Environment

by Peter Gleick and Heather Cooley Debates about water in California, the western U.S., and indeed, worldwide, have traditionally focused on the question of how best to further expand water supply to meet some hypothetical future increase in water demand. And the solution frequently offered is to build massive new infrastructure in the form of…

Super Typhoon Chan-hom

UPDATE: There are significant changes (as of Friday mid day Middle America Time) in the track and strength of the storm, mostly good news for china. See here for updates. A large typhoon (hurricane) is heading for China and is expected to make landfall in the vicinity of Shanghai. The image above is from the…

Not an “accident”: Gerald Thompson, 51 suffers fatal work-related injury in Lakeville, MN

This week’s snapshot of just one work-related fatality in the US. This one occurred on Tuesday, June 30, 2015 in Lakeville, Minnesota.

I came across this neat press release from the American Physiological Society which describes new research on understanding how the genes of burmese pythons are actually altered by feeding. Fascinating! The research was published in the May issue of Physiological Genomics. Here is a brief synopsis. For the full story, visit the APS website. What is…

A new paper has just been published. This paper is going to cause an uproar in the science denialist community. Mud will be thrown. Tin hats will be donned. Somebody better check the oil pressure. Conspiracies everywhere I see conspiracies everywhere. It’s true. Look at any internet site that talks about health, disease, diet, or…

Recycling our garbage is good for the planet, but a new report finds that the workers who process our recyclable materials often face dangerous and unnecessary conditions that put their health and safety at serious risk.

Focusing on Earth, but also a few tidbits on wind, fire, and ice, some current news and observations about global warming. Earth As humans release greenhouse gas pollutants (mainly CO2) into the atmosphere, the surface of the Earth, and the top 2000 meters of the ocean, heat up. But some of the CO2 is absorbed…

No OSHA citations for fatal work injury that killed Ernesto Rodriguez at Oklahoma fracking site

The OSHA inspection following the work-related death in Oklahoma of Ernesto Rodriguez did not result in any citations. A FOIA request of records from the inspection shed little light on why it happened.

Weighing meal options

I just listened to a neat podcast from Scientific American’s Karen Hopkin in which she described a new study published in the Journal of Ornithology that suggests Mexican Jays (Aphelocoma ultramarina) pick which peanut to eat only after literally weighing their options. The researchers modified some peanuts to remove the contents. The Mexican Jays were then offered unmodified nuts along with the…

Global Warming Is Heating Up

Humans have been releasing greenhouse gas pollution into the atmosphere for a long time now, and this has heated up the surface of the planet. This, in turn, has caused a number of alarming changes in weather. Several current weather events exemplify the effects of climate change. Record High Temperatures Being Shattered South Asia recently…