Jessica Placzek/KQED

It used to be that farms were cleared to make way for housing developments. Now, developments are making room for farms.

Agricultural neighborhoods — or agrihoods — are neighborhoods with urban farms. They are being sown across California, and buyers are eating them up.

NASA/Public Domain

In the eyes of people focused on climate change, saving the planet is relatively simple and straightforward: power down, green up, and shout out. 

Those are the main components of the Ashland Climate Challenge, starting November 15th as Climate Week in Ashland concludes. 

Ashland and nearby Talent are developing Clean Energy Action Plans for moving into a world beyond fossil fuels. 

Liam Moriarty/JPR News

Rogue Valley residents south of Medford have to get used to new sounds: the rumbles and horn blasts of freight trains. 

The Central Oregon and Pacific Railroad closed the Siskiyou line south to California several years ago, forcing any Rogue Valley freight traffic to head north to go anywhere in the country. 

Now with new owners and a federal grant, CORP has reopened the line between Medford and Black Butte (South Weed). 

Art of Survival Facebook page

Maybe you don't generally visit federal courthouses for art displays, but here's your chance. 

The Wayne Morse Federal Courthouse in Eugene is the temporary home to art showcasing a dark moment in American history: the sentencing of Japanese-Americans to prison camps, including one at Tule Lake. 

A display called "The Art of Survival: Enduring the Turmoil of Tule Lake" hangs and stands in the courthouse through November 22nd. 


As international leaders prepare for the next round of climate talks in Paris, the plight of climate refugees is expected to be front and center.

The question confronting these global leaders is this: how should the developed world help poor, island and coastal nations whose lands and livelihoods are threatened by sea level rise, extreme weather and other climate change-related risks?

Here in the Northwest, sea level rise is forcing a Native American tribe to consider abandoning lands it has inhabited for thousands of years.

Convergent Books

Army Staff Sergeant Travis Mills promised his wife his third tour of duty in Afghanistan would be his last.  And it was, for all the wrong reasons. 

A bomb exploded, turning Travis into a quadruple amputee. 

Now, with the help of artificial limbs, he walks, runs, dances... and generally lives as normal a life as possible. 

He tells his recovery story with writer Marcus Brotherton in the book Tough As They Come

We welcome SSG Travis Mills to the Exchange. 

Steeplechase Films

The country was scandalized not long ago by the news that the medical system at the federal Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) was falling behind in patient care, and falsifying records. 

It was not the first time the country slipped in its commitments to wounded veterans, as pointed out in the documentary film "Debt of Honor."

It premieries Tuesday night (Nov. 10) on PBS, detailing the history of care for disabled veterans in America, and the many times that care has not kept up with needs. 

Director Ric Burns joins us to talk about his project.  

Rogue Valley Messenger

Bill Hahey is equally at home on guitar, keyboards, or trumpet.  We assume not at the same time. 

Bill, a member of DUDE (Disabled United in Direct Empowerment), joins us in studio with music and chat, as part of our First Friday Arts Segment.  

The Exchange syncs up with the art world on First Friday, by visiting with listeners about arts events in the coming month.


For a guy in the minority party in the Senate, Jeff Merkley knows how to make headlines. 

He certainly did so this week, with a proposal (shared with Sen. Bernie Sanders) to stop leasing federal lands for fossil fuel extraction. 

He makes a rare studio visit to discuss the proposal. 

Sen. Merkley, who came from Southern Oregon, supports the Jordan Cove natural gas export plan, despite his position on the new fossil fuel bill.

Rowman & Littlefield

Dr. Marjorie Woollacott at the University of Oregon knows at thing or two about the human brain. 

You know... nerve tissue, chemicals, electricity. 

But once she started meditating, her own conception of human consciousness changed in a big way. 

The collision of neuroscientist and meditator produced a book, Infinite Awareness: The Awakening of a Scientific Mind.

Oregon Moves On Criminal Justice Reform

Nov 4, 2015
Courtesy Dave;s Killer Bread

The United States has five percent of the world's population, but twenty-five percent of its prison inmates.  The state of Oregon mirrors the national numbers.  This mass incarceration – largely a result of the decades-old War on Drugs – has had a huge cost in dollars and ruined lives. Now, a bipartisan reform movement is picking up steam and Oregon is playing a part.

Maybe the police chases and house fires get the headlines and the big pictures, but it's another corner of the Medford Mail Tribune that garners a lot of the eyeballs. 

The paper has been running a question-and-answer column for many years now called "Since You Asked."

And it's become a highly popular feature, with many questions submitted. 

Best of all for the writers, it's delivered in a fairly wry and snarky voice. 


More than a quarter of a million children go into foster care in the United States every year, often because they were abused or neglected at home. 

The numbers and causes fluctuate a bit, as do concerns about the system. 

The foster care system in Oregon gets some attention next week (November 10th) in a town hall meeting set up to share ideas on improving the system. 

The Jackson County Foster Parent Association is a partner in the meeting with Oregon State Representative Duane Stark, who represents parts of Jackson and Josephine Counties. 


The difficulties of some veterans in returning to civilian life are well-documented. 

What is often missed is the long list of services available for veterans, from government and non-government sources. 

You can put Rogue Valley Veterans and Community Outreach on that second list. 

RVVCO offers programs designed to assist struggling vets in achieving self-sufficiency and independence. 

Executive Director Samantha Brix visits with case managers and clients.   

This is another of several Veteran-related interviews in a joint project between JPR and Southern Oregon Public TV called "Local Focus: Debt of Honor."

Medicinal Missions

The fate of veterans returning home after combat can be downright bleak.  Bleak enough that many commit suicide. 

Doc King and Daniel Egbert, both veterans themselves, fixed on the number 22. 

That's how many veterans commit suicide every day. 

They formed a group called "Medicinal Missions" to address veteran issues, and made a movie called "Project 22." 

The movie shows in White City on November 18th; Daniel and Doc join us to talk about their work.  

This is another of several Veteran-related interviews in a joint project between JPR and Southern Oregon Public TV called "Local Focus: Debt of Honor."


We've got sheriffs saying they won't enforce gun laws, states bypassing federal drug laws, even the president saying he won't enforce immigration laws.  Who gets to do that?  Give us your answer in our VENTSday segment. 

And/or give your thoughts on the person (Paul Ryan) or the tough job of Speaker of the House in Congress.

You've got opinions on events in the news, and our VENTSday segment is designed to let the world hear them. 

We plop a pair of topics on the table--frequently unrelated--and let YOU deliver your passionate (and polite) views on them.

Jes Burns/EarthFix

As cooler, wetter weather comes to the Northwest, wildfire season is coming to a close. This year’s fires are leaving behind more than just charred forests. They’re setting the stage for what’s expected to be a fundamental shift in the landscape. Because of a changing climate, what grows back could permanently look very different than what was there before. 

2015 Holiday Specials

Nov 2, 2015

This holiday season, JPR presents a big gift box of special programming for you. And now, to start unwrapping...

Classics & News Service


The care of dying people is often about physical comforts and medical efforts.

But music can be part of the closing of life's book as well. 

Music thanatologists play instruments, often harps, to soothe people approaching death. 

Jane Franz wrote a book about it, Behind The Harp; she joins us on the phone. 

Mary Landberg

We don't mind talking about taxes, but death is another matter entirely. 

Oregon Humanities is determined to break through the resistance, with a series of conversations on the end of life called simply "Talking About Dying." 

Communities all across the state are hosting the discussions, including Ashland, Medford, and Klamath Falls. 

Pastor Fred Grewe talks about death a great deal in his role as hospice chaplain.