About the Book

Dam Nation

Dam Nation

Dispatches from the Water Underground
March 2007
Trade Paperback · 344 Pages
$19.95 U.S. · $25.95 CAN · €14.99 E.U.
ISBN 9781932360806
Soft Skull Press


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Edited by the coauthors of the notorious zine The Guerrilla Graywater Girls Guide to Water, this collection of original essays, drawings, and photographs is part radical history of water and part DIY guide to disengaging one's home, school, or workplace from the wasteful water grid. The pieces are arranged in three sections: "Water Wars" focuses on the history and politics of dams and water infrastructure; "The Water Grid" chronicles the rise of energy-intensive, polluting sewage treatment plants, and points out alternative systems; and "Watershed" examines the often destructive relationship between human settlements and nature, but finds hope in the experiences of those involved in watershed restoration.

About the Authors

Cleo Woelfle-Erskine is a Bay Area based writer, teacher and agitator. His books include Urban Wilds: gardeners’ stories of the struggle for land and justice (water/under/ground, 2001), the kids book Sink or Swim: A History of Sausal Creek (water/under/ground, 2004) and the infamous The Guerrilla Graywater Girls' Guide to Water zine (with Laura Allen). His water conservation projects have been featured in The Utne Reader and The San Francisco Chronicle. Cleo has lived in Los Angeles, and Santa Fe and currently lives in Oakland, CA.

Laura Allen is a Bay Area gardener, activist, and elementary school teacher. She has a BA in Environmental Science from UC Berkeley and a teaching credential from the New College of California. She also attended Solar Energy International where she received certificates in photovoltaic design and installation, wind power and microhydro power. Co-author of the notorious Guerrilla Greywater Girls Guide to Water, her writings can also be found in Urban Wilds: gardeners’ stories of the struggle for land and justice (water/under/ground, 2001), Clamor, and Home Power magazine. She has lived in Eureka and Oakland, California.