David SeidemanDavid Seideman has been Audubon’s Editor-in-Chief since 2000. Under his aegis, the magazine has been a finalist in the American Society of Magazine Editors Awards three times, including General Excellence in 2007. Before joining Audubon, he worked for Time, The New Republic, and National Wildlife. Seideman is the author of Showdown at Opal Creek, a firsthand account of the spotted owl conflict, and The New Republic: A Voice of Modern Liberalism, a history of the influential opinion magazine’s founding and early years. His articles and book reviews have appeared in many publications.
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Coney Island, post-Hurricane Sandy. Photo: Jarek Mazur/CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
With another major storm bearing down the Atlantic Coast a few days from now, I thought back to my survey of Coney Island the day after Sandy struck. Sand swept over the boardwalk. Smoke poured out of a building. Power lines and trees were down everywhere. An upended SUV rested on a park bench. A public bus had floated into the middle of the street. Cars and trucks were almost at a standstill because the traffic lights were out due to the power outage.!--/end tags-->
Hurricane Sandy Update From the Field: Brooklyn’s Prospect Park Loses Beloved Trees but Boasts a Rare Bird Sighting
Common blue violet. Photo by Les Line.
In the spring of 1971, in the wake the first Earth Day, I became absorbed in an issue of a magazine that my mother had recently subscribed to: Audubon. The genius behind this issue was one of the fathers of environmental journalism and one of the most important magazine editors who ever lived, Les Line. Les passed away yesterday, just a few days before Audubon goes to press.!--/end tags-->
Since I consider myself an unrepentant hot head, with the sweaty head to prove it, the Tilley Hat’s light weight and patented “Airflo” system is the perfect alternative to the oven-baking baseball caps I’ve always worn. It practically feels like you’re wearing nothing on your head. By the same token, it keeps my ears relatively warm on the days I need that, too, like the recent outing by Audubon magazine’s staff on a cool Autumn afternoon when we canoed along the Hudson River, guided by staff members from the Constitution Marsh Audubon Center and Sanctuary. From now on, I’ll pity the poor souls who have to settle for pedestrian, uncomfortable baseball caps. When wearing my Tilley (an Audubon-licensed product) in central Brooklyn where I live I may even mock them, especially if they have Yankees caps on.
Here's what a few other Audubon staffers had to say:!--/end tags-->
Rocky Mountain National Park. Courtesy NPS
About a decade ago, I traveled to Yosemite and Rocky Mountain National Park for Audubon on July 4th weekend to report on the overcrowding and craziness at our national parks on holidays. At Rocky Mountain, my wife and I were enjoying a ride-along with a law enforcement ranger who politely dropped us by the side of the road to handle an urgent matter. An hour later he picked us up and explained that a family from Alaska at the campgrounds was armed with loaded guns. The ranger quickly defused the situation by asking them to store their firearms at headquarters. “They were okay with it,” he explained, “though we have different interpretations of the second amendment.”
If you need any further evidence that President Obama will usher in a new era of environmental consciousness besides his stirring words about climate change and harnessing the power of the sun, look no further than the invitations to his inaugural. One million of them were printed on recycled paper and mailed in recycled paper envelopes certified by the Forest Stewardship Council.!--/end tags-->
The day after the presidential election Audubon New York held a lunch in the Rainbow Room at the top of Rockefeller Center, in part, to honor George Pataki. I’m personally familiar with New York’s former governor and his record, having profiled him for Audubon seven years ago because he was so successful in protecting land. By the time he left office a year ago he conserved more than one million acres of open space.!--/end tags-->
During a League of Conservation Voters (LCV) reception two weeks ago at the Central Park Boathouse, Mayor Michael Bloomberg was the star speaker. The mayor, who is poised to run for a third term after the City Council revised term limits, has been striving to cement his legacy as a green visionary. Earlier this year Time named him to “Time’s 100 Scientists & Thinkers.”!--/end tags-->