NEXT Our laboratory is all of New England — one of America's oldest places — at a time of change. The show is about how we power our society, how we move around, and how we adapt. It's about trends that provide us challenges and present us with new opportunities. New England has old rules and customs, with well-worn pathways forged centuries ago, and its population is aging fast. Through original reporting and interviews, we ask important questions about the issues we explore: where are we now? How did we get here? And what's next?
NEXT

NEXT

From Connecticut Public Radio

Our laboratory is all of New England — one of America's oldest places — at a time of change. The show is about how we power our society, how we move around, and how we adapt. It's about trends that provide us challenges and present us with new opportunities. New England has old rules and customs, with well-worn pathways forged centuries ago, and its population is aging fast. Through original reporting and interviews, we ask important questions about the issues we explore: where are we now? How did we get here? And what's next?More from NEXT »

Most Recent Episodes

Episode 102

The view from the top of Mt. Washington. Photo by Annie Ropeik for NHPR This week we discuss border patrol checkpoints around New England and a recent arrest that was made in New Hampshire. And, we consider sustainable infrastructure around the region, including how a small island off the coast of Maine is transforming its energy system into what they call the next, next electricity grid. Tensions rise between preservation and tourism on top of Mt. Washington, and we see the effort being made to make the marijuana industry more energy efficient in Massachusetts. Also, as the state of Vermont narrowly avoided a government shutdown at the end of June, we check-in on Vermont politics. Finally, we get a tour of Cuttyhunk Island by the last two kids who live there. It's NEXT. (more...)

Episode 101

This week on NEXT: The invasive Emerald Ash Borer has made its way around the region, threatening millions of ash trees and the culture of the Penobscot Nation in Maine. And, as recreational marijuana becomes legal in Massachusetts, we hear from new populations who are considering partaking. Plus, we visit a Baseball Museum in an old mall in the Berkshires, and we speak with one of the best Atlantic salmon fishers alive, who reflects on the "Presidential" history of the fish. Finally, we take you to an exhibit in Lyme, Connecticut that explores the unique nature and history of the New England farm. It's NEXT. (more...)

Episode 100

Steve Wilkes recording on the summit of Mt. Tecumseh in the White Mountain National Forest. Photo by Sean Hurley for NHPR This week on a special 100th episode of NEXT: we hear highlights of a live panel discussion about the effects of immigration on the economy. Plus, we listen back to some of our favorite reports from the past 100 episodes, including how one actress perfected a Boston-flavored accent, why a local chef cooks with invasive species, and what a musician is doing to make a "sound map" of the White Mountains. Finally, we revisit a conversation with a composer whose music is inspired by the New England landscape. It's NEXT. (more...)

Episode 99

As housing assistance ends for Puerto Rican evacuees in Massachusetts, many families face uncertainty. Plus, a look at Massachusetts' struggling public transit, and the aging water treatment infrastructure along the Connecticut River. A rural small town in Maine wonders how it will get its high-achieving graduating high school seniors to return, and new programs in Vermont and Maine aim to bring in young workers. Finally, an interview with Bill McKibben about the Ripton Country store in Vermont, and the importance of general stores around New England. It's NEXT. (more...)

Episode 98

Future housing at the Frank Jones Brew Yard in Portsmouth. Photo by Robert Garrova for NHPR This week on NEXT: why is the region's largest utility buying water companies? We explore Eversource's move to get into the water business. Plus, a look at the new Hartford Commuter Rail that will link Springfield, Massachusetts to New Haven, Connecticut. And, we talk with a local author about how she is using language to preserve the changing world. Finally, a look at innovation around the region, from the booming biotech industry in Boston, to changing industrial buildings in New Hampshire, to innovative distilling in Vermont. It's NEXT. (more...)

Episode 97

This week on NEXT we look at two sources of alternative energy: hydroelectric power along the Connecticut River, and solar power in New England. We also discuss gun deaths in Vermont and New Hampshire and hear about an unlikely partnership that is working to reduce the rate of gun suicides. Plus, fifty years since the death of Robert F. Kennedy, we reflect on his legacy and visit an archive of his assassination. Finally, we debate the history of stone walls in New England and listen to a stonemason describe the work that goes into creating each one. It's NEXT. (more...)

Episode 96

This week on NEXT: the story of how one "unaccompanied minor" traveled to Massachusetts. Plus, a massive wind farm will open off of the coast of Martha's Vineyard. We discuss what this deal means for energy in the region. And, how the opioid crisis is affecting the African American population in Massachusetts, and pregnant women in New Hampshire. In addition, now that the New Hampshire legislative session has come to a close, we reflect back on the past few months of politics in the state. Finally, two local-food battles: one between the FDA and maple syrup producers in Vermont, another between food-delivery apps in Maine. It's NEXT. (more...)

Episode 95

This week on NEXT: We discuss security concerns on the Northern border of the United States. A Vermont Supreme Court ruling touches on when an action can be construed as a threat, and when it falls under a person's right to free speech. Plus, while the Steamship Authority is performing an audit of the Martha's Vineyard Ferry, we discuss the history and the future of the shipping industry in New England. We also hear about the "living memorial" to Holocaust survivors created by one Massachusetts man. We tour the Mark Twain house with a group of Puerto Rican evacuees. Finally, Maine-based L.L. Bean is finding unlikely success in Japan. It's NEXT. (more...)

Episode 94

This week on NEXT, we're focusing on the many ways climate change and rising sea levels are affecting New England. We talk with climate scientists, urban resilience experts, and artists about how they're grappling with these questions. Plus, we'll visit eroding salt marsh islands, rivers and streams that are getting saltier, and a city that's bearing the brunt of climate worries and industrial infrastructure. It's NEXT. Image above is "Decreasing in Glacier Mass Balance" by Jill Pelto. Courtesy of Jill Pelto How Rising Sea Levels Will Affect New England The large stones seen here were once the foundation of a garrison house that stood in the early 17th century near Great Bay. Photo by Jason Moon for NHPR We speak with Paul Andrew Mayewski, the Director of the Climate Change Institute at the University of Maine, about how rising sea levels and climate change will impact New England. Maine Artist Integrates Data into Her Art Gulf of Maine Temperature Variability" by artist Jill Pelto. Courtesy of Jill Pelto Jill Pelto, artist and Masters student at the University of Maine, joins us to tell us why she integrates data in her art, and what she hopes to achieve by combining these two worlds. She has provided her art to us for this post. You can see more of her art on her website, Twitter, or in her Etsy shop. Vulnerable Communities and Climate Change Several industrial sites are located on the Chelsea Creek in Chelsea, Massachusetts. Photo by Robin Lubbock for WBUR Low-income communities and communities of color are disproportionately affected by the consequences of climate change: think New Orleans and Hurricane Katrina. These areas suffer from poor air quality, increasing temperatures, and extreme weather. In many of those same communities, residents already live among health hazards like fuel storage units and the toxic remains that come with them. In the city of Chelsea, Massachusetts, residents bear these burdens while much of New England benefits. WBUR's Shannon Dooling reports. Creating Resilient Communities Sandbags hold back water at the entrance to the Aquarium MBTA station during the March 2 nor'easter. Photo by Robin Lubbock for WBUR Cities and towns all over New England and the world are working to create resilient communities that can survive the effects of climate change and rising seas. We speak with Dr. Atyia Martin, the former Chief Resilience Officer for the city of Boston, about how cities can adapt, and protect their most vulnerable communities along the way. GMRI Works to Educate Communities About Rising Sea Levels The Gulf of Maine Research Institute teaches a course about rising sea levels. Photo by Lily Tyson for the New England News Collaborative The Gulf of Maine Research Institute and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration are teaming up to give 90-minute interactive classes about sea level rise to anyone who is interested. The New England News Collaborative's Lily Tyson attended a recent class in Portland. Click here to see a map of how sea level rise will affect Maine. Salt Marshes at Risk Salt marsh islands in Massachusetts. Photo by Juan Rodriguez New England has already started experiencing the effects of climate change: sea levels are rising, water temperatures are warming and major storms are becoming stronger. All of this has caused Rhode Island and South Coast officials to wonder, are we prepared for the consequences of these changes? Rhode Island Public Radio's Environment Reporter Avory Brookins investigates that question through a new series called "Ready or Not" to reveal who and what are the most vulnerable to the effects of climate change, and what more can be done to prepare. In her first series, she travels to the Westport River where salt marsh islands are rapidly disappearing, a transformation scientists link to climate change. Freshwater Increasingly Saline and Alkaline This portion of the Menunketesuck River splits itself between Westbrook and Clinton. It's only a few miles from Long Island Sound, and even closer to a nearby highway. But among the trees and water, all that noise feels so far away. Photo by Patrick Skahill for Connecticut Public Radio Bodies of fresh-water around the United States are becoming increasingly salinated, and increasingly alkaline. And a new study published by a group of scientists show these two issues are linked and caused by specific actions that humans are taking. We speak with Gene Likens, a co-author on the recent study, and a distinguished research professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Connecticut. "Heads of Tide" Show Unique Ecosystem Steve Gephard, a supervising fisheries biologist with the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, in front of a fishway and eel pass. His agency manages on the Menunketesuck River. Photo by Patrick Skahill for Connecticut Public Radio In nature, fascinating biology can be found "on the edges" — intermingled habitats where biodiversity can flourish. Connecticut Public Radio's Patrick Skahill recently traveled to one such edge — what's called a "head of tide." About NEXT NEXT is produced at Connecticut Public Radio Host: John Dankosky Produced with help this week from Lily Tyson and Ali Oshinskie Digital Producer: Carlos Mejia Executive Producer: Catie Talarski Contributors to this episode: Shannon Dooling, Lily Tyson, Patrick Skahill, Avory Brookins Music: Todd Merrell, "New England" by Goodnight Blue Moon Stream every episode of NEXT. We appreciate your feedback! Send critiques, suggestions, questions, and ideas to next@wnpr.org. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Episode 93

This week on NEXT: why the opioid crisis is hitting Latinos in Massachusetts especially hard. Police are setting up stings to catch bootleggers in New Hampshire. Political news from around New England, including the new ranked-choice voting system in Maine, and a new bill in Connecticut that pledges the state's electoral votes to the winner of the national popular vote. We also hear from a New Hampshire judge about how his son's mental illness changed his life and visit a Palestinian art museum in Connecticut, which is the only one of its kind in the United States. It's NEXT. Latinos Hit Especially Hard By Opioid Crisis in Massachusetts From left to right: Felito Diaz, Julio Cesar Santiago, Richard Lopez and Irma Bermudez speak at Casa Esperanza, a collection of day treatment, residential programs and transitional housing in Roxbury. Photo by Jesse Costa for WBUR In Massachusetts, the opioid overdose death rate has doubled in three years for Latinos, a rate that is growing twice as fast for this group than it is for any other demographic. WBUR's Martha Bebinger set out to find why this group is so affected by the crisis, and how policymakers and doctors can help. Stakeouts and Stings to Catch Bootleggers in New Hampshire A customer loads a case of Hennessey cognac into his vehicle. Photo by Todd Bookman for NHPR New Hampshire's state-run, tax-free liquor stores bring customers from all over the region. And recently, lawmakers have been cracking down on bootleggers from other states. NHPR's Todd Bookman reports on the recent wave of arrests. New England Pressures Canada to Protect Right Whales A 4-year-old right whale entangled in heavy fishing rope 40 miles east of Jacksonville, Florida, in Feb. 2014. Photo courtesy of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, taken under NOAA Research Permit #15488 A group of New England senators are urging the government to analyze Canada's actions to protect the endangered right whale and to enact serious consequences if they rule Canada is not doing enough. Maine Public's Fred Bever tells us what's going on, and what the senators hope to achieve. Voting in New England Maine's State House. FLICKR Maine voters will use their new ranked-choice voting system for the first time in the June primary. We speak with Maine Public's Steve Mistler on why voters wanted ranked-choice voting, and how the new system works. Plus, the Connecticut legislature voted to join an interstate deal that promises, if enough states join, that the state will give all of its electoral votes over to the winner of the national popular vote, regardless of who wins the popular vote in the state. Mark Pazniokas of the CT Mirror joins us to explain what this means, and what it could achieve. New Hampshire Judge Encourages People to Talk About Mental Illness John Broderick, a former chief justice of the New Hampshire Supreme Court, speaks to high school students in Salem, N.H., about mental health awareness. Photo by Jesse Costa for WBUR A former New Hampshire supreme court justice is visiting schools around New England, speaking about his son's struggles with mental illness. WBUR's Deborah Becker reports how Broderick hopes to inspire the next generation to change the conversation and culture around mental illness. Palestinian Art Museum Opens in Connecticut An exhibit in the Palestine Museum. Photo by David DesRoches for Connecticut Public Radio The first American museum dedicated solely to Palestinian art, The Palestine Museum, recently opened in Connecticut. Connecticut Public Radio's David DesRoches recently visited the museum and spoke to the curator about why he feels it's important to showcase Palestinian art. Palestinians Live! Event Sparks Conversation and Community Nadia Abuelezam performs on stage at "Palestinians, Live!" a night of storytelling in Cambridge, Mass, on January 28. Photo by Annie Sinsabaugh With their stories being so highly politicized, the personal narratives of Palestinians don't often make it to American ears. Nadia Abuelezam, a Palestinian-American living in the Boston area, wants to change that. In 2015, she launched an event series called Palestinians, Live! featuring true stories told on stage. The stories are later released on Palestinians Podcast, which Nadia also created. Reporter Annie Sinsabaugh went to a recent Palestinians, Live! event at the Oberon Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where she found not only entertainment but a community. About NEXT NEXT is produced at Connecticut Public Radio Host: John Dankosky Produced with help this week from Lily Tyson and Ali Oshinskie Digital Producer: Carlos Mejia Executive Producer: Catie Talarski Contributors to this episode: Martha Bebinger, Todd Bookman, Fred Bever, Steve Mistler, Deborah Becker, David DesRoches, Annie Sinsabaugh Music: Todd Merrell, "New England" by Goodnight Blue Moon Photo at the top of the page is of Faisal Saleh, founder of the Palestine Museum, giving a tour. Photo by David DesRoches for Connecticut Public Radio. Stream every episode of NEXT. We appreciate your feedback! Send critiques, suggestions, questions, and ideas to next@wnpr.org. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

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