On the brink.

From billions of searches emerged a fascinating portrait of a culture on the brink — of environmental changes, political breakaways, celebrity breakdowns, and technological breakthroughs. Join us as we explore the top trends in 2007.

Grass Is Always Greener

top 10 environmental searches
By Mike Krumboltz, Buzz Senior Editor

2007 may go down as the year people stopped talking about the climate crisis and actually did something about it.

Environmental awareness gained momentum over the year, which marks the 10th anniversary of the Kyoto Protocol.

Al Gore Hybrid Cars

In February, Al Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth" won an Academy Award and brought global warming front and center. Throughout the summer, buzz on "stop global warming" boomed, and conscientious citizens looked to reduce their carbon footprint.

Another familiar eco-issue on the minds of searchers this past year was pollution, from water to air. Clearly, rising oceans and falling air quality are concerns, and people used Search to monitor what the Environmental Protection Agency was doing about them and look into the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which shared this year's Nobel Peace Prize with Al Gore.

Closer to home, hybrid cars, solar energy, and recycling programs proved popular. And Freecycle.org, a social networking approach to local recycling emerged a hit as consumers sought to exchange used goods in their neighborhoods. (Take that, landfills!)

In terms of sheer search volume, residents of the Big Apple proved the most interested in global warming, edging out the environmentally conscious San Francisco Bay Area. When it came to hybrid cars, Los Angeles posted the most searches. Whether that's out of concern for the planet or frustration over gas prices and gridlock, we can't really say.

2007 saw queries on global warming reach their highest level ever, as searchers acted on their environmental concerns. Feel free to do your part and recycle the top 10 list by emailing it to a friend.

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To come up with the Top Trends of 2007, we analyze search queries based on a number of factors, including absolute volume and growth versus previous periods, to see which themes and trends bubble to the surface. And of course, individual users and their searches remain anonymous.

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