Bacteria and fungi, Earth’s quintessential biochemists, are famous for the odd molecules they produce. But human beings are no slouches. According to one estimate, global commerce swells with thousands of industrial chemicals, many completely novel, some very toxic
Will global capitalism eventually wean itself off fossil fuels? Can wind, solar, geothermal and other renewable energy sources generate enough joules to drive permanent economic growth? Should carbon emissions be taxed?
It’s not a new or unique story. The factories in a blue-collar industrial town grow silent and the character of the city surrounding them is transformed.
In the rolling foothills of the Canadian Rockies, where cattle peacefully graze and ranchers retire to handsome chalets, a purple haze hovers. Fracking is being blamed not only for air pollution, but for a litany of health complaints.
Diana Daunheimer and her husband Derek were a typical young couple pursuing their dreams — raising kids and growing good food at their Alberta homestead. But in 2008, a nastier crop sprouted around her property.
Imagine what it would be like to have your home water supply morph into a fire hazard — the liquid flowing from your tap liable to explode if you light a match.
Inka Milewski was a marine biologist, not a public health researcher or epidemiologist, when she received a phone call from worried residents of her community. She took up that call. Had no choice. It was something she had to do.
In the summer of 2014, several hundred people gathered at a fracking “Day of Protest” in Kent County, between Moncton and Miramichi — Elsipogtog First Nations territory.
Human beings are deeply dependent on motorized machines to move themselves around. Trillions of these things now choke a vast and growing network of so-called “roads,” getting into deadly accidents and polluting the planet’s atmosphere.
One of Earth’s tens of millions of species has been mining colossal volumes of organic matter buried for ages, and burning the stuff for fuel — raising the surface temperature of their planet to a level higher than any time in the past.
In the Tanzanian capital of Dar Es Salaam, a metropolis known for its astonishing traffic jams, urban planners are working on a new mass transit system that will hopefully make everyone’s lives and workday much more peaceful.
Stuart Franklin is turning air miles into trees. Franklin — the founder of a carbon offsetting project in Ecuador — calculates how many seedlings he needs to plant to capture the carbon dioxide emitted by tourists jetting to the Galapagos Islands each year.
Once upon a time, the US was the world’s top emitter of carbon dioxide. The average American still emits more than the rest of us, but – sometime last year – China’s annual emissions surpassed the US’s. As the Chinese choke on fume-filled air, their leaders are turning to the wind.