The Sand to Snow National Monument is one of three California areas designated as national monuments on Friday. Together they protect nearly 1.8 million acres of public lands. Bob Wick/Bureau of Land Management hide caption

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"We are very different from all previous species, and we have the power to endure. We also have the power to destroy ourselves." — Lord Martin Rees Ryan Lash/TED hide caption

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TED Radio Hour

Lord Martin Rees: How Can We Ensure Our Survival As A Species?

Astronomer and cosmologist Lord Martin Rees asks whether our species will endure despite the many existential threats we face.

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"That I'm standing here telling this story is proof that we all can accomplish great things, through ambition, through passion, through sheer stubbornness." — Ben Saunders James Duncan Davidson/TED hide caption

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Russ Finch holds up half of a Cara Cara orange grown in his geothermal greenhouse in Alliance, Neb. Courtesy of Grant Gerlock/Harvest Public Media hide caption

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Green when young, and about the size of an adult human's hand when full-grown, Dryococelus australis is more commonly known as the Lord Howe Island stick insect, or the tree lobster. Courtesy of Rohan Cleave/Melbourne Zoo hide caption

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A neighborhood where many people have left their homes because of a massive natural-gas leak is seen in the Porter Ranch neighborhood of Los Angeles in December. David McNew/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Wisdom, a Laysan albatross that's believed to be 65 years old, and her mate have welcomed a new chick at the Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge. Here, a week-old chick peeks out from its nest. Kaipo Kiaha/Paliku Productions hide caption

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A central piece of President Obama's climate change initiatives is now on hold, after the Supreme Court put a stay on rules limiting carbon pollution generated by U.S. power plants. Charlie Riedel/AP hide caption

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