Earth news stories
It was designed as an impregnable deep-freeze to protect the world’s most precious seeds from any global disaster and ensure humanity’s food supply forever. But the Global Seed Vault, buried in a mountain deep inside the Arctic circle, has been breached after global warming produced extraordinary temperatures over the winter, sending meltwater gushing into the entrance tunnel.
For years, scientists have debated whether heavy inland snowfall on the vast East Antarctic Ice Sheet — Earth’s largest — balances out the rapid melting in West Antarctica.
Given enough snowfall, the continent might not yet be contributing to sea level rise.
Antarctica may conjure up an image of a pristine white landscape, but researchers say climate change is turning the continent green.
Scientists studying banks of moss in Antarctica have found that the quantity of moss, and the rate of plant growth, has shot up in the past 50 years, suggesting the continent may have a verdant future.
Standing Rock is cast as an environmental protest, but the Native American Water Protectors are part of a religious tradition that predates Christianity
Related: Trump Made It a Lot Easier for Oil Companies to Drill in National Parks
Scientists say they have found a possible layer of tectonic plates within the Earth’s mantle which could explain a mysterious series of earthquakes in the Pacific.
A famous feature of Mount Everest has collapsed, potentially making the world’s highest peak even more dangerous to climbers.
Caves are dark, dank, isolated, and home to very few plants or animals. At first glance they might seem devoid of life. But caves are full of microscopic creatures, bacteria and fungi at home in the gloom. These microbes, scientists are discovering, may be an untapped reservoir of new medicines to fight antibiotic-resistant germs.
Children and teens exposed to high levels of traffic-related air pollution have evidence of a specific type of DNA damage called telomere shortening, reports a new study.
Related: Farmworkers get sick after Trump’s EPA reverses Obama and approves poison that damages kids’ brains
Dam, what a find! Beaver dams could lower maximum water temperatures in streams – keeping temperature-sensitive fish safe from dangerous highs.
Previous studies suggested that beaver dams warm up the water, for example by expanding the water’s surface area, cutting the speed of water flow and removing shade by felling trees.
In the 1940s, Americans found a new way to love salt. Not simply for sprinkling on food — we’d acquired a taste for the mineral long before that — but for spreading on roads and sidewalks. Salt became a go-to method to de-ice frozen pavement.
On 13 May 2017, California smashed through another renewable energy milestone as its largest grid, controlled by the California Independent System Operator (CISO), got 67.2 percent of its energy from renewables – not including hydropower or rooftop solar arrays.
China has for the first time extracted gas from an ice-like substance under the South China Sea considered key to future global energy supply.
Chinese authorities have described the success as a major breakthrough.
A single revolution of a turbine’s blades can power a home for 29 hours.
The new wind farm, actually an addition to an older facility installed a decade ago, comprises 32 of the gargantuan new turbines.
Related: EU nations set to wipe out forests and not account for emissions
The Swiss will vote in a referendum Sunday on a planned overhaul of the country’s energy system by gradually replacing the power from its ageing nuclear reactors with renewable sources.
The new energy strategy has been in the making since shortly after Japan’s Fukushima nuclear plant was destroyed in the March 2011 tsunami disaster, when the Swiss government decided to gradually close its nuclear plants.
Norway is boosting the flood defences of its Global Seed Vault on the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard after water entered the entrance tunnel last year.
The storage facility, deep inside a mountain, is designed to preserve the world’s crops from future disasters.
New research shows climate change is altering the delicate seasonal clock that North American migratory songbirds rely on to successfully mate and raise healthy offspring, setting in motion a domino effect that could threaten the survival of many familiar backyard bird species.
Related: Handstanding Skunks’ DNA Shaped by Ancient Climate Change
Ancient trees are disappearing from protected national forests around the world. A look inside $100 billion market for stolen wood
It was a local hiker who noticed, during a backwoods stroll in May 2012, the remains of the body. The victim in question: an 800-year-old cedar tree.