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By Kristin Ohlson
From where I stand inside the South Dakota cornfield I was visiting with entomologist and former USDA scientist Jonathan Lundgren, all the human-inflicted traumas to Earth seem far away. It isn't just that the corn is as high as an elephant's eye — are people singing that song again? — but that the field burgeons and buzzes and chirps with all sorts of other life, too.
We may be in the midst of a major human-driven extinction crisis, but it turns out that humans may have been pushing other species to the brink long before the industrial era.
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Scientists studying plants' ability to gobble up carbon from the atmosphere have found that plants will offer protection from greenhouse gases for another 80 years. Beyond 2100, they are not sure if carbon levels will become so high that that plants will reach a breaking point where they can no longer remove carbon from the air, as Newsweek reported.
Hawaii's Kilauea volcano could be gearing up for an eruption after a pond of water was discovered inside its summit crater for the first time in recorded history, according to the AP.
There's nothing that ruins a sunset walk on the boardwalk like a flock of greedy seagulls circling your funnel cake. Before you start to imagine yourself under attack in a sea of Hitchcock-esque pecks and flapping wings, remember that science has your back. New research has a strategy for protecting your food next time you're at the beach. Just give them your best death stare.
By Jeff Turrentine
I met Jim Brainard recently on a sunny summer afternoon in Bryant Park, a grassy oasis roughly the size of one square block nestled among the skyscrapers of midtown Manhattan. The stately New York Public Library — one of the city's most famous cultural institutions — defines the park's perimeter on one side, and roughly outlining the other three are more than a dozen smaller-scale treasures, including an old-fashioned carousel, several food kiosks, an outdoor cocktail bar, a petanque court, ping-pong tables, and even an extra-miniature miniature golf course.
By Jessica Corbett
The exodus of federal scientists in the era of President Donald Trump continued Friday as 62-year-old plant physiologist Lewis Ziska left the U.S. Department of Agriculture "over the Trump administration's efforts to bury his groundbreaking study about how rice loses nutrients due to rising carbon dioxide in the atmosphere," POLITICO reported Monday.
July 2019 was the warmest month globally ever recorded, according to data released on Monday by the European Union's climate change agency.
The climate crisis looms large for young people. We see teenagers like Greta Thunberg inspiring kids around the world to take part in political activism. Then, there are solution-seekers like Fionn Ferreira, an 18 year-old Irish wunderkind, who won the grand prize at the 2019 Google Science Fair for creating a method to remove microplastics from the ocean.