19 May 2017

Early Tanpopo mission results show microbes can survive in space

Early Tanpopo mission results show microbes can survive in space

Clumps of microbes can survive in space for at least a year – and perhaps longer, according to Japanese researchers conducting an experiment on board the International Space Station (ISS).

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New technique provides earthquake risk for major cities worldwide

New technique provides earthquake risk for major cities worldwide

Scientists have developed snapshots of the likelihood of major earthquakes occurring in megacities around the world using a new statistical approach for estimating earthquake risk. The new technique, called seismic nowcasting, estimates the progress of a defined seismically-active geographic region through its repetitive cycle of major earthquakes.

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High levels of radioactive material migrating down into soil around Fukushima

High levels of radioactive material migrating down into soil around Fukushima

High levels of radioactive cesium remain in the soil near the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant and these radionuclides have migrated at least 5 centimeters down into the ground at several areas since the nuclear accident five years ago, according to preliminary results of a massive sampling project being presented at the JpGU-AGU joint meeting in Chiba, Japan.

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18 May 2017

Planting trees cannot replace cutting carbon dioxide emissions, study shows

Planting trees cannot replace cutting carbon dioxide emissions, study shows

Growing plants and then storing the carbon dioxide they have taken up from the atmosphere is not a viable option to counteract unmitigated emissions from fossil fuel burning, a new study shows. Plantations would need to be so large they would eliminate most natural ecosystems or reduce food production if implemented as a late-regret option in the case of substantial failure to reduce emissions, according to the study.

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17 May 2017

Researchers track groundwater loss during drought in California’s Central Valley

Researchers track groundwater loss during drought in California’s Central Valley

A new study from researchers at UCLA and the University of Houston reveals estimates of significant groundwater loss in California’s Central Valley during the recent drought and sparks questions of sustainability for the important agricultural area.

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11 May 2017

Warmer temps cause decline in key runoff measure

Warmer temps cause decline in key runoff measure

Since the mid-1980s, the percentage of precipitation that becomes streamflow in the Upper Rio Grande watershed has fallen more steeply than at any point in at least 445 years, according to a new study. While this decline was driven in part by the transition from an unusually wet period to an unusually dry period, rising temperatures deepened the trend.

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10 May 2017

Research finds spike in dust storms in American Southwest driven by ocean changes

Research finds spike in dust storms in American Southwest driven by ocean changes

People living in the American Southwest have experienced a dramatic increase in windblown dust storms in the last two decades, likely driven by large-scale changes in sea surface temperature in the Pacific Ocean drying the region’s soil, according to new NOAA-led research. With the increase in dust storms, scientists have also documented a spike in Valley fever, an infectious disease caught by inhaling a soil-dwelling fungus found primarily in the Southwest.

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9 May 2017

Paris 1.5°C target may be smashed by 2026

Paris 1.5°C target may be smashed by 2026

Global temperatures could break through the 1.5°C barrier negotiated at the Paris conference as early as 2026 if a slow-moving, natural climate driver known as the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO) has, as suspected, moved into a positive phase.

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8 May 2017

Bands of extra-tough ice slow down cracks in Antarctica’s Larsen C ice shelf

Bands of extra-tough ice slow down cracks in Antarctica’s Larsen C ice shelf

The stability of the Antarctic Peninsula’s largest ice shelf may depend upon stripes of extremely strong ice running down its spine, a new study finds.

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4 May 2017

Hawaiian mountains could lose snow cover by 2100

Hawaiian mountains could lose snow cover by 2100

A new study, accepted for publication in Earth’s Future, a journal of the American Geophysical Union, indicate that Hawaii’s two volcano summits are typically snow-covered at least 20 days each winter, on average, but that the snow cover will nearly disappear by the end of the century.

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