel our gluttonous over-consumption.

    Another question might be if we did find a huge reserve of oil should we even burn it -- or would we be better to leave it in the ground? We will, of course, burn it, because we are addicted to oil, and we will act like the addicts we are. Still, the question has merit.

    A few other points for discussion:

    1. Discoveries of 100 Billion barrels undersea -- really? How about asking exactly how they define "discovery"? Is it actually there (confirmed with direct sampling), or are there statistical models that say it must be? The definitions of "reserves", "confirmed reserves" "proven reserves" and other terms actually have very different meanings in the petroleum industry than in common usage! And then there's the little question of just exactly how will we get those reserves to the surface for refinement and consumption -- and back to the question of whether we SHOULD. We are discussing an industry that so closely guards information about its reserves and production that it warrants a branch of the United States government tasked with managing that information (READ: EIA), and that tells me we can be certain that the information they guard and peddle is highly political, and probably in need of outside confirmation.

    2. Future forecasts of 100 mbd consumption to meet demand* -- REALLY? Where will that come from? Is there any evidence that all the oil fields on Earth -- some 70% or more of which are already past their production peak -- could possibly supply that volume of oil? Many experts say there is no way we can even increase production at a rate that will keep up with the declining production from all the oil fields that are already past their peak, and have been foundering for years. Relevant examples would be US and Libya, where oil production peaked 40 years ago, and we have seen a steady decline since 1971. This is not due to stringent environmental regulations, or lack of investment in exploration -- hundreds of billions have been spent looking for large oil reserves, and they simply aren't there. Thus the small-scale operators are taking the risks to find the smaller oil fields that are left.

    * and that future demand is a calculation by sociologists and economists based on future population and consumption trends. BTW: do you know how the EIA defines the proven reserves of oil available to meet this predicted future demand? It's truly fascinating how they do that! They do some calculations about how many people we expect to have, and how much energy they are expected to consume, and publish that number as our "proven" reserves. Indeed, it has nothing to do with the actual volume of oil or natural gas in the ground -- whatever we want it to be -- THAT's the number! Check it out, but you will probably need an industry insider to spill the beans like Erin Brockavich to get at the answer.

    3. Can higher prices be a good strategy to incentify efficiency, innovation, and lifestyle change? Would be nice to look into this more! Perhaps that is what is needed, but you'd have to describe the problem first, and the need for personal involvement and responsibility to act second.

    Thank you kindly,

    Brad Vietje
    Newbury, VT

    I am not merely an energy activist with a keyboard. I have changed all aspects of my life in order to address climate change and the world peak in energy production. While I am trained as a biologist, and formerly worked as a neurobiologist at the UVM College of Medicine, I now own and operate a solar and renewable energy company in northern Vermont, and have recently completed a high-efficiency straw bale home. Our goal is to make all our energy on-site, and to use as little petroleum as possible. We're not there yet, but we're working on it.

  • Masterpiece Classic: Birdsong   6 years 9 weeks ago

    This has to be the slowest moving Masterpiece story I have ever seen! I'm in the middle of part one and bored out of my mind. Hardly any dialogue, mostly just staring looks. Plus, a couple of times in the beginning, with english subtitles, the white lettering was over a white background, so I missed half the sentence.

    Very disappointing!

  • With Heart and Voice ® Program 1217   6 years 9 weeks ago

    Heard the show this morning. When will the playlist be available?

    Need more info on the Blue Grass "Gloria" by Burnell? also the Rutter "For the Beauty" and "All creatures".


  • With Heart and Voice ® Program 1217   6 years 9 weeks ago

    I was wondering who composed the arrangement of "God who made Earth and Heaven" that was just played today on the first 20 minutes of the with heart and Voice program.

  • With Heart and Voice ® Program 1217   6 years 9 weeks ago

    Really just stumbled upon your program recently and was elated to find it but a bit disappointed once I realized how many shows I've missed. Keep the great programming running!

    Thank you,
    Adam Stielstra

  • The eye of the beholder   6 years 9 weeks ago
  • Week of April 9 - April 13, 2012   6 years 9 weeks ago

    Please listen here:

  • The eye of the beholder   6 years 9 weeks ago

    I see a bird perched on a cliff with a cloud near its head.

  • Week of April 9 - April 13, 2012   6 years 9 weeks ago

    I am interested to know whether the 4/11/12 discussion with Rochester School Board Finance Committee Chair Willa Powell is available for listening on-demand through your website, and if so, how to find the link. Thank you for your response, Jerry

  • With Heart and Voice ® Program 1215   6 years 9 weeks ago

    Thanks, Paul, for that insight....very helpful, and it makes perfect sense. Will keep that in mind for the future!

    Thanks for listening!


  • Volunteer Recognition Reception ... are you attending?   6 years 9 weeks ago

    Thank you to all of you who came out yesterday to the Cultural Volunteer Reception. It was a pleasure talking with you and meeting some new volunteers as well!
    Carolyn Reynolds

  • WXXI's Travel Club: Colors of Provence   6 years 10 weeks ago

    Where Will the info night be held?

  • With Heart and Voice ® Program 1215   6 years 10 weeks ago

    First, let me say how happy I am that you've preserved the spirit of Richard's passion and mission.

    A small matter on your comment on the Langlais Incantation. The opening notes, to my ear, are the wonderful triple ascending Lumen Christe which open the Easter Vigil liturgy, chanted as the Pascal Candle is brought, in the candlelit dark, to the altar. Later in the piece there is a citation of the responses to the Litany of the Saints which makes its most obvious appearance also in the Vigil ceremony.

    Again, great thanks for your and Houghton's commitment to this treasured program.

  • In Search of Memory   6 years 10 weeks ago

    Fantastic show!

  • INDEPENDENT LENS: Being Elmo: A Puppeteer's Journey   6 years 11 weeks ago

    We are glad to hear that you enjoyed the program. You have a number of occasions in the near future to catch it again:

    At 3am and 11pm this Sunday, April 8th on WXXI-TV/HD:
    WXXI-HD Sun, 04/08/2012 23:00:00 01:26:46
    WXXI-HD Sun, 04/08/2012 03:00:00 01:26:46

    It will also play on WXXI-World (DT21.2 and TWC 524):
    at 8:30am, 2:30pm, and 7:30pm on Wednesday, April 11th.
    at 12:30am on Thursday, April 12th and at noon on Saturday, April 14th. Enjoy!

    ~Irene Fink
    WXXI TV Program Director

  • INDEPENDENT LENS: Being Elmo: A Puppeteer's Journey   6 years 11 weeks ago

    We just tuned in for the Independent Lens special, "Being Elmo" last night. It was a terrific program. It's amazing to see how much work goes into creating the puppeteering magic that is Sesame Street! We hope it airs again because we missed the beginning. Thanks WXXI!!!!

  • Energy Company Goes Bankrupt, Despite Millions from NYS and Feds   6 years 11 weeks ago

    Sad to hear that, i just hope that their company will continue to work things in and sort every bad things out.

  • Inside Fenway Park: An Icon at 100   6 years 11 weeks ago

    I want to know if " Inside Fenway Park : An Icon at 100" be aired again?
    I missed it the first time.
    I live in Rochester, NY and watch PBS on WXXI

  • Broadway Divas Showcased with Diane Chevron Part Two   6 years 11 weeks ago

    I was honored that Ms Chevron mentioned me. It is an also an honor to co-star with her in GRRC's Love Letters which will part of Rochester's Fringe Festival in September.

  • What Next for Kodak's Retirees?   6 years 12 weeks ago

    none I just want to hear the broadcast!!