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Category archives for Green Jobs

The Value of Birds in Colombia’s Post-Conflict World

by Dr. R. Scott Winton As we peer through the fog in the pre-dawn twilight, the birds we see are anonymous silhouettes. Once the tropical sun breaks through the thickness of the cloud forest, bright jewels of color are illuminated. “There it is!” says José, somehow both whispering and shouting. In the branches overhead appears…

Money Makes The World Go ‘Round: Green Banks are a Game Changer

By Lynn Scarlett, co-Chief External Affairs Officer at The Nature Conservancy and former Deputy Secretary of the Interior in the George W. Bush Administration If you’re a homeowner (and even if you aren’t), you’ve probably tuned into a home improvement show. There’s something irresistible in the way the hosts, who are always so personable and…

Holding the Cosmos in Our Hands

“The seed comes from the tree, the tree comes from the seed. It’s like the chicken and the egg. If people want to understand it, they will break the seed apart — they will actually kill it — to see the cells, the chromosomes and the genetics. There is another way to look at this. I plant a seed and a miracle happens — something new is born out of this carbohydrate and protein, a new life is born. This is a miracle, you see? The miracle of life.”

A Fisherman’s Son Who Cannot Swim

Mayur, a young Koli fisherman’s son, never learned to swim because the beaches of Mumbai are too polluted. Few Koli youth want to follow their parent’s footsteps to be fishermen in Mumbai. The consumer demand for fish though is ever on the rise. Mayur teaches me to dig for clams and offers his perspective on Koli culture among shifting tides.

Oysters Built the East Coast. Now Entrepreneurs are Rebuilding the Oysters.

The East Coast was literally built on oysters. At the peak of their production as a food source, these shellfish were so plentiful from the Gulf Coast to New England that discarded shells were crushed and used to pave roads. Oysters kept bays and waterways clean—Chesapeake Bay residents didn’t need to treat or filter their…

Storytelling in a Slum’s Silicon Valley

“We have a different kind of Silicon Valley here,” Nawneet Ranjan explains. Founder of the Dharavi Diary: Slum and Rural Innovation Project, Ranjan tells how his students use storytelling, technology, and the power of their diversity to raise awareness and develop solutions for issues facing the Dharavi slum community in Mumbai, India.

Why the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reflects Patriotism

By Saleem H. Ali, Cristina Archer, Jeremy Firestone On December 2, 1970, Republican President Richard Nixon established the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). This was the world’s first major government organization dedicated to ameliorating the environmental condition of its citizens. The world marveled at how the United States was able to address pollution concerns that…

Hey Developers, Wanna Make an App to Help the Ocean?

We have a lot of data about the ocean, but much of it is in obscure databases – unintegrated, unanalyzed, and largely inaccessible for the public. There is so much we could do with all that information if it was easy to visualize and interpret. At our fingertips, we could have alerts about the presence…

Insisting on Truth – Bhopal and Beyond

“I cut all the pictures out of my textbook…they were so…” My friend Anu doesn’t finish her thought. She doesn’t have to. I know the words that she can use, but they will never fully articulate the horrific, gruesome, tragic images depicting the event of the 1984 Bhopal Gas Disaster, considered by many to be the…

Saving Rice in Pictures

Not pictured: the dozens of hands cutting, sorting and hauling rice. The sweat-soaked saris and brows. The awe of witnessing the preservation of biodiversity.      

Solving Humanity’s Grand Challenges Requires a Healthy Ocean

Human well-being and human rights are inextricably tied to the health of the ocean, yet ocean conservation work is often isolated. Last month, as the United National General Assembly focused on tackling the grand challenges represented by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), both the ocean goal (aka Goal 14, “Life Under Water”) and me, as…

Ascension: Halfway to the Atlantic’s largest marine reserve

    By Charles Clover, Executive Director, Blue Marine Foundation     On the morning of Sunday 3 January 2016, the world woke to the news that the British government was proposing to create a “marine reserve nearly the size of the United Kingdom” in the tropical Atlantic around the island of Ascension. It was a…

Apocalypse Paused: Scenes From Soviet-Era “Ghost Farms”

Picture two giant farms: one the size of France; the other the size of Wisconsin. That is how many acres of agricultural land sit fallow in Russia (45 million) and Kazakhstan (35 million).   The 250,000-acre Chilinka Collective Farm, in northern Kazakhstan, was once known as an oasis on the steppes. It was home to 500…

Paris Agreement Catalyzes Global Cooperation Toward a Low-Carbon Future

Worker’s clean solar panels for maximum efficiency at the power solar facility in Lancaster, California. Photo credit: © Dave Lauridsen for The Nature Conservancy By Lynn Scarlett, Managing Director of Public Policy and Global Climate for The Nature Conservancy Paris is again in the news—and, this time, as host to nearly all the world’s nations who…

Mapping Ocean Wealth – Informing a Sustainable Ocean Economy

By Mark Spalding, marine scientist, The Nature Conservancy I’m a somewhat recalcitrant tweeter. I’m not quite sure whether it’s worth the effort, but last month I joined a trending topic, a first for me. I tweeted: #IAmAScientistBecause I want to explain to people how much we all NEED nature. It was honest, but I wondered…