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ACC Urges House Passage of Interior-EPA Spending Bill

Environmental Regulations - 8 hours 4 min ago
Maintaining current ozone standards would benefit environment and economy.

Researcher Discovers Groundwater Modeling Breakthrough

A University of Wyoming professor has made a discovery that answers a nearly 100-year-old question about water movement, with implications for agriculture, hydrology, climate science and other fields.

Today's Extra Second Explained

The day will officially be a bit longer than usual on Tuesday, June 30, 2015, because an extra second, or "leap" second, will be added. "Earth's rotation is gradually slowing down a bit, so leap seconds are a way to account for that," said Daniel MacMillan of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. Strictly speaking, a day lasts 86,400 seconds. That is the case, according to the time standard that people use in their daily lives - Coordinated Universal Time, or UTC. UTC is "atomic time" - the duration of one second is based on extremely predictable electromagnetic transitions in atoms of cesium. These transitions are so reliable that the cesium clock is accurate to one second in 1,400,000 years.

ACC Applauds EPA Milestone in Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program

Chemical Safety - June 30, 2015 - 1:48pm
Weight-of Evidence assessment represents evidence-based approach to risk determination.

How Rainwater Could Save Rupees

Climate Change News - ENN - June 29, 2015 - 12:24pm
Rainwater could save people in India a bucket of money, according to a new study by scientists looking at NASA satellite data. The study, partially funded by NASA’s Precipitation Measurement Missions, found that collecting rainwater for vegetable irrigation could reduce water bills, increase caloric intake and even provide a second source of income for people in India.

What California can learn for Israel on solving serious water shortages

Climate Change News - ENN - June 29, 2015 - 7:13am
California is still counting up the damage from the 2014 drought, which resulted in more than $200 million in losses in the dairy and livestock industry and a staggering $810 million in crop production. And analysts are predicting this year to be even worse.But many will admit that if there is any country on earth that knows how to trump a three-year (and counting) drought cycle and convert a wasteland to oasis, it’s Israel. For thousands of years, populations have been wresting a livelihood from the desert of what is now Israel, refining the techniques that would one day result in an agricultural paradise.

Study examines overall carbon cost of fuel from Canadian oil sands

Climate Change News - ENN - June 28, 2015 - 7:34am
Gasoline and diesel fuel extracted and refined from Canadian oil sands will release about 20 percent more carbon into the atmosphere over the oil’s lifetime than fuel from conventional crude sources in the Unied States, according to a study by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory; the University of California, Davis; and Stanford University.The researchers used a life-cycle, or “well-to-wheels,” approach, gathering publicly available data on 27 large Canadian oil sands production facilities. The study, published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology, found the additional carbon impact of Canadian oil sands was largely related to the energy required for extraction and refining.

California's Isla Rasa being abandoned by seabirds

Climate Change News - ENN - June 27, 2015 - 10:11am
Isla Rasa, in the Gulf of California, is renowned for its massive aggregations of nesting seabirds. Over 95 percent of the world populations of Elegant Terns and Heerman's Gulls concentrate unfailingly every year on this tiny island to nest. Ever since the phenomenon was described by L. W. Walker in 1953 the island has been a magnet for tourists, naturalists, filmmakers, and seabird researchers.During some years in the last two decades, however, the seabirds have arrived to the island in April, as they usually do, but leave soon after without nesting. The first event was the 1998 "El Niño," when oceanic productivity collapsed all along the eastern Pacific coast from Chile to California. But then colony desertion happened again in 2003, and since then it has recurred with increasing frequency in 2009, 2010, 2014, and 2015. Researchers and conservationists were asking themselves where are the birds going when they leave their ancestral nesting ground, and what is causing the abandonment of their historic nesting site.

Beijing growing explosively, impacting weather and climate

Climate Change News - ENN - June 26, 2015 - 6:12am
A new study by scientists using data from NASA's QuikScat satellite has demonstrated a novel technique to quantify urban growth based on observed changes in physical infrastructure. The researchers used the technique to study the rapid urban growth in Beijing, China, finding that its physical area quadrupled between 2000 and 2009. A team led by Mark Jacobson of Stanford University, Palo Alto, California, and Son Nghiem of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, used data from QuikScat to measure the extent of infrastructure changes, such as new buildings and roads, in China's capital. They then quantified how urban growth has changed Beijing's wind patterns and pollution, using a computer model of climate and air quality developed by Jacobson. 

Nepal deals with climate change

Climate Change News - ENN - June 25, 2015 - 3:33pm
On 25 April, Nepal was hit by a 7.8 magnitude earthquake. But as well as quakes, the country is also vulnerable to climate change, a combination that makes it harder to build resilience and risk preparedness. As mean temperatures rise in South Asia, the monsoon season has changed, leading to more-erratic rainfall and increasing the risk of floods and landslides that can claim lives and wreck food production. 

Breeders select trait to conserve drinkable water

Plants need water. People need water. Unfortunately, there’s only so much clean water to go around — and so the effort begins to find a solution.Luckily for people, some plants are able to make do without perfectly clean water, leaving more good water for drinking. One strategy is to use treated wastewater, containing salt leftover from the cleaning process, to water large areas of turf grass. These areas include athletic fields and golf courses. Golf courses alone use approximately 750 billion gallons of water annually in arid regions.However, most plants cannot tolerate a lot of salt. As some areas of the United States run low on clean water, plant breeders are trying to breed plants that are more salt tolerant. This would conserve clean water while maintaining healthy turf.Plant breeders can actually see the individual effect of what each parent plant passes on because the genes add intensity to the trait. These are additive effects. Breeders can more easily select for those features when they observe those differences.

ACC Applauds House Passage of TSCA Reform Bill, Encourages Senate to Follow Suit

Chemical Safety - June 23, 2015 - 2:29pm
Today marks a pivotal moment in the years-long effort to reform TSCA.

ACC Applauds House Passage of TSCA Reform Bill, Encourages Senate to Follow Suit

Toxic Substances Control Act - June 23, 2015 - 2:29pm
Today marks a pivotal moment in the years-long effort to reform TSCA.

Measuring Climate Change Action

Climate Change News - ENN - June 23, 2015 - 8:29am
Reducing global greenhouse gas emissions could have big benefits in the U.S., according to a report released today by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), including thousands of avoided deaths from extreme heat, billions of dollars in saved infrastructure expenses, and prevented destruction of natural resources and ecosystems.

A look at N2O: Nitrous oxide emissions may be higher than previously thought

Climate Change News - ENN - June 22, 2015 - 6:01pm
In addition to carbon dioxide there are plenty of other greenhouse gases. Nitrous oxide is one of them. However, a global assessment of emissions from the oceans is difficult because the measurement methods used so far have only allowed rough estimates. Using a new technology for continuous measurements, researchers of the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel and the Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel have now discovered that nitrous oxide emissions from the Southeast Pacific are much higher than previously thought. They publish their data in the international journal Nature Gesoscience.

Stricter emissions standards for trucks proposed

Climate Change News - ENN - June 20, 2015 - 8:17am
The Obama administration announced new rules today that would require tighter emissions guidelines for medium and heavy-duty trucks in an effort to reduce greenhouse gases.The rules, proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), were expected to cut carbon dioxide emissions from trucks and vans by one-quarter by the year 2027.The proposed standards affect semi-trucks, large pickup trucks and vans, buses and work trucks and cover model years 2021-2027, officials said.

Pope Francis challenges us all on Climate Change and improving the life of the poor

Climate Change News - ENN - June 18, 2015 - 8:52am
The Encyclical due to be published today by Pope Francis represents a profound religious and philosophical challenge to the mainstream narratives of our times, writes Steffen Böhm, and a major confrontation with the great corporate, economic and political powers, as it spells out the potential of a new world order rooted in love, compassion, and care for the natural world.Improving the lives of slum dwellers and addressing climate change is, for Pope Francis, one and the same thing. Both require tackling the structural, root causes of inequality, injustice, poverty and environmental degradation.

Will Visitation at US National Parks Warm Up or Overheat?

Climate Change News - ENN - June 17, 2015 - 5:50pm
Visitation at U.S. National Parks may potentially increase with increasing temperature in temperate areas, but may decrease with temperatures rising over 80 degrees Fahrenheit, according to a study using future climate and visitation modeling scenarios published June 17 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Nicholas Fisichelli and colleagues from U.S. National Park Service. 

Why does the Earth's core appear to be so light?

​The old tales may be true: There is brimstone in the underworld, and lots of it. Brimstone, the biblical name for sulfur, is often found near hot springs and volcanic fissures on Earth’s surface (above). But scientists studying the formation of Earth’s core have shown that the lightweight nonmetal might also be present there in vast quantities, answering a question that has long troubled earth scientists: How could Earth’s core—predominantly made of the heavy elements iron and nickel—appear as light as it does when analyzed using seismic waves? Researchers report online today and in the July issue of Geochemical Perspectives Letters that the answer may be sulfur trapped deep within Earth. To come up with their results, the team compared the proportions of copper isotopes in ancient meteorites—the presumed building blocks of our planet—with the proportions of copper isotopes in rocks originating from the mantle—the deep layer of viscous rock beneath Earth’s crust.

Focusing on Air Quality Could Prevent 2.1 million deaths per year

Climate Change News - ENN - June 16, 2015 - 10:45am
Improving air quality — in clean and dirty places — could potentially avoid millions of pollution-related deaths each year. That finding comes from a team of environmental engineering and public health researchers who developed a global model of how changes in outdoor air pollution could lead to changes in the rates of health problems such as heart attack, stroke and lung cancer. Outdoor particulate air pollution results in 3.2 million premature deaths annually, more than the combined impact of HIV-AIDS and malaria. The researchers found that meeting the World Health Organization’s (WHO) particulate air quality guidelines could prevent 2.1 million deaths per year related to outdoor air pollution.

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