Livestream: Dan Egan in Conversation with Doug Moe
By Mystery to Me
About the book
THE DEVIL’S ELEMENT: PHOSPHORUS AND A WORLD OUT OF BALANCE is an insightful exploration of one of earth’s most significant and dangerous natural resources. Since it was first refined from human urine in a seventeenth-century alchemist’s laboratory, phosphorus has been used to help burn down entire cities as well as to create the modern chemical fertilizers that have allowed the global population to nearly quadruple in the past hundred years. With a journalist’s ability to translate meticulous research into a thrilling story, Egan brings phosphorus’s checkered history to life. Today, with phosphorus at the center of an increasingly dire environmental disaster poisoning freshwater sources all over the globe, its history has taken on renewed significance. Egan convincingly makes the case that we can no longer afford to be ignorant of our phosphorous use and the damage it is causing.
About the author
Dan Egan is the Brico Fund Journalist in Residence at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s Center for Water Policy, a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist, and the author of the New York Times bestseller The Death and Life of The Great Lakes. From 2002 to 2021, he covered the Great Lakes as a reporter at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. He is the winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize; National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine Communication Award; Alfred I. duPont–Columbia University Award; AAAS Kavli Science Journalism Award; and J. Anthony Lukas Work-in-Progress Award. Dan lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, with his wife and children.
Mystery to Me