Weekend Reads: Fire-Fighting Hotshots, Miami: the Next Atlantis?, the Mysterious Noise Driving Canadians Mad
Five #greenreads to peruse while cruising across state lines to buy fireworks.
“Last Song for Migrating Birds” Food, profit, culture, entertainment -- there are many reasons why people across the Mediterranean are bloodthirsty for migrating birds. The hunters string miles of mist netting and fill the sky with birdshot. They trap voyage-weary birds stopping to rest on perches covered in pine tar. They have even devised rather ingenious ways to catch raptors by loading smaller birds with booby-traps. From Italy and Albania to Egypt, Jonathan Franzen grants us begrudging entrance to a world where more and more birds end up in the hand, leaving few for the bush. National Geographic
“The Sound and the Fury” There’s a peculiar sound haunting the citizens of a small town in Ontario. It’s difficult to describe, this low roar, but it’s been blamed for stress, loss of sleep, cranky children, and maybe even the death of a beloved goldfish. People there call it the “Windsor hum,” and they suspect it’s coming from the many steel mills and factories across the river in Detroit -- though no one will let them prove it. Follow Kim Tingley as she wades into the international dispute caused by Canada’s greatest sonic mystery. OnEarth
“In the Line of Wildfire” Even if you don’t live in the West, it’s impossible to ignore fire season (see “Fighting More Forest Fires Will Come Back to Burn Us”). This year, the states hardest hit have been Colorado and Arizona. Last year it was Texas (and Colorado and New Mexico and Montana...). And behind every headline is a crew of nameless elite firefighters called "Hotshots," who risk life and limb (and lung) to quell the blaze. Kyle Dickman should know; he used to be one. See what it’s like to pick up a Pulaski and dig a line with some of the finest, filthiest wilderness firefighters you’ll likely never have the pleasure to know. Outside Magazine
“Goodbye, Miami” There are many places on Planet Earth that stand to be rocked by rising sea levels, but Miami is, as Jeff Goodell says, “uniquely screwed.” The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development lists the city as the number-one most vulnerable city worldwide when it comes to property damage at risk, to the tune of $416 billion of assets. The whole area is remarkably flat and prone to flooding. The ocean could just as well come at Miami from behind, through the Everglades. And the city's politicians are deeply entrenched in climate denial. Unfortunately, that’s not even the half of it. Rolling Stone
“Pregnant Pause” Being pregnant is a lot like climate change. No, really, just hear Hillary Rosner out. As a science journalist, she’s used to sorting good information from bad. But now that she’s pregnant, she’s bombarded with advice from everyone she knows, people in the street, the daytime news, and thousands of books and websites. Faced with such an onslaught of dire information, she started tuning it out -- all of it. And this, she says, has helped her understand why some people can ignore the threat of climate change. Is climate denial simply a coping mechanism? Ensia
Tired of reading yet? Watch this.
Reduce, reuse, rewatch this recycling video: Ever wondered what happens to the glass you recycle? All kinds of cool stuff. NPR Planet Money
Tips: @OnEarthMag (tag it #greenreads)
Image: Elviz Low