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Toxic green slime has taken over the lakes of America. Again.

It's late summer, and that means toxic algae blooms fueled by conventional fertilizers and factory farms are taking over lakes in the Midwest. Run for your lives!


Ask Umbra: What’s that stuff in my bra?

A reader wonders about what’s in those newfangled foam rubber bras. Umbra makes the big reveal, and offers some uplifting alternatives.

Climate & Energy

Gus Speth: ‘Ultimate insider’ goes radical

In a new manifesto, an environmental statesman describes what it will take to rip out the roots of our unsustainable system and replace it with something better. Hint: It won't be easy.

Climate & Energy

What runners can teach us about sustainability

Today in the U.S., we have a “sprint culture” -- an addiction to speed and quick rewards. We need to slow down and begin to find a rhythm for a long-distance run.

Climate & Energy

Photos: See ya later, lovely glaciers

A new book by photographer James Balog captures in vivid color just what’s at stake as climate change erodes ice in some of the world’s most extreme places.

Climate & Energy

Fracking and the road to a clean energy future

Geophysicist Mark Zoback says natural gas squeezed from shale can be a crucial and clean(ish) short-term energy fix -- if we’re careful about how we get it.


Knope and change: A tribute to the women of urban sustainability, inspired by Parks and Rec

In the first of our series about the women who are leading the fight to make cities more green, Minneapolis Sustainability Director Gayle Prest talks about putting beehives on city hall, the Asian carp invasion, and her Spandex-free approach to biking.


Umbra’s second helpings: Back-to-school advice for the eco-minded student

Readers write in search of green fundraising ideas and tips for eco-friendly dorm living. Umbra fills their backpacks with great ideas.


Drought-tolerant seeds: Insurance policy for farmers or a big gamble?

Companies like Monsanto and Syngenta want farmers to think of drought-tolerant seeds as an insurance policy against hot, dry weather. But for farmers who don't take care of the soil, these seeds look like a gamble.