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Articles by Jeff Shaw

Jeff Shaw is an award-winning environmental journalist. His work has appeared in publications including The Nation, In These Times, and The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.

Featured Article

The elusive and endangered yamaneko.

Photo: Makoto Yokotsuka.

The Iriomote cat is a survivor. For centuries, it employed the surest survival technique of all — avoiding humans — before being scientifically described for the first time in 1967 by Dr. Yoshimori Imaizumi of Tokyo’s National Science Museum.

Its home, Iriomote Island, is one of the southernmost points in Japan. Located more than 1,200 miles from Tokyo, Iriomote is often called Japan’s last true wilderness. With 90 percent of its land still undeveloped, this sparsely populated tropical ecosystem has been the perfect hiding place for the yamaneko (literally “mountain cat”). Favoring dense rainforests and beaches, it hunts and breeds in the island’s lush mangrove stands.

Unfortunately, freedom from the heavy-handed interference of Homo sapiens recently came to an abrupt end. A new resort hotel has just opened on Todomari Beach, one of Iriomote’s most treasured natural spots, and environmentalists are outraged at the development’s potential impact on island wildlife.

“This beach is a pr... Read more

All Articles

  • Wood-labeling program less green than it appears

    If you’ve got plans to undertake a woodworking project — building a deck, say, or a fancy new china cabinet — you’re probably not going to figure a plane ticket to Burma or Humboldt County, Calif., into the budget, even if you’d like to be sure that the wood you’ll use has been harvested sustainably. […]

  • Okinawan sea life likely to suffer under Navy sonar deal

    Every year, scuba divers make tens of thousands of excursions into the waters off Okinawa, Japan, drawn by the spectacular array of sea life on display. Soon, though, that sea life may be blasted out of the water by an unwelcome sonic barrage. The Okinawan coast is not clear. Photo: Jeff Shaw. Almost everywhere in […]