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The Ends of the World

Embedded dinosaur bones.

Since first evolved on earth more than four billion years ago, it has passed in and out of existence five times. Make that six. An extinction event is happening right now. So what can we learn about the previous ones?

 

RadioWest divider.

Throughout human history, people have warned that the end of the world is coming. If it does, it won’t really be all that unique. You see, the world has already ended five times. Life on earth has been broiled, frozen, gassed, smothered, and asteroided out of existence. And scientists believe that those previous mass extinctions can teach us something about the one happening right now. Science writer Peter Brannen joins us to explore the Earth’s past dead ends and what they mean for the future. (Rebroadcast)

Peter Brannen's writing has appeared in the New York TimesThe AtlanticWired, and the Washington Post, among others. His new book is called The Ends of the World: Volcanic Apocalypses, Lethal Oceans, and Our Quest to Understand Earth's Past Mass Extinctions [Independent bookstores|Amazon|Audible].

Doug Fabrizio has been reporting for KUER News since 1987, and became News Director in 1993. In 2001, he became host and executive producer of KUER's RadioWest, a one hour conversation/call-in show on KUER 90.1 in Salt Lake City. He has gained a reputation for his thoughtful style. He has interviewed everyone from Isabel Allende to the Dalai Lama, and from Madeleine Albright to Desmond Tutu. His interview skills landed him a spot as a guest host of the national NPR program, "Talk of the Nation." He has won numerous awards for his reporting and for his work with RadioWest and KUED's Utah NOW from such organizations as the Society of Professional Journalists, the Utah Broadcasters Association, the Public Radio News Directors Association and the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.
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