Stop saving the planet!

Historian, author, and urban park ranger Jenny Price makes her case for throwing out the well-tread “save the planet” mantra in favor of a new environmental approach stemming from social justice, a re-contextualization of nature, and even satire.  In particular, she explains the beauty she finds in recognizing the nature of the concrete Los Angeles river.  As she wraps up, Jenny discusses how her satirical approach to environmentalism has gotten her into trouble involving a hit man.

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Jenny Price
Price received her Ph.D. in History from Yale University in 1998 with a focus on the environment, the American West, and writing history. She is a freelance writer and she gives tours of the Los Angeles River on her own and as part of the Los Angeles Urban Rangers, an art-performance educational group. She has published a book called Flight Maps: Adventures with Nature in Modern America (1999) and has also written several book chapters including “Looking for Nature at the Mall: A Field Guide to the Nature Company” in Uncommon Ground: Toward Reinventing Nature (1995) and “A Natural History of the Plastic Pink Flamingo” in The Nature of Nature: New Essays from America’s Finest Writers on Nature (1994). She is also a contributing writer to LA Observed, Sunset, the Los Angeles Times, GOOD, the Huffington Post, and the New York Times, among many other publications. She recently began writing a satirical environmental advice column called “Green Me Up, J.J.” for LA Observed.


Aaron Strong
Aaron is interested in the controls and feedbacks of global change factors and the carbon cycle, in constraining and understanding the spatiotemporal variability of these dynamics, and how uncertainty about these mechanisms and their variability is treated by policies for accounting for flows of carbon across scales. He also studies the history, philosophy and sociology of the idea of anthropogenic impacts on natural ecosystems. His preliminary research focuses on continental shelf carbon cycling and the loss of carbon from terrestrial ecosystems through respiration and hydrological pathways.

Mike Osborne
Mike Osborne is currently a fifth year PhD student using stable isotope and trace metal geochemistry to analyze coral records from the western Pacific.  In particular, he is interested in decadal scale variability and dynamics in the El Niño/La Niña Southern Oscillation (ENSO) system.  His current fieldwork is done in the Republic of Palau and Easter Island.  In addition to his paleoclimate research, Mike has developed and taught science communication courses at Stanford.  These courses are project-based and generally focus on 21st century environmental issues.