Earth

CORVALLIS, Ore. – If global warming some day causes the West Antarctic Ice Sheet to collapse, as many experts believe it could, the resulting sea level rise in much of the United States and other parts of the world would be significantly higher than is currently projected, a new study concludes.

TORONTO, ON – University of Toronto geophysicists have shown that should the West Antarctic Ice Sheet collapse and melt in a warming world – as many scientists are concerned it will – it is the coastlines of North America and of nations in the southern Indian Ocean that will face the greatest threats from rising sea levels.

WASHINGTON, Feb. 5, 2009 — Millions of homes in rural areas of Far Eastern countries are heated by charcoal burned on small, hibachi-style portable grills. Scientists in Japan are now reporting development of an improved "biomass charcoal combustion heater" that they say could open a new era in sustainable and ultra-high efficiency home heating.

Their study was published in ACS' Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research, a bi-weekly journal.

VIRGINIA KEY, Fla. — Seawater is a complex, dynamic mixture of dissolved minerals, salts, and organic materials that despite scientists best efforts, presents difficulties in measuring its potential to contain and disperse energy. Like the water itself, the calculations scientists employ to measure seawater are fluid, undergoing significant revisions and clarifications over the years as research techniques and instrumentation continues to evolve.

MELBOURNE, FLA.—Climate change is about to cause a major upheaval in the shallow marine waters of Antarctica. Predatory crabs are poised to return to warming Antarctic waters and disrupt the primeval marine communities.

RIVERSIDE, Calif. – An international research team of scientists from UC Riverside, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and other institutions has found the oldest evidence for animals in the fossil record.

The researchers examined sedimentary rocks in south Oman, and found an anomalously high amount of steroids that date back to 635 million years ago, to around the end of the last ice age. The steroids are produced by sponges – one of the simplest forms of multicellular animals.

PASADENA, Calif.--Scientists from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and an international team of collaborators have returned from a month-long deep-sea voyage to a marine reserve near Tasmania, Australia, that not only netted coral-reef samples likely to provide insight into the impact of climate change on the world's oceans, but also brought to light at least three never-before-seen species of sea life.

Increasing greenhouse gases could delay, or even postpone indefinitely the recovery of stratospheric ozone in some regions of the Earth, a new study suggests. This change might take a toll on public health.

A researcher at North Carolina State University is tracking the movement of the Redbay Ambrosia beetle, an invasive insect that, if it spreads to southeast Florida, may severely affect the production of avocados, a $15 million to $30 million industry in the state.

Tubeworms have been around for millions of years and the fossil record is rich with their distinctive imprints. But a discovery made by U of C scientists found that what previous researchers had labeled as tubeworms in a formation near Denver, Colorado, are actually 70 million-year-old escape hatches for methane.