The Eco News Roundup brings stories and commentary about issues related to climate change, renewable energy and the environment.
WASHINGTON — The Department of Energy has successfully completed an unprecedented test of harvesting the vast storehouse on Alaska’s North Slope of methane hydrate, essentially natural gas locked in ice crystals under the permafrost.
The federal government’s wildlife damage control program is based on outdated science and indiscriminate tools that kill many non-target animals, including protected species, according to a lawsuit filed Monday by WildEarth Guardians, a Colorado-based environmental group.
WASHINGTON — The heavy fuel that oceangoing vessels burn adds so much to air pollution hundreds of miles inland that the United States joined with Canada during the George W. Bush administration to ask the International Maritime Organization to create an emissions-control area along the coasts. Large ships would be required to reduce pollution dramatically in a zone 200 miles out to sea along all the coasts of North America, mainly by using cleaner fuel.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Chipps Island is packed with stories. The 1,000-acre tract in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta has been the stage for a variety of human scheming and struggling.
A new study has raised fresh concerns about the safety of gas drilling in the Marcellus Shale, concluding that fracking chemicals injected into the ground could migrate toward drinking water supplies far more quickly than experts have previously predicted.
A study by the Wildlife Conservation Society documents that intense development of the two largest natural gas fields in the continental U.S. are driving away some wildlife from their traditional wintering grounds. Researchers tracking 125 female pronghorn in Wyoming’s vast Jonah and PAPA gas fields using GPS collars discovered an 82 percent decline of habitat classified as “highest quality” — meaning highest probability of use for wintering animals.
Loss of biodiversity appears to impact ecosystems as much as climate change, pollution and other major forms of environmental stress, according to a new study from an international research team. The study is the first comprehensive effort to directly compare the impacts of biological diversity loss to the anticipated effects of a host of other human-caused environmental changes.
Underground mining is a sweaty job, and not just because of the hard work it takes to haul ore: Mining tunnels fill with heat naturally emitted from the surrounding rock. A group of researchers from McGill University in Canada has taken a systematic look at how such heat might be put to use once mines are closed. They calculate that each kilometer of a typical deep underground mine could produce 150 kW of heat, enough to warm 5 to 10 Canadian households during off-peak times.
Experiments may dramatically underestimate how plants will respond to climate change in the future. That’s the conclusion of an analysis of 50 plant studies on four continents, published this week in an advance online issue of the journal Nature, which found that shifts in the timing of flowering and leafing in plants due to global warming appear to be much greater than estimated by warming experiments.
versity of California, Berkeley, scientists are drilling into ancient sediments at the bottom of Northern California’s Clear Lake for clues that could help them better predict how today’s plants and animals will adapt to climate change and increasing population. The lake sediments are among the world’s oldest, containing records of biological change stretching back as far as 500,000 years.
Nearly 80 percent of disease in developing countries is linked to bad water and sanitation. Now a scientist at Michigan Technological University has developed a simple, cheap way to make water safe to drink, even if it’s muddy. It’s easy enough to purify clear water. The solar water disinfection method, or SODIS, calls for leaving a transparent plastic bottle of clear water out in the sun for six hours. That allows heat and ultraviolet radiation to wipe out most pathogens that cause diarrhea, a malady that kills 4,000 children a day in Africa.
Here are some other links you may find worthwhile:
• Climate Change News Digest
• Climate Progress from Center for American Progress
• Rocky Mountain Institute “an independent, entrepreneurial nonprofit think-and-do tank™ that drives the efficient and restorative use of resources.”
At BPI Campus our Progressive Agenda is:
1. People matter more than profits.
2. The earth is our home, not our trash can.
3. We need good government for both #1 and #2.
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