Heather Goldstone

Science Editor and Host of Living Lab

Heather Goldstone is science editor at WCAI and host of Living Lab on The Point, a weekly show exploring how science gets done and makes its way into our daily lives. Goldstone holds a Ph.D. in ocean science from M.I.T. and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, and spent a decade as researcher before leaving the lab to pursue journalism. She has reported extensively on Woods Hole’s unique scientific community and key environmental issues on Cape Cod. Her stories have appeared in outlets ranging from Cape Cod Times and Commercial Fishery News to NPR and PBS News Hour. Most recently, Goldstone hosted Climatide.org, an NPR-sponsored blog exploring present-day impacts of climate change on coastal life.

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Cod fishing has been a mainstay of coastal New England cities, like Gloucester, for hundreds of years. Now, the cod fishery is virtually closed, and the population's future is in question..
Public Domain

New England’s iconic cod fishery has hit an all-time low. Scientists point the finger at a combination of fishing and climate change. Many fishermen reject that assessment and blame their woes on regulators. A new documentary film, Sacred Cod, tells the story of two populations in crisis – the cod, and the fishermen who’ve built a way of life around them.

J. Junker

Are you addicted to your smartphone? Many of us certainly feel drawn to our electronic devices - and the array of information and activities they offer - in a way we feel uncomfortable admitting. And, while there's some controversy about whether or not the term "addiction" is appropriate, there is growing evidence that things like posting on Facebook can elicit the same brain response as an addictive substance.

Luke Wroblewski / flickr, https://goo.gl/sZ7V7x

An estimated seventy two percent of adults in the United States own a smartphone. For most, they are a handy tool for keeping track of the kids and checking the weather. But, for a growing number, smartphones have become a problem - a conduit to potentially addictive games and social media.

Which category do you fall into? Try answering these questions, giving yourself one point for each "yes" answer. Do you find yourself:

Crocuses sprang up with February's warmth, but got frozen in March.
Elsa Partan

For the start of spring, we thought we’d look back at the wacky weather we’ve been having over the past two months. Like the 71-degree Fahrenheit day in Boston on February 24, which set the record for the warmest day for that city for the month of February. Or the February 27th tornado in Western Massachusetts. Or the radical swing to arctic temperatures in March.

The FlavoRx pilot study provided at-risk patients with prescriptions worth $30 at a farmer's market.
Francie Randolph / Sustainable CAPE

We all know that we’d be healthier if we ate more fruits and vegetables. Your doctor may have suggested that. But few of us actually do anything about it. But would that change if you actually got a prescription that covered the cost of fresh, locally-grown produce? That was the question at the heart of a recent pilot project on Cape Cod, called FlavoRx.

One reason nuclear power plants are expensive is concrete.
Petr Adamek / Public Domain

Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant is scheduled to close in 2019, and there are many who would like to see it shut down sooner. But that leaves a significant gap in southern New England’s energy supply. And, love it or hate it, nuclear power is a source of electricity with a much smaller carbon footprint than fossil fuels.

DIYbio Boston at the Cambridge Science Festival, a partner for this year's Science on the Street Cape Cod.
Mackenzie Cowell

We’re used to hearing about upcoming concerts and movies. This weekend, there’s another option - called Science on the Street. Think art or food festival, but with science instead. Jill Neumayer-DePiper, director of Cape Cod Regional STEM Network, shared what it's all about.

Alecia Orsini / WCAI

12:55pm - It's snowing harder, temperatures are dropping, and roads are getting sloppy. Martha's Vineyard tops the current snow totals, with 4.5-6 inches. Nantucket has about 3 inches on the ground, while accumulation on the Cape and Coast range from 2 to 6 inches.

It's wet, heavy snow, so power outages are a concern. So far, National Grid is reporting fifty customers without power on Nantucket; no outages reported across the remainder of the region.


From Wall Street to the weather, statistics are a routine part of modern daily life. Statistical analysis is also critical to scientific advancement. And yet, even among scientists, there's a lack of understanding about how statistical tests work and what the results mean.

The group "500 Women Scientists" has nearly 17,000 members.

Shortly after last fall’s election, there was a rash of open letters from various groups within the science community asking for a range of things - strong climate policy, science-based policy, and multicultural diversity. One such letter came from a group that calls themselves 500 Women Scientists.

That name quickly became a misnomer as more than ten thousand women scientists signed the letter in a matter of weeks. Four months later, nearly 17,000 women have signed.