How Our Changing Climate Impacts the Past (And How Citizen Science Can Help)

When we think about our changing Earth, we might focus on impacts to human health or our food supply. But, we may fail to think about the ways that climate change affects the past, or rather, affects material remains. Whether bones or stones, these remnants help us to understand how people from the past lived. …

Backyard Digs

“Some [archaeological] sites are found by luck or by accident,” writes Sarah Parcak, in her book Archaeology from Space. For example, in 1900 “a donkey transporting a gentleman from a quarry in Alexandria, Egypt, fell into an abandoned shaft. What the poor donkey landed in were second-to-fourth century AD Roman Period catacombs.” You don’t have …

The Bittersweet Science and History of Chocolate

Happy Valentine’s Day, or as I like to call it, One-More-Day-Until-All-the-Chocolate-Goes-On-Sale Day. But seriously, I have no interest in the drek that passes for milk chocolate. Give me something spicy or bitter, or both. Up until recently, the Mayan civilization was credited with gifting chocolate to the world. A 2018 study by Sonia Zarrillo et …

Down to a Science Book Club: Archaeology from Space

If you’ve ever played with Google Earth, you can almost call yourself a space archaeologist. This is a fairly new and totally real career, Sarah Parcak explains in her book Archaeology from Space: How the Future Shapes Our Past. She describes how the “story of everyday past people across the globe, is only now better …

Fighting Fire with Fire

With seemingly non-stop fires raging, it’s hard to remember when people’s homes, the rainforest, kangaroos, or California’s wine country weren’t being threatened. Lately, the conversation has turned to fire management, namely, how we should look to the indigenous communities for advice on how to work with, instead of against, fire. On the surface this seems …