Planet Earth news, feature and articles (2024)

Earth is one big spinning mystery in a constant state of change. With more than 4.5 billion years of history locked inside a ball of molten rock and iron, our planet is made up of a vast array of geological wonders, carved by the oceans, shaped by the shifting plates beneath our feet and sculpted by weather across the surface.

50 interesting facts about Earth

The deadliest natural disasters in history

25 weirdest things on Google Earth

Our team of expert science writers and editors are here to reveal our planet’s secrets — from the deepest depths of the ocean, through the coldest places on Earthto the very edge of space — keeping you up to date with the latest discoveries with planet Earth news, articles and features.

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Editor's Picks

The 165-year reign of oil is coming to an end. But will we ever be able to live without it?Like whale blubber, oil as a dominant source of energy will gradually be phased out over the next decades. Here's what that transition may look like.
Will we ever be able to stop using plastic?While the push to reduce carbon dioxide emissions is spurring alternatives to petroleum in other sectors, phasing out plastic, particularly for medical applications, will be very tough.
How much oil is left and will we ever run out?We may never run out of oil, though known reserves are expected to last for about 50 years, current estimates suggest.

Latest about Planet Earth

What is photosynthesis?ByDaisy Dobrijevic last updated 11 June 24ReferencePhotosynthesis is the process plants, algae and some bacteria use to turn sunlight, carbon dioxide and water into sugar and oxygen.

Reference

What is the coldest city in the world?ByJoe Phelan last updated 10 June 24The coldest city in the world is in Siberia, where temperatures plummet to minus 76 degrees Fahrenheit. Here's why it's so cold there.

Planet Earth

Earth from space: Mysterious, slow-spinning cloud 'cyclone' hugs the Iberian coastByHarry Baker published 10 June 24This 2017 satellite photo shows an unusual cloud "cyclone" nestled up against the coastline of Spain and Portugal. Researchers are unsure what caused the strange structure's spin, but ocean eddies and an extreme heat wave likely played key roles.

Weather

'The difference between alarming and catastrophic': Cascadia megafault has 1 especially deadly section, new map revealsByStephanie Pappas published 7 June 24The Cascadia subduction zone is more complex than researchers previously knew. The new finding could help scientists better understand the risk from future earthquakes.

Geology

Arctic 'zombie fires' rising from the dead could unleash vicious cycle of warmingBySebastian Wieczorek, Eoin O'Sullivan, Kieran Mulchrone published 7 June 24Zombie fires that burn underground over winter may be a case of climate change-driven spontaneous combustion, new research reveals.

Climate Change

Blood Falls: Antarctica's crimson waterfall forged from an ancient hidden heartBySascha Pare published 7 June 24Iron-rich waters buried beneath Taylor Glacier in East Antarctica are sporadically released in what looks like a bloody mess — but the so-called Blood Falls aren't as gruesome as they first appear and sound.

Antarctica

Giant viruses discovered living in Greenland's dark ice and red snowByPatrick Pester published 7 June 24The giant viruses might infect algae that are increasing Greenland's ice melt. These viruses could help kill off the damaging algal blooms, helping to reduce some of the impacts of climate change.

Planet Earth

Rare-earth elements could be hidden inside coal minesByStephanie Pappas published 6 June 24Rare earth elements are necessary for modern technology, including green energy, but they only come from a few sources around the globe. New research has discovered them hiding in coal mines in the U.S.

Planet Earth

100-foot 'walking tree' in New Zealand looks like an Ent from Lord of the Rings — and is the lone survivor of a lost forestByHarry Baker published 5 June 24An unusual northern rātā tree that looks like it is striding across an empty field has been crowned New Zealand's Tree of the Year. The giant plant, which looks strikingly similar to an Ent from "The Lord of the Rings," is centuries old.

Plants

Earth from space: Shapeshifting rusty river winds through Madagascar's 'red lands'ByHarry Baker published 3 June 24This 2018 astronaut photo shows the rust-colored waters of Madagascar's Betsiboka River winding through a complex series of mangrove islands. Both the river and islands have been altered in recent years by destructive human practices.

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