Reading Time: 3 minutes Two recent crashes of commercial spacecraft have unearthed a new risk to the heavens: the possibility that money-driven incompetence is replacing the nobler aims of space exploration echoed in the phrase “for all mankind.”
Reading Time: 5 minutes Begun in 1989, America’s biggest radioactive contamination waste site—run by the Department of Energy—has cost taxpayers roughly $40 billion so far and may take another 40 years and an additional $100 billion before the cleanup is done, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. And critics argue workers are getting sick while waste is still leaking.
Reading Time: 6 minutes African terrorist groups are funding themselves through the sale of ivory from illegally slaughtered elephants. That connection is giving the fight against poaching a martial makeover, styled after the wars on drugs and terrorism.
Reading Time: 3 minutes Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, an important voice in climate change research, is about to take oil company funding. Is it going to be another case of industry buying academic influence? WhoWhatWhy takes a closer look.
Reading Time: 11 minutes Plans to build the Keystone XL pipeline—designed to pump 35 million gallons of tar sands oil a day through the heart of America—are on hold, stalled by legal challenges about its route to Gulf Coast refineries from Canada. Yet there are very few answers to questions about the health risks involved in moving that kind of oil, as pipeline accidents in Michigan and Arkansas are demonstrating. WhoWhatWhy takes a look at those questions in the second part of a series.
Reading Time: 4 minutes Thanks to increased travel, and possibly global warming, mosquitoes are bringing more diseases from the tropics to North America. One in particular—dengue fever—can be deadly.
Reading Time: 6 minutes If you’re not big on the idea of antibiotics injected into your chicken dinner, you may be even less so after reading our story. It turns out that in the uber-quest to build the perfect cluckers, consumers may have been taken for suckers.
Reading Time: 4 minutes In the drama over who controls Ukraine, Americans know exactly which side we are on. Or do we?
Reading Time: 1 minute A fracking well explodes, killing a worker, and a fire burns for days. Read Chevron’s nifty solution for the neighbors.
Reading Time: 4 minutes In the third installment of our three-part look at underreported aspects of Climate Chaos, we cover a Washington conference which revealed terrifying new dimensions of the problem…but couldn’t quite get around to causes and cures.
Reading Time: 7 minutes Washington won’t act to slow the chaos of climate change, even as the Navy prepares to patrol an open Arctic Ocean and the oil industry pushes to be able to start drilling in newly ice-free Arctic waters.
Part two of a three-part WhoWhatWhy investigation.
Reading Time: 1 minute Climate change is hardly funny, but some activists see poking fun as part of their message.
Reading Time: 1 minute If there is a cooler way to see the earth’s air currents on the move, we don’t know what it is.
Reading Time: 7 minutes You don’t need to go to the North Pole to see evidence of climate change and rising seas. Just go to Florida.
Reading Time: 5 minutes Wild tigers have disappeared from 90 percent of their historic range, and their population stands at a tiny fraction of a century ago. WhoWhatWhy science contributor Sharon Guynup collaborated with National Geographic photographer Steve Winter to raise an alarm about the state of this imperiled species in Tigers Forever: Saving the World’s Most Endangered Big Cats (National Geographic Books).
Reading Time: 2 minutes ‘Ground-breaking’ scientific research could unleash the huge potential of aquatic biomass in creating a sustainable energy supply. (This first appeared on our site in February, 2012.)
Reading Time: 1 minute The truth about whistleblowers—and why they do what they do. Turns out they’re not crazy; though the rest of us might be. An inspiring video talk on how we all could be whistleblowers.
Reading Time: 1 minute Two new short documentaries on the astounding things the Dutch are doing with bikes. This is wheelie, wheelie cool.
Reading Time: 11 minutes As the Obama administration weighs approval of TransCanada Corporation’s contentious Keystone XL pipeline project, the impacts of huge tar sands oil spills in Michigan and Arkansas raise questions about the true cost to human health and the environment—and the high cost and difficulty of cleanup. Part of 1 of a 2-part Series
Reading Time: 1 minute Bet you didn’t know how our heavy use of plastic is affecting…ourselves. In this video, Dianna Cohen, who has been studying this issue for years, lays out the horrific story of plastic, the oceans, our lifestyles, and our health. Watch this for your kids’ sake, if not your own.