Frankenstein Is a Story About Climate Change’s Horrors

How a Massive Volcanic Eruption Spun the World Into Chaos and Helped Inspire the Famous Novel

Two hundred years ago this June, during a dreadfully cold and wet summer, Mary Shelley began writing Frankenstein. Since then Frankenstein has become iconic, spawning a legion of adaptations and reinterpretations. The Oxford English Dictionary even includes entries for the verb “to frankenstein,” which means to stitch something together in a grotesque fashion, and the prefix “franken-,” which means to make anything monstrous.

The novel is shorthand for the dangers of unfettered scientific progress. But the unforgettable creation scene, depicted in movies with frenzied screams of “It’s alive!” and arcing …

Canada’s Fort McMurray Wildfire Highlights the Trouble with Fighting Fire with Fire

Call It the “Pyrocene,” an Unprecedented Collision of Free-Burning Flames with Our Fossil-Fuel Powered Society

“And where two raging fires meet together, they do consume the thing that feeds their fury.” —William Shakespeare

The images are gripping. Horizons glow with satanic reds squishing through black and …

How Angelenos Beat Back Smog

High Aspirations, Law, and Science Helped Make Southern California a Better Place

My personal battle against smog began in 1971, when I moved to L.A. with a brand new degree from Yale Law School and no job.

The city was sprawling but …

Why I Drowned L.A. and the World

It Started As a Lark. But It Turned Out To Be a Major Conversation-Starter About Climate Change.

One day, I’ll look back fondly and tell my grandkids about the week I spent flooding the planet.

It began as a lark. For the past few months, I’ve been writing …

Are We Really Out of Water?

Doomsday Predictions About Scarcity Haven't Panned Out, But Water May Be Different

Across the globe, countries and communities are asking, with fear: Do we have enough water? But fear, in many places, has not transformed into action, and the forces that have …

Start By Building a Beach House in Greenland

We Must Combat Climate Change. We Must Also Learn To Live With It.

Should we just adapt to climate change?

The question raises the hackles of environmentalists and global warming deniers alike—yet it’s one we should be asking sooner rather than later. That was …