The world is losing its large predators -- and that's a big problem

On the same day we learn that lions are all but extinct in West Africa, a new study points to the devastating ecological and environmental impacts of losing large carnivores across the globe. » 1/09/14 4:00pm 1/09/14 4:00pm

Scientist sets out to pen futuristic novel, ends up drowning your town

Scientist Andrew David Thaler decided to write a novel set in the future, in a "post-sea-level-rise world." To make Fleet as scientifically realistic as he could, he needed to model the actual flooding that could result from climate change. And thus, a meme that reached 10 million people was born. » 12/17/13 11:19am 12/17/13 11:19am

Synthetic animals will save the planet

A recent project by designer Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg proposes that bioengineered creatures be released into the wild to save endangered species and clean up pollution. And she's already designed four organisms to do it, including soil-scouring slugs and seed-dispersing porcupines. » 11/13/13 12:40pm 11/13/13 12:40pm

Scientists find radioactive fracking waste in Pennsylvanian stream

A group of Duke University scientists have found concentrations of radium, a highly radioactive substance, in a stream near a facility that treats wastewater left over from hydraulic fracturing. The concentrations are 200 times higher than background levels — and they're in the water supply. » 10/03/13 2:43pm 10/03/13 2:43pm

No, Extreme Human Longevity Won’t Destroy the Planet

It’s only a matter of time before humanity solves the aging problem. And resistance to radical life extension has already begun, driven by fears of overpopulation and the exhaustion of our planet's resources. Here’s why the critics are wrong. » 10/02/13 11:52am 10/02/13 11:52am

IPCC Report: Humans are the ‘dominant cause’ of global warming

Our climate is changing, no doubt about it. The festering controversy we're in has been about whether humans have anything to do with it. A comprehensive report by a UN-sponsored climate panel may now finally put the issue to rest — and we're most certainly to blame. » 9/27/13 8:00am 9/27/13 8:00am

Should we preserve the eggs of endangered species?

A recent paper by Caterina Wiedemann describing her success in freezing and thawing the egg cells of several different cat species is raising an interesting question about our efforts to preserve endangered animals. We've got a doomsday seed vault in the Arctic, so why not create egg vaults, too? » 2/28/13 2:00pm 2/28/13 2:00pm

U.S. To Drop Toxic Mice On Guam's Invasive Snakes

Last September we told you about how snakes are turning Guam into a spider-infested horror show. The island's brown tree snake population has reached epic proportions and is now threatening Guam's native bird species, along with neighboring islands. But where the U.S. government dropped shells on the island back in… » 2/22/13 11:20am 2/22/13 11:20am

Ecologist E. O. Wilson explains why you likely have an acute case of…

Back in 1984, the acclaimed Harvard ecologist E. O. Wilson introduced us to the term "biophilia" by virtue of his book published under the same name. Wilson was recently interview by NOVA in which he reprised the case that humans have an innate tendency to focus on living things, as opposed to the inanimate. » 2/15/13 1:20pm 2/15/13 1:20pm

New Zealand environmental activist wants to ban cats as pets

In a country that's crazy about their cats, economist Gareth Morgan has his work cut out for him. Concerned about the threat that cats are placing on New Zealand's native bird population, he has launched a campaign to make the country free of felines. But given that New Zealanders own more cats per capita than most… » 1/22/13 6:20am 1/22/13 6:20am

World's first commercial vertical farm opens in Singapore

The prospect of growing crops in vertical farms directly inside of cities has been on the collective wish-list of environmentalists, sustainable developers, and futurists for quite some time now. And now it looks like it's finally starting to happen. Land-strapped Singapore has opened its first vertical farm — an… » 10/25/12 2:40pm 10/25/12 2:40pm