Sari Albornoz ’06 (top-left) at the Adelphi Acre Community Garden in Austin, Texas.
Sari Albornoz ’06 (top-left) at the Adelphi Acre Community Garden in Austin, Texas.

Let’s Fix This

Our planet’s in trouble. Here are some ideas on confronting the climate crisis, brought to you by Reed and Reedies.

April 13, 2021

Ten years ago, Reed launched its unique environmental studies program. To celebrate this milestone, we decided to highlight some of the ideas and solutions that Reedies come up with in the quest to save the planet. Some are so new they exist only on the blackboard—at least for now. Some are decades, even centuries old, but getting a fresh look in this time of crisis. The vintage doesn’t really matter—because confronting this challenge will take everything we’ve got.

Plant the Seeds of Change

Agriculture isn’t just about feeding people. It can be a tool for social change.

These Microbes Eat Water Bottles

Reed College biologists develop colonies of bacteria that can break down plastic pollution.

Race, Heat, and Redlining

Urban heat islands are often a legacy of racism. Cate Mingoya ’08 has ideas on how to fix that.

Build a Radically Better Battery

To wean the grid from fossil fuels, we need a way to store vast quantities of energy.

Don't Cut Down Trees—Make Paper from Straw

Ben Rankin ’87 has a new use for an agricultural waste product.

Live Wild

Mardy Murie ’23 fought to create the Arctic National Wildlife Range.

Happy Birthday, Environmental Studies!

Reed’s unique ES program celebrates its 10-year anniversary.

Growing the Curriculum

The environmental studies program currently offers more than two dozen courses. Here’s a small sample.

Break the Wall of Indifference

Psychologist Cameron Brick ’04 studies how we react to problems such as climate change.

How To Make Green(er) Paint

America is drowning in old paint, but it needn’t. Just ask chemist Jim Quinn ’83.

Spread the Word

Reed grads have written an astonishing number of books about climate change and sustainability. Here’s a tiny sample.


Tags: Alumni, Books, Film, Music, Climate, Sustainability, Environmental, Professors