Opening Pandora’s Box: Deforestation and Development on the Island of Borneo

    The island of Borneo is changing rapidly. Infrastructure development and palm oil production are hastening deforestation on the island, which is occurring at alarming rates. Widespread deforestation has many consequences for biodiversity, including habitat loss and decreased habitat connectivity. Even more ominously, changes in land use and tree cover are shifting precipitation levels across the island.

    Karam Sheban

    August 20, 2019
    Batteries could be a missing ingredient in our recipe for renewable energy

    Lithium, a material mined to create batteries, might not be a stable enough source to support a renewable energy transition.

    Jack Rusk

    August 13, 2019
    Climate change is causing leaves to change color, which may speed up warming

    The way leaves reflect and absorb light can drive the climate of the entire planet. Darker leaves absorb more light, trapping heat and subsequently warming surrounding ecosystems. A recent study shows that climate change may be changing leaf properties, making them darker.

    Laura Ostrowsky

    August 6, 2019
    The true long-term cost of nuclear power

    Although some say that nuclear power is a low cost, low-carbon energy source, nuclear waste may harm future generations. New research has shown that the true costs of nuclear power are far greater than many previous studies have indicated.

    Haley Leslie-Bole

    July 30, 2019
What can we do to protect both forests and the livelihoods of forest communities in a changing world?

Protecting livelihoods while simultaneously protecting forests can be a difficult task. However, recent research suggests that investing in innovating social programs is an effective way to improve livelihoods of forest-dependent communities, without putting pressure on the environment.

Khin Htet Htet Pyone
July 23, 2019
Climate change and refugees: How drought and war lead to more asylum seekers

Civil war in Syria. The Central American caravan. Legal restrictions on refugees in Europe and the U.S. Countries around the world are being confronted by questions of immigration and refugees—and new research says that in some cases, climate change might be to blame.

Nathan Empsall
July 18, 2019
Even if it is in our best interests, are we willing to move towards a plant-based diet?

A shift towards plant-based diets could bring health and environmental benefits to the world. However, strong beliefs and psychological attachments to meat complicate this shift. Are we really willing to eat less meat?

Josefina Cobian
July 16, 2019
Amanda Lynch and the Philosophy of Coexistence

Amanda Lynch is a mathematician, meteorologist, climate modeler, political scientist, philosopher, and the Director of the Institute at Brown for Environment and Society. Her career, which has spanned continents and disciplines, is reflected in her new book, co-authored with Dr. Siri Veland, called Urgency in the Anthropocene. It reimagines our global climate crisis not only as the sum of disasters, but also as a human philosophical crisis.

Jesse Bryant
July 11, 2019