The city of Juchitan, on Mexico’s southern Pacific coast, was hit particularly hard by the 8.2-magnitude earthquake that shook the region on Sept. 7, 2017. Edgard Garrido/Reuters

Why seismologists didn’t see Mexico’s deadly earthquake coming

The Tehuantepec gap in southeastern Mexico, where this month's massive earthquake originated, was long thought to be 'aseismic.' On September 7, scientists learned otherwise.
Metropoles like Shanghai have survived and thrived in large part because of their massive populations. But what happens when people start to become a liability rather than an asset? Reuters/Aly Song

Can the world’s megacities survive the digital age?

Research shows that technology disrupts economies of scale, turning megacities' huge populations from strength to liability. To survive, megacities, like companies, must adapt.
Clouds over Australia’s Davis Research Station, containing ice particles that activate ozone-depleting chemicals, triggering the annual ozone hole. Barry Becker/BOM/AAD

After 30 years of the Montreal Protocol, the ozone layer is gradually healing

The treaty to limit the destruction of the ozone layer is hailed as the most successful environmental agreement of all time. Three decades on, the ozone layer is slowly but surely returning to health.
The rainfall from Harvey has now exceeded the amount from the previous record-bearer, Tropical Storm Amelia in 1978. AP Photo/Charlie Riedel

What made the rain in Hurricane Harvey so extreme?

An expert in extreme weather events explains why the rain – and thus flooding – associated with Hurricane Harvey has been 'unprecedented.'
Bangladesh is located in a river delta, making it both fertile and extremely vulnerable to disasters. In 2007, cyclone Sidr destroyed parts of this low-lying Bangladeshi island. UNU-EHS/Sonja Ayeb-Karlsson

Facing disasters: lessons from a Bangladeshi island

Why don't people evacuate their homes when warned of impending storm danger? To save lives, resiliency plans must understand how locals in climate-vulnerable places assess risk.
The tropical dry forest characteristic of Colombia’s Montes de Maria region has all but disappeared. Felipe Villegas, Instituto Humboldt

Healing Colombia’s war-ravaged landscapes

As Colombia seeks to rebuild after fifty years of armed conflict, an emerging conservationist movement is linking lasting peace to healthy habitats.
Exxon funded climate scientists while the bulk of its public-facing advertorials argued the science and cause of climate change was uncertain. AP Photo/Mark Humphrey

I was an Exxon-funded climate scientist

A new study confirms what many already know: Exxon for years sowed uncertainty and doubt about climate change in the public. Should scientists reject certain funding sources?
The return of European brown bears to the Alps means that humans must learn about cohabitation. Alexas Fotos/Pixabay

How to live with bears

Bear-man conflicts have made news in the Alps but history tells a story of a possible cohabitation.

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