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Sustainability

A scientific mission to save the sharks

Despite increasing protection measures, these fish are among the world’s most endangered animals. New tests to detect species being traded, as well as population studies, aim to help save them.

Cleaning up cow burps to combat global warming

New tools for lowering methane emissions from livestock are on their way

Invasive species are transforming the Everglades

From Burmese pythons and Asian swamp eels to Old World climbing ferns, South Florida hosts hordes of non-native animals and plants. What can be done about the ecological havoc they are wreaking?

In defense of wild meat’s place at the table

Sustainable and safe consumption of wildlife is possible, and important for those who depend on it, says a conservation researcher

The tender art of tadpole parenting

From poison frogs to worm-like caecilians, some amphibians are hardworking and surprisingly creative caregivers

Geothermal power heats up

Long confined to regions with volcanic activity, geothermal promises to become a much more versatile energy source thanks to new technologies

Inching toward a global treaty on plastic pollution

Delegates from 175 nations are working on an international agreement that would tackle the vast amounts of plastic waste in the environment. A marine scientist specializing in plastic pollution discusses the problem and her hopes for the proceedings.

Nuclear’s role in a net-zero world

Is nuclear power a necessary part of the energy transition away from fossil fuels? As the debate rages on, new technologies and smaller reactors may be shifting the balance.

Hunting sky islands for genetic clues to climate resilience

OPINION: Isolated mountaintops are hotbeds of evolutionary adaptation and great places to study how climate change affects ecosystems

Moving trees north to save the forests

As the world warms, trees in forests such as those in Minnesota will no longer be adapted to their local climates. That’s where assisted migration comes in.

A big boost to Europe’s climate change goals

The bloc aims to become the first carbon-neutral continent. A new policy called CBAM will assist its ambitions — and may persuade other countries to follow in its footsteps.

Toward truly compostable plastic

Materials scientists are cooking up environmentally friendly polymers from natural sources like silk, plant fibers and whole algae. Economics and acceptance remain hurdles.

Losing the connection between the Andes and the Amazon: A price of peace in Colombia

The South American country, where the biodiversity of the Andes meets that of the Amazon, is losing the great natural wealth of some 1,500 square kilometers of forest each year, mainly in areas formerly under guerrilla control

The hidden threat from rising coastal groundwater

OPINION: Sea level rise won’t hit just homes on shorefronts, but also the infrastructure beneath our feet

Indigenous languages are founts of environmental knowledge

Peoples who live close to nature have a rich lore of plants, animals and landscapes embedded in their mother tongues — which may hold vital clues to protecting biodiversity

Forests are under attack from invasive species

OPINION: International commerce and travel bring ecological destruction to the world’s most cherished natural places. We need to do more to stop the assault.

How shade coffee lends conservation a hand

When managed in the right way, the farms that provide our morning brew can be a refuge for plant and animal biodiversity

Why scientists are making transparent wood

Stronger than plastic and tougher than glass, the resin-filled material is being exploited for smartphone screens, insulated windows and more

Green shipping picks up speed

An international treaty aims to bring the shipping industry to net-zero emissions by around 2050. Can novel fuels, wind power and coordination on a global scale get it there?

How wind turbines could coexist peacefully with bats and birds

As wind power grows around the world, so does the threat the turbines pose to wildlife. From simple fixes to high-tech solutions, new approaches can help.

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