The Great Pumpkin Shortage Is Coming

The Great Pumpkin Shortage Is Coming

Pumpkin fever is back. The latest bout of this seasonal disorder has infected Hostess Twinkies and moved Starbucks to put a smidge of real pumpkin in its pumpkin spice lattes. Previously, the ubiquitous coffee purveyor used a common ploy: It evoked agrarian and...
The Impeccable Timing of ‘This Changes Everything’

The Impeccable Timing of ‘This Changes Everything’

Writer Naomi Klein and her filmmaker husband Avi Lewis lucked out with the release of their new documentary, This Changes Everything. This film about why humanity must kick our fossil-fuel habit before it wrecks the planet arrived at an ideal time. For one thing,...
World Capital of Weather Wimps

World Capital of Weather Wimps

What’s wrong with Washington? I’m not talking about goofy political antics, like James Inhofe’s latest bid to disprove climate change. In case you missed it, the chairman of the Senate’s Environment and Public Works Committee gave a mind-numbing speech a few weeks ago...
Lessons of Sandy

Lessons of Sandy

In July 2009, I was in Ghana during a fuel shortage. This year, after Hurricane Sandy deprived the Northeast of gas, power, food, and clean water, drivers in New York and New Jersey were forced to line up for rationed gas. The cause of the fuel shortage differed from...
This Week in OtherWords: After the Superstorm

This Week in OtherWords: After the Superstorm

As authorities in the Northeast order new evacuations and the airlines cancel hundreds of flights in anticipation of another fierce storm, OtherWords is taking stock of the many ways in which Sandy may prove a teachable moment. Daphne Wysham and John Talberth show how...
How Sandy Reveals the GDP’s Twisted Logic

How Sandy Reveals the GDP’s Twisted Logic

As he waded knee-deep in an Atlantic City street, pummeled by Superstorm Sandy’s winds, CNN’s Chief Business Correspondent Ali Velshi declared that it was too early to tell whether Sandy would be a plus or a minus for the U.S. economy. The authorities are...
Hurricane Sandy’s Wakeup Call

Hurricane Sandy’s Wakeup Call

I’ve been working on solutions to the climate crisis for a long time, but I never really expected that it would hit home for me quite the way it did. Chadwick Beach, the small New Jersey town where I grew up and where my parents still live, was one of many...
Rebuilding Resilience

Rebuilding Resilience

Our nation is recovering from a natural disaster. Again. This time it’s Sandy. A few months ago, it was the drought. Last year, there was Irene. A few years before that, Hurricane Ike devastated Galveston, Texas. In 2005, we endured Rita, Wilma, and Katrina....
Shivering in the Land of Climate Denial

Shivering in the Land of Climate Denial

Love to keepThese storms from me;But can’t give upMy SUV. First, the 80-foot pine tree fell on our house. Then, the power went out, along with the heat. After a few days the indoor temperature became brisk, emulating the outdoors. But in our neighborhood at...
The Drought Lottery

The Drought Lottery

Politicians on both sides of the aisle are planning to shamelessly take advantage of the devastating drought and stick taxpayers with a bloated, wasteful Farm Bill. This trillion dollar bill won’t fix the drought, but it will put taxpayers in a fix. Let’s...
Avoiding a 21st-Century Dust Bowl

Avoiding a 21st-Century Dust Bowl

Mother Nature found a cruel way to demonstrate the difference between political rhetoric and reality when this summer’s record-breaking drought coincided with the writing of a new U.S. Farm Bill. The House Agriculture Committee’s draft 2012 Farm Bill will...
Why We Need the Food from Family Farms Act

Why We Need the Food from Family Farms Act

Although my Mississippi community has fared pretty well this summer, the worst drought since 1956 is jeopardizing more than half of U.S. cropland. Thousands of farmers are facing tough decisions, especially if they own livestock. Dairy farmers face a triple threat...
Smoldering Planet

Smoldering Planet

As fires raged in Arizona last summer, Senator John McCain (R-AZ) discovered the culprits. “There is substantial evidence,” the former Republican presidential candidate told reporters, “that some of these fires have been caused by people who have...