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tv   America Tonight  Al Jazeera  May 8, 2015 2:30am-3:01am EDT

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al jazeera america gives you the total news experience anytime, anywhere. more on every screen. digital, mobile, social. visit follow @ajam on twitter. and like aljazeera america on facebook for more stories, more access, more conversations. so you don't just stay on top of the news, go deeper and get more perspectives on every issue. al jazeera america. [ ♪♪ ] on "america tonight", bringing harmony to a community. >> in our orchestra and in most african-american musicians. why is that, what can we do to impact that.
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>> in an uneasy time the role music can play. adam may takes the stage with the conductor taking the tune one note at a time also, striking a sour note on what could have been a sweet deal for the everglades. >> florida is the next california. california has a situation where they don't have water. florida has water, but essentially you will not be able to drink, utilize the water, because it's too polluted. >> a bid to change swamp land and a key resource in the sunshine state thanks for joining us, i'm joie chen. the power of the people to tell our leaders what we want, what we believe the communities need. it's a bedrock of society, when florida voters stood up to save a resource, endangered
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everglades, you'd thing lawmakers would respond, in an area that was so big that it was committed to creating yos 'emmin ni national park. but time is running out. deep in the river of grass is a dark secret. under the burning sun, beneath the blooming lilry pads the -- lily pads the shimmering waters of the everglades long sustained these people, who warn visitors surface. >> you know, they see all this water and grass, and it looks to them healthy. >> reporter: right. >> but when you look at the everglades, i tell people that florida is the next california. california has the situation where they don't have water. florida has a situation they have water, but eventually you are not going to be able to drink, utilize the water. >> reporter:
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because... >> because it's too polluted. >> reporter: for generations they lived on tree islands called hack okays. they fished -- whom okays, fished -- ham a. they fished and hunted. water reabsorbs in here. like a sponge, we squeeze the water out. and then we drink it they have spent most of their 47 years here, teaching tourists about the misisuki name for the everglade. native people know the waters and see what has gone wrong. >> translation: you see a decline in the turtles, in the native fish. it affects the food they eat. it's a trickle down effect. system. >> reporter: an up coast
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flighting of a bird is rare. >> look at the pretty bird. >> reporter: and thrilling, but troubled. >> there's a lot of cat tail growing in and amongst the grass. they are here because of the phosphorous and nitrogen allowing them to flourish. the birds can't move around because they are so dense. >> reporter: we'd be further in if it wasn't for that. >> that's correct. >> reporter: the source of the everglades troubles lies 80 miles north in the agricultural heart of the sunshine state, the land around lake okachobi. farming interests control the flow of the lake. if the water is kept in, a reserve for sugar cane growers and others in the dry season. when there's too much. it is flushed into essuraries east and west. not enough water is allowed to follow the natural route. south into the everglades.
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by this time of the year the water should be a foot and a half higher. >> a lot has too do with the way the south florida management district manages north of here. they manage the water levels for optimum growing continues. >> reporter: sugar cane is a $500 million business. it is also a major waterway. the phosphorous run off causes algae blooms. in 2008, governor charlie crist cut what looked like a sweet deal to rescue the everglades. the state would buy from a big sugar manufacturer. it would be used to catch and clean the waters before sending the flow south to the everglades. one year later florida fell deep
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into a recession, the state's interest and ability to buy land dried up. last year the effort to save the everglades kicked into high gear. they are under threat from development. if the state doesn't acquire them. they'll be lost forever. >> the group spearheaded the campaign for what is known as amendment one. >> what is more important than protecting florida's natural people... >> reporter: an initiative on the ballot last year earmarking $750 million a year for the next 20 years so the state could buy and conserve land for critical environmental projects,ed paid for with tax. >> protecting the florida we love and the people we love. 75% of floridians voted yes, to approve the largest
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environmental initiative history, and guarantee more that enough money to buy the u.s. sugar land. with days left in the florida legislative session, the deal looks doomed. >> do we have comments, if not. we'll un lock the... >> florida lawmakers must approve the sugar land money by the end of the legislative session. the state's offer to buy ends in ob. the republican dominated legislate jur in tallahassee declined to vote on the sugar land purchase, steering $200 million of the amendment money to other projects. >> the ballot language says to acquire lands in the agriculture area, which is where the u.s. sugar land is. they are funding existing agency operations
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instead. >> florida senator rick scott and others declined a request for a sit-down interview. "america tonight" tracked down to ask what should be done with the money. management. >> translated, no sugar land deal. it will be spent on other state projects that environmental activists insist were not part of amendment one. "america tonight" asked if lawmakers were living up to the votest expectations. >> any property use of amendment use? >> it goes to the overall objectives of the agency. >> reporter: if the state fails to buy the land by the deadline, the price tag surely will go up. now that florida's economy is surging, u.s. sugar no longer wants to sell. and the sugar industry usually gets what it wants in tela hassy, thanks -- tallahassee,
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thanks, critics say, to generous campaign contributions. u.s. sugar and executives made half a million to state candidates for 16 races, according to the "tampa bay times", sugar in south florida is anything but sweet. it's a bitter pill. >> back in the everyglad, the bad news echos for the saw crass and the cyprus tree. once billed as a big project since everystone now lies nearly dead in the water. >> now i hear the grass talking to us. you hear the birds in the background, you hear the frogs. you hear the trees. over there they are rustling, talking, whispering. they deserve a right to exist. they are in distress. and those of us that have the ability to do something about it need to wake up and start doing something about it.
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the deal to buy the u.s. sugar land must be complete by october, or the option will expire. but the florida legislature ends this month, and if the lawmakers don't put up the money before they head home, the deal is effectively dead. >> next - igniting new fears. north dakota's energy boom and growing worries about the danger passing through. >> later an explosive performer, how baltimore's maestro intend to lead her city to harmony. >> we started with 32 kids and have many more now. the goal is 83,000, the numbers in the baltimore public school. there. >> absolutely and hot on the website - against the wind. is texas changing its mind about
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window power? that's at >> sunday on "hard earned". losing control. >> 50 and broke. i live with the consequences every day. >> harsh realities. >> i did two tours in iraq, when i came back i couldn't find a job. >> fighting to survive. >> bein' a man and can't put my family in a home that they deserve... that's a problem for me. >> hard earned pride. hard earned respect. hard earned future. a real look at the american dream. "hard earned". sunday, 10:00 eastern. only on al jazeera america. >> part of our month long look at working in america. "hard earned".
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in our fast-forward segment - sparking fear when a train of crude derailed
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and created an explosion, it reignited a deadly derailment explosion that obliterated a town in canada. it was filled with crude as the north dakota explosion. sheila macvicar looks at the bolt of cargo travelling through north america. >> one of my captain's summed it up the best saying "this is like driving into hell", and it was. >> reporter: this firefighter joch. >> trees, benches, park benches burnt. everything. there was no noise except for the burning oil. >> the fire caused a mile-long train carrying north dakota crude derailed and exploded, killing 47 people, including
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five whose bodies were never found. the crude came from here. the oil fields of north dakota, ground zero. a lack of infrastructure spurred the rail roads to create pipeline on wheels, oil unit trains with over 100 tanksers, hauling up to 3 million gallons of crude at a time. with so much oil moving over the railways, the united states already has had some close calls. [ siren ] a train carrying 105 tankers of the north dakota crude, 31 more than the train that destroyed lack maggantic derailed in the middle of a workday when way. >> do you feel your city dodged a bullet that day? >> maybe we dodged a bomb.
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we were hit by the bullet. i think we were fortunate, yes, that it went the way it did. >> the near disaster follows similar incidents in alabama and north dakota. those derailments and the fires involved crude. most crude oil will not ignite or explode. scott smith, chief scientist at the environmental organization water defense is one of those attempting to solve the mystery as to why back-in crude an is the the root of disasters. tell me about the respondents of this oil. >> what makes bakin different is the clear colorless vol tiles, gases that ignite easily and explode. and what happens is the clear and colorless gases and chemicals, when you shake them
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up creates pressure. >> reporter: right. >> and when that pressure is subject to spark a derailment or changes in temperature, you get the explosion. >> reporter: with a low flashpoint of 17 degrees, you get explosions like this one. in an old and frail car. the old industry shows that bakin is no different from crude. other independent studies support smith's findings. >> reporter: fast toward to what governments are doing about the danger. both the united states and canada are putting tougher safety tender on crude oil trains, ordering shippers to use stronger railcars and slower speeds. changes have to be made by object. critics are warning they do not go far enough. next - the high notes.
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the leader trying to bring harmony to baltimore's uneasy streets. and perilous journeys. the great escape of thousands of migrants across the mediterranean. friday, sheila macvicar from the italian coast on who the refugees are, and where they are trying to go and why even though they fled the danger at home, the stopping point is not a safe haven. a first look at "compass", with sheila macvicar, friday on >> al jazeera america, weekday mornings. catch up on what happened overnight with a full morning brief. get a first hand look with in-depth reports and investigations. start weekday mornings with al jazeera america. open your eyes to a world in motion.
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a final word on the sounds of change. with the city on edge after so many night of unrest baltimore tried to hit the right note.
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[ ♪♪ ] the baltimore symphony orchestra held a free imprompt u conference hoping to ease the tensions after the death of freddie gray. that's the podium of a leader keen to make a difference. adam may cues up the story in baltimore. [ ♪♪ ] >> reporter: the power of marran sneaks up on you, the music conductor of the baltimore symphony is the first female to lead an orchestra. maestro allsop is considered one of the world's best conductors. baton. she uses the tool to help the audience' imagination take flying, she down to earth. >> classical music became extreme in terms of you are not supposed to clap, to cough.
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there's so many things that you are not supposed to do, that i off-putting. my parents and art home like of classical music is fun. we have a couple of dogs, and they scream when they play. >> reporter: the child of professional musicians decided she would become a conductor. at the ripe old age of nine. >> reporter: were there many role models to look up to at that age? >> that didn't occur to me, i have to say. >> reporter: her mentor is leonard byrne sign, famous for making classical music accessibleful. >> my dad took me to the new york out. he was charismatic, he turned to the audience and spoke. i never saw that. he was having fun. >> reporter: his encouragement
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set her on her life's pass. >> he seemed to ignore the rules, that is what appealed to me. >> reporter: when allsop came to baltimore, she noticed the orchestra didn't represent the city. what she saw, driving to work, hall. >> for me classical music needs to be about inclusion, accessibility. baltimore, like many americans have challenges, particularly in terms of a huge economic divide between the poor and the wealthy. that, combined with the fact that baltimore is the majority of population is african american, and in the orchestra and in most, there's few african-american musicians. why is that. what can we do to impact that? [ ♪ music ♪ ]
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>>reporter: her solution, a series of afterschool music class, all kind, at the elementary schools, with 50 full and part-time teachers every day, in some of the roughest part of baltimore. allsop started the programme with $100,000. she was awrded for a mcarthur genius prize. funding comes from grants and the federal, state and local government. what do you think the kids get out of this? >> it is transformative for a kid. you learn incredible skills, you learn that things don't come overnight. you have to practice them. the hand-eye accord naying, the athleticism is enormous much then, of course, there's working with others. >> allsop's counterpart is artistic director dan trey hi. he makes no bones about the
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mission. >> when i met marion, she said to me - i want you to think about the biggest problems, and we can solve them through music. we looked at the social ills, such as poverty, homelessness, racism, and we attacked them. we thought about the fact that we are fighting a war. >> are you playing together? >> excellent. how does that work? all right. i think that's okay. it's a war kids may be winning note by note. fan. >> to me, it keeps them off the street. and keep them busy. music helps put commonsense in order.
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reminds me of an older person.
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would be more women on the podium. not much company. 20 years, not much company. timely i thought if i don't change this horizon, who will? >> reporter: in 2002 allsop started a fellowship for female conductors. she had nine recipients and hopes it's the beginning, part of her mission to spread the power of music. >> music is a transformative experience for people. when you come together with other human being in one space, the experience can be unique for you. you know, it's not mandated that you hear a piece of music in any
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particular way, and letting go of everything just for a couple of hours can be liberating it's a message the maestro, armed with nothing more than her baton, wants to spread to the world. a fantastic note for baltimore, and an encore. the bso will try for harmony this weekend taking the stage with the orr kids for another concert honouring the people of baltimore. that's "america tonight". tell us what you think at talk to us on twitter or facebook and come back. we'll have more of "america tonight"
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