space
Massive Tides Could Boost TRAPPIST-1’s Prospects For Life

Earlier this year, Earthlings rejoiced when scientists announced the discovery of three rocky exoplanets in the habitable zone of TRAPPIST-1, an “ultracool dwarf” star located just 39 light years away. Soon after, astronomers brought us back down Earth, pointing out that it might be hard for life to survive on a world in such a tight orbit around such a dim star. But the debate has now taken yet another delicious twist, this time, in favour of aliens. Read More >>

space
There’s Growing Evidence That Pluto’s Largest Moon Had a Massive Ocean

Pluto’s moon Charon is the best sidekick a dwarf planet could hope for: unwavering in its loyalty, content to be a minor character in somebody else’s narrative. But two years after the New Horizons flyby, the largest of Pluto’s five moons is finally getting some well-deserved time in the spotlight. New research suggests that Charon’s storied history includes tectonic activity, cryovolcanism, and perhaps, a globe-spanning ocean. Read More >>

environment
What You Can Actually Do to Fight Climate Change, According to Science

There’s no doubt that if we’re going to stop or even slow down climate change, we have to get our collective shit together. But collective action starts with individual choices, and for all the data-driven decision makers out there, the path forward just got a bit more lucid. A new study in Environmental Research Letters has determined exactly which life choices reduce our carbon footprints the most. Read More >>

environment
Why Is Greenland’s Ice Sheet Covered in Industrial Waste-Chowing Bacteria?

The Greenland ice sheet is vast, majestic, pristine....and peppered with bacteria that seem equipped to survive in industrial waste, according to a new study. Which really makes you question the whole the pristine bit, now, doesn’t it? Read More >>

science
The Amazing Reason Deep Sea Corals Glow In the Dark

Lots of creatures glow in the ocean’s depths, where sunlight is slim to nil. But while most of these abyssal lightbulbs use their neon powers to hunt or avoid being hunted, deepwater corals may have beat everything else down there in terms of evolutionary creativity. New research indicates these corals glow in order to eat the meagre sunlight, turning their tissues into grow chambers that nourish tiny plants in a beam of artificial luminosity. Read More >>

science
The Black Death May Have Had a Surprising Effect on the Environment

From 1347 to 1351, a nightmare disease ravaged Europe, afflicting victims with putrid black boils, fevers, vomiting, and in short order, death. Daily life ground to a halt as the Black Death spread along medieval trade routes, claiming an estimated 20 million lives with ruthless efficiency. Now, a team of researchers is asserting that the plague had an unexpected impact: clearing the air of a toxic pollutant for the first time in over a thousand years. Read More >>

environment
This Is Why Antarctic Sea Ice Crashed This Year

The disappearance of Arctic sea ice is a well-documented trend with a well-established cause. But this past summer, Earth scientists were startled to see Antarctic sea ice take a nosedive, too. Now, scientists at the British Antarctic Survey are blaming the event on a spate of freak weather, underscoring how much we still have to learn about what controls ice around the south pole. Read More >>

environment
The Impacts of Deep Ocean Mining Will ‘Last Forever,’ Scientists Warn

The search for raw materials to feed the all-powerful Sarlacc of capitalism is pushing industries to increasingly remote and alien environments. One of the most exciting frontiers to emerge of late is the deep ocean—rife with valuable metals like copper and zinc, as well as the rare Earth elements that drive our smartphones and computers. But as humanity’s interest in plundering the deep of its riches heats up, scientists are warning that this new gold rush will have serious consequences. Read More >>

environment
Some Good News on Coral Reefs for a Change

A global coral bleaching event that’s been killing reefs around the world since early 2015 finally appears to be ending, according to a report just released by the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration. That said, reefs aren’t out of hot water yet. Read More >>

environment
Why Did an Enormous Chunk of West Antarctica Suddenly Start Melting?

300,000 square miles is nearly twice the area of California. It’s difficult to visualise a space that vast, but go ahead and give it a try. Now, imagine this California plus-sized chunk of land is covered in thousands of feet of ice. Then, all of a sudden, that frozen fortress becomes a wading pool. Read More >>

uncategorized
Why There’s Still Hope for the World’s Coral Reefs

Last week was a sad one for the planet, but buried beneath headlines of the history’s largest carbon polluter telling everyone else to piss off, a team of researchers issued a more hopeful message: Coral reefs, a poster child for impacts of climate change, may not be as doomed as we think. Read More >>

enviroment
Don’t Let That Global Warming Sleep Study Keep You Up at Night

Climate change is bad — it’s causing sea levels to rise, it’s exacerbating heat waves, it’s damaging coral reefs, the list goes on. But that doesn’t mean every time researchers find a correlation between some bad thing and the temperature, we should freak out about how global warming is going to make everything on this round Earth a whole lot worse. Read More >>

science
Male Tortoises Mysteriously Stop Boning

There are only a few things in this life animals really have to do. They have to eat, they have to shit, and they have to bang. So when conservation biologists transplant a bunch of wild animals in order to save them, but half of them stop getting laid as a result, it’s cause for concern. Read More >>

environment
Australian Climate Expert Says Pain-in-the-Arse America Should Just Ditch the Paris Agreement Already

Sometimes, the only way to fix an unhappy relationship is to end it. Since former president Obama (remember that guy?) left office in January, the United States has done an about-face on the Paris climate agreement—they’ve gone from being an leader on climate action to a rogue state that can’t decide whether it wants to keep a seat at the international table. Read More >>

space
That ‘Alien Megastructure’ Star Is Freaking Out Again

It’s almost certainly not aliens, but once again, Tabby’s Star is acting hella weird. The star that first became our planetary obsession back in the fall of 2015—when astronomer Jason Wright suggested its weird flickering behaviour might be the result of an alien megastructure—is, once again, flickering. But unlike previous stellar glitches, astronomers are now prepared to study it in the act. Read More >>