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April 15, 2014

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7:37 PM | The Fine Print
By Sarah Tory Sometimes solving environmental problems is a lot of work. But every once and a while, a solution comes along that seems as simple as, say, changing a font. So easy, in fact, that a sixth-grader could figure it out. That’s what happened when 14-year-old Suvir Mirchandani, concerned about the heavy paper and ink use at his Pittsburgh-area middle school, began thinking about ways to slow down consumption and cut costs. (Well, that and he […]
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7:10 PM | Bat-Killing Fungus Now Found in 25 U.S. States
The news for bats in the U.S. keeps getting worse. Last week conservation officials announced that the bat-killing white-nose syndrome (WNS) has been found in Michigan and Wisconsin. The disease,... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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6:43 PM | RWE to Supply Natural Gas to Naftogaz of Ukraine
Germany’s RWE began deliveries of natural gas to Ukraine on Tuesday as a diplomatic crisis between Kyiv and Moscow raises the risk of Russia cutting off gas supplies to Ukraine. Read more »
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6:28 PM | While Rest of Globe Basked, U.S. Mostly Shivered in March
The globe overall might have been quite warm in March, but here in the United States the picture was quite different. Following yesterday’s release by NASA of data showing that this past March was the fourth warmest globally in 134 years of record-keeping, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration today announced that the United States […]The post While Rest of Globe Basked, U.S. Mostly Shivered in March appeared first on ImaGeo.
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5:32 PM | Quantum Dots Could Be Used to Make Efficient Solar Windows
A house window that doubles as a solar panel could be on the horizon, thanks to recent quantum-dot work by Los Alamos National Laboratory researchers in collaboration with scientists from University of Milano-Bicocca (UNIMIB), Italy. Read more »

Meinardi, F., Colombo, A., Velizhanin, K., Simonutti, R., Lorenzon, M., Beverina, L., Viswanatha, R., Klimov, V. & Brovelli, S. (2014). Large-area luminescent solar concentrators based on ‘Stokes-shift-engineered’ nanocrystals in a mass-polymerized PMMA matrix, Nature Photonics, DOI:

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5:23 PM | BioCoder
Regular readers of my blog might have noticed that I have a weak spot for the DIY movement especially in biology and biotechnology. I try to follow the news in this sector and secured them a spot in the DNA Barcoding Bulletin that we produce quarterly. That being said, I was surprised that I didn't find out about the BioCoder newsletter that is published by O’Reilly.O'Reilly is an american media company that mostly publishes books on computer technology topics. Their distinctive […]
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4:28 PM | Inspiring the Next Generation of Innovators: President Obama Honors the Nation’s Cutting-Edge Scientists and Engineers
A group of leading researchers—including EPA’s own Dr. Tom Purucker—we were honored today at the White House as recipients of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE). The following is reposted from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. A group of leading researchers were honored today at the White […]
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3:47 PM | U.S. / Texas Oil Reserves At Highest Levels In Decades
According to data recently released by the U.S. Energy Information Administration, crude oil reserves in the U.S are at their highest level since 1976.  In 2012 alone the U.S. added 4.5 billion barrels.  This represents the highest one-year increase since … Continue reading →
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3:05 PM | Health Trackers May Be the Rage, But How Useful Are They?
Low battery life, bulky appearance and lack of integration are some of the obstacles in the way before health trackers become the next gadgets we can’t live without.
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3:03 PM | Toyota Says Its New Gasoline Engines Will Be 10% More Efficient
Toyota Motor Corporation aims to increase the environmental performance of its vehicles with a series of newly-developed fuel-efficient gasoline engines. Read more »
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2:33 PM | The Vicious Valparaiso Wildfire as Seen From Space
As a raging wildfire swept through Chile’s coastal city of Valparaiso last weekend, destroying 2,000 homes and killing at least 15 people, NASA’s Terra satellite captured this image of the blaze as it passed overhead. A plume of smoke is clearly visible streaming northwestward over the Pacific Ocean from areas outlined in red where the […]The post The Vicious Valparaiso Wildfire as Seen From Space appeared first on ImaGeo.
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2:20 PM | Stop Killing Enviros! Climate Change vs. Mad Men, Gefilte Fish Shortage—Gulp
By Jason Bittel You need green to make green: The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change makes no bones about the fact that we need to make a move soon to address climate change. Just one problem—trying to do so has proven political suicide. Many in Congress are beholden to the fossil fuel industry; others simply won’t consider levying any more taxes, no matter what they’re for. To help remedy the situation, the League of Conservation […]
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2:11 PM | Cracking Open a Cancer Cluster
By Elizabeth Royte This interview was originally published on March 21, 2013. On Monday, Dan Fagin (a member of the OnEarth editorial board) won the Pulitzer Prize for nonfiction. Read an excerpt from his award-winning book here.Toms River, New Jersey, wasn’t polluted in a day. Ciby-Geigy and Union Carbide dumped their wastes in this small coastal town for decades before scores of local children were diagnosed with leukemia and cancers of the central […]
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2:01 PM | EIA: LNG Shows Potential as Railroad Fuel
EIA projects that liquefied natural gas (LNG) will play an increasing role in powering freight locomotives in coming years. Read more »
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2:00 PM | Could vacant lots double as green infrastructure projects?
Subtle changes to how vacant lots are managed could be a big benefit for cities dealing with storm water runoff problems.
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1:58 PM | Soil colors – what more could you want?
Nuno Simões University of Algarve, Portugal E-mail: nuno_simoes58@hotmail.com We can easily see that soil color varies from one site to another, with depth, with topographic position and composition. Even color may be light brown in one side of the road and dark brown in the other. Whether for scientific purposes, or just curious, you study the colorimetric […]
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1:16 PM | Mulroy joining Brookings
To Colorado Basin water nerds’ favorite question – What’s Pat up to? – we have an answer. According to the Las Vegas Sun, former Las Vegas water czar Pat Mulroy is joining the Brookings Mountain West project: Robert Lang, director of Brookings Mountain West, said the shrinking Colorado River is one of the most critical ...Continue reading ‘Mulroy joining Brookings’ » Related posts:Mulroy Calls For Vegas Water Vote Pat Mulroy on How Vegas Plans to Do […]
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12:18 PM | Grow Wild!
Check out this video from the official launch of the Grow Wild campaign (supported by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew), which aims to get young people sowing seeds for UK native wild flowers to brighten up our urban areas and provide new habitats for our beleaguered pollinators and beneficial insects. You can get your hands on some free seeds via their Facebook page. Sowing them is easy – as they say in the video, it’s just like sprinkling salt on your chips! You don’t […]
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11:00 AM | Rethinking environmental folklore
You’ve likely faced the question: “paper or plastic?” Clearly the paper bag is the better option, right? Or is it? In a TED Talk, Leyla Acaroglu has a challenge for us. She wants us to rethink our... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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9:18 AM | Plant Nutter's Book Club: The Lost Art of Potato Breeding
It’s the middle of April, and it’s time to open up the discussion for the Plant Nutter’s Book Club’s second book – the Lost Art of Potato Breeding, by Rebsie Fairholm. I confess that I haven’t finished reading it yet, but hope to do so in the next couple of days. So… while I’m catching up, what did you all think? Are you all converts to the cause of backyard potato breeding? You will have noticed that I haven’t had a vote for our next […]
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4:39 AM | Ross Sea, Antarctica
If you look at a map of Antarctica, below the long arm of the Graham Land Peninsula which reaches out towards the Shetland Islands, there is an inlet that, for most of the year, is glued by a vast swath of sea ice to the ice sheets and mountains that  Read more »
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4:00 AM | Alvarado Dr., Holbrook, Ariz.
This isn’t just old west ruin porn. There’s actually a water policy question here. This is in Holbrook, Ariz. There’s a big, expensive new levee protecting this neighborhood from the Little Colorado River. These properties back onto the levee. How do they decide whose property warrants protection? Related posts:Don’t Think About Water Crossing the divide Water in the desert, Kingman, Ariz., edition
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2:21 AM | A weird dry stretch
Here’s a statistical oddity. Through April 14, we’ve measured 0.4 inches (10 mm) of precipitation at the National Weather Service’s Albuquerque gauge in 2014, about 23 percent of the long term mean. This is the seventh straight year that Albuquerque has been below average through April 14. 2007 is the last calendar year in Albuquerque ...Continue reading ‘A weird dry stretch’ » Related posts:Another dry month at my house Running the table: dry at all […]

April 14, 2014

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11:56 PM | Massive Sea of Warmth Propels March to Fourth Hottest
An area of extraordinarily high temperature stretching more than half way around the globe helped propel this past March into the record books as the fourth warmest since historical record-keeping began in 1880, according to NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies. The global average temperature for March was warmer only in 2002, 2010 and 1990. The […]The post Massive Sea of Warmth Propels March to Fourth Hottest appeared first on ImaGeo.
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8:54 PM | Years of Recapping Dangerously
By Jason Bittel When the premiere of your 9-part climate change documentary is up against Game of Thrones’ purple wedding and the return of Don Draper, it’s probably a smart idea to open with Indiana Jones boarding a fighter jet on his way to kick some Nazi ass.Of course, it’s really just Harrison Ford on a plane loaded with CO2 sensors, but he is embarking for an exotic locale to confront an existential threat to humanity. “The […]
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7:59 PM | Airborne Wind Turbines Have Significant Potential, Study Finds
Airborne wind turbines hovering high in the air and tethered to the ground, like kites, have the potential to generate huge amounts of electricity, based on a recent wind availability study led by the University of Delaware. Read more »

Archer, C., Delle Monache, L. & Rife, D. (2014). Airborne wind energy: Optimal locations and variability, Renewable Energy, 64 180-186. DOI:

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7:18 PM | Monday’s SpaceX Launch Cancelled; Next Opportunity is April 18
SpaceX is launching a rocket to the International Space Station this afternoon. The live webcast begins at 12:45 PST and the launch itself is scheduled for 1:58.
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6:54 PM | The Profits of Doom
By George Black Every cloud has a silver lining. And every hurricane, every melting glacier, every millimeter of sea-level rise. That’s the uncomfortable message delivered by McKenzie Funk’s Windfall: while global warming may bring catastrophe to billions, it will also make some people very rich. Banks, hedge funds, and smart investors had this epiphany, Funk says, around 2007, after the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reported that 11 […]
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6:37 PM | Scientists Gain Insight Into High-Temperature Superconductivity
In a new study by the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory, researchers have identified and solved at least one paradox in the behavior of high-temperature superconductors. The riddle involves a phenomenon called the “pseudogap,” a region of energy levels in which relatively few electrons are allowed to exist. Read more »

Mishra, V., Chatterjee, U., Campuzano, J. & Norman, M. (2014). Effect of the pseudogap on the transition temperature in the cuprates and implications for its origin, Nature Physics, DOI:

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6:05 PM | When pharmaceuticals become too effective
Sepsid flyThe veterinary pharmaceutical ivermectin has been used for more than thirty years all over the world to combat parasites like roundworms, lice and mites in livestock and pets. The active ingredient belongs to the chemical group of avermectins, which generally disrupt cell transport. However, when ivermectin is used in high dosage excess quantities are excreted in the faeces of treated animals which also harms dung-degrading beneficial insects like dung beetles and dung flies. This has […]
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