Environmental Protection

Research and Technology


Renewable Energy Program Could Make Fracking and Biofuels Obsolete

Project Volt Gas Volt, a new green program, shows the potential of storing renewable energy in surplus, which could make nuclear energy, natural gas, fracking, and biofuels seem like energy sources from the past.

Drones Used for Environmental and Wildlife Protection Accessible by Tablets

Professional micro civil drones from Lehmann Aviation are now available with a touchscreen tablet running under Windows8 Operating System. The new innovative software helps to immediately process all flight data on a touchscreen tablet, laptop, or desktop PC.

Study Explores Environmental and Health Impacts of Lithium Batteries for Electric Vehicles

In a new study, researchers are assessing the life cycle of batteries in order to find ways to reduce global warming emissions and address nanotechnology innovations that could improve the overall performance of the batteries.

Two Volcanoes Currently Erupting in Alaska

Scientists are monitoring and providing alerts on Pavlof and Cleveland, two of the most active volcanoes in Alaska.

World’s Largest Solar Boat Coming to U.S. in June

On Monday, June 3, MS Turanor PlanetSolar will be making its way to the Sunset Harbour Yacht Club in Miami Beach, Fla. This is the first time the largest solar powered boat will be in the U.S.

Climate Scientists and Finance Experts to Collaborate on Study

The AMS will assemble leading members of the climate science and finance communities on June 3-4, 2013 in Washington D.C. to explore climate information needs for financial decision-making.

Fishing Gear Can be Fatal to Whales

In a new study conducted by WHOI scientists, a “patient monitoring” device was attached to a whale that was entangled in fishing line. As a result of being tangled in the line, the whale’s ability to eat and migrate was directly affected, resulting in a slow death for the animal.

EPA Urges People to Protect Themselves Against Skin Cancer

Skin cancer has become the most common type of cancer in the U.S., and if current trends continue 20 percent of all Americans could be diagnosed with the disease in their lifetimes. The EPA urges people to take action and protect themselves against the sun.

Clean Up Oil Spills with Low-Grade Cotton

Researchers have found a low-grade cotton from West Texas that might be able to clean oil spills more effectively and more eco-friendly than other methods currently in use. According to the study, one pound of the cotton can soak up more than 30 pounds of oil.

States and Utilities Emissions Report Now Available

According to a major new report on U.S. power plant emissions from the top 100 power producers, it shows that the electric industry cut emissions of NOx, SO2 and CO2 in 2011 even as overall electricity generation increased, largely due to increased use of natural gas and growing reliance on renewable energy.

New Research Shows Gas Hydrates as Future Energy Resource

In collaboration between the USGS, BOEM, and the DOE, scientists have completed a 15-day research expedition in the northern Gulf of Mexico with high-resolution seismic data and imagery of sediments with high gas hydrate saturations.

Robotic Sensors Monitor Red Tides in Gulf of Maine

The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) is utilizing new robotic instruments to help monitor and manage harmful algal blooms (HABs) or red tides in New England. The first instrument has been in use since last month, and a second will be deployed later this spring.

A New iPad Book Introduces Backyard Environmentalism to Children

Ben Nicholson and Kurt Koch created and designed Mudbuddy, a new iPad book that helps children learn about the environment.

Long-Lasting Nitrate in Streams Disturbs Water Quality

Hydrologic researchers from the USGS found that nitrate from fertilizers takes decades to travel through groundwater and into streams, disturbing the water quality of streams and even large rivers for many more years to come.

Billions of Cicadas May Soon Swarm Eastern U.S.

The East Coast of the U.S. may soon be swarmed with billions of cicadas, outnumbering people from North Carolina to Connecticut by 600 to 1. But not to worry, even though the insects may be a nuisance, they’re not a threat to anything but a few shrubs.

People in India, Indonesia, and Philippines Affected by Toxic Waste Sites

A Mount Sinai researcher has found that the health of people living near toxic waste sites in India, Indonesia, and the Philippines are directly affected, causing them to miss out on healthy years of life.

Solar-Powered Nanofilters Remove Antibiotics from Waterways

Researchers have developed solar-powered nanofilters that can remove antibiotics from waterways more efficiently than existing practices.

Enzyme Research Could Lead to Less Expensive Biofuels

New research from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has discovered two approaches in which enzymes could break down cell walls more quickly and lead to less expensive biofuels for the transportation industry.

A New Additive to Make Wastewater Treatment More Efficient

Wastewater sludge is a semi-solid material that accounts for 50 percent of operating costs and about 65 percent of environmental impact in order to purify the water. After being tested in 50 wastewater treatment plants in various countries, a new additive called LODOred may be able to purify the sludge more efficiently.

Measuring the Floods in Illinois

Crews from the USGS are measuring the floods of rivers and streams in Illinois. It’s estimated that current conditions of the waterways are the highest levels in over 20 years for the state.

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