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Climate

Companies May Soon Have to Reveal a Hidden Risk: Carbon Emissions

Big businesses set splashy climate targets but don’t always reveal their data. The Securities and Exchange Commission wants to change that—to protect investors.

A Bold Idea to Stall the Climate Crisis—by Building Better Trees

Changing the genetic makeup of trees could supercharge their ability to suck up carbon dioxide. But are forests of frankentrees really a good idea?

Astronomers Tally the Growing Carbon Footprint of Space Science

Observatories require electricity and computing power to process data from deep space. Is there a way to make them run greener?

Regulations and Solutions

A Global Boom in Fences Is Harming Wildlife

Barriers are going up rapidly as border projects and livestock farming increase, but they impede wildlife migrations and genetically isolate threatened species.

The Deadly Cyclone That Changed the Course of the Cold War

A 1970 storm that killed half a million people became a flashpoint for political upheaval in Pakistan—and ultimately brought America and Russia to the brink of war.

Climate Change Is Disrupting the Global Supply Chain Too

Extreme weather, from floods to wildfires, is increasingly hammering ports, highways, and factories. It’s expected to get worse.

Coal Threatens a Comeback as the EU Pulls Away From Russian Oil

Europe's efforts to avoid Russian energy imports will likely trigger a short-term spike in coal, and environmentalists are concerned.

Oceans and Waterways

Offshore Wind Turbines Could Mess With Ships’ Radar Signals

A new study finds that turbines can muddle ships' navigational systems, obscuring the location of smaller boats or creating misleading images on radar screens.

Sea Level Rise Will Be Catastrophic—and Unequal

A chilling new report predicts a foot of sea level rise in the US by 2050. But quirks of physics mean everyone will suffer in different ways.

A Strange, Endangered Ecosystem Hides in Underground Waterways

In an increasingly thirsty world, scientists warn that the rare creatures living in our groundwater are at risk.

Extreme Heat in the Oceans Is Out of Control

More than half of the sea now logs temperatures once considered extreme, threatening countless species, livelihoods, and the air we breathe.

Extreme Heat

The Amazon Rainforest May Be Nearing a Point of No Return

Satellites spot troubling signals that may portend a transformation from rainforest to savanna, with profound implications for the planet.

How Preserving Agave Could Help Save an Endangered Bat

Climate change and overgrazing are destroying the plants on which the Mexican long-nosed bat depends. Now, an initiative is trying to restore the balance.

Wildfires Are Digging Carbon-Spewing Holes in the Arctic

Soaring temperatures are rapidly thawing permafrost, leading to huge sinkholes called thermokarst. Northern fires are making the situation even worse.

The US Mountain West Could Soon Face Snowless Winters

Parts of Colorado, Utah, California, and the Pacific Northwest could be without snow for years at a time in just a few decades.
Shock and Thaw

Underwater Permafrost Is a Big, Gassy Wild Card for the Climate

You’ve probably heard of permafrost, the frozen carbon-rich land. But it’s also thawing under the sea, burping up planet-warming gases.
Fuel Up

The Nuclear Reactors of the Future Have a Russia Problem

Next-generation nuclear plants could be safer and more efficient, but first the US has to figure out how to fuel them up—without relying on Russia.
Pump It Up

Why You (and the Planet) Really Need a Heat Pump

Using a furnace is so 1922. In 2022, humanity has to massively ramp up adoption of clean ways to heat buildings.
Missed Connection

It’s a Perfect Time for EVs. It’s a Terrible Time for EVs

Gas prices are up, commutes are back, and Russian oil is under sanction. Too bad the electric vehicle industry isn’t ready to seize the moment.
Island Mode

The Race to Rescue Ukraine’s Power Grid From Russia

In late February, Ukraine began a long-planned 72-hour test to unhook its electricity grid from Russia’s. Then the invasion started.
Climate Change

Machines of War Take a Heavy Toll on Ukraine—and the Planet

The conflict is poised to exacerbate the climate crisis, as tanks, jets, and convoys burn fossil fuels and nearby nations boost their military spending. 
Overcooked

Climate Change Is Taking a Big Bite out of Our Food Supply

This week’s startling United Nations IPCC report suggests the situation is worse than previously thought, and war in Ukraine will only compound the problem.
Streetwise

Cities Are Unlikely Yet Powerful Weapons to Fight Climate Change

The UN's latest IPCC report paints a dire picture for the species of Earth. But it also suggests how urban areas can help humanity face down the threat.
Bark vs. Bite

In Alaska, Beavers Are Engineering a New Tundra

Once nonexistent in the northwest part of the state, beavers are both benefiting from and changing a warming landscape.
Greenwashing

Energy Firms Are Going ‘Green’ by Offloading Dirty Coal Plants

In the EU, phasing out emissions often means paying someone to take over polluting plants—and keep them running.
Captcha

It Might Be Time to Take Methane Removal Seriously

An alarming spike in the second-most-damaging greenhouse gas is giving wind to a once fringe idea: Take it out of the air.
Climate Change

Serious, Salty Trouble Is Brewing Under Antarctic Glaciers 

Alarming new research suggests warm seawater is rushing under the ice, perhaps doubling the rate of melting.
Sneakbrowsing

The Best Way to Learn Online? Be a Lurker

The internet has made me immune to a coherent narrative. In order to truly understand anything, I've taught myself to read networks.
Terraforming

Rewilding Asks: What Will You Do After the Climate Apocalypse?

The upcoming indie game puts you in charge of rebuilding a destroyed ecosystem—not as a hero, but as a gig worker for a profit-hungry corporation.
Global Warming

Can ‘Green’ Ammonia Be a Climate Fix?

Researchers believe that if the chemical is made with renewable energy, it could be used as a clean source for fertilizer, fuel, and heat.
Unnatural Selection

A New Database Reveals How Much Humans Are Messing With Evolution

Some animals and plants are rapidly adapting to our warming, polluted world. How alarming that is depends on your perspective.
Thought Leaders

Kids Suffer Climate Anxiety, Too. Adults Can Help

The point is to give youngsters tools to channel their feelings into something more constructive, like taking action in their own communities.
Bright Idea

Maybe Green Energy Needs ‘Information Batteries' Too

Researchers are exploring whether tech giants can precompute certain data when the grid is humming with solar or wind power, then stash it away for later use.
Green House

What It's Like to Give Up Air Travel to Curb Climate Change

These three families gave up flying to reduce their emissions. Here's how it's shaping their relationship to people and places.
Apocalypse Now

75 Years On, the Doomsday Clock Keeps Ticking

The iconic graphic of a timepiece originated as a nuclear warning. It updates its time on Thursday amid threats like climate change and pandemics.