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Novel Alloy Could Produce Hydrogen Fuel From Sunlight

Scientists from the University of Kentucky (UK) and the University of Louisville (UofL) have determined that an inexpensive semiconductor material can be "tweaked" to generate hydrogen from water using sunlight.

Panda Poop May Be a Treasure Trove of Microbes for Making Biofuels

Panda poop contains bacteria with potent effects in breaking down plant material in the way needed to tap biomass as a major new source of “biofuels” produced not from corn and other food sources, but from grass, wood chips and crop wastes, scientists reported.

Cars Could Run on Recycled Newspaper

Here’s one way that old-fashioned newsprint beats the Internet: Tulane University scientists have discovered a novel bacterial strain, dubbed “TU-103,” that can use paper to produce butanol, a biofuel that can serve as a substitute for gasoline.

Researchers Build a Tougher, Lighter Wind Turbine Blade

Efforts to build larger wind turbines able to capture more energy from the air are stymied by the weight of blades. A Case Western Reserve University researcher has built a prototype blade that is substantially lighter and eight times tougher and more durable than currently used blade materials.

Tips Tuesday: How to Stay Safe on Your Boat this Weekend

Labor Day is coming, with the chance to get in one last weekend of watersports fun before fall and winter make the lake off-limits. Make sure you stay safe for next year's boat season with these tips.

Wastewater Recycling Can Multiply Greenhouse Gas Emissions

New research shows that wastewater recycling processes may generate more greenhouse gases than traditional water-treatment processes. Despite this finding, there are good reasons to continue keep wastewater recycling among the water-resource tools for urban areas

High Ozone Levels in Midwest Could Depress Soybean Yields

Satellite views of the Midwestern United States show that ozone levels above 50 parts per billion (ppb) along the ground could reduce soybean yields by at least 10 percent, costing more than $1 billion in lost crop production, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists.

Testing the Water for Bioenergy Crops

Many energy researchers and environmental advocates are excited about the prospect of gaining more efficient large-scale biofuel production by using large grasses like miscanthus or switchgrass rather than corn. They have investigated yields, land use, economics and more, but one key factor of agriculture has been overlooked: water.



Scientist Floats New Hypothesis on Ocean Acidification

A researcher at the Hawai'i Institute of Marine Biology, an organized research unit in the University of Hawai'i at Manoa's School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology has come up with a new explanation for the effects of ocean acidification on coral reefs.

Professor Warns of Nitrogen’s Double-Edged Sword

Billions of people owe their lives to nitrogen fertilizers – a pillar of the fabled Green Revolution in agriculture that averted global famine in the 20th century – but few are aware that nitrogen pollution from fertilizers and other sources has become a major environmental problem that threatens human health and welfare in multiple ways.

Scientists Call for Better Deep Sea Management

A recent study has found that it's being damaged by human activities, and that this is only likely to get worse. Scientists are now calling for better management and conservation of entire deep-sea ecosystems.

Greenhouse Effect Could Extend Habitable Zone

The distant region beyond Saturn is too cold for liquid water, a necessity for life as we know it. New research indicates that rocky planets far from their parent star could generate enough heat to keep water flowing - if their atmospheres were made up primarily of hydrogen.

As Droughts Decrease Water for Irrigation, Less-Productive Crops Consume Less Carbon

Water shortages - already forecasted to be a big problem as the world warms - could contribute to yet more warming through a positive feedback loop.

Study Shows That Florida Reefs Cannot Endure a Cold Snap

Corals like this one in the Florida Keys experienced unprecedented mortality rates during the severe cold snap in 2010, according to a new study published in PLoS ONE.

Ocean Observatories Initiative Streams Live Video of Undersea Volcano

Last spring, a volcano erupted 425 kilometers (about 265 miles) off the Oregon coast and far below the surface, at Axial Seamount. No one was aware for months, now a live streaming video will monitor the underwater volcano.

New Refrigerator Standards Cut Energy Usage by 25 Percent

New Department of Energy efficiency standards will cut the energy use of most new refrigerators by 25 percent and help save consumers money, create jobs, reduce pollution and spur innovation and investment.

What to Do Before, During and After a Hurricane

With hurricane Irene barreling up the East Coast, we bring you tips for preparing for a serious hurricane, as well as what to do during and after the storm hits.

NASA Satellites Show Hurricane Irene is Almost One-Third the Size of East Coast

Hurricane Irene is a major hurricane, and NASA satellite data shows its diameter is now about one-third the length of the U.S. Atlantic coastline. Meanwhile, far in the eastern Atlantic Ocean a tenth tropical depression formed. One satellite image captured both storms and shows the tremendous difference in their size.

Irrigation Impacts on Global Carbon Uptake

Globally, irrigation increases agricultural productivity by an amount roughly equivalent to the entire agricultural output of the U.S., according to a new University of Wisconsin-Madison study.

Study Casts Doubt on Drought-Driven Declines in Plant Productivity, Global Food Security

A new study published in the current issue of Science rebuts earlier claims that drought has induced a decline in global plant productivity during the past decade and poses a threat to global food security.

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