Environment

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Category archives for Environment

Efficiency: Mould vs. Man

Robert Burns wrote that the best laid schemes of mice and men go often askew, but Tokyo railway planners seem to have arranged things just right. Ed Yong on Not Exactly Rocket Science reports that Japanese researchers are exploring “better network design through biological principles,” by setting a “slime mould” cell loose on an in…

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Last week, hackers pulled a data heist on the Climatic Research Unit of the University of East Anglia, releasing thousands of stolen documents and emails that purportedly exposed a scientific conspiracy to fabricate evidence of global warming. Climate change skeptics dug into the data with forks and knives, choosing the choicest morsels as evidence of…

The Buzz: Ocean Plastification

As SciWo explained to daughter Minnow last week in a video on Sciencewomen, lakes, ponds, oceans and other natural bodies of water are as ecologically important as they are beautiful. But the ecological health of many is severely compromised due to widespread pollution, global warming, ocean acidification and other factors. GrrlScientist shed light on the…

For the first time in over a century, New York’s Salmon River is home to its namesake species of fish. Young Atlantic salmon were abundant in the Salmon River and nearby Lake Ontario in the 19th century but were driven away by damming, pollution and overfishing—now, USGS scientists have reported that efforts to reestablish the…

In 2007, the Arctic saw its lowest levels of sea ice coverage than any year in recorded history, and trends for 2009 indicate that we may be on our way to a new record low. The low summer coverage follows a winter that saw an unprecedented disappearance of thick, multiyear ice, which is more resistant…

When the controversial and talented physicist Edward Teller was doing a PhD. with the great Werner Heisenberg at the University of Leipzig, the question asked at the end of every group meeting that focused on a complex sequence of problems was “Wo ist der Witz?”, supposed to be translated as “What is the point”? but…

Last Tuesday, West Virginia State Police arrested NASA climate scientist James Hansen for trespassing on a Massey Energy-owned coal plant near the state’s Coal River Valley. Thirty-one demonstrators–also including actress Daryl Hannah and former West Virginia Representative Ken Hechler–were apprehended while protesting the company’s practice of mountaintop removal mining, which both perpetuates the use of…

The Buzz: Science in the Cinema

As scientists often lament, science in the entertainment industry is often ignored or misportrayed outside the realm of science fiction. But two compelling new documentaries have ScienceBloggers hopeful that their messages will have the mass-market appeal of films such as An Inconvenient Truth or Fast Food Nation. The End of the Line, which Darren Naish…

Last weekend, some ultra-powerful movers, shakers, and carvers of our planet caught ScienceBloggers’ attentions. First, researchers debated the potential for Mt. Saint Helens to form a supervolcano, an extraordinarily large volcano with the potential to cause massive wildlife destruction and devastating impacts on climate. Bloggers also discussed two megafloods: one that permanently separated Great Britain…