Environment + Energy – Articles, Analysis, Opinion

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Larval black sea bass, an important commercial species along the US Atlantic coast. NOAA Fisheries/Ehren Habeck

Fish larvae float across national borders, binding the world’s oceans in a single network

Fish can't read maps, and their eggs and larvae drift across national boundaries. Recent research shows that local problems in one fishery can affect others across wide areas.
Extreme flooding during Hurricane Maria in 2017 was hazardous for the Puerto Rican people. But a new study finds that it helped native fish populations rebound after years of drought. AP Photo/Alvin Baez

Caribbean fish love catastrophic hurricanes

Big storms with lots of flooding, like hurricanes Dorian and Maria, actually restore the Caribbean's delicate balance between native and nonnative fish species, new research finds.
Wind turbines are slowly replacing coal plants in Germany, an industrial powerhouse with a conservative government and a strong climate agenda. Reuters/Pawel Kopczynski

Market-based policies work to fight climate change, from India to Jamaica

Conservatives worldwide favor carbon pricing, cap-and-trade systems and other innovative environmental plans – just not in the United States.
A farmer carries firewood during the dry season in Nicaragua, one of the Central American countries affected by a recent drought. Neil Palmer for CIAT/flickr

How climate change is driving emigration from Central America

Poverty and violence are often cited as the reasons people emigrate from Central America, but factors such as drought, exacerbated by climate change, are driving people to leave too.
High surf in Vero Beach, Fla. in advance of Hurricane Dorian. AP Photo/Gerald Herbert

Good communication is a key part of disaster response

Social media make it easier to push information out quickly during disasters, but also create challenges for public information officers, who have to judge which reports are credible enough to share.
Warning signs in the Newark Health Department after the city learned that lead service lines to houses still were contaminating water. Seth Wenig/AP

How to address America’s lead crisis and provide safe drinking water for all

Newark is the latest US city to struggle with high lead levels in drinking water. Ending this public health crisis will require more money and enforcement, plus stricter water testing standards.
Wild boar in a swamp in Slidell, Louisiana. AP Photo/Rebecca Santana

Feral pigs harm wildlife and biodiversity as well as crops

Feral pigs are a destructive invasive species across much of North America. In a recent study, forest patches where feral pigs were present had fewer mammal and bird species than swine-free zones.
The movement to ban miniature toiletries isn’t likely to make a dent in the global plastic crisis. vaidehi shah/Flickr

Removing mini-shampoos from hotel rooms won’t save the environment

InterContinental Hotels Group plans to switch miniature toiletries for bulk products, but it isn't likely to do as much for the environment as activists might think.
An all-renewable grid will mean more electricity and more transmission lines. Russ Allison Loar/flickr

How to have an all-renewable electric grid

We have all the technologies needed to make the electric grid run on renewables and lower pollution. What are they and what are the barriers to adopting them widely?
An Atlantic cod on ice. Cod fisheries in the North Sea and Irish Sea are declining due to overfishing and climate change. Robert F. Bukaty/AP

Ocean warming has fisheries on the move, helping some but hurting more

As the oceans warm, fish are moving to stay in temperature zones where they have evolved to live. This is helping some species, hurting others and causing a net reduction in potential catch.
Visualization of the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission satellite in space over a tropical cyclone. NASA

We use satellites to measure water scarcity

Climate change threatens the water supply of nations around the world. But it's difficult to measure whether a region has sufficient water to satisfy the people who live there. Could satellites help?
No-till farming conserves soil by greatly reducing erosion. USDA NRCS South Dakota/Eric Barsness

Restoring soil can help address climate change

More than one-fifth of global warming emissions come from land use. Sustainable farming can make soil healthier and better able to soak up carbon, while saving energy and boosting food production.
Steller sea lions in the eastern Pacific are an Endangered Species Act success story. David B. Ledig/USFWS

Saving endangered species: 5 essential reads

The Trump administration is changing implementation of the Endangered Species Act in ways that conservationists say would reduce protection for some of America's most threatened wildlife.