Image-of-the-Week: Irene’s Sediments

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.


NASA Earth Observatory image by Robert Simmon, using Landsat 5 data from the U.S. Geological Survey Global Visualization Viewer. Credit: NASA Earth Observatory image captured 2 September by Robert Simmon, using Landsat 5 data from the US Geological Survey Global Visualization Viewer. A week after Hurricane Irene blew through New England, dumping 6-10 inches/15-25 centimeters of rain into the 33 tributaries of the Connecticut River—in Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Connecticut—sediment still poured into Long Island Sound. Meanwhile, the Thames River to the east showed little or no sediment. The difference: the Connecticut flows across lands once submerged under, and still loaded with agriculturally-rich silts of, Glacial Lake Hitchcock; the Thames flows through glacier-stripped bedrocks. Much of the sediment flooding into the sea in this image comes from farmland—with some riverbank fields literally washed away. Consequently, one of the powerful side-effects of this year’s extremely active hurricane season (14 named storms before the halfway mark, compared to 10-11 storms in the entirety of a normal season) will be the impact on local agriculture for years to come. Add to that the rebirth of La Niña, and we might expect more of the same in the coming months—including the possibility of another hyperactive Atlantic hurricane season and more lost farmlands next year.

LET’S TALK ABOUT OPTIMISM FOR A CHANGE

Democracy and journalism are in crisis mode—and have been for a while. So how about doing something different?

Mother Jones did. We just merged with the Center for Investigative Reporting, bringing the radio show Reveal, the documentary film team CIR Studios, and Mother Jones together as one bigger, bolder investigative journalism nonprofit.

And this is the first time we’re asking you to support the new organization we’re building. In “Less Dreading, More Doing,” we lay it all out for you: why we merged, how we’re stronger together, why we’re optimistic about the work ahead, and why we need to raise the First $500,000 in online donations by June 22.

It won’t be easy. There are many exciting new things to share with you, but spoiler: Wiggle room in our budget is not among them. We can’t afford missing these goals. We need this to be a big one. Falling flat would be utterly devastating right now.

A First $500,000 donation of $500, $50, or $5 would mean the world to us—a signal that you believe in the power of independent investigative reporting like we do. And whether you can pitch in or not, we have a free Strengthen Journalism sticker for you so you can help us spread the word and make the most of this huge moment.

payment methods

LET’S TALK ABOUT OPTIMISM FOR A CHANGE

Democracy and journalism are in crisis mode—and have been for a while. So how about doing something different?

Mother Jones did. We just merged with the Center for Investigative Reporting, bringing the radio show Reveal, the documentary film team CIR Studios, and Mother Jones together as one bigger, bolder investigative journalism nonprofit.

And this is the first time we’re asking you to support the new organization we’re building. In “Less Dreading, More Doing,” we lay it all out for you: why we merged, how we’re stronger together, why we’re optimistic about the work ahead, and why we need to raise the First $500,000 in online donations by June 22.

It won’t be easy. There are many exciting new things to share with you, but spoiler: Wiggle room in our budget is not among them. We can’t afford missing these goals. We need this to be a big one. Falling flat would be utterly devastating right now.

A First $500,000 donation of $500, $50, or $5 would mean the world to us—a signal that you believe in the power of independent investigative reporting like we do. And whether you can pitch in or not, we have a free Strengthen Journalism sticker for you so you can help us spread the word and make the most of this huge moment.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate