Essays

Frackin’ on heaven’s door
Frackin’ on heaven’s door
How many people over the centuries have loved the Pawnee Buttes, only to see them ravaged?
When boyhood friendships were forged outdoors
When boyhood friendships were forged outdoors
After his friend’s passing, a writer reflects on a life spent chasing fish and toads.
You’re made of the same stuff sloshing around in tidepools
You’re made of the same stuff sloshing around in tidepools
When the tides pull back the water line, a writer takes a trip through time.
How faith plays into the new conservation debate
How faith plays into the new conservation debate
Two sides call a truce, at least for now.
Introducing the idea of ‘hyperobjects’
Introducing the idea of ‘hyperobjects’
A new way of understanding climate change and other phenomena.
Can Aldo Leopold’s land ethic tackle our toughest problems?
Can Aldo Leopold’s land ethic tackle our toughest problems?
An argument for ‘voluntary decency.’
Postcards from fire
Postcards from fire
‘We will rise from the ashes, sweep them from our children's hair.’
The unusual occupation at Utah’s Book Cliffs
The unusual occupation at Utah’s Book Cliffs
They’re burning mad about climate change. Are you?
Should nature have standing to sue?
Should nature have standing to sue?
Even today, the natural world needs a co-plaintiff: us.
Should we put a price on nature?
Should we put a price on nature?
A nuanced look at ecosystem services.
Think of pollution as trespassing
Think of pollution as trespassing
Why take the ‘harms’ approach? Try this instead.
Mesas and Sky
Mesas and Sky
2014 Bell Prize runner-up
Where can we say ‘Yes’ to oil and gas?
Where can we say ‘Yes’ to oil and gas?
What we give up in so-called sacrifice zones.
The New, New West
The New, New West
Introducing the 2014 Bell Prize winner.
Rants from the Hill: An Assay on Old Lang Syne Peak
Rants from the Hill: An Assay on Old Lang Syne Peak
Taking a right gude willie waught for the turning year.
Hunting for scorpions
Hunting for scorpions
Seeking one of Earth’s most ancient land invertebrates.
Remembering an environmental science pioneer
Remembering an environmental science pioneer
Theo Colborn uncovered effects of chemicals, like those used in fracking, on the human body.
When neighbors spray herbicides next to your organic crop
When neighbors spray herbicides next to your organic crop
Living together with local resentments in Northern California.
Rants from the Hill: Desert Insomnia
Rants from the Hill: Desert Insomnia
Living the not-so-quiet life in the rural West.
Solace at the end of Homer Spit
Solace at the end of Homer Spit
When I quit my job and joined a pilgrimage of heartbroken dreamers staggering toward Alaska.
‘Poverty with a view,’ in the rearview
‘Poverty with a view,’ in the rearview
I spent my 20s in some of the most beautiful towns in the West.
Rants from the Hill: What’s Drier than David Sedaris?
Rants from the Hill: What’s Drier than David Sedaris?
The Ranter Defends Both Nevadans and Count Chocula.
The lost navigator
The lost navigator
Before Parkinson’s, my father never needed to consult a road map.
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