The geologic secrets of Lake Mead

Lake Mead. Credit: Josh Hawkins/UNLV As the climate crisis continues to affect the American West, sunken boats and human remains aren’t the only surprises to be revealed by record-low water levels at Lake Mead. Sedimentary rocks that hadn’t been seen since the 1930s are now exposed along the constantly changing shoreline, and a UNLV study … Read more

Tiny sea creature’s genes shed light on evolution of immunity

When compatible Hydractinia symbiolongicarpus colonies recognize each other as “self,” via Alr genes, they fuse together. Credit: Huene, AL et al., PNAS, 2022 How a tiny marine invertebrate distinguishes its own cells from competitors’ bears striking similarities to the human immune system, according to a new study led by the University of Pittsburgh School of … Read more

Study finds all African carnivores at risk for range loss

Credit: Pixabay/CC0 Public Domain A new Yale School of the Environment-led analysis identifying gaps in maps that help forecast range contractions for African species found that all species have studied a portion of their range at risk and small carnivores warrant more concern. The study, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and … Read more

States take on PFAS ‘forever chemicals’ with bans, lawsuits

Credit: Pixabay/CC0 Public Domain “Forever chemicals” are everywhere. The thousands of chemicals in the group known as perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, are found in cookware, packaging, cosmetics, clothing, carpet, electronics, firefighting foam and many other products. The chemicals, which do not naturally break down, are so widespread that they’re found in the blood … Read more

Ian could become ‘catastrophic’ Category 4 hurricane. NASA considers stashing rocket

Credit: CC0 Public Domain Tropical Storm Ian was forecast to rapidly gain strength Sunday while racing across the Caribbean toward Cuba and threatening a big hit to Florida’s west coast later in the week. Ian was 540 miles southeast of Cuba early Sunday, cruising northwest at 12 miles an hour with 50 mph winds. The … Read more

Archaeologists uncover ancient mosaics on the shore of the Sea of ​​Galilee

Khirbat al-Minya: The excavation site (brown) with its sunshade canopies located on the northwestern shore of the Sea of ​​Galilee—here viewed from the elevation of Tel Kinneret. Credit: Hans-Peter Kuhnen With the help of geomagnetic surface surveys and subsequent hands-on digging, an excavation team from Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) has revealed new insights into … Read more

The asteroid that formed Vredefort crater was bigger than previously believed

An impactor—most likely an asteroid—hurtled toward Earth about two billion years ago, crashing into the planet near the present-day Johannesburg, South Africa. The impactor formed Vredefort crater, what is today the biggest crater on our planet. Using updated simulation data, University of Rochester researchers discovered the impactor that formed Vredefort crater was much larger than … Read more

Humanity healed the ozone hole. Can we do the same for climate change?

The 2019 ozone hole. Credit: NASA The year was 1987, and Earth’s shield against the giant thermonuclear reaction in the sky was failing. Human-made chemicals in aerosol cans and refrigeration were eating up a thin protective layer of atmospheric gas called ozone, and heavy doses of radiation from the sun were leaking through. Scientists warned … Read more

In a ‘return to nature,’ California legalizes human composting for environmental benefits

Credit: Unsplash/CC0 Public Domain Californians will soon have a new end-of-life burial option: human composting. Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bill into law Sunday that creates a state regulatory process for “natural organic reduction,” or transforming human remains into soil. The law will go into effect in 2027. California is the fifth state to legalize … Read more

Climate change makes living at the coast riskier, but more people keep coming

Credit: Pixabay/CC0 Public Domain Among the counties that trace the coastline of the contiguous United States, two very different pictures emerged from the latest census. One shows how fled after devastating hurricanes, fueled by warmer-than-normal water in the Gulf of Mexico, slammed into their communities. The other shows how coastal counties attracted millions of people … Read more