The Most Popular and Memorable Stories of 2010


Image: TreeHugger

Looking back at 2010, it's clear that the Gulf Oil Spill is the story that will headline environmental history books.

But it's not the only memorable one: From nearly invisible mirrored treehouses to strange pale and blind ants found in the Amazon to fake rocks that help conserve water, this year was full of surprises.

We've rounded up the most popular and memorable posts on TreeHugger in 2010, plus a look back at the year here. And check back for more -- we'll have additional Year in Review posts launching throughout the month.

The Year in Incredible New Species



Photo credit: Christian Rabeling

Even though species are lost at a rate of one every 20 minutes, science still manages to identify new plants and animals every year.

This list of 10 of the most strange and wonderful creatures discovered in 2010 includes pale and blind ants, transparent frogs, hairy lobsters, and more.

Read More: From Transparent Frogs to Blind Ants: Incredible New Species Discovered in 201

The Year in Design and Architecture



Image Credit: Treehotel

Looking back at the most popular posts on TreeHugger in the Design and Architecture category, one sees a rather odd mix, barely a normal bit of design and architecture in the bunch. In fact, there is only one real building in the lot. But they do reflect the eclecticism of both our writers and our readers.

Here are some of the most popular posts of the year, selected by a mix of page views and editing for eclecticism.

Read More: The Most Popular Posts in Design and Architecture in 2010

The Year in Water



Photo by ComputerHotline via Flickr Creative Commons

This year has been quite a doozy for water. From spreading smart metering to our water works, to shipping water from Alaska all the way to India, to clever and crazy ideas to help us conserve, down to our annual month-long Blue August feature, we've been through the wringer, so to speak. Check out the top news of 2010 in the world of water.

Read More: What About Water?: The Year In Review

The Year in Cars and Transportation


From a Jaguar electric car to a man single-handedly building his own subway system to a tiny, tiny RV, and more, the following 10 stories were the most popular -- according to traffic -- in the transportation category. Each gives us a good idea about what hit a nerve this year. So let's travel back in time...

Read More: The Most Popular Posts in Cars and Transportation in 2010

The Year in Celebrities



Photo: Jun Sato/WireImage/Getty Images

From sexy Leo's mega donation to tigers to Kevin Costner's surprise knowledge of oil clean-up technology, celebrities were on fire this year. There were a few mistakes, however....such as NBC's "Tonight Show" debacle, which sent a barely used set to landfill.

Here's a look back at the year in green hits and misses when it comes to Hollywood's A-listers.

Read More: The Year in Celebrities: The Biggest Green Hits and Misses

The Year in Environmental Disasters



Photo: U.S. Coast Guard

We wish we could say the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico was the only horrific environmental disaster this year.

From red toxic sludge spewing through Hungary to floods in Pakistan and heatwaves in Russia, 2010 was a year of record-setting natural disasters -- all of which were exacerbated by climate change.

As part of our Year in Review Series, here's a sobering look back at the year's worst environmental catastrophes.

Read More: 2010: The Year in Environmental Disasters

The Year in Green Technology and Gadgets



Photo by smeadli via Flickr Creative Commons

Tech and gadget news is always interesting, and every week has its next-big-thing announcements. But there were a few stories and trends that really stood out from the crowd during 2010. Yes, that includes the iPad -- but also a ton of other neat stuff.

Read More: The Most Popular Posts in Green Tech & Gadgets in 2010

The Year in Stunning Photos



Photo: Wikimedia Commons

The toothy mug on this guy makes quite an impression -- it was featured in our most popular slideshow of 2010, a collection of scary fish that puts your fear of Jaws on the back burner.

The top 10 slideshows of the year also include jaw-dropping close-ups of insects, curious whales that check out photographers, bird photos so dramatic you will think they are fake, solitary bees that live in flower petals, and more.

Read More: The Most Popular Slideshows of 2010

The Year in Travel and Nature



Photo: WIkimedia Commons

It's no secret, we like trees. But trees photographed using infrared look truly magical.

And you like trees too -- as evidenced by the fact that this post was the most popular in our Travel and Nature category in 2010.

Our top 10 posts in this category also include really, really ugly fish, whales that eat golf balls, boob-shaped clouds, and more.

Read More: The Most Popular Posts in Travel and Nature 2010

The Year in Extinct Animals That Returned From the Dead



Photo credit: Keith Slausen/US Forest Service

According to some estimates, a species is lost every 20 minutes. This shocking number considers factors like habitat loss but also includes approximations of the planet's total number of species, known and unknown.

Actually declaring a species extinct, however, is a long and laborious process that requires evidence beyond a reasonable doubt the plant or animal has disappeared from the face of the earth. The difficulty of this process is highlighted by the fact that only 875 extinctions have been officially documented since 1500.

And a few of those 875 have made miraculous reappearances.

Read More: 9 Species That Returned From Extinction in 2010

Tags: Animals | Architects | Architecture | Designers | Electric Cars | Endangered Species | Water Conservation

Best of TreeHugger