Popular Science articles about Earth & Climate

The impacts of man-made climate change were felt in Australia during its hottest year on record in 2013.

NASA support key to glacier mapping efforts

A 3-D map of bedrock beneath Jakobshavn Glacier was generated with ice-penetrating radar data.Thanks in part to support from NASA and the National Science Foundation, scientists have produced the first-ever detailed maps of bedrock beneath glaciers in Greenland and Antarctica. This new data...

If trees could talk

In 35 years, this network of long-term, large-scale forest monitoring plots has grown from a single site in Panama to 60 sites around the world.Permafrost thaw drives forest loss in Canada, while drought has killed trees in Panama, southern India and Borneo. In the U.S., in Virginia, over-abundant deer eat trees before they reach...

Suomi NPP satellite data used for mitigating aviation related volcanic hazards

This image shows ash trajectories over Iceland on May 6, 2010, created by the Center for Satellite Applications and Research (STAR).A joint NOAA/NASA satellite is one of several satellites providing valuable information to aviators about volcanic hazards. An aviation "orange" alert was posted on August 18, 2014, for Bárðarbunga, a...

Experts call for widening the debate on climate change

Environmental scientists are being urged to broaden the advice they give on global climate change, say experts who are also frustrated that decision makers are not taking enough action.

Water research tackles growing grassland threat: Trees

Walter Dodds, university distinguished professor of biology (pictured), and Allison Veach, doctoral student in biology, are researching grassland streams and the expansion of nearby woody vegetation. They have studied 25 years of data on the Konza Prairie Biological Station and found that increasing fire frequency reduces the rate of woody vegetation expansion.Two Kansas State University biologists are studying streams to prevent tallgrass prairies from turning into shrublands and forests.

Study: Biochar alters water flow to improve sand and clay

As more gardeners and farmers add ground charcoal, or biochar, to soil to both boost crop yields and counter global climate change, a new study by researchers at Rice University...

'Fracking' wastewater that is treated for drinking produces potentially harmful compounds

Concerns that fluids from hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," are contaminating drinking water abound. Now, scientists are bringing to light another angle that adds to the controversy. A new study, appearing...

Water-quality trading can reduce river pollution

Allowing polluters to buy, sell or trade water-quality credits could significantly reduce pollution in river basins and estuaries faster and at lower cost than requiring the facilities to meet compliance...

2014 Arctic sea ice minimum sixth lowest on record

Arctic sea ice hit its annual minimum on Sept. 17, 2014. The red line in this image shows the 1981-2010 average minimum extent. Data provided by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency GCOM-W1 satellite.Arctic sea ice coverage continued its below-average trend this year as the ice declined to its annual minimum on Sept. 17, according to the NASA-supported National Snow and Ice Data...

Shorebird's beak inspires UT Arlington research on water collection

This image shows Xin Heng, left, Ph.D. student, and Cheng Luo, UT Arlington professor in the Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering Department.A UT Arlington engineering professor and his doctoral student have designed a device based on a shorebird's beak that can accumulate water collected from fog and dew.

Shape up quickly -- applies to fish, too!

This is Erik Sandblom with a couple of shorthorn sculpins caught off Disko Island in Greenland.Fish can live in almost any aquatic environment on Earth, but when the climate changes and temperatures go up many species are pushed to the limit. The amount of time...

Greenland Ice Sheet more vulnerable to climate change than previously thought

A scientist explores the remains of a supraglacial lake after it has drained.A new model developed by researchers at the University of Cambridge has shown that despite its apparent stability, the massive ice sheet covering most of Greenland is more sensitive to...

Poor fish harvests more frequent now off California coast

As a child in southern California, Ryan Rykaczewski spent a fair amount of time on his grandfather's boat, fishing with him off the Pacific coast near Los Angeles. At the...

Dunes reveal biodiversity secrets

Ancient, acidic and nutrient-depleted dunes in Western Australia are not an obvious place to answer a question that has vexed tropical biologists for decades. But the Jurien Bay dunes proved...

Scientists develop tool to help communities stay environmentally and socially 'healthy'

This photo shows an example of subsistence farming in China.Geographers at the University of Southampton have developed a new way to measure the 'health' of poor regional communities. They aim to improve the wellbeing of people by guiding sustainable...

Study finds global sea levels rose up to 5 meters per century at the end of the last 5 ice ages

Land-ice decay at the end of the last five ice-ages caused global sea-levels to rise at rates of up to 5.5 metres per century, according to a new study.

Natural gas usage will have little effect on CO2 emissions, UCI-led study finds

Abundant supplies of natural gas will do little to reduce harmful U.S. emissions causing climate change, according to researchers at UC Irvine, Stanford University, and the nonprofit organization Near Zero....

Study helps assess impact of temperature on belowground soil decomposition

Earth's soils store four times more carbon than the atmosphere and small changes in soil carbon storage can have a big effect on atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations. A new paper...

Study: Antifreeze proteins in Antarctic fishes prevent freezing…and melting

Special 'antifreeze' proteins in the blood of several Antarctic fish species bind to ice crystals and prevent the creatures from freezing. A new study finds that the proteins also allow the internal ice crystals to persist at temperatures that normally would melt them.Antarctic fishes that manufacture their own "antifreeze" proteins to survive in the icy Southern Ocean also suffer an unfortunate side effect, researchers report: The protein-bound ice crystals that accumulate inside...

First eyewitness accounts of mystery volcanic eruption

This eruption occurred just before the 1815 Tambora volcanic eruption which is famous for its impact on climate worldwide, with 1816 given memorable names such as 'Eighteen-Hundred-and-Froze-to-Death', the 'Year of...

Global shift away from cars saves US$100 trillion, eliminates 1,700 MT of CO2 pollution

More than $100 trillion in cumulative public and private spending, and 1,700 megatons of annual carbon dioxide (CO2) -- a 40 percent reduction of urban passenger transport emissions -- could...

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