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Covering all things Earth! Latest news and inspiring stories about our planet, the current climate crisis, and what actions are being taken to protect our home.

Covering all things Earth! Latest news and inspiring stories about our planet, the current climate crisis, and what actions are being taken to protect our home.
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ideasscienceenvironmenttype-text

Brooke Bowser June 14, 2020

The Invasion of the Emerald Ash Borer
The emerald ash borer (EAB), Agrilus planipennis, has been a cause for concern for foresters and landowners alike in the United States. The beetle originated in Asia and was first observed in the United States near Detroit, Michigan, in 2002. It killed nearly 99% of ash trees near its place of original introduction. By 2018, EAB has been observed in thirty-five states and has killed hundreds of millions of ash trees in North America.
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Brooke Bowser May 27, 2020

Producing Pandemics: Human Incursion into Nature
The COVID-19 crisis has been a shock to our system. No one could have predicted what 2020 would have in store for us, but perhaps we shouldn’t be so surprised. Scientists have been warning us of the growing possibility of a pandemic for years. Human interaction with wildlife and the environment has a role to play in producing pandemics.
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Brooke Bowser April 22, 2020

Earth Day Through the Years
Today marks the fiftieth anniversary of Earth Day. While the world around us has dramatically changed since its first celebration fifty years ago, we will take a moment to reflect on the legacy of Earth Day that has continued to inspire action through the decades.
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Brooke Bowser April 21, 2020

Activism from Home, Climate Strikes Go Virtual
Youth climate coalition's three-day Earth Week strikes aren't cancelled--they're going virtual.
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Brooke Bowser April 1, 2020

Environmental Rollbacks During Global Pandemic
During the time of a global pandemic and national crisis, the EPA and DOT have weakened CAFE (Corporate Average Fuel Economy) and CO2 emission standards set during the Obama-era.
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Brooke Bowser March 24, 2020

Environmental Connections: Peace Corps Series
Regardless of drawn boundaries and state lines, we all call this planet our home. The Peace Corps provides a unique opportunity to connect with and learn from communities in countries across the world. Together, with support across the world, we can protect our Earth. The following stories in this series will highlight the work and experiences by returned Peace Corps volunteers.
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Brooke Bowser March 15, 2020

Deep Winter Greenhouses: Eat Fresh Vegetables Year-Round
The frozen ground may be blanketed in a layer of fluffy snow with icicles clinging to the barn roof, but some families in Minnesota have been eating fresh greens for dinner all winter long. A Deep Winter Greenhouse (DWG) is a greenhouse designed specifically for northern latitudes with cold, dark winters.
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Brooke Bowser March 6, 2020

Farm-fed Energy with Anaerobic Digestion
Anaerobic digestion (AD) has been hailed as an upcoming renewable energy source. These systems seem to solve two problems by removing the manure waste from farms and producing renewable energy. From California to Pennsylvania to New York, many AD projects have been successfully producing energy across the United States for years.
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Brooke Bowser February 21, 2020

Counting Whales from Space
The New England Aquarium in Boston, Massachusetts, has partnered with Draper, an engineering and research company in Cambridge, Massachusetts, to monitor whales with satellites in a project fittingly named “Counting Whales from Space.”
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Brooke Bowser February 16, 2020

UW-Madison Students Stage Die-In to Demand Divestment
UW-Madison is one of 59 campuses across the country and the world who participated in Fossil Fuel Divestment Day (F2D2). Students from various universities share disappointment with the lack of urgency and response to growing concern over climate change.
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Brooke Bowser January 26, 2020

Unfulfilled Aichi Biodiversity Targets Set to Expire
The Aichi Biodiversity Targets were meant to craft a roadmap towards establishing an “enriching society in harmony with nature.” Unfortunately, even though the strategy was set to expire this year, little action has been taken to meet the targets described by the agreement.
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Brooke Bowser January 22, 2020

New Year, New Supernova?
One of the brightest stars in the sky has been growing dimmer for the past couple of months, and some astronomers suspect this might indicate the star will soon explode into a supernova.
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Brooke Bowser January 11, 2020

Celebrating the Birthday of Aldo Leopold
On January 11, 1887, Leopold was born. 133 years later, we still celebrate the remarkable legacy of one of the United State’s most influential leaders in wilderness conservation.
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Brooke Bowser January 5, 2020

Reduce Waste, Feed Students
The UW-Madison chapter of the National Food Recovery Network established a new method of food recovery to further reduce the amount of food wasted on campus. Not only is this a great step for waste reduction, but it also provides a solution to food insecurity.
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Brooke Bowser December 28, 2019

Rail's Investment in Climate Change Denial
Rail transportation is considered one of the most environmentally friendly and efficient modes of transportation. While it has a relatively have a low carbon footprint, there may be more to the story. Tracing back to where rail companies are investing their money reveals a whole different side to the industry–a much less environmentally friendly one.
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Brooke Bowser December 21, 2019

Wisconsin, A New Model of Climate Leadership
International climate change negotiations may appear fruitless and frustrating, but there is hope for action in the state of Wisconsin following the recent COP25 and the first meeting of Governor Evers’ Task Force on Climate Change. It is important to see state and local governments stand up for climate action despite the federal government’s clear disengagement during this critical time.
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Brooke Bowser December 9, 2019

Soulardarity Keeps the Lights On
With just one streetlight, an idea was born. Over the next several years, the movement grew from this one initiative into an organization with the mission of community participation in ownership and planning of lighting the city and establishing Highland Park’s own clean, democratic energy system. The organization Soulardarity was formed.
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Brooke Bowser December 2, 2019

The Tongass Faces Attack
The Tongass National Forest stretches nearly 17 million acres across southeastern Alaska. This land of ancient forests and towering mountains is home to a wide variety of wildlife. Now the world’s largest temperate rainforest is under attack.
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Brooke Bowser November 17, 2019

President Jimmy Carter: An Environmental Advocate
Imagine this: The White House roof has been covered in solar panels, which capture the sun’s energy to heat water used inside. Legislation has been passed to clean up America’s hazardous waste sites. Instead of offering up land to destructive mining operations, national parks and wildlife refuges are being created to preserve its wilderness. It may sound like a futuristic fantasy, but these were the programs being implemented in the late 1970s during Jimmy Carter’s presidency.
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Brooke Bowser November 4, 2019

Will trees save the earth? Not a simple solution.
Recently a team of forest ecologists declared global tree restoration is one of the most effective carbon reduction solutions. They claim forest restoration at a global scale could lead to an additional 205 metric gigatonnes of carbon sequestration, or the equivalent of 25% of the current atmospheric carbon pool. If you think these impressive numbers sound too good to be true, you may be right.
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Brooke Bowser October 27, 2019

#NoJusticeNoCop25: Chile's Climate and Social Justice Movements Unite
1.5 million protesters spilled through the streets of Santiago, Chile, this past week as activists remind us climate justice is also social justice.
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Brooke Bowser October 14, 2019

McDonald's: Green or Greenwashed?
McDonald’s serves 69 million people daily in 37,000 restaurants located in over 100 countries around the world. Due to their scale, environmental-protection efforts (and lack of effort) have significant influence in worldwide progress. How are they taking on this responsibility?
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Brooke Bowser October 10, 2019

William Perry Pendley was recently re-appointed as acting director of the Federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Interior Secretary David Bernhardt used his power to extend Pendley’s appointment and once again side-step the requirement of a confirmation from Congress. Pendley was first made acting director in the summer of 2019, and his current appointment will last until January 3, 2020. Many environmentalist groups have raised concerns about this appointment due to Pendley’s history of anti-public land sentiment.
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Brooke Bowser October 7, 2019

Black ant guacamole. Grasshopper tacos and cricket quesadillas. Silkworm cookies and mealworm brownies. The menu appeared to be out of a fictional story, but insect-chef Joseph Yoon of Brooklyn Bugs was quite serious as he described the unique and vivid flavors each insect would bring to the dishes we were preparing at UW-Madison’s “Swarm to Table: Cooking with Insects Workshop.”
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Brooke Bowser October 3, 2019

The Endangered Species Act (ESA) of 1973 remains one of the strongest and most controversial pieces of environmental legislation ever passed by the U.S. Congress. President Richard Nixon signed it into law in after he acknowledged the American peoples’ interest in protecting the nation’s wildlife and producing a legacy of environmental protection. Reforms of the ESA to reduce regulations and increase economic growth have recently been implemented by the Trump Administration.
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Brooke Bowser September 29, 2019

Hundreds of people from across the Midwest gathered along the shores of Gitchi-gami (Lake Superior) in Duluth, Minnesota, this afternoon. They came together to voice opposition to Enbridge’s proposed Line 3 Pipeline Replacement Project. First Nations, environmental groups, and communities in the Great Lakes region have been fighting this replacement plan for the past five years.
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Brooke Bowser September 24, 2019

From Australia to Afghanistan, South Korea to Senegal, millions of people joined together in solidarity this past week to demand action on climate change. Youth have mobilized and planned strikes in over 150 different countries, according to The Global Climate Strike website. Greta Thunberg, the sixteen year old leader of Fridays for the Future, has been striking every Friday since August 2018. This week, she asked youth across the world to join her by walking out of school and work to demand action on the current climate crisis. The strike was strategically planned to precede the United Nations General Assembly and the Climate Action Summit this upcoming week. Thousands of miles away, the movement inspired action in Madison, Wisconsin, where protesters showed up en masse to show their support.
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