Science in the News

If All The Ice Melted

Maps on the National Geographic website show the world as it is now, with only one difference: All the ice on land has melted and drained into the sea, raising it 216 feet and creating new shorelines for our continents and inland seas.

There are more than five million cubic miles of ice on Earth, and some scientists say it would take more than 5,000 years to melt it all. If we continue adding carbon to the atmosphere, we will very likely create an ice-free planet, with an average temperature of perhaps 80 degrees Fahrenheit instead of the current 58.

One of Most Dangerous Asteroids on Record Close to Earth Last Month

One of Most Dangerous Asteroids on Record Close to Earth Last Month

From NASA/JPL (October 17, 2013) - Newly discovered asteroid 2013 TV135 made a close approach to Earth on Sept. 16, when it came within about 4.2 million miles (6.7 million kilometers). The asteroid is initially estimated to be about 1,300 feet (400 meters) in size and its orbit carries it as far out as about three quarters of the distance to Jupiter's orbit and as close to the sun as Earth's orbit. It was discovered on Oct.

New Subduction Zone May Close Atlantic Ocean

New Subduction Zone May Close Atlantic Ocean

From EARTH Magazine - Throughout the history of Earth, supercontinents have formed and ocean basins have opened and closed over timescales of 300 million to 500 million years. But scientists haven't found direct evidence of the in-between phase - an ocean basin that was opening, starting instead to close - until now. Thanks to new high-resolution surveys of the seafloor, scientists think they have evidence of that process starting in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Portugal.

Changes in Greenland landscape affect carbon balance sheet

Warming is altering Greenland's tundra, affecting carbon dynamics

From the National Science Foundation - Warming temperatures in the Arctic are changing the tundra from a landscape dominated by grasses to one increasingly dominated by woody shrubs. In addition to affecting the habitat of local wildlife such as caribou and musk oxen, these changes are also altering the carbon exchange between the plants and the atmosphere.

Pakistan Earthquake Creates a Mud Volcano Island

Pakistan Earthquake Creates a Mud Volcano Island

On Tuesday, a 7.7-magnitude earthquake struck a remote part of western Pakistan, killing more than 260 people and displacing hundreds of thousands. It also triggered formation of a new island off the coast, which has quickly become a global curiosity. But scientists say the island won't last long.

Read more from National Geographic: How Did the Pakistan Earthquake Create a Mud Island?

EARTH Magazine: How Sandy Changed Storm Warnings

From our friends at the American Geosciences Institute - Superstorm Sandy slammed against the U.S. Eastern Seaboard in October 2012, inundating iconic communities. Those communities have been rebuilding since then and things are almost back to normal for most. But something else has had to be rebuilt as well: the structured procedures for issuing warnings. The goal is to help communities better comprehend what natural disasters will bring their doorsteps.

Teachable Moment from IRIS - Magnitude 7.7 Earthquake in Pakistan

IRIS does an excellent job collecting and preparing resources we can use in our classrooms on recent, significant earthquakes. Check out their PowerPoint, visualizations and animations on this powerful earthquake (M7.7) that has killed at least 208 people in Pakistan's remote south-west province. Many houses were flattened and thousands of people have spent the night in the open.