John Upton

John Upton is a former Grist news blogger. He tweets, posts articles to Facebook, and blogs about ecology.

Arctic summers could be nearly ice-free in seven years

NOAA scientists used three methods to predict when summers in the Arctic will be almost ice-free. Looks like it will happen by 2040, and maybe by 2020.

BP to pump $1 billion into its Alaska drilling efforts

After Alaskan leaders slashed the state's tax on oil companies, BP announced that it will ramp up investment and bring new oil rigs to the North Slope.

Airlines propose weak, vague climate plan

Major global airlines have agreed on a proposal for reducing carbon emissions -- but it lacks details, aims low, and would sit on the tarmac until 2020 or later.

Carbon pricing is catching on around the globe — just not in Washington, D.C.

More than 40 countries now have a cap-and-trade system or carbon tax, or will soon -- and China, Brazil, and other emerging economies might soon join the club.

Obama admin to lease New England waters for offshore wind

The U.S. still doesn't have a single offshore wind turbine. The Interior Department is trying to change that by auctioning wind leases off the coasts of Rhode Island and Massachusetts.

National weather forecasters won’t be furloughed after all

After a tornado outbreak, NOAA dropped its plan to force employees to take unpaid days off to deal with the sequester. But budget cuts will still have to come from somewhere.

China’s plastic-bag ban turns five years old

Officials say the ban has spared the country 67 billion polluting plastic bags, though a study finds that many retailers are still ignoring the rules.

Warming oceans are killing baby puffins

Rising temperatures off the East Coast are driving away herring, which is making it hard for puffins to find food for their young.

Vegetarians live longer, researchers find

A recent study found that vegetarians were 12 percent less likely to die over a six-year period than were meat eaters. Men in particular got a health boost from skipping meat.