Environment

Does Moscow Garbage Crisis Represent the Biggest Threat to Putin?

Garbage is piling up in landfills around Moscow, writes government professor Laura Henry in “The Conversation,” and the resulting pollution has led to a wave of citizen protests “that potentially poses a greater challenge to Putin’s government than pro-democracy activism.”

Nature Moments: How to Build a Bird’s Nest

Biology professor Nat Wheelwright explains the ingenuity that birds employ when constructing a home for their eggs.

Nature Moments: Birdsong Baby Babble

Biology professor Nat Wheelwright explains how songbirds find their voice by mimicking the sounds adult birds make, in much the same way as baby humans learn to speak.

Nature Moments: Packing Leaves into Buds

How do plants pack their growing leaves inside such small buds? The way a particular species packs its leaves has less to do leaf size or shape than with the plant’s evolutionary history, says biology professor Nat Wheelwright.

Nature Moments: The Spiritual Significance of Trees

Trees provide us shelter, fuel, food, protection from climate change, and beauty. But they also have deep spiritual importance

Nature Moments: Introducing the Warm-Blooded Skunk Cabbage

Meet the plant that has a metabolic rate as high as a hummingbird’s, generates enough heat to melt its way through the snow, and has the ability to regulate its body temperature just like a warm-blooded animal. But be warned, you won’t like the smell!

Prof. Starobin Cautions about Legal Risks of Local Climate Policy Action

Shana Starobin’s intention is not to discourage local action, but rather to provide realistic guidance. “We want to be optimistic and hopeful, but the vision from our perspective is to think about the legal risks of local regulation and what could happen,” she said. “Lots of communities want to have autonomy over driving what their futures are going to look like….And while it’s not that they shouldn’t move forward, there is a reality of constraints and regulations.”

Nature Moments: House Invaders

If you live in an old house, you’re probably acquainted with certain types of spiders, bugs and beetles. Although these house invaders are not native to the northeast, they’re completely harmless and really quite companionable—some of them will even dance for you!