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Syrian Forces Try To Halt Rebel Offensive On Aleppo

KPLU News - 3 hours 34 min ago
Updated at 10:05 a.m.

Why The World Might Be Running Out Of Cocoa Farmers

KPLU News - 3 hours 52 min ago
Chocolate might be headed toward a crisis, depending on whom you ask.

That's at least what the 2015 Cocoa Barometer has to say. It's an overview of sustainability issues in the cocoa sector, written by various European and U.S. NGOs, and was released in the U.S. this week. And what they're really worried about is the people who grow the beans that are ground up to make our beloved treat.

"The world is running out of cocoa farmers," the report states. "Younger generations no longer want to be in cocoa.

Hours From Greek Referendum, Pro-Bailout Side Holds Slight Edge

KPLU News - 4 hours 17 min ago
Despite the prime minister urging a thumbs down, the "yes" vote holds a slight edge in Greece ahead of a referendum on whether the country should accept the terms of an international bailout, according to the latest poll.

The survey, conducted by the respected ALCO institute just 48 hours before the referendum that could decide Greece's economic fate and future in the eurozone, gives the "yes" camp 44.8 percent against 43.4 percent for the "no" side, according to Reuters.

Reuters notes: "Given a volatile public mood and a string of recent election results that ran counter to opinion poll p

Don't Call 911 To Report Illegal Fireworks, Police Say

KPLU News - 5 hours 14 min ago

It’s illegal to set off fireworks in Tacoma, Seattle and most other cities in the region. But, every 4th of July, so many people ignore the law there’s little police can do. They say calling 911 about violations just overwhelms the emergency system.

Thiel: U.S. Women's World Cup Dominance Result Of Title IX

KPLU News - 5 hours 16 min ago

A lot of local interest as the U.S. Women's National team plays Japan in the Women's World Cup soccer final on Sunday in Vancouver, B.C.

The U.S. women are going for their third World Cup title. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says their odds are pretty good.

Russia Finally Launches Supplies To ISS After Earlier Failures

KPLU News - 5 hours 51 min ago
A Russian rocket filled with much-need supplies for the International Space Station lifted off from a pad in Kazakhstan early today after two previous re-supply missions failed.

NPR's Corey Flintoff reports that the successful launch of the Russian Soyuz spacecraft, known as the Progress 60P, which is set to dock with the station on Sunday, was a relief to the astronauts and cosmonauts on the space station.

In April, a Russian supply ship

Peruvian Sisters Can Turn A Gourd Into An $800 Objet D'art

KPLU News - 6 hours 13 min ago
Their gourds tell a story — and earn them a living. That gourd in the photo — the one on the left? It is covered with miniature pictures of a potato harvest in Peru. There's even a wee burro hauling the day's crop.

That gourd will sell for around $800.

The Canto sisters — Katya, 29, and Blanca, 24 — are experts in the folk art of decorating gourds. Their father taught them when they were growing up in the village of Cochas Grande, Peru. Katya began learning when she was 8.

New Nation, New Cuisine: The First Cookbook To Tackle 'American Food'

KPLU News - 6 hours 13 min ago
In 1776, the American colonies declared independence from Britain.

But it wasn't until 1796 that someone dared to tackle a question that would plague every generation of Americans to come: "What is American food?"

American Cookery, the very first American cookbook, was written by Amelia Simmons (more on this mysterious woman later). In it, she promised local food and a kind of socioculinary equality.

How Personal Should A Personal Assistant Get? Google And Apple Disagree

KPLU News - 8 hours 10 min ago
The smartphone has become a staple of life. But what about the personal assistant inside that phone? Not so much.

Maybe you turn to Apple's Siri or Google Now for a quick search, or a snarky answer to a question. But imagine a world where your phone actually gets you. You, personally.

Guest Student DJ Joel Steinke: Ushering In The Next Generation Of Jazz

KPLU News - Thu, 07/02/2015 - 21:00

Note: Each month, KPLU invites a teen guest DJ to play his or her favorite pieces on the air.  The program is part of KPLU's School of Jazz.  

Joel Steinke from Edmonds Woodway High School is the Student DJ for the month of July.  Joel's hour aired from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. on July 2.

To get to know him better we asked Joel to answer a few questions about jazz:

Which instrument do you play and why?

Washington's Wettest Spot Just Had Its Driest-Ever June

KPLU News - Thu, 07/02/2015 - 16:55

Last month was the driest June on record for the wettest part of Washington State.

Fewer Students Pass Washington's New, Harder Statewide Test — But It Could've Been Worse

KPLU News - Thu, 07/02/2015 - 15:49

Fewer Washington students passed a new, harder statewide standardized test this year — but the exam didn't trip up as many kids as some had feared.

For instance, roughly 58 percent of fifth graders earned "proficient" English scores in their first year taking the new Smarter Balanced tests, according to early results state officials released Thursday.Compare that with 72 percent of last year's fifth graders who passed the state's old benchmark reading exam, the MSP.

Virginia's Pamunkey Tribe Granted Federal Recognition

KPLU News - Thu, 07/02/2015 - 15:39
The federal government Thursday granted recognition to the Pamunkey Indian tribe of Virginia.

White House: We Have A Beef With GMO Regulations

KPLU News - Thu, 07/02/2015 - 15:13
The U.S. government's system for regulating the products of biotechnology, including GMOs, or genetically modified organisms, was born in 1986, and it has been controversial from the start.

Small Donors Fueled Sanders' $15 Million Fundraising Haul

KPLU News - Thu, 07/02/2015 - 15:08
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, running in the Democratic presidential primaries, has raised about $15 million, his campaign said Thursday.

His campaign emphasized the grass-roots strength of his fundraising: 250,000 donors making nearly 400,000 contributions of $250 or less.

The numbers come from a quarterly disclosure report being filed at the Federal Election Commission, and are measured from when Sanders launched his campaign April 30.

The maximum legal contribution to a presidential candidate is $2,700.

Yes, There Really Is A Town In Liberia Called 'Smell No Taste'

KPLU News - Thu, 07/02/2015 - 14:34


Maria Leaves Sesame Street After 44 Years On The Block

KPLU News - Thu, 07/02/2015 - 14:31


New Rules Could Create A New Class Of Overtime Workers

KPLU News - Thu, 07/02/2015 - 14:24
As President Obama promised, a new rule would make 5 million more Americans eligible for overtime pay.

Many workers say it's a welcome change.

In Secular French Schools, One Group Wants To Talk Religion

KPLU News - Thu, 07/02/2015 - 14:13
For the past several years, the group Coexister has been going into secular French schools to break down religious stereotypes in the classroom.

Since January's attacks on satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and a kosher supermarket, the demand for their interventions has skyrocketed.

"We used to get two requests a week, but now it's two a day," says Radia Bakkouch, a 23-year-old graduate st

5 Things You Should Know About Jim Webb

KPLU News - Thu, 07/02/2015 - 14:01