As many of you know, I served as the Andrew Mellon Fellow for the Humanities at Bates College in Maine for two years. One of the best parts of the experience was designing a course that focused on getting students to interview locals about their personal experiences with climate change. I recently published an article in PUBLIC: A Journal of Imagining America about the experience. Check it out here:
I am honored and excited to report that Publisher’s Weekly named Rising one of their top ten science picks for the first half of 2018! Check out the full announcement here.
I am writing with some very exciting news. My book, Rising: Dispatches from the New American Shore, will be published by Milkweed Editions next spring. You can pre-order your copy now. Simply click on the link below.
In a historical moment of hurricanes, flooding, and unprecedented weather events, it is becoming increasingly clear that climate change is neither imagined nor distant—and that it is changing the coastline of the United States in irrevocable ways.
In Rising, Elizabeth Rush guides readers through our nation’s disappearing places, from Louisiana to Miami, Staten Island to the Bay Area. The wetlands that define these regions are among the most imperiled ecosystems on the planet—accustomed to periods of change, of ebb and flow, yet overwhelmed by rapidly shifting conditions. For many of the plants and animals who live there, the options are stark: retreat or perish in place.
Is human civilization facing a similar set of limited options? And how do we move forward in a world whose borders are already becoming unsettled and strange? Weaving the firsthand accounts of those who are living through sea level rise today—scientists, activists, and members of the communities both currently at risk and already displaced—with eyewitness reporting from our shoreline’s disappearing places, Rising is at once polyphonic and precise, lyric reportage that privileges the voices of those usually kept at the margins.
A shimmering meditation on vulnerability and on vulnerable communities, both human and more than human, and on how to let go of the places we love.
A couple Sunday’s ago my Op-Ed “For Those Living by the Water’s Edge It May Be Time to Move” appeared in the Washington Post. You can check it out here.
It has been a busy summer here at Rush-basecamp. I am putting the spit shine on my manuscript, Rising: The Unsettling of the American Shore, due out next summer with Milkweed Editions. Also a number of my pieces have appeared in various media. Check out my journey into the heart of a rotting tidal wetland in “The Marsh at the End of the World” published in Guernica Magazine, and also my piece on the disorientation that comes with sea level rise “Something Like Vertigo” published in the summer edition of Creative Nonfiction. And in the meantime, try to keep you head above water in the flurry of storms that are descending upon our imperiled coasts.
In the June issue of Harpers Magazine Rebecca Elliott and I teamed up to unpack the cartographic tug-of-war over New York City’s flood lines. Check it out here.
Check out the op-ed I recently wrote in the Portland Press Herald: When Climate Change Impacts Livelihoods Adapting Trumps Believing.
Take a deep dive into the student generated immersive climate change storytelling archive I reference in the piece here.
Check out my latest piece in Orion Magazine: Memorial for the Future. It is about the recent winners of the National Parks Service’s future forward design competition.
Rebuilding or Relocating: How to Respond to Climate Change
Join me Wednesday, April 5th, at 6pm for a lively discussion followed by a reception with drinks and hous d’oeuvres.
Tickets available here.
Our coasts are vulnerable, now more than ever. Rising sea levels are jeopardizing coastal communities, forcing them to rebuild after flooding. But a question looms: Is rebuilding the answer? In the United States, we are witnessing the first efforts to resettle populations due to climate change. The Native American community on the Isle de Jean Charles in south-eastern Louisiana will move in its entirety with the help of a climate resilience grant from the federal government. Similar efforts are currently under way in Newtok, Alaska. Yet, cities in the northeast of the country continue to grow and build along their waterfronts. The 2017 Happold Foundation Lecture, presented in partnership with the New School’s Tishman Environment and Design Center and the Zolberg Institute on Migration and Mobility explores the physical and social consequences of climate change and compares the community responses in Louisiana or Alaska with those in the northeast.
Keynote speaker Harriet Tregoning, former Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Office of Community Planning and Development at the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), will introduce the topic and provide an overview of the impacts of climate change on the social and physical fabric of our towns and cities. She will talk about her experience working with communities across the country and share ideas to address their challenges. Following her lecture, Kate Ascher, Milstein Professor of Urban Development at Columbia University and partner at BuroHappold, will moderate a panel discussion addressing economic, social, and physical implications of climate change. Joining Kate and Harriet will be panelists Elizabeth Rush, the Andrew Mellon Fellow for Pedagogical Innovation at Bates College who has dedicated her work to climate change and its effects on populations, and David Waggonner, president of Waggonner and Ball Architects, a firm that has worked extensively in post Katrina New Orleans.
The Happold Foundation
The Happold Foundation, founded in 1995 and financed by the partners of the engineering firm BuroHappold, is a charity dedicated to using engineering skills and experience to make a positive impact on people’s lives. Working in the areas of human development and education, the foundation helps students to take the next step in their education, and engineers to work in some of the most challenging environments. As part of its mission, it hosts a series of events, among them an annual lecture on a topic that the foundation considers to be vital to the development of the engineering industry and society as a whole.
My images from Still Lifes from a Vanishing City: Essays and Photographs from Yangon, Myanmar have been selected for inclusion in the Goethe Institute’s latest publication, “Inclusion”. It is a collection of contemporary visions of Myanmar. If you are in Yangon please come to the book launch on March 18th at 7 pm at 98 Bo Galay Zay Street. 3rd floor. Details in the image below.