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Featuring great stories and great solutions from some of the best journalists on the planet, OnEarth is a magazine of thought and opinion about the environment. We publish longform journalism and thoughtful opinion pieces four times a year in print and every weekday online at OnEarth.org. The opinions expressed by contributors and the editors are their own and not necessarily those of OnEarth's publisher, the Natural Resources Defense Council. Founded in 1979 as The Amicus Journal, today our publication explores the challenges that confront our world, the solutions that promise to heal it, and the way we can use those solutions to improve our homes, our health, our communities, and our future.

Entries by OnEarth

What does Chris Christie Really Think About Climate Change?

(0) Comments | Posted November 11, 2013 | 2:29 PM

By Scott Dodd, OnEarth

A few weeks ago, the editorial board of New Jersey's largest newspaper bowed to the inevitable and endorsed Chris Christie's never-in-doubt bid to be re-elected governor. Folks outside of my adopted home state will recognize Newark's Star-Ledger as the paper a bathrobe-clad...

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Enemy at the Gates: Asian Carp Breeding in Great Lakes Watershed

(0) Comments | Posted November 7, 2013 | 1:55 PM

By Jason Bittel, OnEarth

Fifty years ago, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service imported a species of Asian carp to Arkansas as part of an initiative to control aquatic plants in reservoirs and fish farms. The foreign fish performed well, and managers in other states adopted the...

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China's Airpocalypse Didn't Kill Me, It Only Killed My Spirit

(1) Comments | Posted November 7, 2013 | 1:20 PM

By Mary X. Dennis, OnEarth

There is a moment, as your plane makes its decent into Beijing on a particularly smoggy day, that your heart sinks. As you drop below the cloud ceiling, the bright sunlight streaming in through the plane's windows becomes sepia-filtered, and everything takes...

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Hey cosmetics industry: get your plastic out of the Great Lakes!

(0) Comments | Posted November 6, 2013 | 4:36 PM

By Susan Cosier, OnEarth

Got an exfoliating face wash in your medicine cabinet? You might not know it, but that face wash--along, most likely, with some of your soaps, deodorants, and maybe even your toothpaste--is full of minuscule plastic spheres, known, appropriately enough, as microbeads. When you...

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The Real Cost of Shipping

(1) Comments | Posted October 24, 2013 | 4:10 PM

By Bruce Stutz, OnEarth


When I first moved to Brooklyn in the early 1970s I lived not far from the waterfront and often walked along the piers to watch the longshoremen drive forklift loads of cargo back and forth, in and out of the dockside...

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Let's Face It: Food Expiration Dates Are Worthless

(0) Comments | Posted September 24, 2013 | 6:15 PM

By Jocelyn C. Zuckerman, OnEarth


A few days ago, Ted Labuza enjoyed an afternoon snack of crackers with sour cream, which he spooned from a tub whose sell-by date had passed two weeks earlier. A professor of food science and engineering at the University of Minnesota,...

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What the Fungi? Not Our Snakes, Too!

(0) Comments | Posted September 24, 2013 | 5:22 PM

By Justine Hausheer, OnEarth


Fungi are giving wildlife a real beating these days. Chytrid is walloping frog and salamander species worldwide, and here in the United States, white-nose syndrome, caused by an invasive European fungus, has killed millions of bats on...

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XPRIZE's new $2 million incentive for tracking ocean acidification

(0) Comments | Posted September 13, 2013 | 5:05 PM

By Jason Bittel, OnEarth


Book-length grant applications, faculty review committees, tenure-track requirements--my eyes glaze over just thinking about what many scientists have to endure to pursue their research goals. Which is why the story of XPRIZE is so interesting. XPRIZE is a nonprofit that believes...

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Remembering magazine industry creative giant J.-C. Suarès

(0) Comments | Posted August 23, 2013 | 6:26 PM

By Douglas Barasch, OnEarth

One would have almost thought that nothing could overpower J.-C. Suarès, not even death. He was as immovable as a granite rock, a torrent of magnanimity (though this was not always obvious at first blush). He was softhearted but gruff, elegant but roughly...

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What are snakes good for? Fighting Lyme disease, for one

(1) Comments | Posted August 16, 2013 | 1:17 PM

By Jason Bittel, OnEarth

The only good snake is a dead snake. At least, that's what my high school friend said the time we went backpacking and he chopped a garter snake in half with a machete. He wiped the blade in the grass while the tiny,...

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We're no closer to saving bees--or our food supply

(0) Comments | Posted August 16, 2013 | 1:12 PM

By Scott Dodd, OnEarth

In 2006, long before I worked at this magazine, OnEarth contributing editor Sharon Levy visited a farm in California's Sierra foothills and let honeybees swarm all over her body. Wearing the distinctive white coveralls and veiled helmet that serve as a beekeeper's protective...

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New predator alert! Oh wait, it's adorable

(0) Comments | Posted August 16, 2013 | 12:57 PM

By Melissa Mahony, OnEarth

There's a new predator in town--but fortunately, it's an adorable one.

Actually, this animal has been around for 3 to 4 million years, prowling the cloud forests of Colombia and Ecuador, but had been overlooked by scientists until very recently. So let me...

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Ignore the Stunts: Russian President Vladimir Putin is No Enviro Hero

(0) Comments | Posted August 9, 2013 | 5:19 PM

By Kristen French, OnEarth

Vladimir Putin took off in a motorized hang glider last September wearing goggles and a white suit, on a mission to guide young Siberian cranes on their first migration. The publicity stunt wasn't the Russian president's first attempt to cultivate his...

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Scientists to Media: Stop Calling Everything a 'Shark Attack'

(0) Comments | Posted August 9, 2013 | 5:11 PM

By Jason Bittel, OnEarth

Just in time for Discovery Channel's annual bloodbath known as Shark Week, a group of scientists in the American Elasmobranch Society sent out a plea to Reuters, the Associated Press, and other media organizations asking them to revise the...

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Keep Popping Those Corks: Forests Need More Wine Lovers

(3) Comments | Posted July 30, 2013 | 4:25 PM

By Elizabeth Royte, OnEarth


When my phone rang two months ago, a stranger invited me to visit a Portuguese cork-oak forest. I'd never seen one, so I was intrigued. My caller, Patrick Spencer, executive director of an Oregon-based nonprofit called the Cork...

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When We Finally Save the World, We'll Have Birds to Thank for It

(0) Comments | Posted July 30, 2013 | 4:03 PM

By David Gessner, OnEarth


Last month, when I read that Atlantic puffins were threatened, I had an immediate and visceral reaction. It wasn't to form a Pro-Puffin League, or to post something about saving the puffins on Facebook, or to organize a Puffin...

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Superbugs Found in the Hudson River

(3) Comments | Posted July 22, 2013 | 4:52 PM

By Jason Bittel, OnEarth


It's a scorcher out there. According to NASA and NOAA, last month was one of the hottest months on record globally, and the 340th month in a row to hit higher-than-average temperatures. This week is especially bad as a...

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Could Our Livers Save Overfished Eels? Or Will Unagi Say, 'Sayonara'

(0) Comments | Posted July 10, 2013 | 12:51 PM

By Jason Bittel, OnEarth


In Japan, everyone knows there's one sure way to rejuvenate the body and beat the summer heat: a nice bowl of rice topped with grilled Unagi, or Japanese freshwater eel. (Hey, don't knock it until you try it.) Unfortunately, the popularity...

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Shifting Wildfires: Mourning Arizona's Best and Bravest

(0) Comments | Posted July 3, 2013 | 3:12 PM

By Michael Kodas, OnEarth


"We are the land of the free because of the brave," announced Frank Ayers, chancellor of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, Arizona. He was speaking at the beginning of yesterday's memorial service for the 19 firefighters killed on Sunday in the...

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Whales to Big Oil: 'Keep It Down, Would Ya?'

(0) Comments | Posted June 28, 2013 | 3:52 PM

By Jason Bittel, OnEarth

No one ever said the search for fossil fuels in increasingly hard-to-reach places was easy. As part of their quest to keep the oil and gas industry on top, drilling companies blast sound waves into the ocean depths with crazy-powerful airguns, looking...

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