A new study links geological factors such as faulting and geothermal activity to an elevated risk of arsenic contamination in private wells across the Great Basin.
Extreme Wildfires Make Their Own Weather
Extreme fires in the western United States and Southeast Asia influenced the local weather in ways that make fires and smoke pollution worse.
Does This Mineral Indicate Oxygen on Mars?
Manganese oxides are thought to be a signature of atmospheric oxygen. But on the Red Planet, recent results suggest they might be more of a red herring.
Deep-Sea Pressure Crushes Carbon Cycling
The extreme pressure in the deep sea stifles microbes’ appetite for organic carbon. This finding could have important implications for carbon budgets and geoengineering.
Glacial Ice Offers Polar Bears a Precarious Climate Refuge
An isolated polar bear population in southeastern Greenland survives in fjords, despite spotty sea ice. But this pocket of bears is not a sign of how the species could be saved.
Did a Chaotic Climate Drive Human Evolution?
A new 620,000-year climate record from East Africa reveals dramatic swings between wet and dry conditions that may have influenced human evolution.
Warmer Winters Keep Crops Sleepy into Spring, Hurting Yield
Annual crops go dormant during winter. Frosty temperatures cue them to wake up—but the warmer winters brought on by climate change scramble the cold signal, hurting yield.
Mammoths Lost Their Steppe Habitat to Climate Change
Ancient plant and animal DNA buried in Arctic sediments preserve a 50,000-year history of Arctic ecosystems, suggesting that climate change contributed to mammoth extinction.
Summer Could Be Earthquake Season on Mars
InSight data hint that shifting carbon dioxide ice loads, illumination changes, or solar tides could drive an uptick in marsquakes during northern summer—a “marsquake season.”
Purple Bacteria Fix Nitrogen in Proterozoic-Analogue Lake
A new study challenges the assumption that cyanobacteria were the only major nitrogen fixers in the Proterozoic eon.