Environment

Frack now, ask questions later: bio impact of fracking still largely unknown

Since 2007, shale gas has boomed by 700% in the US and is projected to rise for the next 30 years. While there are states where well fields span across hundreds of hectares, you'd think that the effects of exploitation of this caliber are well researched and documented. In reality, the bio impact of fracking remains largely unknown.

In two years, wind energy in Denmark will be 2 times cheaper than fossil fuels

Wind is already the cheapest form of energy in Denmark, and prices will plummet in the near future, the country’s government declared – 2 years from now, in 2016, wind energy will be 2 times cheaper than fossil fuels energy. Wind and solar energy are already nearing parity with energy from fossil fuels in many […]

Activists in Brazil are endangered

Some 40 activists are killed every year in Brazil alone. The government is weak and corrupt, rarely capable of providing protection and enforcing its environmental laws. The big companies and local militias are powerful and ruthless.

Colorado is averaging 2 oil and gas spills per day – but residents don’t hear about it

Colorado is averaging 2 oil spills per day, but oil companies aren't obliged to inform residents - even if the surface or ground water is polluted.

How air conditioning is making your city hotter

Air conditioning may make your home cooler, but it's making your city hotter - cities can be even 3 degrees hotter than the surrounding environment, and ACs play a big role in that, a new study shows.

Irony at its finest: Oil refinery threatened by rising sea levels, asks government to fix problems

Big oil companies invest big chunks of their profits (which are bigger than many countries’) into climate change denial. As I wrote a while ago, 9 out of 10 top climate change deniers are linked with Exxon Mobil, the biggest private oil company. Still, there are some brilliant scientists working for oil companies, and they […]

Gecko sex in space, and why this is good for science

Ruscosmos, the Russian space agency, recently launched geckos in space to see how zero gravity affects mating. The findings have much broader implications that extend humanity's ultimate goal of reaching for the stars.

Mothers teach babies fear through smell

Babies can learn what to fear from the first days of life simply by smelling their distressed mothers, a new study has shown. This doesn’t only work after the pregnancy, but also during it and even before – if a mother experiences something specific which makes her fearful. It’s the first direct observation of this […]

Popeye’s secret: spinach provides key insight that might one day lead to artificial photosynthesis

While scientists have been studying and incrementally increasing solar cell efficiency, we’ve yet to reach nature’s magnitude of solar energy conversion through photosynthesis. Artificial photosynthesis is a goal in alternative energy research, yet the process is extremely difficult to mimic since, in nature, the process involves numerous stages and transformation of matter and energy. Purdue University […]

Mad snake disease makes snakes tie themselves in knots they can’t get out of

One of the oddest behavior biologists have witnessed is Inclusion Body Disease (IBD) – a fatal disease that affects captive pythons and boas causing them to tie themselves in knots they can’t untangle out of. The source of this extremely erratic and suicidal behavior was unknown until recently when researchers have found it is caused by […]

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