Bayside Corners: ‘Cool Solutions’ to climate change

PODCASTERS Wendy Ring and Brian Curtis, the voices of “Cool Solutions.” Submitted photo

I’m continually amazed by the wonderful things that are created in our little community. 

In September 2018, a new radio show and podcast about climate change hit the airwaves. Called “Cool Solutions,” it is produced in Bayside by Wendy Ring.

Wendy is known to many for her former work as physician director of the Mobile Medical Clinic. Since her retirement, she has become a full-time climate activist. This interest started back in 2014, when she embarked, with husband Michael, on the first of several extended bike trips across the U.S. which turned into speaking tours about climate issues. 

These climate road shows became an annual project, and soon included “Dogs to the Rescue,” a puppet show about two dogs who train their humans how to stop climate change.

Wendy didn’t just speak to the choir. She talked anywhere she could get her foot in the door to folks of all ages, varied backgrounds and political persuasions. 

What she found was interesting. People listened. Attentively. But they didn’t know what to do about what they were hearing. The issues were so complex and the problem so big. Where to start?

As Wendy points out, climate change reaches into every aspect of our lives. Agriculture and food production, transportation, energy production and consumption, water management, waste and plastics, health care... all are pieces of the puzzle. 

But solutions will not come from Washington D.C. or multinational corporations. Sure, they have their role, but practical solutions come at the local level, when communities get involved and innovate new strategies to help both themselves and the planet. And on her climate tours, Wendy saw lots of examples of real, implementable action at the local level.

Enter “Cool Solutions.” Each 28-minute podcast is about real people implementing a very specific action to impact climate change. 

The stories focus not on what is lost in addressing climate change, but rather what is gained by addressing it effectively. 

Episodes often include a toolkit of resources to help the listener follow the progress of a project, get more information, or get something started in their own community. 

To help record the podcast, which is researched, written and produced entirely in her Bayside home office (oh the wonders of technology!), Wendy enlisted the voice of Brian Curtis, another Bayside resident, known to many as a DJ and former KHSU radio host. 

The two of them weave together guest interviews, background research, musical clips and a cool sound effect or two, into stories that are entertaining and informative, and just might prod you into action.

“Cool Solutions” is released on the 10th of each month and is available live on many public radio stations and by podcast. There are no ads, and it is free. The website has a partial list of radio stations, links to past episodes and toolkits, and links to subscribe on your computer or smartphone. Check it out, and if you like what you hear, subscribe (it’s free). That helps them to know how many people the show reaches.

Got Bayside news? Suggestion of an interesting Bayside project, resident or business that should be better known to the community? 

Let me know at [email protected] or (707) 599-3192!



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