Annie Proulx's 2022 book Fen, Bog, and Swamp is a melancholy love letter to wetland ecosystems. But missing from this lament, Nino McQuown argues, are hopeful histories of resistance.
Grappling with the Drying Riverbeds of the Agua Fria
As the once flowing Agua Fria river runs dry, Rachel Howard discusses how Arizona communities are living with climate change.
What Minnesota’s Mineral Gaze Overlooks
Minnesota state agencies have a history of seeing the landscape with an eye toward extraction, writes Andrew Hoyt, ignoring water resources and Indigenous sovereignty in favor of risky mining.
Farms, Fertilizer, and the Fight for Clean Water
In Portage County, Wisconsin, 95 percent of the nitrate in groundwater comes from agriculture, and it's having major health consequences for residents. Ground Truths editors Ben Iuliano and Carly Griffith find out how community members have used scientific and legal advocacy to fight for cleaner drinking water.
To Conserve Nature, Recognize Its Rights
The Biden administration wants to conserve 30 percent of U.S. lands and waters by 2030. Austin Miles asks: what might that conservation look like if it recognizes the rights of nature?
Living with Lead in Milwaukee
In 2021, rates of childhood lead exposure in Milwaukee were nearly double the state average. In this episode of Ground Truths, Juniper Lewis and Carly Griffith learn more about this public health crisis.
Faculty Favorites: Books That Go Beyond the Classroom
Six scholars from campuses across the country recommend new environmental books about the blue humanities, environmental justice, the histories of bikes and blockades, and more.
Diving into the Aquatic Depths of East Asian Ecohorror
In ecohorror movies like Shin Godzilla and The Host, pollution fights back in the form of rampaging sea monsters. Lindsay S. R. Jolivette traces the significance of water in these films—and what it reveals about our worst nightmares.
It’s Time to Decolonize the Great Lakes
Caitlin Joseph argues that Indigenous water governance practices are necessary to creating a more equitable Great Lakes.
Living with Floods: A Conversation with Caroline Gottschalk Druschke
The Driftless Area of southwestern Wisconsin experienced historic flood events in late summer 2018. To commemorate the third anniversary of these floods, Caroline Gottschalk Druschke shares how the oral history project Stories from the Flood helped with community healing in the aftermath.
To Build a New Capital City, Indonesia Must Design for Resilience
Indonesia plans to move its capital city from Jakarta to Borneo. Jeamme Chia, Gioia Montana Connell, and Dewi Tan argue that the new capital provides an opportunity address existing housing, water management, and land issues.
Be Like Water, An Abolitionist Relationality
What does abolition mean for the everyday ways we relate to ourselves, to other humans, to the land, and to the more-than-human world? In this poetic essay, Ki'Amber Thompson wonders how water—and the call to "be like water"—might change the way we think and talk about abolition.
Faking Niagara Falls, A Visual History
A visual history by Daniel Macfarlane digs into the archives to document how Niagara Falls was remade for energy, tourists, and profit.
Poet’s Body as Archive Amidst a Rising Ocean
Western media often portrays Pacific Islanders as helpless victims of “sinking islands." Kuhelika Ghosh shows how Marshallese poet Kathy Jetñil-Kijiner brings performance poetry to climate activism and resistance.
This Shark Can Outlast Nuclear Waste. But Will It?
This mysterious deep-sea shark is built to live centuries. Will it survive to tell the tale of the Anthropocene? Sadie E. Hale considers the Greenland shark, nuclear waste, and ocean plastics, showing how their sclaes of time and space converge.
Infrastructure’s Inequalities: A Conversation with Nikhil Anand and Nausheen Anwar
Geographer Siddharth Menon interviews anthropologist Nikhil Anand and urban planner Nausheen Anwar about infrastructures and development in India and Pakistan.
Diving into the History of Seabed Mining
To understand the future of seabed mining, look to the economic and environmental histories of an industry that threatens the stability of the ocean floor.
Can Aquaculture Make Seafood Sustainable?
Aquaculture is bringing seafood out of the sea. It might be a good idea.
Managing the Rights of Nature for Te Awa Tupua
The settlement over the Whanganui River, Te Awa Tupua, in Aotearoa New Zealand has been hailed as a victory for the "rights of nature." But context matters.
Why Write Beautifully About Climate Crisis?
In a moment of climate crisis and as rising seas threaten human life and habitation, writer Elizabeth Rush teaches the importance of learning to let go.
Recording the Mississippi Soundscape: A Conversation with Monica Haller
Artist Monica Haller explores the Mississippi River as an Anthropocene site with intimate ties to her own family history. She records the underwater sounds of this historical waterway to trace connections between the river and legacies of slavery, philosophies of ownership, and environmental racism.
Decolonizing Infrastructure in India and the US: A Conversation with Malini Ranganathan
Two urban geographers discuss decolonization in theory and practice, the politics of water and infrastructure, and the social sides of environmental science.
Writing Ecopoetry During Doomstead Days: A Conversation with Brian Teare
A new book of poems, Doomstead Days, explores our intimate entanglements with watersheds, environmental loss, and the toxic burdens we carry.
How a Beaver Became a Twitter Star
A geoscientist crafts a viral research video with a little bit of patience and a whole lot of felt.
Navigating Race on the Mississippi River: A Conversation with Eddy Harris
When you venture into the great unknown, you often have to rely on the generosity of strangers. Eddy Harris reflects on race and outdoor recreation, ecological conservation, and the elusive idea of America as he discusses his film, River to the Heart.
Outswimming Extinction in the Great Lakes
Dan Egan's compelling narrative of recent challenges to Great Lakes ecosystems raises intriguing questions about invasion, evolution, and species survival.
Our Waters, Our Selves: A Conversation with Astrida Neimanis
"We can't contain water." Feminist philosopher Astrida Neimanis discusses the environmental inequalities and queer rhythms of the elusive fluid.
Activism and Hope in Flint: Five Questions for Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha
Pediatrician, scientist, and activist Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha uncovered the effects of the Flint Water Crisis on children. Her new book tells this story and how the Flint community came together to fight environmental racism and science denial with perseverance and hope.
Water Justice vs. Western Development in Nepal
A development practitioner and anthropologist explores the promises and realities of water development projects in Kathmandu, Nepal, where luxury hotels have pools while poor city residents struggle to find clean water sources.
Wading out the Kickapoo River Flood
After historic floods devastate Wisconsin's Driftless Area, a team of scientists reflects on their fieldwork in the Kickappo River Valley to make sense of an entangled, multispecies world.
The Water’s Not Fine: A Conversation with Anna Clark
The Flint water crisis is not over. Anna Clark’s new book tells the history of how we got here and how lead is here to stay.
Indigenous Art as Creative Resistance: A Conversation with Dylan Miner
How can we use the arts to decolonize our relations to the land? An artist, activist, and scholar discusses the many forms of creative resistance we can use to imagine and enact new and better worlds.
Making the Nation in the Gilded Age: A Conversation with Richard White
To be outside the "home" was a dangerous place to be in Gilded Age America. Richard White tells the story of how the modern nation reluctantly came into being alongside the environmental crisis of the late nineteenth century.
Apocalypse in Watercolor
To reach a broader audience, one artist and physical scientist takes data on environmental catastrophe and renders it beautiful.
Cottonwoods in Concrete: A Call for Collaborative Survival among Ruins
A forest sprouting from a levee in eastern Washington offers a model for flood management, if only we notice it.
“Stop Calling Me Resilient”: Addressing Environmental Degradation in Louisiana
Louisiana's coast restoration project, and its underlying framework of climate resiliency, is generating pushback from environmental justice organizations.
Remembering Lost Landscapes in Cambodia
Nearly forty years after the Pol Pot time, Cambodia’s landscape testifies to a tumultuous past and hints at an uncertain environmental future.
Toxic Bodies and the Wetter, Better Future of “Mad Max: Fury Road”
Most Hollywood catastrophe films offer neat endings and the promise of a fresh start. Fury Road asks what happens when the broken world cannot be made whole.
A Reading List To Stay Grounded On Earth Day
Recommendations of environmental history books that carry us from stardust to coal dust and back, just in time for Earth Day.
Crying Dugongs and Ocean Encounters in Southeast Asia
Stories of the dugong, a cousin of the manatee, offer important insight into human-nature encounters in the waters of Southeast Asia.
A Syllabus for Teaching Water Politics
A new syllabus outlines a series of readings for teaching the politics of water.
Faculty Favorites: Books for an Engaged Spring
Environmental scholars in the United States and Europe share the books they're most excited about teaching this spring.
Tilefish and Jello Salad for Family and Nation
When the National Canners Association and the US Bureau of Fisheries write the recipes, Americans learn to serve Jello Salad and Tilefish for dinner.
The First Green Developer
Charles E. Fraser built a South Carolina beach resort privileging environmental protection, leaving a complex legacy for conservation and development today.
How Activists Are Taking on Factory Farms
Activists gather at a summit over factory farm expansion, offering an economic vision based on the value of clean water.
The Ethics of Ceremony at Standing Rock
Activists at Standing Rock bring a sense of ceremony to environmental politics.
Wisconsin’s John Muir: An Interview with Michael Edmonds
A traveling exhibit celebrates the life of John Muir and the centennial of the National Parks Service.
Rhythms of Time Along the Water
The Center for Culture, History, and Environment’s Place-Based Workshop on the Mississippi River this summer inspires reflections on Mali’s critically important Niger Delta floodplain.
Same Place, Different Photograph
Repeat photography is used by a range of scientists and artists as a form of data collection, but also raises deeper questions about the nature of truth.
Humans, Streams, and the Desire to Manage
Reflections on improvement versus natural restoration in watershed management.
Snapshots of the Mississippi
Members of the Edge Effects editorial board share a selection of photos from CHE's recent Place-Based Workshop on the Mississippi River.
5 Ways to Ford the Dam(n)ed Mississippi River
CHE's upcoming place-based workshop elicits questions—and several suggestions—about how to navigate a river and its watershed.
An Ode to Madison’s Lake Monster
A story about sea serpents, water spirits, and how Madison's lake monster lore invites an ethic of coexistence.
Damming God? Making Sense of the Plan to Fix Niagara Falls
Recent news of restoration work at Niagara Falls provides an opportunity to reflect on how symbolic American landscapes become meaningful despite constant change.
Brooklyn’s Empire Stores and the Future of the Waterfront
Trash uncovered beneath an 1860s Brooklyn warehouse encourages us to reconsider our contemporary relationship to urban waterfronts.
The Flint Water Crisis: A Special Edition Environment and Health Roundtable
The Flint water crisis sounds a call not just to address the immediate emergency, but to consider the larger legacies to which it points. We’ve assembled a roundtable of noted scholars to contemplate this history, whose understanding, they suggest, is crucial to any broader solution.
One Community and its River: An Artist Roundtable
Artists reflect on their collaborative installation and performance on the banks of the Chester River.
Everyday Paths of Water in the City
How do people encounter water every day in São Paulo, and how can those encounters suggest opportunities for dealing with water's scarcity?
Building Beaches: Beach Nourishment in the United States
A hard look at the soft engineering that goes into our beaches.
Tapping the Past for California’s Water Future
California's current drought offers an occasion for rethinking how our relationship to the past can help us confront crisis.
Land, Water, and Climate Change in Five Interactive Maps
Five new visualization tools help us explore how climate change might affect the places where land and water meet.
Seven Ways to Sense the Anthropocene
Seven projects that help us to better sense—visualize, hear, count—ecological and social transformations in the "Age of Humans."
Davis Island: A Confederate Shrine, Submerged
A visit to Jefferson Davis’s former property in Mississippi shows that, in the battles over how we remember the Civil War, the combatants are not always human.