Health, Science & Environment | WOSU Radio

Health, Science & Environment

ODNR / Ohio Department of Natural Resources

The findings of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers study on Buckeye Lake dam are serious.

Surge In Ohio Ginseng Harvesting

Mar 10, 2015
Sam Hendren / WOSU

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources is studying ways to protect Ginseng, a plant highly prized in Asia for claimed medicinal qualities. Recent media attention has caused a surge in ginseng harvesting.

Rick Campbell and Kelly Caldwell sit at their dining table in their rural Morgan County home looking out at the snow covered hills. Scattered beneath the snowy mantle is wild ginseng. Campbell has spent most of his adult life dealing in the exotic commodity. He says he first dug ginseng, which he calls ‘sang, when he was 18 years old. How did he know what he’d found?

Ohio Legislature Weighs New 'Run-off' Regs For Farmers

Mar 9, 2015

The Ohio House is expected to vote on legislation this week to regulate fertilizer and manure run-off from fields. The run-off is partially blamed for a toxic algae bloom on Lake Erie that disrupted water supply for 400,000 Toledo residents last summer.

Ohio Farm Bureau Federation spokeswoman Yvonne Lesicko says the house bill will help reduce the threat of toxic algae blooms.

“I think it’s absolutely a critical piece in terms of a larger comprehensive way, and a larger comprehensive solution to deal with what happened in Lake Erie,” says Lesicko.

Ford Begins Production Of New Engines In Cleveland

Mar 6, 2015
Ford Motor Company

Ford says it is starting production of two new engines at its plant in Cleveland.

The company said Friday that production is beginning at the plant on the 2.0-liter and 2.3-liter EcoBoost engines for vehicles built in North America. It will mark the first time those engines have been built in the U.S. They previously were built in Valencia, Spain.

Tom Borgerding / WOSU News

A combination of stagnant funding and changing technology is putting pressure on a decades old service for Central Ohio’s blind community. VOICEcorps is searching for ways to maintain services for the visually impaired.

At Mike and Julie Russell’s Clintonville home, the sound of VOICEcorps is nearly constant.

The Russell’s have been married 17 years. Both are blind. They depend on the radio reading service for entertainment, community and consumer news and emergency information.

Central Ohio To Get New 380 Area Code In Existing 614 Region

Mar 4, 2015
JonJon2K8 (flickr)

Central Ohioans will see a new 380 area code introduced because the available phone numbers for the existing 614 code are expected to run out next year.

Regulators plan to use both codes for the same geographic area, meaning even local phone calls eventually will require dialing the full 10-digit number. The so-called “overlay” plan was approved by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio years ago, in 2001.


The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments Wednesday challenging whether the federal government can pay subsidies to people in Ohio and other states that don’t have state-created health insurance marketplaces set up after the Affordable Care Act, President Obama’s landmark health insurance law.

So what could the ruling mean for Ohio?

Flu shot

Central Ohio public health advocates gained some political support on Monday to keep funding intact for a children’s health insurance program.

U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown visited a south side health center to promote continued federal funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program. It helps low income workers purchase health care for their children.

“These are parents who make $9, and $10, $11 an hour whose employers don’t offer health insurance and who don’t make enough money themselves to pay for it,” Brown said.

WOSU file photo

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio last week rejected a request from American Electric Power to have customers subsidize two coal plants. AEP said it would have helped customers in the long run, but opponents likened it to a bailout.

So what will the ruling mean for future proposals?


A recent investigation into several generic dietary supplement brands found gross misrepresentations in labeling. Many supplements did not even contain the ingredients they advertised. In this hour of Wellness Wednesday, we’ll talk about how to know what’s what among supplements: which are worth it, and which might be downright dangerous. We’ll also learn why it’s getting harder to die in the U.S., and how to get the support you need for end-of-life care.


EPA Regulations and the Future of Coal

Jun 10, 2014

What are the economics behind the EPA's newly proposed regulations? It is estimated that one-third of the United States energy came from coal in 2012. However, coal has also been blamed for a large amount of the US's carbon emissions. Does regulating and reducing carbon emissions result in lost jobs and increased energy prices, or are the coal companies simply blowing smoke?

Ohio's Energy Present and Future

May 29, 2014

10 am New legislation in Ohio has put a "freeze" on the state's green energy standards. Today on the show we talk about that legislation and what it means for Ohio's energy future. Guests:

Fertilizer, Algae and Our Water

Jan 9, 2014

11:00 Tap water tasting odd? Columbus is spending $600,000 to treat algae in water from the Hoover Reservoir. Though this algae is believed to be safe for consumption,  the farm fertilizer runoff producing algal blooms is causing changes to our ecosystem. This hour we'll get an update on filtration efforts, and talk about a program designed to curb nutrient runoff. Guests

11:00 Stitches are just a needle and thread-- but hospitals charge over $500 per stitch. Today we'll talk about rising hospital bills. And with many spending the holidays with their families, we'll tell you what conversation to have with them, then we'll discuss Kentucky's relative success with their healthcare exchange and get an update on Ohio's enrollment numbers. Guests

11:00 At some schools, "C" is considered the gentleman's grade. But the "C" Ohio got on its March of Dimes report card has implications for ladies, too. This hour we'll talk more about the Buckeye State's premature birth rate. Then we'll get the latest on the controversy over new cholesterol medication guidelines, and what's new with Obamacare. Guests