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Gloomy Days Ahead

By Jason Bittel What thrives in urban areas, sports an armored shell, and can cut through tree bark like a samurai’s sword? Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles? No way, dude. Allow me to introduce to you the gloomy scale insect. This mutant-like sap sipper is native to the American southeast, but it could become more common...

Mother Nature Brought Us Into This World—Now She’s Threatening to Take Us Out

By Susan Cosier Mom is pissed. Mother Nature—who sounds strangely similar to Julia Roberts—is taking humans down a notch (or seven) in a video released this week at SXSW Eco. Through pollution, mining, drilling, deforestation, poaching, and overfishing, we’ve been biting the hand that feeds us. And she … is … fed...

Clawing Their Way to the Top

By Elizabeth Royte This story is a part of OnEarth's Invasive Species Week.In the chill of a New England April, Chad Coffin, a 12th-generation Mainer, raced against the dying of the light, the rising of the tide, and the prospect of his livelihood falling to pieces. Wearing chest waders, earmuffs, and multiple layers...

Stop the Presses

By The Editors This is the final installment of Today OnEarth, but don’t panic! Today OnEarth—which started as our publication’s daily news digest and has evolved in recent months to feature the most eye-opening story of the day—is giving way to something even better. In a matter of hours, we’ll be launching our...

Jane Goodall and John Oliver Debate Putting Hats on Chimps

By Susan Cosier We all know biologist Jane Goodall spent years of her youth living with chimpanzees in the forests of Tanzania. But did she ever try to put a monocle and top hat on one of them? Comedian John Oliver—never one to shy away from the tough questions—got to the bottom of wild primate behavior in his interview...

Stop Doodling in Our National Parks!

By Susan Cosier Art has its place, but it’s not in our country’s national parks—unless, of course, we’re talking ancient glyphs, Bob-Ross-style landscapes, photography (whether by Ansel Adams or dear old dad), and other mediums of the “leave only footprints” variety. But that’s not the kind of artistic expression...

When the Rainforests Run Dry

By Susan Cosier If you thought the California drought was bad (and it is), take a look at what's happening in southeastern Brazil. These satellite images of the Jaguari Reservoir—one of the main water sources for São Paulo, South America's largest city—show how much water levels have dropped in just one year. In...

Different Worlds, Connected by Climate Change

By Brian Palmer Life in Thule, Greenland, and the Pacific nation of Tuvalu couldn’t be more different. At 750 miles above the Arctic Circle, Thule is among the northernmost inhabited places on earth. In July it reaches an average high of 52 degrees. Tuvalu is a tropical island where the temperature rarely drops...

I Spy Something ... Wild!

By Susan Cosier As many as a third of all animal species on Earth are now threatened or endangered, thanks in large part to what we’ve done to the planet. But the Society of Biology is zooming in on what wildlife still remains. The group’s recent photography competition, themed “Home, Habitat, and Shelter,” captures...

Ice Zombies?

By John Upton This story originally appeared at Climate Central.Scientists tend to speak of glaciers as if they were living creatures. They say they grow and die and have good health and bad. Now, with Halloween approaching, a handful of researchers has found a way that the anthropomorphized rivers of ice that they...

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