WYSO

Bob Brecha

Commentator

Bob Brecha is a professor of Physics and Renewable and Clean Energy at the University of Dayton, and Research Director at UD's Hanley Sustainability Institute.  Follow him on Twitter: @BobBrecha

Ohio Senate
Bob Hall / Flickr Creative Commons

Area college graduates are preparing to begin their careers or the next part of their educations.  WYSO commentator Bob Brecha is a professor at the University of Dayton and has been thinking about how his students look at sustainability issues inside the classroom and as citizens.

Havana, Cuba
Pedro Szekely / Flickr Creative Commons

All the nations of the world need to make decisions about how to use resources but in developing countries, trade-offs between economic growth and spending on health and education are especially challenging. On Friday, President Donald Trump is expected to announce changes in U.S. policy toward Cuba. Commentator Bob Brecha was in Cuba early this month and has some thoughts about how the Cuban government is making choices about economic growth and sustainability.

Joe Flood / Flickr Creative Commons

The Trump administration announced Thursday that the U.S. will withdraw from the Paris climate agreement, fulfilling a campaign promise he made repeatedly. Sustainability commentator Bob Brecha has this response:

Even though candidate Trump promised to pull out of the Paris climate agreement, there was some hope that calmer and better-informed voices might prevail once Trump took office, but this apparently did not happen.

The March for Science, April 22, 2017 in Washington, DC
Becker1999 / Flickr Creative Commons

For scientists it can be really tricky to figure out whether to protest, engage with legislators, or stay in the office. Sustainability commentator Bob Brecha compares visits to Capitol Hill with taking part in the People’s Climate March.

Commentary: EPA and Us

Apr 25, 2017
Paul A. Fagan / Flickr Creative Commons

After World War II, American industry grew rapidly, leading to not only unprecedented wealth and a growing middle class, but also to serious negative effects on the environment.  As industry and population expanded, we learned through poisoned rivers and unbreathable air that there are limits to the capacity of the environment to absorb our waste.  The Environmental Protection Agency was created in 1970 with strong bipartisan support for efforts to remediate heavily polluted urban air and waterways across the country.

solar panels on roof
Chris Kantos / Flickr Creative Commons

Politicians in Ohio and around the country  are struggling to articulate new energy policies.  Renewables are booming and becoming cheaper, but shale oil and gas are on the rise as well. How will the energy system of the future look?  Sustainability commentator Bob Brecha has some ideas about pitfalls to avoid.

Garry Knight / Flickr Creative Commons

The 2016 presidential campaign often focused on immigration issues, but there was very little talk about energy or climate change.  Sustainability commentator Bob Brecha thinks we should be talking about all of these issues, and tying them together when trying to come up with solutions.

Kym Farnik / Flickr Creative Commons

The role of coal as an energy source is diminishing in this country.  Ten years ago, half of the electricity in this country came from burning coal, but today, that number has dropped to one third. The coal companies have claimed that the Obama administration is waging a WAR on Coal .   But sustainability commentator Bob Brecha isn’t so sure.

vegetables
Alexander Baxevanis / Flickr Creative Commons

In late April,  Michael Pollan spoke at a public event at the University of Dayton. He is known for his research and writing about food, agriculture and sustainability.    UD  Professor and WYSO commentator Bob Brecha interviewed Pollan during his visit - and has this reflection.

My Renewable Electrons

Dec 28, 2015
Claudio Schwarz / Flickr Creative Commons

Nowadays it’s possible to choose where you get your electricity from by signing up for options including renewable energy.  Commentator and UD Professor Bob Brecha asks how we know if our electricity is really green.

After hearing one of my WYSO essays, a listener contacted me to ask what I thought about switching her electricity service to a “green” option, which is offered by various providers, such as DP&L.  But this question interests me because it tends to generate a lot of controversy.

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