The Backstory: Heather Rogers

October 22, 2009

For more than two years, environmental reporter Heather Rogers has been traveling the globe, from Brazil and Paraguay to India and Indonesia, probing what the new green economy looks like on the ground. For her Investigative Fund article, "Slash and Burn," published in Mother Jones, Rogers traveled to remote old-growth forests on the island of Borneo to view first-hand what the boom in biofuel crops means on the ground.

Do Biofuels Do More Harm than Good?

March 03, 2009

With soaring energy prices, debates rage on about how to reduce carbon emissions and slow climate change. As a solution, many consider biofuels as a renewable and clean source of energy.  But, nearly 100,000 acres of forest vanish every day, due to global demand for timber, pulp and paper. Oil from African palm trees is considered one of the cheapest sources of biofuels.

Turning Trash into Cash

November 09, 2007

Listen to the story on Marketplace's website>>

Tess Vigeland: One of the big problems facing our buy-it-and-toss-it culture is that we're running out of places to put all that trash. As we mentioned earlier, landfills are closing and in most places, the not-in-my-backyarders are vocal opponents against new ones.

But believe it or not, some places actually want our garbage. The U.S. imports trash from Canada and hazardous waste from Mexico.

A Wonder Material You Can't Get Rid Of

June 21, 2007

To anyone who's truly green at heart, San Francisco's central recycling plant is an exhilarating sight. There, tons and tons of paper, plastic, glass and who-knows-what works its way through a mountain of belts, gears and gizmos. Much of what the city throws away gets separated, classified and bundled for sale.

Recycling is a point of pride to Robert Reed of Norcal Waste Systems. When it comes to giving garbage a second life, no American city does it better.

Gone Tomorrow: The Hidden Life of Garbage

September 07, 2006

“The United States is the number one producer of garbage: we consume 30% of the planet’s resources and produce 30% of all its wastes. But we are home to just 4% of the global population.” So cites Heather Rogers in her book, “Gone Tomorrow: The Hidden Life of Garbage.” Rogers shares a number of such sobering statistics with us including the 4.5 pounds of garbage that the average American produces each day. That adds up to 1,600 pounds each year per American.

Garbage, Garbage Everywhere

January 13, 2006