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Cold War, Warm Planet juxtaposes the extent of beetle kill in southwestern Wyoming's forest with the locations of decommissioned nuclear missile silos. These silos were originally home to the Atlas missiles installed in this region beginning in 1957. The installation made Wyoming's Warren Air Force Base the first base in the country to oversee operational nuclear missiles. The Atlas missiles were later decommissioned, but Wyoming is still home to several active Minutemen nuclear war heads. I was interested in exploring these two seemingly disparate landscapes because both seem to me to represent landscapes of anticipated disaster. One stands for the threat of the Cold War; and the other investigates the bark beetle epidemic that is ravaging Wyoming's forests and is spurred on, in part, by a warming climate. I'm curious about what motivated our country to prepare so thoroughly for one disaster, that being the threat of nuclear war, while largely ignoring current, pressing ecological changes.

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Audio introduction to Cold War, Warm Planet

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