Episode 4 – Blibber Blubber & Big Balloon

listen on Spotify / Apple / Anchor / scroll down for our podcast player!

This week was rough because of *gestures broadly* but we’re still here to burst your bubble! But really though. We cover the juicy secrets of the “gum base” in your chewing gum and the truth behind “biodegradable” balloons. Then we find ways to still have a fun party and how to use design to change the way we consume plastics.

Olivia mentioned Leena Norms’ A Guide to Positive Panic series as a good way to process climate anxiety and the climate crisis. Elise has been liking the climate podcast Drilled and how it connects the unusual ways Big Oil is present in our lives.

Story #1 (Elise) : Chewing Gum
Photo of Seattle gum wall via Quirky Travel Guy

Sources:

History Channel, Aug 22, 2018, Chew On This History of Gum
Smithsonian Magazine, June 16, 2009, A Brief History of Chewing Gum
Science Focus, What Is Chewing Gum
Deccan Chronicle, June 1 2017, Here’s The Unusual Ingredient In Gum You Didn’t Know About
Wikipedia, Chewing Gum
BBC, March 6, 2018, World Hacks: A Surprising New Afterlife for Chewing Gum

Plastic Free Gum Alternatives:
Simply Gum
Glee Gum

Want to shop products made from used chewing gum or get involved in the recycling process? Check out Gum Drop LTD here.

Story #2 (Olivia) : Balloons

Cleveland Balloonfest 1986, www.rarehistoricalphotos.com

Sources:

Detroit Free Press, Global helium shortage is a growing threat to graduation parties and scientific research
CNBC, The worldwide helium shortage affects everything from MRIs to rockets 
Science World’s resource on Balloons
Balloon Debris research by Lara O’Brien
BalloonsBlow.org, especially  their Backyard Biodegradability Test 
The Atlantic’s video The Doomed Cleveland Balloonfest of 1986 
The Conversation, We Composted Biodegradable Balloons. Here’s what we found.
Physics Today, Helium shortage has ended, at least for now

We love this wholesome video of a non-disastrous Guinness World Record attempt for most giant bubbles ever made.

There were some fun, environmentally-friendly balloon alternatives on Balloon Debris.org and Balloons Blow. We especially liked the idea of DIY Bubbles or Floating Wishes, but there are a lot of suggestions for different types of events!

The Dump

We’ve been watching a lot of good TV this week: Great News, Undone, Border, and The Wedding Planner. We hope you’re hanging in there and that this episode made you feel better, especially if you’re feeling bogged down by the US news cycle like us.

Our World is Burning themed playlist is on Spotify.

If you enjoyed this episode, considering reviewing us on Apple Podcasts and downloading/subscribing/following wherever you like to do those things. It helps us immensely.

Thanks for listening!

Ep. 50 – The Hindenburg Explosion and Getting Stuck in the Suez Canal World Is Burning

We’re back for our 50th episode, and we're coming into the new year with a bang – Elise tells us how the Hindenburg airship explosion, despite some amazing survival stories, might have halted the potential for low-carbon air cargo (and cool blimps). Then Olivia revisits a phenomenon of early 2021: Ever Given, the ship that got stuck in the Suez Canal, and what it says about our supply chain and meme culture. Other topics include how the fossil fuel industry upholds itself, adding a comma for dramatic effect, and what we’ve been reading. Subscribe/follow/press the button to keep up with new episodes every Wednesday! You can also follow us @worldisburnin on Instagram and Twitter, and check out our website worldisburning.com for extended show notes including sources and photos. World Is Burning is hosted by Olivia Hamilton and Elise Nye. Our theme music is by Kaycie Satterfield, and our logo was made by Sonja Katanic. — Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/worldisburning/message
  1. Ep. 50 – The Hindenburg Explosion and Getting Stuck in the Suez Canal
  2. Ep. 49 – Daylight Saving Time
  3. Ep. 48 – Bhutan and Information Overload
  4. Ep. 47 – Ratpocalypse and the Wendigo
  5. Ep. 46 – Free Leonard Peltier and People vs. Fossil Fuels