Mountain Sentinels is collaborating with Livable Future Podcast to accelerate and uplift the voices of mountain communities around action, struggle, and development towards sustainable futures. This series will bring stories of mountain community members, leaders, scientists, and activists. Some episodes will feature community members of the Mountain Sentinels Alliance and their unique perspectives. You can listen to all of the episodes, and all previous episodes, anywhere you get your podcasts or on the Livable Future Podcast website.

Mountain Life Series #MountainLife

The Livable Future Podcast Mountain Life Series is a collection of podcast episodes that focus on mountains and the communities living in and around them, as seen through the eyes of mountain community members, leaders, scientists, and activists. These episodes delve into the challenges, characteristics, and actions of mountain communities and ecosystems amidst global change. Featuring community members of the Mountain Sentinels Alliance!

Appalachian communities have been deeply impacted by extractive industries, leading to devastating consequences from climate change. In this episode, community leader and activist Tiffany Pyette shares her perspective on the impacts of strip mining on the Appalachian community, the need for a Just Transition, listening to community members, and more.

Tiffany Pyette is a community organizer, activist, facilitator, published poet, and visual artist based in Kentucky. She believes in storytelling as our greatest asset to connect and communicate. She centers using arts and culture to build community power and builds capacity within several organizations and collectives in central Appalachia. She is a former fellow of programs such as Kentuckians for the Commonwealth’s Kentucky Empower Leadership Cohort, Younify’s Democracy Fellowship, ACF’s Capacity Builder Fellowship, and the Mountain Sentinels fellowship. She serves on Appalachian Community Fund’s Board of Directors. She is also a Kentucky Equal Justice Center Board Client Member, a UK-CARES Stakeholder Advisory Board Member, a KY Poor People’s Campaign Coordinating Committee Member, and a member of the Waymaker’s Collective’s elected Appalcore. She recommends visiting MADR for more information on grassroots mutual aid.

The Himalayan region is among the most unique and also the most climate-vulnerable regions in the world. Basanta Shrestha, former Director of Strategic Cooperation at ICIMOD, discusses some of the distinct challenges facing the Himalayan region, the importance of building effective partnerships, and the need for greater attention to climate action for mountain communities.

As the former Director of Strategic Cooperation at the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), Basanta Shrestha built the key portfolio to provide strategic leadership and partnership development to bring about transformative change on ICIMOD’s operations. Basanta has played a widely acknowledged pivotal role in promoting geographic information systems and remote sensing applications across the region, which has significantly advanced ICIMOD’s profile and its reputation as a knowledge centre advancing digital science and technology. Basanta has a Masters in Engineering in Computer Science from the Asian Institute of Technology, Bangkok, Thailand in 1989 and a Bachelors in Electrical and Electronic Engineering in 1985 from Madras University, India. He is well-known for his outstanding strategic leadership quality, as an experienced manager and team builder, and proven track-record of excellent networking in the ICIMOD region and around the world. Basanta has been instrumental in mobilizing resources and has developed, planned, managed, and implemented highly successful programs to support mountain development policies and practices in the Hindu Kush-Himalayan region.

Delve into the connection between Hawaiian culture and land management in our third episode on mountain ecology. Dr. Kamelamela, an expert in ethnoecology, guides us through the historical practices and their relevance today, highlighting the critical impact of climate change on the islands and the role of community in forest restoration.

Dr. Katie Kamelamela is an Assistant Professor at Arizona State University and researcher in the Global Discovery and Conservation Science Center who studies ethnoecology, ecological restoration, indigenous conceptions of wealth, and indigenous economies. Dr. Kamelamela explores both historical and modern Native Hawaiian plant gathering in forests, advocating for policies that embrace community voices in forest restoration.

Learn more about Livable Future Podcast

The Livable Future Podcast was born from a desire to communicate with our local and global communities about some of the most important issues of our time, possible solutions, and how individuals can make a difference. As we continue to learn about environmental science and the impacts of global change, we’re struck by the urgent need for action and the search for any good news. We wanted to know: what can all of us do to ensure a “livable future?” This podcast is the resulting exploration of that goal, sharing stories and expert perspectives in environmental science and sustainability.

Kaydee is a business consultant/communicator turned soil ecologist, currently pursuing a PhD in Earth and Environmental Science at the University of Manchester (UK). Her love of nature and of people has fueled her growth into an activist and ecologist, from her beginning days as a Colorado ranch kid to her days “dirtbagging” around the world and founding a non-profit with her husband Devon, finally to her formal education and training at Colorado State University and the University of Manchester. This dual passion for people and the planet continues to drive her, and she recharges by traveling and participating in outdoor activities (hiking, biking, running, climbing, diving, paddling, you name it!) with Devon and their dog, Sadie.

Cody is a sustainability specialist and communicator stationed in Denver, Colorado. Upon graduating from Colorado State University with a B.S. in Ecosystem Science and Sustainability, Cody has been focused on the sustainability problems facing mountain and urban communities. When Cody isn’t busy working on sustainability initiatives, you’ll find him living life to the fullest at 9,954 feet above sea level in the stunningly beautiful South Park, Colorado surrounded by majestic mountains and the fresh air.