This is the second entry in a series examining the relationship between environmentalists and labor unions. It was 1967. United Auto Workers executive board member Olga Madar went to Congress on behalf of her union and asked the federal government to curb air pollution by putting tighter emissions regulations on the auto industry. The testimony … Continue reading What’s Next for Blue-Green Relations?
I first heard about bonobos when Peter Gabriel started making music with them, to mild ridicule from his peers, back in the early aughts. Then they came up again in the book I read last year, Sex at Dawn by Ryan and Jethá. To me, they're by far the most fascinating (non-human) ape, so I'm … Continue reading Book Review: Bonobo Handshake
Today I sat across the glass from Kyle, a 16-year old orangutan at the National Zoo while he sporadically twisted pieces of straw as if pedaling a hand bike, regurgitated his food, scratched his arms and looked sideways at his onlookers. He rapped gently on the glass with his fist and I couldn't help putting … Continue reading Animals Like Us
On my way to an Anacostia Riverkeeper event at the unique Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens this morning, I passed by PEPCO's Benning Road power plant in NE DC, which was shut down two months ago. Such closings are part of a national trend: US power generation from coal dropped nearly 20% in just one year, mostly due to cheap … Continue reading Another One Bites the (Coal) Dust
China’s environmental story is full of contradictions. What does one make of a country where the government severely limits the freedom of NGOs, yet has some of the most thorough environmental laws and most sustainably-minded leadership in the world? A place where the opening of a nature preserve is celebrated with a banquet that includes … Continue reading Book Review: China’s Environmental Challenges
What is it that this disaster wants to teach us? If there's nothing it wants to teach us, then what should I believe in? - Fukushima Poet Ryoichi Wago March was falling apart. My girlfriend and I had recently broken up and we were to see each other at an academic conference in Montreal where … Continue reading Enduring Disaster: Reflections on the Anniversary of 3/11
There are many haunting images in this gargantuan photography book by Julia Reyes Taubman, but the one that devastates my dad is a picture of two disintegrating steam Bob-Lo boats docked next to a US Steel plant in west Detroit. For nearly 100 years, the boats carried generations of Detroiters to Bob-Lo Island amusement park … Continue reading Book Review: Detroit: 138 Square Miles