Posts

September 03, 2014

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3:16 PM | New Fall Season Lineup at Endless Forms
Two things happened this past year and I just recently figured out they were related. Thing 1: My writing critique group was going over a piece I wrote on naked mole rats.  Near the end of the 90-minute discussion I had a revelation: “How many of you had ever heard of a naked mole rat […]
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2:00 PM | Pretty but Prickly: the Defenses of California Plants
Discover the beauty of sharpness and learn how to tell the difference between thorns, spines, and prickles.
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1:29 PM | In the Parching West, It’s Beginning to Feel like 1159
To find a similar period of Western drought to the current recent span, you'd have to go back to 1159.
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1:22 PM | The Passenger Pigeon Flies Again (in a Museum)
By Jason Bittel This week marks the 100th anniversary of the death of Martha, the last known passenger pigeon. In honor of her species, which numbered in the billions when Europeans arrived in the New World, the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art is hosting “Eclipse,” an exhibit on extinction. The multimedia exhibition features photography, the writings of author (and OnEarth contributor) Elizabeth Kolbert, and a 100-foot video […]
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12:00 PM | How carpooling will save the world
Public transportation services are ubiquitous in the world’s cities, whether more traditional taxis or newer mobile-powered startups like Uber or Lyft. While using those means of public transportation is environmentally friendly, it’s not a perfect system. It might help reduce the number of cars on the road, but it does not necessarily reduce the number

September 02, 2014

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8:11 PM | Napa Quake Forces Redrawing of Fault Maps
Some surprises emerge, which could lead to additional building restrictions in the Napa Valley.
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6:22 PM | Let's Be Perfectly Clear
By Susan Freinkel In a 2007 Skidmore College museum exhibit titled Molecules That Matter, the exhibit’s curators noted that we are never more than three feet away from something plastic. That stunning statistic reflects just how thoroughly plastics permeate the fabric of our daily lives. So it’s sobering, then, to consider that the plastics industry is one of the largest consumers and users of chemicals known to be hazardous to human health or […]
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5:46 PM | Discoveries of the week
Back at the office from a short vacation. Time for some new discoveries:Boophis ankarafensisA new species of treefrog of the Boophis rappiodes group (Anura, Mantellidae) is described from the Sahamalaza – Iles Radama National Park in northwest Madagascar. This new species is green in colour with bright red speckling across its head and dorsum; similar in morphology to other species of this group including: B. bottae, B. rappiodes, B. erythrodactylus and B. tasymena. The new species can be […]
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5:17 PM | A New ImaGeo Feature: Every Day Wonders
Whether it’s an iPhone in my pocket or something more sophisticated hanging around my neck, I’m rarely without a camera. So I find myself shooting photos pretty much daily. The subjects vary, but often they fall into a category I would describe as “every day wonders.” From a monsoon cloud blossoming over the mountains and moving […]The post A New ImaGeo Feature: Every Day Wonders appeared first on ImaGeo.
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2:20 PM | Stuff I wrote elsewhere: RIP Yoda, the tree
When Henri Grissino-Mayer first told me about the tough little old Douglas fir named Yoda, it struck me as the perfect bit of anthropomorphic business for a book about tree rings for kids. When Henri emailed me last month to tell me that Yoda had died over the summer, I knew I couldn’t let the ...Continue reading ‘Stuff I wrote elsewhere: RIP Yoda, the tree’ »
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2:06 PM | Russians Love Their Varmints, Too
By Jason Bittel The first morning after a long weekend is never easy, but things could be worse: you could be stuck in a hole in the middle of the road like this prairie dog in Russia. Perhaps the rodent ate one too many pirozhkis this summer, or maybe a passing car collapsed the burrow, trapping the little p-dog. Either way, two tourists came to the rescue! On this side of the world, prairie dogs could use some help, too. Thanks to habitat destruction and […]
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1:00 PM | Most conservation science not available to conservationists
Does anyone have $51 million lying around? Asking for a friend. Well, a whole lot of friends actually—all the thousands and thousands of people around the world who are actively engaged in some branch of applied conservation science, from saving the whales to reforesting Indonesia. It turns out that $51 million might be enough to
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11:30 AM | The New Look of Smokers’ Litter
The cigarettes may change, but for some smokers the habit of littering does not.
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9:30 AM | 25 Million Salmon Lost On Pacific Coast
25 million sockeye salmon expected to be swimming into the Strait of Juan de Fuca near Seattle are nowhere to be found! It has been... The post 25 Million Salmon Lost On Pacific Coast appeared first on Russ George.
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6:00 AM | How Does Oil and Gas Drilling Raise Electricity Prices in West Texas?
In July 2012, Frontier Texas, an Old West museum located in Abilene, received an electric bill nearly $4,000 higher than expected. Oddly enough, the museum hadn’t used an unusual amount of power that... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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3:31 AM | Elinor Ostrom on mistrusting easy answers
The resource institutions that research has documented as working well in the field differ substantially in their detailed design but can usually be characterised as adaptive, multilevel governance systems related to complex, evolving resource systems. We need to overcome the tendency to recommend panaceas and encourage, instead, considerable experimentation at multiple levels to reduce the ...Continue reading ‘Elinor Ostrom on mistrusting easy answers’ »

September 01, 2014

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7:08 PM | #13: A Whale-Sized Donation
Since 1998, Irving Oil has shown support for the recovery of the North Atlantic right whale by partnering with the New England Aquarium Right Whale Research Program and providing funding necessary to run our field research projects. In addition to their 2014 funding, this year Irving Oil ran a campaign on Facebook for our program. Facebook users could show support for right whales while also
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5:54 PM | The Role of Social Media in Wiping Out Passenger Pigeons, and Conserving Species Now
Social media helped push the passenger pigeon to extinction. Now they may help forestall some species' vanishing.
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3:56 PM | Politics-Minded Marine Group Targets ‘Ocean Enemy #1’
An ocean conservation group dives into the gritty world of congressional politics.
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3:54 PM | 100 Years Ago Today
Today marks a sad centennial: the 100th anniversary of the extinction of the passenger pigeon (Ectopistes migratorius), a species once so abundant that their flocks blacked out the skies of North... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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1:46 PM | Is Rational Water Management Finally Emerging in Dry California?
California legislators, and farmers, begin to adjust well-drilling practices to suit a drier reality.
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8:00 AM | Glutbusters: September 2014
Stunning autumn foliage In the gardening calendar, September in the UK is ‘early autumn’. It comes before the season of mists and mellow fruitfulness, and (depending on the weather) is frequently a period when harvesting of summer crops can continue. There’s usually a few more weeks of frost-free weather, and the mad dash to harvest everything safely and clear everything away for the winter hasn’t started yet. Most people are sick of the sight of courgettes and runner […]
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7:01 AM | Drought Myth-Busting: Why El Niño Is Never A Good Bet
The peculiar set of ocean conditions are known as a California rainmaker -- but El Niño's reputation has been greatly exaggerated.
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7:00 AM | ESRC Festival of Social Science – Tipping Points in Health and Society
Institute of Hazard, Risk and Resilience Blog - Making a difference to how we live with hazard and risk. 6th November 2014, 19:30 to 21:00, Durham Town Hall, Market Place, Durham City. Presenters: Prof Michael Goldstein and Dr Camila Caiado, Dept of Mathematical Sciences Health problems, from cardiovascular disease to the AIDS epidemic, present major social challenges that require [...] The post ESRC Festival of Social Science – Tipping Points in Health and Society appeared first on […]
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5:25 AM | Cristobal Whirls Toward Iceland
As I’m writing this on Sunday night (Aug. 31), the cyclone formerly known as Hurricane Cristobal is taking dead aim on Iceland. You can see it whirling off Iceland’s coast in the image above, captured by NASA’s Aqua satellite on Saturday. No longer a hurricane, it is, in the parlance of meteorology, an “extra-tropical cyclone” […]The post Cristobal Whirls Toward Iceland appeared first on ImaGeo.

August 31, 2014

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10:59 PM | Scientific literacy
Public engagement in science is a hot topic highlighted by the ‘Nation of Curious Minds’ project and the National Objectives Framework component of the Freshwater Reform package. For both, the […]
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10:00 PM | Monday paper: Use of phytoremediation and biochar to remediate heavy metal polluted soils: a review
Paz-Ferreiro, J., Lu, H., Fu, S., Méndez, A., and Gascó, G.: Use of phytoremediation and biochar to remediate heavy metal polluted soils: a review, Solid Earth, 5, 65-75, doi:10.5194/se-5-65-2014, 2014. Soil heavy metal pollution Due to increased extraction and use by various industries, heavy metals come easily to the environment in various ways. Unlike organic substances, heavy metals can not […]
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9:43 PM | #12: Roseway Basin- the first leg
On August 15, a team including Moe, Philip, Kelsey, Marianna and Kari left Campobello Island for an offshore trip aboard the Shelagh, captained by Joe. Destined for Roseway Basin and slated to last two weeks, the Shelagh was packed to the brim with food, supplies and equipment. After a few days of loading and orienting ourselves to the boat, we left around noon on Friday and began surveying after
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9:33 PM | “Sharing Water: What an Environmental Experiment in Mexico can Teach us About the Future of the Colorado River”
I’m excited to be giving a talk on the Colorado River Delta environmental pulse flow Sept. 8 at Colorado College in Colorado Springs. If you’re in the neighborhood, please come by, say “hi”, and, if possible, ask questions when I explain things poorly. The talk is a snapshot of a work in progress, so no ...Continue reading ‘“Sharing Water: What an Environmental Experiment in Mexico can Teach us About the Future of the Colorado River”’ »
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9:15 PM | Used Tires Could Find Second Life in Batteries
Hundreds of millions of tires reach the end of their first life each year in the United States. The majority of these tires are recycled into road paving materials, plastic additives, and other... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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