How Leather Is Slowly Killing the People and Places That Make It

Though we may consider ourselves intellectually and technologically superior to our cave-dwelling ancestors, we still adorn our bodies, transports, and homes with the skin of conquered animals. But unlike the wholly organic methods used by our forebears, the modern leather industry is simultaneously killing the local… » 6/03/14 4:23pm 6/03/14 4:23pm

These Landscapes Covered In Oil Wells Are Like Huge Alien Cities

Crude oil—or petroleum—has been used since ancient times for several purposes, mostly for dimly lighting up buildings and streets. Only after inventing the fractional distillation of oil and discovering vast mineral oil fields under the ground and sea in the 19th and 20th centuries, petroleum became the most important… » 5/08/14 9:00am 5/08/14 9:00am

Why our planet is fucked up in one single picture

National Geographic's Your Shot member John Goodman took this beautiful—and terrible—image north of Manhattan Beach in Los Angeles, California: "A lone surfer returns from the sea, bathed in the sodium light of an onshore industrial site." Two ways to understand Earth clashing in one perfect image. » 3/13/14 12:49am 3/13/14 12:49am

Making Plastic, Fertilizer, and Superglue Out of Thin Air

What to do with an environment-wrecking molecule like carbon dioxide? The gas behind global warming and ocean acidification enjoys a pretty rough reputation these days, but scientists have been working on ingenious ways to put carbon dioxide to good use. A little electricity, it turns out, can transform the waste gas… » 3/06/14 6:00pm 3/06/14 6:00pm

A Photographic Journey Down The Old Industrial Banks of the Thames

After the Thames River weaves eastward through London, it widens into an industrial landscape of factories sretching out into the English Channel. London-based photographer Alice Gur-Arie has documented this landscape in her series Passages: Industry on the River Thames, a collection of beautiful black and white… » 11/25/13 6:00pm 11/25/13 6:00pm

How Baby Spoons Are Feeding American Manufacturing

We've all spooned grub into our gaping maws at one point or another, but how about spooning a new soul into the vacant husk of American manufacturing? That's what Spuni is doing with just a bright idea and hip-tastic technologies like crowd-funding and 3D printing. The New York Times dug into the story of Spuni's… » 4/27/13 4:30pm 4/27/13 4:30pm

The Next Industrial Revolution Starts in this 20-foot Shipping Container

The guys at Re-Char, a small startup that makes carbon-negative products, were faced with a problem. They wanted to ship products to Kenya, but the options available were wasteful, costly, and not nearly as efficient as simply manufacturing near to the customers. To do it, in a place with little industry or… » 9/13/12 3:40pm 9/13/12 3:40pm