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Environmentalist and former president of Missouri Botanical Garden reflects on the changing Earth

Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio
Dr. Peter Raven, the former longtime president of the Missouri Botanical Garden.

On Friday’s St. Louis on the Air, host Don Marsh was joined by Dr. Peter Raven, the former, longtime president of Missouri Botanical Garden, to discuss environmental issues. Raven recently celebrated his 80th birthday.

Even in his retirement, Raven is staying busy with his work on the board of the National Geographic Society and writing his biography. He is still deeply immersed in the challenges facing the planet today.

"I spend a lot of time worrying about interactions between faith and science and how people can be helped to understand the dilemma the world is facing now and how people can deal with it more effectively," Raven said. “People aren’t really jarred out of their daily activities by being shown more numbers about how awful something is…but if you can put it on an ethical level and that things that are happening have an impact on our lives and the lives of our children, you might be able to get somewhere.”

Raven said it was frustrating to see the archaic discussions about the environment that persist today.

“There are three times as many people in the world now as there were when I was born,” Raven said. “The United States is the wealthiest nation on Earth, we spend as much on defense as the next twelve nations put together, people are better off here than any other industrialized country. We keep yakking about how to make ourselves better off. We’re already over the top in terms of use of the world’s resources.”

Listen to the full discussion between the two here:

St. Louis on the Air brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh and producers Mary Edwards, Alex Heuer and Kelly Moffitt give you the information you need to make informed decisions and stay in touch with our diverse and vibrant St. Louis region. 

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Kelly Moffitt joined St. Louis Public Radio in 2015 as an online producer for St. Louis Public Radio's talk shows St. Louis on the Air.
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