Matt Baume

Matt Baume is a writer and photographer in San Francisco, focusing on the science of cities. From hybrid transit to urban frogs to underground rivers to invisible airborne toxins, he dives into the amazing discoveries that make city life possible. Growing up in rural Connecticut, he learned to appreciate nature; striking out in downtown Boston, he learned to appreciate density; and settling in California, he learned to appreciate weirdos. You can follow his work at

Salt of the earth: Environmentalists and urbanists collide in San Francisco Bay [UPDATED]

In a collection of salt evaporation ponds tucked between a freeway, a sleepy little marina, and the headquarters of Dreamworks Animation, the San Francisco Bay’s ecological future hangs in the balance. The ponds themselves look deceptively blank: Vast flat rectangles …

Thank you very mulch

Bayview Greenwaste provides fertile ground for San Francisco’s urban agriculture revolution

Just a few years ago, they were abandoned freeways, dilapidated back yards, and institutional dumping grounds. But today, thanks to San Francisco’s urban agriculture renaissance, many of these pockets of underutilized land are being transformed. And one local company — …

Cities of the Future

The city that said no to garbage

If you want to keep garbage out of landfills, you have to stop thinking about it as garbage. Instead, think of it as resources. This is how Jack Macy thinks. He developed San Francisco’s trailblazing composting program and is currently …

Cities of the Future

San Francisco watches its waste line

Most cities send thousands of tons of unwanted flotsam and jetsam to landfills every day. But in San Francisco, garbage is treated like a resource that shouldn't be wasted. And that means formulating a plan to reduce the city's garbage …

Water treatment plant yields gourmet drug-infused seasoning!

You can now sprinkle hand-harvested salt from San Francisco Bay on your food -- if you dare.