Design, evaluate, and refine a solution for reducing the impacts of human activities on the environment and biodiversity.

  1. Microbes

    Giant cave crystals may be home to 50,000-year-old microbes

    Microbes trapped in crystals in Mexico's Naica mine may represent some of the most distinct life forms ever found. The microbes have remained dormant for up to 50,000 years.

  2. Ecosystems

    Underwater meadows appear to fight ocean germs

    The seagrasses that sway in coastal currents are more than aquatic groundcover. They can reduce harmful bacteria that might otherwise sicken neighboring animals, new data show.

  3. Animals

    Under blanket of ice, lakes teem with life

    Life under frozen lakes is vibrant, complex and surprisingly active, new research finds. In fact, some plants and animals can only live under the ice. But with climate change, will that continue?

  4. Environment

    Ocean of the future may make shrimp small and colorful

    Carbon dioxide released into the air can end up in the ocean, making it more acidic. A teen showed that this acidification could shrink shrimp and make them more colorful.

  5. Animals

    Spidey sense: They can hear you!

    Surprise! At least some spiders can hear us. Even without eardrums, jumping spiders can still detect airborne sounds from across the room.

  6. Oceans

    Creative ways to help coral reefs recover

    Coral reefs are under siege from threats ranging from climate change to explosives. But scientists are developing ways to rebuild reefs before they disappear.

  7. Health & Medicine

    Cool Jobs: Linking animal health to human health

    Scientists who watch out for diseases in wild animals also can play a role in keeping people from getting sick.

  8. Environment

    Teens use science to worm through plastic waste

    Some beetle larvae can eat plastic, which might be good for our pollution problem. But which types eat the most can vary a lot, these young scientists find.

  9. Animals

    Catching ‘Dory’ fish can poison entire coral reef ecosystems

    More than half of saltwater-aquarium fish sold in the United States may have been caught in the wild using cyanide, new data show.

  10. Environment

    Fighting big farm pollution with a tiny plant

    Fertilizer runoff can fuel the growth of toxic algae nearby lakes. A teen decided to harness a tiny plant to sop up that fertilizer.

  11. Agriculture

    Profile: A human touch for animals

    Temple Grandin uses her own autism to understand how animals think. The animal scientist is famous for fostering the humane treatment of livestock.

  12. Environment

    Wildlife forensics turns to eDNA

    Environmental DNA, or eDNA, tells biologists what species have been around — even when they’re out of sight or have temporarily moved on.