has covered energy and environment for the Tribune since 2010. Previously she reported on clean energy for The New York Times from 2008 to 2009, serving as the lead writer for the Times' Green blog. She began her career at The Economist in 2000 and spent 2005 to 2007 in Austin as the magazine's Southwest correspondent. A Nieman fellow in journalism at Harvard University from 2007 to 2008, she has an undergraduate degree in English from Harvard and a master's degree from the London School of Economics. She is co-author of The Great Texas Wind Rush, a book about how the oil and gas state won the race to wind power.
In 1996, then-Gov. George W. Bush shocked his Public Utility Commission chairman by endorsing wind power. A decade later, Texas would become the nation's top wind-energy producer. An excerpt from The Great Texas Wind Rush.
The storied Canadian River has been so badly pummeled by drought that the reservoirs along it are essentially dry. That's bad news for the thirsty cities of the Panhandle, not to mention a fish fighting for survival.
Deep in the Panhandle, a groundwater district is running a closely watched demonstration project aimed at showing farmers how to use less irrigation water on their crops. As the Ogallala Aquifer drops, saving water is an increasingly urgent task.
Barry Smitherman, the chairman of the Railroad Commission and former chairman of the Public Utility Commission, has earned praise as a smart and competent regulator. But he is also ambitious, and speculation is rife that he will make a bid for attorney general.
As the drought continues to blanket most of the state, demands for water are increasing from a growing population and industrial base. These pressures are squeezing Texas waterways, whose average streamflow remains well below normal.
Hotter days are back, and cities across Texas are again at risk of running out of water. Barnhart, a small community in West Texas, already ran out of water just this month. Use our redesigned interactive to track water systems at risk.
Texas has allocated $5 million toward its battle to get more Rio Grande river water from New Mexico. Already, Texas has hired a California lawyer to represent it against New Mexico in the U.S. Supreme Court.
Barnhart, a small community about 50 miles southwest of San Angelo in West Texas, has run out of water after the town's only municipal water well failed. Officials say that the water demands of oil drilling are a factor.
In Houston, air pollution worries usually are about ozone, but scientists are paying increasingly close attention to fine dust. It’s more dangerous than ozone, some say, and the EPA will soon decide whether Houston has too much.
There is plenty of action still to come on water after the legislative session, starting with a shake-up of the Water Development Board. In addition, all eyes will be on a November referendum asking voters to approve new water funds.