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Protect Costa Rica’s Hammerhead Sharks from Poachers

  By Shari Sant Plummer with contributions by Courtney Mattison   Three hundred forty two miles west of mainland Costa Rica lies an oceanic island so spectacular Jacques Cousteau called it the “most beautiful island in the world.” Cascading waterfalls cut through lush foliage, the symphony of a thousand seabirds echoes in your ears, and…

Exploring Civilization Beyond the Walls

Huge walls may separate cultures, but it’s how we interact across those boundaries that reveals the real story of civilization.

3 Surprising Discoveries From the Archaeology of Food

The archaeology of food is filling in the gaps between all the grand monuments and intricately crafted objects that occupied researchers and the public for generations.

3 Things to Know About the Origins of Chinese Civilization

China is big and it’s been around a long time. Top archaeologists peel back the layers of history and reveal how it all got started.

OPINION: China Announces One-Year Ban on Imports of African Ivory Carvings

By Patrick Bergin

On February 26, China’s State Forestry Administration announced on its website it was imposing a one-year ban on all imports of African ivory carvings. According to an unnamed forestry official, the suspension of ivory imports would allow authorities to evaluate the ban’s effectiveness in stemming elephant poaching in Africa. Because the ban was limited in scope, too brief in its temporal application, and fell far short of banning all domestic ivory trade in China, it was largely viewed by the conservation community as a symbolic plaster applied to a gushing wound.

March 1, 2015: Photographing a Revolution, Collecting Subway Bacteria and More

This week on National Geographic Weekend, join host Boyd Matson and his guests as they swab New York’s subways for bacteria, plan the perfect surf getaway, photograph a revolution, study the world’s most important fish, meet a glow in the dark shark, leave and return to a beloved homeland, learn the best way to eat a banana, and plan for sea level rise.

Poachers of Pangolins

The pangolin is the world’s most highly-traded mammal, with more than a million being poached from the wild over the last decade, but most people are not aware such an animal even exists. iLCP Fellow Paul Hilton urges us to pay attention to the decimation of the pangolin, before it is too late.

For Chinese New Year a Celebration of the World’s Largest Sheep

The celestial odometer clicks over to a new year on the Chinese calendar today, and it’s a Year of the Sheep. By some interpretations it may also be the Year of the Goat, but for National Geographic it is an opportunity to celebrate argali Ovis ammon polii, the world’s largest sheep. Perhaps no one is…

U.S.-India Climate Agreement Less Substantive Than U.S.-China Climate Deal

The U.S.-India climate agreement announced January 25 creates a new agreement between the second- and third-largest emitters of greenhouse gases in the world but does not have the strength of the U.S.-China climate deal reached last year. Rather than committing India to cap its emissions, the U.S.-India deal called for “enhancing bilateral climate change cooperation”…

Great News for Tigers in India—and a Cautionary Tale

Talking Tigers: Part 10 of a 12-part series Amidst frequent heartbreaking stories about disappearing tigers, today there is some great news. India’s latest census has counted 2,226 tigers, a whopping  30 percent jump from the 1,706 documented in 2011. Nearly 10,000 “camera traps” were set up in known tiger territories; the resulting photographs definitively identified individuals…

Mayors Voices: Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti on How Cities Can Help U.S. & China Meet Climate Goals

United States President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping recently signed an historic deal setting the groundwork for both countries to make significant strides to halt global climate change*. The deal represents unprecedented collaboration between the two nations on climate, yet the agreement does not outline a comprehensive plan to achieve the agreed-upon reductions…

Under-the-Radar Environmental Stories for 2015: The Furtive Five

Between crazy weather, international events, and global agreements, 2014 was a year in which climate change took center stage. Whether it was a catastrophic drought in California, accelerated ice melting in Antarctica, or even record-breaking heat disrupting the Australian Open, the impacts of climate change are being felt around the world—and people are starting to…

China’s Illegal Ivory Trade Escalating Out of Control

The illegal ivory trade is exploding in China, overwhelming efforts to enforce the law, according to the results of the first detailed research on the markets of Beijing and Shanghai since 2002.

IEA Unveils World Energy Outlook 2014: Looking Ahead to 2040

The International Energy Agency (IEA) has released its World Energy Outlook (WEO) 2014 report, which for the first time provides energy trend projections through the year 2040. Among the key challenges in the next two and a half decades is, a 37 percent rise in global energy demand, driven mainly by emerging markets in Asia,…

U.S., China Reach Climate Deal

Two nations that account for more than one-third of all greenhouse gas emissions reached a climate deal. The United States will accelerate the pace of its net greenhouse gas emissions reductions from 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020 to 26–28 percent by 2025. China will increase the non-fossil fuel share of all its energy…