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Posts

April 23, 2014

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3:28 AM | What I learned this Earth Day, 2014
Laura Nielsen for Frontier Scientists – In the summer I drive to my favorite of many nearby glacial lakes, a deep down-turned gumdrop of cool water ringed in lillypads. I catch painted box turtles. After a frenetic chase and what feels like too long without air I surface gasping, and marveling at each turtle’s personality. They might battle hissing and clawing at air, or hide a bit before emerging to inspect me… or their own reflections in my goggles. Some... Read more
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3:28 AM | What I learned this Earth Day, 2014
Laura Nielsen for Frontier Scientists – In the summer I drive to my favorite of many nearby glacial lakes, a deep down-turned gumdrop of cool water ringed in lillypads. I catch painted box turtles. After a frenetic chase and what feels like too long without air I surface gasping, and marveling at each turtle’s personality. They might battle hissing and clawing at air, or hide a bit before emerging to inspect me… or their own reflections in my goggles. Some... Read more

April 22, 2014

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4:11 PM | Crossing 400ppm: Welcome to the Pliocene
“Right now, we’re living in a world of a Pliocene atmosphere,” scientist Maureen Raymo of the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory tells the Yale Forum on Climate Change and the Media. “But the whole rest of the climate system — the oceans are trying to catch-up, the ice sheets are waning, and everything is trying to catch up to this Pliocene atmosphere.”
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4:02 PM | Celebrate Earth Day with Extreme Science
Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory scientist Robin Bell will participate in a Google+ Hangout hosted by the White House on Tuesday, April 22 at 4:00 pm EDT. Bell, who will join the Hangout from New Zealand, is a polar scientist who studies sub-glacial lakes, ice sheet dynamics and tectonics in Earth’s polar regions.
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2:03 PM | Ice Sheet Microbes and Melt: Dark Snow 2014
Here’s an article I recently wrote with professor Jason Box of Dark Snow – keep checking here for updates on our field plans for Greenland 2014! Ice Sheet Microbes and Melt Greenland […]
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1:24 PM | Full Frontal Nerdity
I was once caught staring at energy efficiency guru Amory Lovins’ pocket protector, and without blinking he said, “Yes, it’s full frontal nerdity.” There was something refreshing about that... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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1:00 PM | California Edging Closer to Regulating Groundwater for the First Time
Power players in California water policy seem to agree for once: it's time to get serious about groundwater.
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9:00 AM | Earth Day: Not just a single day
by Sri Ray-Chauduri Environmental & Earth Sciences subject editor Did you know there are two Earth Days? April 22nd marks the Earth Day founded by US Senator Gaylord Nelson in 1970. Nelson worked on conservation issues with the Kennedy administration in the early 1960s, and the protests and teach-ins of the era inspired him to do the same for environmental awareness. The other Earth Day, first commemorated on March 21st, 1970, during the vernal equinox, was proposed by peace activist John […]

April 21, 2014

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1:00 PM | Drones: The Newest Water-Saving Tool for Parched Farms
Farmers are looking to the sky for the latest water-saving tool. But will aviation authorities allow it?

April 19, 2014

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9:34 AM | Dump fossil fuels for the health of our hearts
Cleaning up air pollution will provide immediate health gains as well as longer-term climate benefits, highlights New York University's George Thurston

Pope, C. (2003). Cardiovascular Mortality and Long-Term Exposure to Particulate Air Pollution: Epidemiological Evidence of General Pathophysiological Pathways of Disease, Circulation, 109 (1) 71-77. DOI:

Smith, K., Jerrett, M., Anderson, H., Burnett, R., Stone, V., Derwent, R., Atkinson, R., Cohen, A., Shonkoff, S., Krewski, D. & Pope, C. (2009). Public health benefits of strategies to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions: health implications of short-lived greenhouse pollutants, The Lancet, 374 (9707) 2091-2103. DOI:

Horton, D., Harshvardhan, . & Diffenbaugh, N. (2012). Response of air stagnation frequency to anthropogenically enhanced radiative forcing, Environmental Research Letters, 7 (4) 44034. DOI:

Kelly, J., Makar, P. & Plummer, D. (2012). Projections of mid-century summer air-quality for North America: effects of changes in climate and precursor emissions, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics Discussions, 12 (2) 3875-3940. DOI:

Thurston, G. (2013). Mitigation policy: Health co-benefits, Nature Climate Change, 3 (10) 863-864. DOI:

Rice, M., Thurston, G., Balmes, J. & Pinkerton, K. (2014). Climate Change. A Global Threat to Cardiopulmonary Health, American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, 189 (5) 512-519. DOI:

Citation

April 18, 2014

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4:58 PM | California Snowpack Melts With Breathtaking Speed as Drought Continues in Most of the Western United States
Severe drought continues in a large portion of the West, according to the latest U.S. Drought Monitor report, issued yesterday. In California, already particularly hard hit by drought, the situation is worsening. Temperatures there were 9 to 12 degrees above normal, which caused breathtakingly rapid melt of the California snowpack. Some areas of the Sierra […]The post California Snowpack Melts With Breathtaking Speed as Drought Continues in Most of the Western United States appeared […]

April 17, 2014

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9:00 PM | Federal Appeals Court Upholds EPA Mercury Rule
A federal appeals court upheld the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) requiring power plants install technology to cut emissions of mercury and other air pollutants. MATS was challenged by industry and several states that argued the EPA should have considered costs when determining whether it was “appropriate and necessary” to go forward with the standards. The…
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9:00 PM | Federal Appeals Court Upholds EPA Mercury Rule
A federal appeals court upheld the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) requiring power plants install technology to cut emissions of mercury and other air pollutants. MATS was challenged by industry and several states that argued the EPA should have considered costs when determining whether it was “appropriate and necessary” to go forward with the standards. The…

April 16, 2014

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8:04 PM | The Christ Child Cometh.
… and by that I mean the El Niño phase of the El Niño Souther Oscillation climate pattern. We have been in an ENSO neutral phase for a while. Climate scientists have a hard time predicting El Niño, which arrives in Summer, Fall, or Winter, this early in the year, but nonetheless most prediction sources,…
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4:51 AM | Predicting the effect of anomalous sea ice loss and increasing sea surface temperatures on global storm systems
Azara Mohammadi – To become a PhD candidate at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Soumik Basu moved from his home in Kolkata, India to a region infamous for its “below zero” weather: Interior Alaska. Basu left warm weather and his family (not to mention his mother’s cooking) because “The climate is changing, so I wanted to study how these changes in the climate affect the storm activities over the Northern Hemisphere.” Specifically, Basu came to UAF to […]
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4:51 AM | Predicting the effect of anomalous sea ice loss and increasing sea surface temperatures on global storm systems
Azara Mohammadi – To become a PhD candidate at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Soumik Basu moved from his home in Kolkata, India to a region infamous for its “below zero” weather: Interior Alaska. Basu left warm weather and his family (not to mention his mother’s cooking) because “The climate is changing, so I wanted to study how these changes in the climate affect the storm activities over the Northern Hemisphere.” Specifically, Basu came to UAF to […]
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12:10 AM | California Trails Texas in Wind Power, Says New Report
Despite some of the strongest renewable energy incentives in the country, California produces less than half the wind energy generated in the Lone Star State.

April 15, 2014

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10:11 PM | New Research Shows Asian Soot Cloud Affecting Pacific Storms
A group of researchers from Texas A & M University have a paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) this week that is getting a lot of attention. Cloud droplets and rain drops need something to form on, and without dust and other aerosols in the atmosphere we would see a lot less of both. Sometimes though, the addition of particulates can cause tiny cloud droplets …
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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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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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2:00 PM | Saving Our Seeds
In this video, a public library in Wisconsin joins the global movement to help secure the future of our food supply.
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7:07 AM | Would addressing climate change improve energy security?
By Jessica Jewell, Research Scholar, IIASA Energy Program How would action to mitigate climate change affect energy security for countries around the world? In two recent studies that I worked on with colleagues in IIASA’s Energy Program and three other European research centers, we explored this question under a range of different policy scenarios. We found … Continue reading →
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4:27 AM | Perspective on Rain and Oso/Hazel Landslide
Rain gets a bum wrap when it comes to landslides. Heavy rain caused the landslide is a common statement. Record breaking rain caused landslide or landslides. Yes, there is a correlation of when landslides happen and rain events, but you can not blame the rain for making steep mountain slopes, steep shoreline bluffs or steep river valley bluffs. The blame the rain gets added to by forestry types as well. Any suggestion that a landslide was caused by logging leads to […]

April 14, 2014

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8:05 PM | Chinese Pollution Changing N. American Weather
The brutal weather in the U.S. Midwest this winter has, in part, coal-burning power plants in China, a new study finds.
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1:30 PM | Chevron Tries Again With Richmond Refinery Revamp
Chevron is looking to launch a billion-dollar construction project at its Richmond refinery. It’s a slimmed down version of a project that environmentalists stopped with a lawsuit a few years ago.
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10:03 AM | Arctic Ozone Hole Looking Good
A global ban on the chemicals that caused the Antarctic ozone hole was successful in staving off one in the Arctic.
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12:00 AM | Evaluating Alternative Sources of Energy: Solar Energy from...
Evaluating Alternative Sources of Energy: Solar Energy from Space (Paul Jaffe) Concerns about global climate change have focused attention on a range of alternative energy sources that have minimal or greatly reduced carbon emissions when compared with conventional energy sources. Assessing how feasible and economically viable these alternative energy sources might be is important from a public policy standpoint in order to ensure taxpayer money is invested wisely. For decades, proponents of […]

April 13, 2014

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1:00 AM | MagLab Science Cafe: Extreme Weather Meteorologist Jeff Evans of...
MagLab Science Cafe: Extreme Weather Meteorologist Jeff Evans of the National Weather Service on extreme weather at the MagLab’s Science Cafe in March 2014. Duration: 01:04:38 via MagLab.

April 12, 2014

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9:59 AM | Detailed regional data reduce warming-drought link doubts
In Portugal and Spain climate change has already driven over 2°C of warming in summer, and new findings from Sergio Vicente-Serrano from the Pyrenean Institute of Ecology are dispelling uncertainties that the temperatures are making drought more severe and widespread.

Vicente-Serrano, S., Lopez-Moreno, J., Beguería, S., Lorenzo-Lacruz, J., Sanchez-Lorenzo, A., García-Ruiz, J., Azorin-Molina, C., Morán-Tejeda, E., Revuelto, J., Trigo, R. & Coelho, F. (2014). Evidence of increasing drought severity caused by temperature rise in southern Europe, Environmental Research Letters, 9 (4) 44001. DOI:

Citation

April 11, 2014

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10:09 PM | California Wildfire Study: Spend on Prevention to Save on Disasters
A new study finds that investing in forest management could shrink the size of wildfires and save California hundreds of millions of dollars.
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