Could My Chilean Childhood Combat Plastic Waste?

In the 1980s, We Recycled Our Bottles in Big Red Crates. Returning to Returnables Can Curb Pollution Today

When I was growing up in the ’80s in Santiago, Chile, during the Pinochet dictatorship, air quality was the environmental problem most present in our lives. It determined whether we could drive that day, how overwhelmed hospitals would be, and whether or not we would have physical education at school.

Global warming was unheard of. And plastic was our friend: a cheap, versatile, and durable material that let us play, move about, and simplify our lives. We never anticipated its long-lastingness would become a problem.

During those politically tumultuous years in the …

The U.S.-Mexico Corn Conflict Is Popping Off

There’s a Cross-Border Battle Over GMO Crops, Biodiversity, Food Security, and Public Health

On October 19, the United States and Mexico announced that they had formed a panel to review an ongoing dispute over corn. Though drug trafficking and migration tend to take …

The Fireball in Baltimore That Ignited a Climate Justice Movement

Residents of Curtis Bay Set Out to Save Their Neighborhood. Instead, They Built a Coalition With Global Aspirations

On December 30, 2021, residents of Curtis Bay, a neighborhood in southern Baltimore, felt a loud boom. The foundation of the row homes and two-story buildings shook as though there …

Will Hawai’i Succeed in Killing Me?

A Weather Forecaster on the Big Island Predicts More Disasters If the State Doesn’t Heed Scientific Warnings

Hawai‘i is a spectacular place—not just visually exciting, but also located above incredible geological forces and beneath amazing atmospheric conditions. As a meteorologist who reports on earth science news, I …

I’m Indigenous Australian, and I Work for a Mining Company | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

I’m Indigenous Australian, and I Work for a Mining Company

For Over 20 Years, I’ve Been Trying to Change an Industry That Has Excluded, Displaced, and Exploited Native People

Being in mining was never part of my plan. As a young boy, I dreamed of becoming a priest with a pilot’s license, living and working in remote …