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Monthly Archives: March 2015

Battling Drought on a California Farm

On a warm March afternoon, farmer Cannon Michael walks alongside wheat fields adjacent to his house in Los Banos, in California’s Central Valley. Most of these fields won’t be watered again this year. “Wheat’s not a glamorous crop, but it makes a lot of bread,” Michael quips. More on this …

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As Himalayan Glaciers Melt, Two Towns Face the Fallout

Recently, Buddhists at a nunnery in Zanskar Valley, a 30-mile-long alley of gray stone high in the Himalayas of northwest India, took the unprecedented step of planting an apricot tree. The valley is known as a “cold desert,” because just half an inch of rain falls a year. Temperatures in …

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The Fisherman’s Dilemma

This story earned second place for “Best Story on Food Policy or Food Issues” from AFJ. “So, a little orientation,” my scuba guide told me on the beach at Monterey Bay. “First thing, don’t mess with the sea otters. “I don’t want to mess with the sea otters.” “Exactly,” said …

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Climate Change Poses Serious Threats to Food Distribution

By now there has been a steady stream of news about climate change’s impacts on food production. Heat waves, drought, and wildfire are damaging harvests in California, Australia and Brazil. Warming and acidifying oceans threaten seafood stocks. Rising temperatures are causing declines in crops as different as wheat and cherries, …

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The Lethal Legacy of the Vietnam War

On a mild, sunny morning last November, Chuck Searcy and I drove out along a spur of the old Ho Chi Minh Trail to the former Marine base at Khe Sanh, which sits in a bowl of green mountains and coffee plantations in Vietnam’s Quang Tri province, hard on the …

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