Molly Peterson Environment Correspondent

Molly Peterson
Contact Molly Peterson

Molly Peterson is an award-winning environment correspondent at Southern California Public Radio.

Molly has reported, edited, directed programs, and produced stories for NPR and NPR shows including "Day to Day" and KQED's "California Report." She was a contributing producer for Nick Spitzer's weekly music program, "American Routes," and reported for "Living on Earth" in the Gulf of Mexico after Hurricanes Katrina & Rita. Prior to joining KPCC, she produced a nationally-distributed radio documentary about New Orleans called "Finding Solid Ground."

A former LA Press Club radio journalist of the year, Molly reported on the faulty pumps installed at New Orleans canals after Hurricane Katrina. That project was a finalist for an Investigative Reporters and Editors award.

Molly worked for NPR American legal affairs correspondent Nina Totenberg during the Clinton Impeachment.

She studied international politics at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service, and graduated from UC Hastings College of the Law. She is an inactive member of the State Bar of California.

Molly was lucky enough to grow up climbing northern California trees and fishing eastern Sierra waters.

Stories by Molly Peterson

Climate change, heat island effect deal a 'double whammy' to cities

Heat waves have grown more common in the last 40 years, and that trend’s happening fastest in cities, according to a new study.

Exide hit with 8 violations over Vernon battery recycling plant

Exide's smelter has been closed since last March under regulatory order, and its operations have been under increasing scrutiny .

Slumping prices slow California oil wells, not stop them

A UC Berkeley economist says new projects stall, but high upfront and relatively lower operating costs keep oil and gas production going, even in a weak market.

'Erin Brockovich' town gets cleanup order

Water regulators order utilituy to contain the underground pollution plume where its boundaries are known and determine boundaries in areas where they are unclear.

LA oil field scraps effort to expand drilling, but neighbors remain uneasy

They want local regulators to keep them safe from potential risks from the operations still underway, but that is easier said than done.

Oil lobby threatens lawsuit, but LA council backs fracking ban

City Attorney Mike Feuer's office wants to meet with council members behind closed doors to discuss next steps in ban effort.

Earth crosses threshold of key environmental markers

A new study says human activity has pushed Earth beyond "safe operating" boundaries in areas like carbon dioxide build-up, species extinction and deforestation

Oil driller to withdraw request for expansion in LA neighborhood

Residents concerned about air and water pollution say they'll continue to seek sanctions and a revocation of permission to drill.

Up to half of new California oil and gas wells use fracking

An independent scientific team finds fracking in California uses less water but more concentrated chemicals than tracking done in other states.

Health concerns get people to cut energy use more than money, UCLA study finds

UCLA researchers discovered that concerns about the health effects of air pollution better motivate people than potential cost savings to cut home energy use.

FAQ: California climate policies driving gas prices up

Gas prices dropped since last summer, but just a day into 2015, they’re ticking up slightly. The explanation may lie in a new law taking effect this year.

Safe Drinking Water Act's 40th year offers new opportunities for helping Coachella Valley

In 1974, lawmakers decided tap water in the United States should be safe to drink. Until then, we didn’t have a national standard for drinking water. Those reports your local provider gives you about water quality? They didn’t exist.

Little fracking at LA, Orange County oil fields, AQMD reports

After a year and a half surveying oil and gas operations in the LA Basin, air regulators find little fracking, but regular "acidizing" and other stimulation methods.

Federal court backs Delta water flows for salmon

Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal Judge Richard Tallman has affirmed environmental protections for salmon. “People need water, but so do fish.” he wrote.

Beach water quality tests could be a lot faster, study says

When health officials make warnings about beaches now, it’s based on yesterday’s news. Scientists now say predictive modeling could better inform closure decisions.