Posts

July 18, 2014

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5:59 PM | Time For Energy Diplomacy
Russia’s intervention in Ukraine has unfolded into the most serious East-West crisis in a generation. These events have illustrated Europe’s energy insecurity, but also highlight how the United... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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5:31 PM | Drones in Biodiversity Research
Ecologists require spatially explicit data to relate structure to function. To date, most of such data came from remote-sensing instruments mounted on spacecraft (satellites) or manned aircraft. However, the spatial and temporal resolutions of those data are quite often not suitable for smaller local-scale investigations.Relatively cheap and portable, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) better known as drones fill a gap between satellite and manned aircraft imagery and on-the-ground observations. […]
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5:27 PM | Catalyst Promises Commercially Viable Hydrogen Production
Rutgers researchers have developed a new catalyst for commercially viable hydrogen production. It is based on carbon nanotubes and performs almost as well as cost-prohibitive platinum-based catalysts.
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4:39 PM | Weekend Reads: Much Ado About Ducks, Enviro Spy Games, Saving the World—from Space
By Jason Bittel Duck Dynasty What if I told you about a government program that raked in $25 million last year despite having just three employees? And this very same program has conserved more than 6 million acres of wetlands since 1949, and wait for it … it's based exclusively around artistic renderings of ducks. Don’t call me crazy—it’s Bryan Kevin’s story—and it’s probably one of the weirdest, and coolest, […]
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3:29 PM | NEON presents its first higher education video
NEON is excited to present its first video in a series of multimedia resources. The Story of LiDAR Data provides a general overview of LiDAR data and highlights how LiDAR data is used to measure structural characteristics of trees. Education is an important part of the NEON project design. NEON’s higher education program provides a … Continue reading »
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3:26 PM | GlobalData: Solar PV Leads in Distributed Generation
A new study by GlobalData found that solar Photovoltaics (PVs) are already leading the world in the distributed power market consisting of 48 percent of the total distributed power capacity installed last year. In addition, the amount of annually installed distributed generation is slate to increase from 190 gigawatts in 2013 to roughly 389 gigawatts in 2019.
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2:22 PM | Study: Fire Is Second Leading Cause of Wind Farm Failure
Scientists at the Imperial College London suggest that incidents of wind turbines catching fire are a big problem that is not currently being fully reported.
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2:11 PM | Crushing Blow to Pebble Mine, Germans Are Good Sports, Shark in Lake Ontario? Puh-lease.
By Jason Bittel Go EPA, go EPA, go!: The Environmental Protection Agency is expected to propose serious restrictions today on filling and dredging activities in Alaska’s Bristol Bay. Although the agency isn't implementing an all-out ban on the area’s proposed Pebble Mine project, it will set high standards for any mining activity moving forward. Good thing, too—the watershed supports nearly half of the world’s sockeye salmon. (See […]
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1:53 PM | Construction begins in Texas on world’s largest carbon capture facility
Carbon Capture and Sequestration (CCS) could be a key technology option in reducing carbon dioxide emissions from the world’s fossil fuel power plants. But, the technology has become better known for... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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12:40 PM | Robert Kennedy Jr.’s Crusade
Some stories I pursue, others I let unwind a bit to make sure they are for real. The cover story I wrote on Robert Kennedy Jr. for this Sunday’s Washington Post magazine falls into the latter category. You couldn’t find a more unlikely author of this story than me. Last summer, I wrote two critical posts […]The post Robert Kennedy Jr.’s Crusade appeared first on Collide-a-Scape.
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12:00 PM | A roadmap for reconciling food security and conservation
Too often, the needs of an increasing population are at odds with the needs of the environment. More people means more mouths to feed. That, in turn, means that we need more land for agriculture. Since there’s only a finite amount of dry land on our planet, we’re increasingly converting forests and jungles into farms
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11:55 AM | A Fresh Look at Iron, Plankton, Carbon, Salmon and Ocean Engineering
A fresh look at controversial efforts to nourish salmon and store carbon.
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6:37 AM | Summer garden activities
The house I grew up in had a very large patio. In the summer we had a paddling pool that my parents could set up, that these days would be classed as a swimming pool. It was made from sturdy canvas and poles, and had a plastic seat on each corner. It took quite some time to fill from the hose, and was – of course – completely freezing to begin with. Once the sun had warmed the water up a bit, we had fun splashing around. The pool didn’t have a cover, and my parents never […]
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3:24 AM | Border arbitrage
I’m not positive, but I’m reasonably certain the guy with the bedroll in this picture is performing arbitrage. He was sleeping out the midday sun under the San Luis Bridge on the Sonora-Baja-Arizona border before I saw him pick up and head toward those bushes on the Colorado River’s east bank. Just beyond that array ...Continue reading ‘Border arbitrage’ »

July 17, 2014

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10:29 PM | Gatsby and the Colorado River
In December of 2002, an effort to sort out the problems of the Colorado River appeared as though it was about to blow up. California had long been living beyond its means (using more than the 4.4 million acre feet minimum guaranteed under the Law of the River). The deal would have given California time ...Continue reading ‘Gatsby and the Colorado River’ »
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6:58 PM | 3-D Nanostructure Could Efficiently Store Gas
Scientists at at Rice University predict functional advantages of a three-dimensional porous nanostructure that could benefit gas storage, nanoelectronics, and composite materials that perform multiple functions.
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6:01 PM | Construction Begins on World’s Largest Carbon Capture Project
The Department of Energy—in partnership with NRG Energy Inc. and JX Nippon—announced that construction has begun on the first commercial-scale post-combustion carbon capture retrofit project in the U.S., the largest such project in the world.
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4:55 PM | California Experiences Warmest, 3rd Driest Year Since 1895
I didn’t think that the release today of the weekly U.S. Drought Monitor report would bring significant news about California. As the report says, with much of the state categorized as being in extreme or exceptional drought, and May through September being normally dry anyway, “there is not much more room for further deterioration, at […]The post California Experiences Warmest, 3rd Driest Year Since 1895 appeared first on ImaGeo.
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4:29 PM | Monitoring Harmful Algal Blooms? There’s an App for That!
By Annie Zwerneman I was recently on my favorite hiking trail, which passes by a beautiful lake. But this time hiking past it, I noticed a strange, dark scum creeping along the shoreline of the water. I learned later that this scum was actually an algal bloom: a population of algae increasing quickly over a […]
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4:15 PM | Efficient Room-Temperature Phosphorescent OLEDs Developed
The team of Jinsang Kim, a professor of materials science and engineering and chemical engineering at the University of Michigan, developed bright, metal-free, organic, phosphorescent light emitters.
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3:53 PM | Milwaukee Sees the Light
By Richard Manning Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett is known for taking prickly offense at the term “Rust Belt.” Nonetheless, the belt fits. The old-line manufacturing cities of the upper Midwest preceded the rest of the nation in collapse by decades. Foreclosure, blight, drugs, failed schools, homelessness, brownfields, pollution, decay, and crime: there’s plenty to justify the term, and Milwaukee has it all. Or maybe had it all. Because a […]
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3:49 PM | The Warming State of the Climate in 2013
A variety of indicators tracked by federal scientists reflect the continued warming of the climate system.
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3:43 PM | Salon in No Position to Judge What Sets Back Science
This week the New York Times published a profile of longtime climate skeptic John Christy. I found the piece perplexing because it contained no obvious hook or peg, as we say in journalism. There were no newsy events in Christy’s life that might have prompted a story about him in a prestige media outlet: No […]The post Salon in No Position to Judge What Sets Back Science appeared first on Collide-a-Scape.
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2:45 PM | Aussie's Oopsie Daisy, Journey to the Center of Siberia, Great Lake Goes Green (in a Bad Way)
By Jason Bittel Man with a plan: President Obama kicked things wide open yesterday by announcing a whole slew of new climate change initiatives. The list is long, but highlights include: $236 million to help eight states improve electricity infrastructure in rural areas, $13.1 million for 3D mapping data to help cities and states predict and plan for weather-related disasters, and $10 million to help Native American tribes with climate change adaptations. […]
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1:00 PM | Hungry dogs ravaging sea turtle nests
In the farming village of Colola, Mexico, many families have dogs that help guard the house and fields. But these canine companions also wreak havoc on the nests of threatened sea turtles at a nearby beach, gobbling up eggs as a way to compensate for a lack of food at home. There are roughly 700
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10:58 AM | The Frustrating World of Dangerous Living
When I first heard about the show I was very excited. Hollywood finally giving climate change the treatment, yay! I really wanted to like it. And I did - to some extent.
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7:01 AM | California Water Districts Face Suit for Ignoring Conservation Law
Investigative report prompted legal action. And some districts are responding.
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6:01 AM | The House of Dung
We gathered around the specimen with hand lenses, expensive cameras, and intent interest.  After some initial documentation, it was reverently placed in a basket and carried back to the main hall to be further examined and identified.  Pieces were placed under microscopes, and hefty field guides and computer programs referenced.  Read more »

July 16, 2014

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9:14 PM | Baby Mountain Gorillas Celebrated by 40,000 People in Rwanda
Well I just found something to add to my bucket list. Earlier this month 40,000 people gathered in Rwanda for the 10th Kwita Izina, the annual ceremony that celebrates and names all of the known... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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7:46 PM | Hawaii: Climate Wipeout
By Rocky Kistner The sea-level rise that comes along with climate change won’t only swallow far-flung, exotic islands such as Kirabiti and the Maldives. The rising waters, fueled by melting icecaps, will also inundate our fiftieth state—the land of hula skirts, mai tais, and most importantly, Hawaiians. “I like to think about the islands as they once were … peopled by some of the most fearless and skilled ocean voyagers on the […]
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