Climate Change Killed Earth's Crocodilians, and It Could Bring Them Back, Too

A diverse clan of fearsome crocodilians once roamed the entire planet. Today, only 23 species remain in a handful of locales worldwide. We’ve all heard tales of the giant asteroid that did in the dinosaurs, but the demise of the crocodilians was far less dramatic. The crocs were picked off quietly, as our planet… »9/25/15 7:00pm9/25/15 7:00pm

First Oxygen Appeared On Earth Way Earlier Than We Realized

If you hopped in the Tardis and traveled back four billion years, you’d find yourself on a hot, miserable wasteland of a planet with nary an oxygen molecule to breathe. Earth used to be an asphyxiating hellscape, but over the eons, tiny green microbes filled the air with oxygen. New research finds they’ve been at it… »9/08/15 7:20pm9/08/15 7:20pm

It Only Takes 70,000 Dancers at Burning Man to Make an Earthquake

Hordes of party-minded hipsters are heading out to Black Rock City this weekend for the annual Burning Man festival — possibly as many as 70,000, if past growth trends hold. And according to British seismologist Paul Denton, that’s enough frenzied dancing feet to generate a small earthquake measuring about 0.5 on the… »9/04/15 2:43am9/04/15 2:43am

Humans Have Eliminated Half the World's Trees

Human beings are having an overwhelming impact on Earth’s ecosystems, whether we’re pouring plastic into the ocean or filling the skies with carbon. But it’s not just modern society that’s to blame — our environmental legacy stretches way back into history. Since dawn of civilization, we’ve caused nearly half of the… »9/02/15 3:30pm9/02/15 3:30pm

Central European Forests Are Regrowing After the Breakup of the USSR

The collapse of the Soviet Union didn’t just affect humans—forests across Europe and Asia were impacted, too. Some 533 million acres of forest in Eastern Europe have regrown since 1985, largely due to the disintegration of timber industries and abandonment of agricultural lands in countries such as Hungary, Croatia,… »7/15/15 7:30pm7/15/15 7:30pm