volume 36 number 1 spring 2014
FEA TUR ES
36 The Redeemers by Lynell George
d e p art m ents cover story
In an L.A. warehouse, workers
14 WHERE ONEARTH
The Everglades’ ecosystem of extremes can be intimidating to visitors. Don’t let it keep you away.
harvest the valuable material inside our old, discarded elec-
tronics, for an employer who
Texas fires a warning shot in the U.S. battle for bullet-train bragging rights. Plus: a snow-loving scientist has some cold, hard truths to share.
believes in second chances for everything—and everyone.
Local communities tend to
Q&A Ted Genoways talks to Slow Money founder Woody Tasch, whose big idea is to encourage the food industry to think smaller.
get rattled when big energy
24 the synthesist
40 The Great Divide by George Black
by Kim Tingley Sometimes the path to scientific discovery is marked by clear signs. And sometimes we don’t even know we’re on the path until the very end.
shows up in small places— especially when the places are as beautiful as Montana’s Rocky Mountain Front.
26 think again
51 Sex and the Single Rhino
by Elizabeth Kolbert
Only about 100 Sumatran rhinos survive in the world. When a species gets that close
Crammed into overcrowded barns all across the state of Iowa, millions of pigs are destined for slaughter. No, it’s not just because we love bacon: it’s to feed China’s appetite for Spam.
to extinction, it may be time to take desperate measures, like mating brother with sister.
ins i de n rdc
10 view from nrdc by Frances Beinecke
12 the deans list by Bob Deans Mary Anne Andrei
8 From the Editor
High-energy skylines, attacking asthma at its source, and more.
Hog Wild in Iowa by Ted Genoways
One thing we know about pigs is that they generate an awful lot of manure. To service industrial agriculture, farmers grow more corn, which feeds more pigs, which produce more manure, which fertilizes more fields, which produce more corn, which... Sound insane? It is, especially because it’s also creating a public health crisis.
Cover: Christophe Lehenaff/Photononstop/Getty
by Bruce Stutz Invasive earthworms can’t wriggle their way out of the blame for destroying our forest topsoil.
For most of the world’s population, climate change means nothing but trouble. For a few, it means laughing all the way to the bank.
64 open space
by Julene Bair The family farm creates a deep attachment to the land. But it can also lead to a guilty conscience.
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Hog Wild, by Ted Genoways