Navigating Nature

A globe-trotting activist communicates science and the environment

Why Silicon Valley Should Support the Paris Agreement

President Trump is on the verge of a monumental decision to withdraw or keep the U.S. in the Paris Agreement. Signed by 194 nations in December 2015, the Paris Agreement establishes the first global goal to limit warming to 2°C above preindustrial levels. But now, the new U.S. administration plans to roll back a suite of environmental measures, and the Paris Agreement is potentially on the chopping block. While this might seem like a distant, bureaucratic matter, the Paris Agreement has immediate, tangible benefits on a local scale. Here in Silicon Valley, the agreement will help create jobs, incentivize innovation, and spur growth in the clean energy sector today – while reducing costly climate impacts tomorrow. We must remind the Trump administration that the Paris Agreement will help, not hinder, our critical slice of the American economy. Continue reading “Why Silicon Valley Should Support the Paris Agreement”

If You Like Piña Colada(s) and Getting Caught in the Rain…

Then Puerto Rico is the place to be! Bryant and I traveled there last week for spring break, and while we only drank one piña colada and got caught in the rain just once, it was a fantastic trip. We were there for six days and experienced a wide variety of settings in such a short amount of time, experiencing the urban history of San Juan, examining the Caribbean reef ecosystem up close while scuba diving, beach-hopping in remote Vieques, and hiking through the dense jungle of El Yunque. Continue reading “If You Like Piña Colada(s) and Getting Caught in the Rain…”

Yosemite, a New Winter Wonderland

Two weeks ago, Bryant and I visited Yosemite National Park in the California Sierras for the second time in my life. The first time was exactly two years ago, in February 2014 (read my blog post about it here). Back then, California was in deep drought, and Yosemite was dry and fairly warm, without a speck of snow to be seen. This time, things were very different.

Continue reading “Yosemite, a New Winter Wonderland”

What Trump’s First Week Means for the Planet – and What You Can Do About It

Friends, it’s been a rough week. Every day I’ve woken up feeling discouraged, terrified, pessimistic, outraged, or all of the above. It’s been hard for me to process how utterly destructive Trump’s first week in office has been, and I’ll admit I’ve pretty much failed to stay calm. The news has been hitting me like big, crashing waves – and before I can get up again and recover, another wave comes crashing over me. The blazing pace of news this week about pretty much every progressive issue – women’s rights, LGBTQ rights, immigration – has been utterly astounding and I’ve found it nearly impossible to keep up. So I thought I’d take this opportunity to help myself and those around me by summarizing what exactly happened this week in terms of the environment, what people are already doing in response, and what you can do right now to help. Continue reading “What Trump’s First Week Means for the Planet – and What You Can Do About It”

Top 10 Kick-Ass Female Environmentalists to Watch

We’ve all heard of Sylvia Earle, Rachel Carson, Gina McCarthy, and Jane Goodall, and there is no doubt that they are all heroines and role models to me. But there are so many more kick-ass women coming up in the ranks of environmental activism right now that I knew it would be amiss not to share my list. This is not comprehensive by any means – there are so many amazing women doing great things for the planet, known and unknown. But as a woman and as an environmentalist, here are ten incredible females that I am looking to for inspiration in this time of deep challenge and struggle: Continue reading “Top 10 Kick-Ass Female Environmentalists to Watch”

My First (and Last) Descent Down the Nuble River

Guest post by Bryant Irawan

Over the course of human history, we have explored nearly every corner of the globe. But despite globalization and advancements in science, there is one last frontier that remains – and it’s closer than you think. Sometimes we live only a few miles away from one and sometimes it courses through our very cities. I am, of course, talking about rivers. Continue reading “My First (and Last) Descent Down the Nuble River”

Water, Water Everywhere, But Not a Drop to Drink

Drink from something other than a plastic bottle, that is. These lines, taken from a poem called “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, describe our modern bottled water industry fairly well. While water distribution is varied across the planet, you can drink clean water for free from the tap in most places in the U.S. And yet, bottled water products, including brands like Perrier and Evian, litter the shelves of every convenience store. Water has become a commodity and a hugely lucrative industry. Continue reading “Water, Water Everywhere, But Not a Drop to Drink”

Why the Electoral College Failed to Surprise

On Monday, December 19th at 9am, I walked up the steps to the Colorado State Capitol. It was 16 degrees and a small crowd had gathered, holding signs that ranged from “Stop Trump” to “Electors: Vote Your Conscience”. My family and I had traveled to Denver on this day to voice our tremendous concerns about President-elect Trump, to show our support for an Electoral College “revolt” (however far-fetched it seemed), and to simply be a part of history. Continue reading “Why the Electoral College Failed to Surprise”

Short Answers to All Your Questions About Composting

Compost is something that we hear about a lot in the Bay Area, and here, many municipalities even pick it up curbside along with trash and recycling. But what really is compost, and why is it so good for the environment? Here are the answers to Frequently Asked Questions about composting: Continue reading “Short Answers to All Your Questions About Composting”

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