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Re-Thinking China

According to Ecotextile News, the Chinese government recently “ordered the closure of over 2,000 companies in 18 different industries – including the dyeing and finishing sector – as the country mulls a new environmental tax on manufacturing to crack down on highly polluting industries.” This environmental tax will likely be […]

Breathe Cleaner Air With These 7 Houseplants

I am marrying a man who knows how to work a houseplant. It is, as the Victorians might have termed, an extremely advantageous match. Why? Because I once kept a ficus tree in the same pot for 13 years and possess plant nurturing skills that work like a bottle of […]

Garbage, Saints and Whale Sharks of The South Atlantic

ExclusiveTouring St. Helena and beyond. “He died of stomach cancer,” are nearly the first words that come out of our tour guide’s mouth. The guide, a diminutive woman of no more than four and a half feet, is adamant on this point. We’re standing in the drawing room of Napoleon […]

Ocean Plastic Pollution Meets Its Match: A 19-Year-Old

Kids these days. Texting with one hand, solving the world’s problems with the other. Meet Boyan Slat, a 19-year-old Dutch student who has plans to remove more than 7 million tons of plastic waste currently polluting the world’s oceans. Slat created the Ocean Cleanup Foundation, a non-profit organization that’s helping […]

9 Reasons to Ditch the Bottle Once and for All

Bottled water is everywhere. Supermarkets, gas stations, even vending machines offer it, but there are compelling reasons to kick the bottle habit for good. 9. Cost: A single bottle of water generally runs about one to two dollars. In some cases, such as at concerts or amusement parks, one bottle […]

Everest: Conservation in the Death Zone

“Mountains are not fair or unfair – they are just dangerous.” – Reinhold Messner Mount Everest, our planet’s highest mountain, has never been welcoming. Its aptly-named “death zone” (the height where the air is too thin to breathe) and has been claiming lives for the last half-century, including during the 1996 disaster […]

China’s Synthetic Natural Gas: Is It Really Clean Energy?

China is doubling-down on synthetic natural gas in hopes of reducing air pollution. But is this new natural gas any cleaner? A study published in Nature last month investigated the finer details of China’s recent approval of nine synthetic natural gas power plants (with plans to build 4o more). As you may […]

Between the Lines: Who Cares?

ColumnConscious life, hear me roar. I think the first time I became aware of trash and the environment was when the Keep America Beautiful commercial of Iron Eyes Cody came out. (As drums pound and smokestacks puff out fumes, Cody looks at a highway coated in debris. A bag of […]

The Crochet Reef: A Phenomenal Stitch in Time

My eccentric Aunt Lorraine could crochet better than most, her intricate hooded baby sweaters ideal for keeping my little ones bundled in warmth. Isn’t that the heartfelt purpose of most woolen handiwork? Yet the magical forms you see here, resulting from thousands of hours of labor, are a commentary on […]

Give Me Convenience or Give Me Death: YOUR Plastic Footprint

  It’s been an interesting few weeks. UN meetings, talks with major film and television networks about filming my nonprofit’s expeditions as we sail around the world studying plastic in our oceans. Lately, I’ve been obsessed with the concept of global pollution in terms of scale. The scale of problems […]

The 20 Most Influential Women in Green

They’re building national parks, protecting endangered species, revealing environmental injustice and making crucial decisions that will affect the future of our planet. Or, maybe they’re just making it cool to be vegan. But in all their varied contributions, these 20 women – from global environmental leaders to community activists – […]

Bad Vibrations: How We're Deafening the Deep

There are few sounds in the natural world that are as soothing as the restless sea – so it’s a shame we’re drowning it out. In yet another assault on the biophony, human beings are flooding the depths of the oceans with noise pollution, turning the formerly Silent World into […]

Let’s Learn About Environmental Justice [Video]

Sometimes you just need a crash course in racism and poverty, and how these subjects relate to pollution and climate change. The following video from Grist explains how certain people in cities and nations are more impacted by pollution. Because, after all, social justice is an environmental issue. Now, on […]

Twinkies In Outer Space

ExclusiveThe voyage into the heart of the Atlantic gyre continues. To make landfall in Uruguay, we’re dependent on our engine to propel our vessel through the windless areas of the open sea. But today, as we followed a line of garbage where we pulled out milk crates, buckets, and nondescript […]

China Gets The Blues, Literally

Guess what? Jeans aren’t really green. The most sustainable pair you’ll slip on are the blue jeans that feel like cardboard boxes on your legs or the pair you find at the thrift shop; otherwise it’s a crapshoot as to how they get distressed like you want them to be. […]

BP Took Our Arms; the Government Is Taking Our Legs

We’re approaching the part of Louisiana where land and water become indistinct. South of New Orleans, approaching Grand Isle, we’re driving a series of elevated roadways and bridges, traversing a mammoth, venerable estuary the likes of which I’ve never seen. The likes of which I never knew existed. This area […]

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Let’s Learn About Environmental Justice [Video]

Sometimes you just need a crash course in racism and poverty, and how these subjects relate to pollution and climate change. The following video from Grist explains how certain people in cities and nations are more impacted by pollution. Because, after all, social justice is an environmental issue. Now, on […]

China’s Synthetic Natural Gas: Is It Really Clean Energy?

China is doubling-down on synthetic natural gas in hopes of reducing air pollution. But is this new natural gas any cleaner? A study published in Nature last month investigated the finer details of China’s recent approval of nine synthetic natural gas power plants (with plans to build 4o more). As you may […]

3 Ways China Is Working To Clean Up Its Air Pollution

China’s urban air pollution went off the charts this past winter, and the world took notice. With aggressive policies on the books, is this industrial giant finally admitting that health is more important than production?  In a list of the world’s most polluted nations, China is a shoe-in. An accelerated pace […]

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