School of Social Science

By Adriana Petryna, past Member (2003–04) and Visitor (2006) in the School of Social Science:

"Already this year, both Colorado and New Mexico have seen the most destructive wildfires in their states’ histories. Colorado’s Marshall Fire consumed almost 1,100 homes in Boulder County. At a time when rooftops and lawns would normally have been covered with snow, drought had left the region dry and vulnerable instead."

"The Ogallala aquifer, one of the earth’s largest, extends from South Dakota to Texas and, today, supports one-sixth of the world’s grain production, even as it is quickly being drained to the point of collapse. Lucas Bessire’s Running Out: In Search of Water on the High Plains, which was a finalist for the 2021 National Book Award, is a story about the politics and livelihoods that have sustained this extraction."