Scientists are studying how to genetically modify desirable trees in order to make them more commercially beneficial. They say it will allow us to grow more productive trees on less land, protecting natural forests -- but environmentalists say it will just increase deforestation by giving businesses something better to do with the land.
About a quarter of all people worldwide live without electricity. For them, evenings and nights are spent by candlelight or kerosene lamp. But a group of scientists in Sri Lanka say they have found a creative way to bring simple electric lighting to rural households.
The United States is the largest producer of one of the most world's important crops: corn. We use it to feed people, livestock and, when it's turned into ethanol, cars. But as the country faces the worst drought in more than 50 years, some experts say the U.S. can no longer afford to turn that food into fuel.
The persistent drought across much of the United States has another casualty, the water in the Mississippi River. One of America's primary ways for shipping commodities to markets around the world, the low water levels means smaller barges, closed stretches of the river and, eventually, higher prices for all of us.
Syria's crops are spoling in the country's fields. The nation's livestock are being starved, sold or killed. According to a new report from the United Nations, Syrians are in danger of starving if urgent aid isn't provided.
Tom Vilsack, the U.S. Agriculture Secretary, says his agency has taken a number of steps to try and mitigate the situation for farmers and ranchers. But real relief won't come, he says, unless Congress takes action. So far, with summer break looming, that hasn't happened.
The effect of this summer's drought in the United States may well be felt around the world soon. That's because the U.S. is the world's biggest corn exporter. As harvests fall and prices rise, many of world's poor will feel the squeeze.
More than half of the United States is in one of the worst droughts to hit America in recorded history. Farmers are among those who have suffered the most so far. But fewer crops means higher food prices for all Americans in the months ahead.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently introduced a voluntary plan to limit the use of antibiotics on farm animals, a move that restaurant chain Chipotle says is long overdue.
Environmentalists around the world have their eyes on Brazil. A controversial new version of the Forest Code, the law designed to protect Brazil's forests, has passed through parliament and awaits President Dilma Rousseff's signature.