Here at Earthwire we’re always on the lookout for visually compelling stories, and 2015 did not disappoint on that front. From newly discovered species to soaring temperatures and man-made earthquakes, the past 12 months have been packed with eye-opening environmental news good, bad, and ugly. As we reflect on the year, we thought we’d share a compilation of the photos, videos, and infographics that most resonated with you, dear reader.
Have emissions ever looked so beautiful? NASA’s mesmerizing visualization of aerosols swirling across the globe shows just how interconnected activities on the Blue Planet really are.
After the record-breaking season the western United States had this year, it’s no wonder this story spread like...well, you know.
April 20 marked the five-year anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon blowout. As the country remembered its worst environmental disaster, this National Geographic video reminded us that the aftermath is still very much happening in the present tense.
It’s not every day you can check out a sunken ship sans scuba gear. These ice- and algae-free waters caught the eye of the U.S. Coast Guard Air Station in Traverse City, Michigan, and then they caught yours.
More than 40 years’ worth of Landsat satellite images put our environmental impacts into real perspective.
The possibility of 20 feet of sea-level rise definitely sounds bad, but there’s something about seeing landmarks like the National Mall flooded to the gills that really hits it home.
The butterfly’s population has declined sharply in recent years, so the prospect of tracking the spectacular annual migration got readers into a flap.
There sure are a lot of dots on this map...Superfund sites aren’t always obvious to the public, but fortunately, this tool provides great information on any not-so-great substances in your immediate area.
The plague of ocean plastics was in the news a lot this year. When this video captured the tiniest members of the food chain falling prey to our trashy habits, it was hard to look away.
Our readers were struck by the need for better data after a study published in September found air pollution causes 3.3 million premature deaths each year.
onEarth provides reporting and analysis about environmental science, policy, and culture. All opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the policies or positions of NRDC. Learn more or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.