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A journal of science, thought, and action.

Animating Environmental Change

18

Mar

2019

Animating Environmental Change

GIF's can tell important stories.

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Crazy Engineering: CubeSats

16

Mar

2019

Crazy Engineering: CubeSats

Here come the CubeSats.

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Archive Highlights

95% Certain

95% Certain

The latest IPCC report on climate change states that humans are the cause of global temperature increases with 95% certainty.

27 Sep 2013

Video Highlights

 

The Conservation Alliance

 

Super Storm

All climate change models predict an increase and frequency of extreme weather events due to a warming atmosphere that can hold more moisture. When three weather systems merge, “super-storm” Sandy is the result. There may many more to come. Super-storm Sandy from Space (credit: NASA) WHB
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Triple Threat

Hurricane Sandy is a triple threat of a storm. Combining high winds, heavy rains, and surging tides, the monster storm has begun to slam into the eastern USA. Sandy’s impacts could be immense. NASA released an impressive time-lapse animation today that shows the convergence of three air masses: the tropical storm system (Sandy) from the south merging with two cold air masses moving from the west and down from the north to create the monster hybrid storm. Hurricane Sandy Prowls ...
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Ghost Orchid

Orchids come in all shapes, sizes, and forms. Here is a very tiny species---less than 3” tall---native to woodlands and stream-bank forests of tropical Africa. This orchid species lacks chlorophyll and requires a persistent root-fungus relationship throughout its development and flowering to obtain required nutrients for growth. Such plants are know as saprophytes. Despite its small size and no green leaves, the flowers are strongly lemon scented. Here are two photos of this ghostly orchid ...
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Poor Monkey

Florida’s Mystery Monkey has finally been captured. Over the past three years, he had been widely seen crossing suburban streets visiting neighborhood gardens around Tampa, Florida sampling fruits and vegetables. The neighbors were concerned. The wandering  rhesus macaque had probably escaped from a monkey colony used years prior during filming of old Tarzan movies. The Mystery Monkey had alluded food traps, veterinarian darts, and all other efforts to coral the wily critter into a cage. ...
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Dear Army Corp of Engineers: This is How Every Bridge Should Look

I never want to cross another bridge that isn’t a trampoline bridge. It looks too good to be true. It is. This is just a concept, entered into a bridge design competition. But someday, maybe. - Reilly Capps
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Beluga Speaks Human

Recently, one of our guest contributors was very discouraged that her favorite songster as a kid, Raffi, had tricked her into thinking his song, Baby Beluga, was in fact based in truth and fact. Instead, she informed us that he was "a big, fat, stinking liar” and her kid’s imagination was crushed. Baby Beluga must have been of considerable influence on many a kid’s imagination. I was reminded of her distress after learning that a real-life beluga had confused marine mammal researchers at ...
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The Big One

My hometown, Los Angeles, always gets a bum rap. Whether being destroyed by massive continental plates rupturing the San Andres Fault (2012), to attacks by creepy alien invaders (Battle LA), or the city being taken over by crazed zombies (Zombieland), LA comes out the looser. Forget the zombies munching on everyone in Santa Monica, NASA now informs me that a monster hurricane isn’t out of the realm of possibility. NASA now says the old California adage that southern California only has ...
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Time to ditch the flickering fluorescents

Remember those bluish fluorescent tubes that illuminated your childhood classrooms and, until recently, most supermarkets and big-box stores? These flickering lights have been giving Americans headaches for some 70 years, but they’re going the way of 8-track tapes and lead paint. This is not a market-based transition, but a government-mandated “phase-out.” In 2009, the U.S. Department of Energy decided that so-called T12 magnetic-ballast fixtures and bulbs were outdated and inefficient. So ...
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Bye, Bye, Palms

Palms have resonated with people since record keeping began. Religious stories including the plants are often mentioned (palm Sunday, date palms); seafaring voyagers carried palm nuts between islands (coconuts); modern growers maintain huge plantations (oil palms), and famous boulevards in Los Angeles are decorated with the iconic trees (fan palms). Palms produce myriad benefits including essential foods; useful construction materials; beautiful garden elements, and important ecosystem ...
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The Tip Of the Iceberg

By Bob Ward Refrigeration is so basic to our everyday lives that we hardly think about it. But keeping food cool accounts for a big chunk of most families’ power bills, and refrigeration accounts for 14 percent of a typical U.S. home’s electricity use. Fortunately, new motors exist that can run a refrigerator 80 percent more efficiently than traditional motors, especially when coupled with a controller to run a fan at different speeds, depending on need. A new company in Glenwood Springs, ...
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Heaven & Earth Erupt

In documentary photography, the mantra is always ‘opportunity, opportunity, opportunity’. A case in point is an image of the western sky colored by iridescent auroras and the eruption of a geyser in Yellowstone National Park. The night time shooter saw a mosaic in his field of view with White Dome Geyser erupting in the foreground. With green auroras appearing on the horizon, brilliant bands of red auroras shimmering overhead, a bright moon illuminating the foreground, an image of heaven and ...
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LA Sunrise Drive

The California Science Center captured an image of the space shuttle Endeavour as it rolled through the streets of Los Angeles on October 14, 2012 at sunrise. The craft will become a ‘star attraction’ at the Center now that it has been retired. Don’t hit the palm trees! Space Shuttle in LA, sunrise (credit: California Science Center) WHB
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The Search for Tatooine Continues

Amateurs have found a planet with four suns. At first, Internet idiots were saying we found Luke Skywalker’s home planet, Tatooine. But Tatooine only had two suns, you pseudo-nerds. Get a life. - Reilly Capps  
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The Search for Tatooine Continues

Amateurs have found a planet with four suns. At first, Internet idiots were saying we found Luke Skywalker’s home planet, Tatooine. But Tatooine only had two suns, you pseudo-nerds. Get a life. - Reilly Capps  
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The Search for Tatooine Continues

Amateurs have found a planet with four suns. At first, Internet idiots were saying we found Luke Skywalker’s home planet, Tatooine. But Tatooine only had two suns, you pseudo-nerds. Get a life. - Reilly Capps  
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Anti-Sunshine Crew’s Attack Ads on Solyndra Aren’t Working

The anti-sunshine crew has spent $11 million attacking Solyndra. The solar company went belly-up, costing taxpayers half a billion dollars. It was a flop. But despite that flop, and despite the attack ads, Americans still overwhelmingly support clean energy, according to a Pew poll, which says that 52 percent of Americans support clean energy as our most important energy resource, and that it has far more support that fossil fuels. People know what’s up, despite all the obfuscation. ...
  • 3337

Anti-Sunshine Crew’s Attack Ads on Solyndra Aren’t Working

The anti-sunshine crew has spent $11 million attacking Solyndra. The solar company went belly-up, costing taxpayers half a billion dollars. It was a flop. But despite that flop, and despite the attack ads, Americans still overwhelmingly support clean energy, according to a Pew poll, which says that 52 percent of Americans support clean energy as our most important energy resource, and that it has far more support that fossil fuels. People know what’s up, despite all the obfuscation. ...
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The Blitz is On

Seriously, how could you be anti-solar? I can understand pointing out cost issues or noting the lack of rare Earth minerals needed to build the solar panels. But being anti solar in general? It’s like being anti-rainbows or anti-puppies. As an op-ed in the New York Times puts it: … an assault on the solar industry becomes akin to sabotaging armaments factories during a mobilization for war. Let’s all keep calm and carry on. - Reilly Capps
  • 2475

The Blitz is On

Seriously, how could you be anti-solar? I can understand pointing out cost issues or noting the lack of rare Earth minerals needed to build the solar panels. But being anti solar in general? It’s like being anti-rainbows or anti-puppies. As an op-ed in the New York Times puts it: … an assault on the solar industry becomes akin to sabotaging armaments factories during a mobilization for war. Let’s all keep calm and carry on. - Reilly Capps
  • 2460

Anti-Sunshine Crew’s Attack Ads on Solyndra Aren’t Working

The anti-sunshine crew has spent $11 million attacking Solyndra. The solar company went belly-up, costing taxpayers half a billion dollars. It was a flop. But despite that flop, and despite the attack ads, Americans still overwhelmingly support clean energy, according to a Pew poll, which says that 52 percent of Americans support clean energy as our most important energy resource, and that it has far more support that fossil fuels. People know what’s up, despite all the obfuscation. ...
  • 2773

The Blitz is On

Seriously, how could you be anti-solar? I can understand pointing out cost issues or noting the lack of rare Earth minerals needed to build the solar panels. But being anti solar in general? It’s like being anti-rainbows or anti-puppies. As an op-ed in the New York Times puts it: … an assault on the solar industry becomes akin to sabotaging armaments factories during a mobilization for war. Let’s all keep calm and carry on. - Reilly Capps
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Chasing Ice Opens in November

I was lucky to be an audience member at last January’s Sundance Film Festival world premiere of Chasing Ice, a film about my friend James Balog. The film documents Jim’s efforts to capture in photographic images, time-lapse video, and personal dialog the ‘real time’ consequences of climate change on glaciers and ice in the Arctic and elsewhere. The film received a special award by the Sundance judgers and went onto gather a slew of other accolades from festival audiences elsewehre. Chasing ...
  • 2261

Chasing Ice Opens in November

I was lucky to be an audience member at last January’s Sundance Film Festival world premiere of Chasing Ice, a film about my friend James Balog. The film documents Jim’s efforts to capture in photographic images, time-lapse video, and personal dialog the ‘real time’ consequences of climate change on glaciers and ice in the Arctic and elsewhere. The film received a special award by the Sundance judgers and went onto gather a slew of other accolades from festival audiences elsewehre. Chasing ...
  • 2206

Chasing Ice Opens in November

I was lucky to be an audience member at last January’s Sundance Film Festival world premiere of Chasing Ice, a film about my friend James Balog. The film documents Jim’s efforts to capture in photographic images, time-lapse video, and personal dialog the ‘real time’ consequences of climate change on glaciers and ice in the Arctic and elsewhere. The film received a special award by the Sundance judgers and went onto gather a slew of other accolades from festival audiences elsewehre. Chasing ...
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