Posts

December 18, 2014

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2:00 PM | Earth Ranger Nicholas is on An Animal Saving Mission
Meet 10-year-old Nicholas, an Earth Ranger who has done some amazing things to help protect animals
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1:00 PM | Mind-controlled Robotic Arm
A new prototype mind-controlled robotic arm is the latest example of brain-computer interface technology being developed with the ultimate aim of improving the quality of life of people unable to use their own arms. We recently reported on robotic prosthetic arms for amputees. Those prosthetic limbs can be controlled by the users and also deliver a sense […] The post Mind-controlled Robotic Arm appeared first on EH Science.
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3:44 AM | Storms a Boon for Rain Water Harvesters
More Northern California residents are harnessing winter storms and cashing in on local rebate programs for rainwater harvesting.
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3:09 AM | The Arctic Continues to Bear the Brunt of Global Warming
Acknowledgment: I want to thank my friend and colleague, environmental journalist Susan Moran for help with this story. She covered the NOAA press conference today at the AGU meeting and sent me her notes. The Arctic continues to warm faster than any other region, according a report released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on Wednesday. Moreover, the extent of Arctic sea ice continues to shrink, and as a result more and more energy from the Sun is […]

December 17, 2014

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10:11 PM | With Unresolved Health Risks and Few Signs of an Economic Boon, Cuomo to Ban Gas Fracking
A look at the mix of economic, political and environmental factors that prompted Gov. Cuomo to bar fracking.
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9:32 PM | Interview: Powering the Top of the World
Powering the Top of the World is a new documentary by Christoph Mazur and Chris Emmott, from Imperial College London. It explores energy supply in Nepal, and the innovative solutions to sustainable energy provision in some of the most remote parts of the world. With over 1.2 billion people with no access to electricity across the globe, these issues are echoed in countries the world over. Christoph Mazur speaks to Climatica about their work in Nepal, the moviemaking process, and their […]
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9:28 PM | New Challenge: Put Technology to Work to Protect Drinking Water
The following excerpt is reposted from “EPA Connect, the Official Blog of EPA Leadership“ By Ellen Gilinksy You likely remember when, this past summer, half a million people who live in the Toledo, Ohio, area were told not to drink the water coming out of their taps for several days. A state of emergency was […]
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7:35 PM | After more than 100 years
Without abundant material it were ridiculous to attempt a wide revision of these insects; and ... a mass of this material causes one's courage to sink at the sight of so uniform and apparently characterless a group.Claude Morley, 1912Back in 1912, three species of the parasitic wasp genus Ophion were described by two different entomologists, one of them was Claude Morley. This increased the number of known species in North America to eleven. Since then no new species was described although it […]
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5:00 PM | Magical Thinking in the Age of Green
We are not in the Age of Aquarius that had brought—to some of us—radical hope about societal change and a turn toward ecology, steady state growth, and different GDP metrics, including happiness. The age was about love, unity, integrity, sympathy, … Continue reading →
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4:00 PM | The Jury is in on the 2014 Canadian Weblog Awards!
I just had the privilege of serving as a juror for the […]
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2:53 PM | Five emerging global risks insurers should be concerned about
Institute of Hazard, Risk and Resilience Blog - Making a difference to how we live with hazard and risk. by Marcus Fletcher In insurance the loss potential of natural catastrophes has traditionally been measured by catastrophe models. Catastrophe models are effective since they rely on past historic trends to predict possible financial loss to a natural catastrophe, however, emerging [...] The post Five emerging global risks insurers should be concerned about appeared first on Institute of […]
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1:44 PM | Rocky Mountain Institute and Carbon War Room Join Forces
Today Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI), brain-child of famed energy thinker Amory Lovins, and Carbon War Room (CWR), the five-year old climate change outfit of Sir Richard Branson, merged to create a... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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1:00 PM | World’s First Walking Robot Stick Insect
A research team at Bielefeld University in Germany has taught the only robot of its kind in the world how to walk. Designed to be stick insect-like, the walking robot is called Hector has elastic joints and an ultralight exoskeleton. Hector is the result of an interdisciplinary project at the Center of Excellence Cognitive Interaction […] The post World’s First Walking Robot Stick Insect appeared first on EH Science.
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1:00 PM | First find the whales, then you can save them
Killer whales, or orcas, can be found in just about every corner of the planet’s oceans, from the frigid poles to the much more comfortable Equator. One population of killer whales that plies the waters around the Iberian peninsula – which overlaps genetically with those spotted in the Canary Islands – has been designated by
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12:05 PM | How a Porcupine and YouTube Helped Save the Bronx Zoo’s Budget
How a century-old conservation group chose YouTube and a porcupine to fight budget cuts in the depth of the recession.
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6:00 AM | How to Catch a Wolf (and Make Sure it Doesn’t Get Hurt)
Find out how our researchers are able to study eastern wolves in the wild.

December 16, 2014

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11:28 PM | Methane and Holes on Mars and Earth
Some musings on very different methane-emitting holes on Mars and Earth.
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7:59 PM | The Battle Over The Battle of the Forecasts: Nature Article Draws Sharp Rebuke from U.S. Energy Information Administration
Earlier this month, prestigious academic journal Nature published a news feature titled “Natural gas: the fracking fallacy,” casting doubt on the long-term prospects of the U.S. natural gas supply.... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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4:50 PM | Another Northern White Rhino Dies, Only 5 Remain
And then there were five. The death by old age this past weekend of Angalifu, a 44-year-old northern white rhino (Ceratotherium simum cottoni) that lived at San Diego Zoo, reduces the world... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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4:02 PM | Unleashing Data for Sustainable, Healthy Communities
By Aaron Ferster One of my first jobs was serving as the writer for a team developing a new bison exhibit at the National Zoo here in Washington, DC. Not only did I get to walk past elephants and zebras on the way to the office every morning, when I got there I spent time […]
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3:26 PM | Discoveries of the week
Salmo kottelatiSalmo kottelati sp. n., is described from Alakır Stream (Mediterranean basin) in Turkey. It is distinguished from other Anatolian Salmo species by a combination of the following characters (none unique to the species): general body colour greenish to silvery in life; 7–9 parr marks along lateral line; four dark bands on flank absent in both sexes; black ocellated spots few, present only on upper part of flank in individuals smaller than 160 mm SL but in larger both […]
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2:00 PM | Spineless: New Photography Collection Celebrates Our Undersea Cousins
A new book about marine invertebrates celebrates the sumptuous beauty of our lesser-known cousins.
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2:00 PM | Is nuclear power key to biodiversity?
The discussion surrounding the future of our energy supply tends to focus on carbon emissions. This is logical and probably the right way to look at things, given that climate change caused by those carbon emissions is the backdrop for virtually every other environmental (and geopolitical, and health, and economic, and so on) issue we
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2:00 PM | What Gives the Morpho Butterfly Its Magnificent Blue?
What does it mean to be blue? The wings of a Morpho butterfly are some of the most brilliant structures in nature, and yet they contain no blue pigment -- they harness the physics of light at the nanoscale.
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1:00 PM | Harlequin Filefish Uses Smell to Fool Predators
Researchers have found an ingenious coral-eating fish that can change its smell to hide from predators. It’s the harlequin filefish, and it camouflages its scent to smell like the coral it’s eating. In other words, it manages to smell like its own food, and not like something else’s. “By feeding on corals, the harlequin filefish […] The post Harlequin Filefish Uses Smell to Fool Predators appeared first on EH Science.
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4:04 AM | As Lake Mead drops, Las Vegas plays the long game
Even with the release of extra water from upstream reservoirs, Lake Mead outside Las Vegas is forecast to continue dropping in 2015 and into 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation’s latest monthly “24-Month Study” (pdf). At this point, as Lake Mead drifts deeper into record emptiness, it goes without saying that the big ...Continue reading ‘As Lake Mead drops, Las Vegas plays the long game’ »
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12:36 AM | Stunning Before and After Photographs Show the Impact of Global Warming on Greenland's Glaciers
I love NASA's Earth Observatory so much that I check in with it every day knowing I'll be rewarded with a visual treat about the Earth. But I'm a journalist, which means I have an urge to try to break news first. That includes beating the folks at EO to big, visual, Earth and environmental sciences stories (which I'm proud to say I've done from time to time). Today, though, I just have to share the Earth Observatory's imagery as is. It consists of the two photographs […]

December 15, 2014

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11:35 PM | In Climate Talks, Soft is the New Hard – and That’s a Good Thing
Why the soft approach in the Lima climate talks is the only approach.
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5:54 PM | What You Need to Build a Computer
This infographic depicting the components you need to build a computer is the work of the fabulous Eleanor Lutz. Lutz is a Seattle-based designer with a degree in molecular biology. She illustrates science concepts using Photoshop and other tools. Her work has been featured in a variety of publications, including Popular Science. Her latest work […] The post What You Need to Build a Computer appeared first on EH Science.
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3:46 PM | Asian Carp detection
Indirect, non-invasive detection of rare aquatic macrofauna using aqueous environmental DNA (eDNA) is a relatively new approach to population and biodiversity monitoring. As such, the sensitivity of monitoring results to different methods of eDNA capture, extraction, and detection is being investigated in many ecosystems and species. One of the first and largest conservation programs with eDNA-based monitoring as a central instrument focuses on Asian bigheaded carp (Hypophthalmichthys spp.), an […]
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