Advertisement

5 August 2020

Massive Ammonium Nitrate Explosions: Beirut, Texas City, and West, Texas

As Beirut struggles with the aftermath of an enormous explosion apparently caused by thousands of tons of ammonium nitrate stored in a dockside warehouse, it is notable that the world has seen such disasters before. What follows is a re-posting of an article I wrote and posted here in 2013 called “Deja Vu: Remembering the 1947 Texas City (Fertilizer) Disaster.” Why did the authorities decide to store such a massive …

Read More >>

Comments/Trackbacks (0)>>



17 May 2020

Nevada Earthquake Raises More Doubts about Yucca Mountain

On Friday, May 15, 2020, a magnitude 6.5 earthquake rocked Nevada and portions of California. With the epicenter located about 22 miles west of Tonopah, NV, no serious damage was recorded aside from cracked highway pavement in the mostly remote surroundings, far from population centers. Reportedly, Nevada has not seen an earthquake of this size since 1954. Worth noting, the earthquake epicenter is about 100 miles away from the Yucca …

Read More >>

Comments/Trackbacks (4) >>



23 February 2020

Lake Erie is Nearly Frost-Free

For the past couple of days, we’ve been lucky to have some all-too-infrequent sunny days, giving us some sunshine to lift our spirits and send us searching for our sunglasses. The clear weather is also a good time for an updated MODIS image of the Lake Erie Basin. The image above shows the lake is nearly ice-free except for some narrow shoreline areas in the western basin. The surface water …

Read More >>

Comments/Trackbacks (1)>>



30 June 2019

“Fairy Rings” or “Hexinringe” and the Role of Fungi in Weathering and Soil Fertility

As our three-year old chocolate-golden Labrador mix looks happiest when he’s running, we try to get him out to a park once or twice a day. While he’s chasing noisy killdeer and attacking discarded plastic water bottles, I have a chance to look at the land and sky and assess the progress of the new growing season. In springtime, at one of the parks near our home in Lenawee County, …

Read More >>

Comments/Trackbacks (0)>>



19 May 2018

Prairie Woody Encroachment, Fire Ecology, and Implications for Regional Hydrology

Images of modern prairie burns near Council Bluffs, Kansas have been captured by venerable National Geographic photojournalist Jim Richardson. These fires aimed at maintaining prairie grassland ecology carry on a Native American practice that goes back centuries. The University of Nebraska-Lincoln hosts an online archive of The Journals of the Lewis and Clark Expedition in which George Clark, who probably never won a spelling bee, recorded this remarkable river scene …

Read More >>

Comments/Trackbacks (0)>>



16 February 2018

Chemical Cocktails Confound Phosphorus Management

It’s been fifty years since the Canadian government at the urging of the International Joint Commission set aside the Experimental Lakes Area near Kenora, Ontario in 1968 to conduct large-scale experiments in aquatic ecology. There, the young Director named David W. Schindler, who would go on to become a world-renown limnologist, and others conducted experiments with nutrient loading and produce one of the most iconic photos in the field of …

Read More >>

Comments/Trackbacks (0)>>



8 September 2017

Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Ag Programs Under Review

The Great Lakes Commission (GLC) has received a two-year $750,000 grant to evaluate the effectiveness of money spent on farm conservation programs by the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI). In addition to the GLC, Ohio State University and Michigan State University will play a role in the evaluation process. Earlier this year, the Trump Administration proposed to end funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative and National Sea Grant programs. …

Read More >>

Comments/Trackbacks (0)>>



1 September 2017

Life in the Soil: The Lizard and the Fire Ant

After a slow, plodding climb up a steep hill in West Virginia, the miogeocline side of the Apallachian mountains, I sat down on a log to catch my breath when, soon, this gregarious creature skittered toward me and, seemingly, looked me straight in the eye. This eastern fence lizard (Sceloporus undulatus) was about seven inches long, and out in full sunshine near the edge of a clearing. It was a …

Read More >>

Comments/Trackbacks (0)>>



22 April 2017

Toledo March for Science

Off to Toledo to March for Science! Updates later this morning!

Read More >>

Comments/Trackbacks (0)>>



31 March 2017

Wetlands and Flood Mitigation: The 10 Percent Solution

Following the Great Flood of 1993, an official report called for more research to find ways to prevent flood devastation, apparently unaware the problem had been mostly solved, conceptually over a decade earlier. But taking action through the implementation of a national wetland restoration program has faced intractable political and economic obstacles.

Read More >>

Comments/Trackbacks (0)>>