A map of London's most toxic breathing spots

Air pollution is up to five times over the EU limit in these Central London hotspots.

  • Dirty air is an invisible killer, but an effective one.
  • More than 9,000 people die prematurely in London each year due to air pollution, a recent study estimates.
  • This map visualizes the worst places to breathe in Central London.
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Strange Maps

How VR can dissolve your ego and unlock your empathy

By being someone else, and seeing and discovering the world through the eyes of other people, that can only increase our empathy... and decrease our own egocentric view of the world.

VR could very well be a greater storytelling medium than video games and TV. By being someone else, and seeing and discovering the world through the eyes of other people, that can only increase our empathy... and decrease our own egocentric view of the world. Documentarian Danfung Dennis thinks that virtual reality is an untapped resource that we should keep our eyes on (literally and figuratively), as the right story at the right time could change the world. Imagine a congressman from Texas watching climate change happen at the polar ice caps before their very eyes. It's a powerful prospect. Danfung Dennis is the founder of Condition One, a VR production and technology studio that has created VR experiences for National Geographic, The New York Times, Google, and Hulu.

Technology & Innovation

The biggest climate change decision: Should you have children?

Environmental concerns have caused some to opt-out of reproduction, both to help the planet and to protect their would-be children.

Image from HBO's "The Leftovers"

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Culture & Religion

Underwater National Parks: A Compelling Case

National Parks have long been a staple of American wildlife conversation. Why not have some underwater?

Sylvia Earle diving 20 meters underwater to get up close and personal with a Port Jackson shark (source: Getty Images)

Awestruck by nature, early American explorers wrote about western landscapes in terms of such singular amazement that residents of the east coast interpreted their accounts to be works of fiction. Since then, national parks and reservations have been established throughout the United States in order, as stated in the so-called Organic Act of 1916, “to conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wild life therein and to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.” An imperative to preserve natural beauty and diversity runs through much of American history. The benefits of national parks far exceed their profound picaresque appearance: they help to maintain biodiversity and to produce quantities of fresh air that are crucial to our survival. In short, they constitute a wonderful means of preserving ecological stability and splendor.

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Culture & Religion