• Hurricane Harvey Halts Domestic Oil and Gas Production

    The full damage wreaked by Hurricane Harvey won’t be totaled up for days if not weeks, but thankfully the destruction so far has resulted in relatively few fatalities. The impact on energy infrastructure, though, is a different story. The storm hit southeast Texas, a major hub of the U.S. petroleum and natural gas industries. It stands as further evidence that the centralized model for fuel production and transportation is out-of-date, leaving the U.S. exposed to economic disruption and threats to national security. In the age of climate change, a more nimble and flexible approach is needed.

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  • NOAA scientists set sail on Coast Guard icebreaker to measure change in the Arctic

    On Friday, August 25, U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Healy will sail from Dutch Harbor, Alaska, with a team of NOAA scientists and collaborators on a 22-day cruise to study environmental change in the western Arctic Ocean.

    Scientists will track ecosystem responses to rapidly changing environmental conditions such as sea ice decline, ocean acidification and rising air and water temperature, as the ship travels north through the Bering, Chukchi and Beaufort seas.

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  • USGS Installs Storm-tide Sensors along Texas Coast prior to Harvey's Arrival

    Storm-tide sensors are being installed at key locations along the Texas Gulf Coast by the U.S. Geological Survey in advance of Hurricane Harvey.

    Storm surge, coastal erosion and inland flooding are among the most dangerous natural hazards unleashed by hurricanes, with the capacity to destroy homes and businesses, wipe out roads, bridges, water and sewer systems, and profoundly alter landscapes. The USGS has experts on these hazards, state-of-the-science computer models for forecasting them, and sophisticated equipment for monitoring actual flood and tide conditions.

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  • Icy air reveals human-made methane levels higher than previously believed

    In 2011 a team of researchers led by Vasilii Petrenko, an assistant professor of Earth and environmental sciences at the University of Rochester, spent seven weeks in Antarctica collecting and studying 2,000-pound samples of glacial ice cores that date back nearly 12,000 years. The ancient air trapped within the ice revealed surprising new data about methane that may help inform today’s policymakers as they consider ways to reduce global warming.

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  • NASA Look at Tropical Storm Pakhar in Infrared Light

    NASA’s Aqua satellite passed over Tropical Storm Pakhar and gathered temperature data to determine the location of the most powerful storms within. Pakhar has triggered a number of warnings throughout the Philippines as the storm moves closer.

    Philippines warnings include Public storm warning signal #1 for the Luzon provinces of Cagayan including Babuyan group of islands, Apayao, Ilocos Norte, Nueva Ecija, Pangasinan, Northern Quezon including Polillo island, and Camarines Norte. Public storm warning signal #2 is in effect for the Luzon provinces of Isabela, Aurora, Quirino, Kalinga, Mountain Province, Ifugao, Ilocos Sur, Benguet, Abra, La Union and Nueva Vizcaya.

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  • Arctic Ice Cores Document Climate Change in Past 300 Years

    Ice cores from arctic mountain glaciers show a dramatic climate change that began nearly 300 years ago, documenting an unprecedented increase in the intensity and duration of winter storms. Drilled by a Dartmouth-led team, the cores show striking changes in weather patterns that may have reached as far as Florida.

    “We attribute these changes to a warming of sea surface temperatures in the tropical Pacific,” says Erich Osterberg, an assistant professor in the Department of Earth Sciences at Dartmouth. “The North Pacific is very sensitive to what happens in the tropics. It is more stormy in Alaska now than at any time in the last 1,200 years, and that is driven by tropical ocean warming.”

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  • Icebergs: Mathematical model calculates the collapse of shelf ice

    Shelf ice, as found in Antarctica, refers to giant floating ice sheets that can span thousands of square kilometres. Pieces break off at their edges which form icebergs in the ocean. In order to more effectively predict these break-offs, in a process known as calving, Julia Christmann from the University of Kaiserslautern (TU) has developed mathematical models in cooperation with the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI). On the basis of physical factors, it is claimed that these models can be used to predict when and where the ice may collapse. This is important particularly for research teams situated on the ice shelf.

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  • NASA Gets an In-Depth Look at Intensifying Hurricane Harvey

    As Hurricane Harvey continued to strengthen, NASA analyzed the storm’s rainfall, cloud heights and cloud top temperatures. NASA’s GPM and Aqua satellite provided information while an animation of GOES-East satellite imagery showed Harvey’s progression toward the Texas coast. 

    Harvey's intensification has been aided by movement through an environment that includes low vertical wind shear and the warm waters in the Gulf of Mexico.

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  • A Galápagos seabird's population expected to shrink with ocean warming

    Within the next century, rising ocean temperatures around the Galápagos Islands are expected to make the water too warm for a key prey species, sardines, to tolerate. A new study by Wake Forest University biologists, published in PLOS One Aug. 23, uses decades of data on the diet and breeding of a tropical seabird, the Nazca booby, to understand how the future absence of sardines may affect the booby population.

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  • NASA Satellite Reveals Formation of Philippine Sea Tropical Depression 16W

    NASA’s Aqua satellite provided an infrared look at the newly formed Tropical Depression 16W in the Philippine Sea. 16W is known locally in the Philippines as "Jolina."  

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