From EARTH Magazine, 04/13/2015 -- The massive 2011 Las Conchas Fire near Los Alamos, N.M., defied conventional fire science wisdom by racing downhill instead of uphill, and increasing intensity overnight. Now, EARTH Magazine brings you recent scientific analysis of the fire from a research team at Los Alamos National Lab.
From AGI, 03/31/2015 -- In a small lake along the Japanese coast, scientists have found evidence of turbulent waters centuries ago. These telltale signs of severe weather in the geologic record support the legend of the two kamikaze typhoons that protected Japan from Mongol invasion. EARTH Magazine follows University of Amherst geoscientist Kinuyo Kanamaru and his research team as the dig up history in search of signs of the storms.
From EARTH Magazine, 04/01/2015 -- As NASA's New Horizons mission to Pluto reaches its destination, join EARTH Magazine to learn about the latest spacecraft to study the furthest reaches of the solar system.
From EARTH Magazine, March 18, 2015 - Did they survive? Since 1962, the fate of three inmates who broke out of the famous prison on Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay - carrying rubber rafts fashioned out of raincoats - has remained a mystery. From the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to the hosts of the show "Mythbusters," many have tried to figure out what happened to the escapees. Now, EARTH Magazine brings you news of an effort led by a research team from Delft University in the Netherlands.
From EARTH Magazine, 03/04/2015 -- Children born during, and up to three years after, the devastating 1997-1998 El Niño event in northern Peru were found to be shorter than their peers in a new study covered in EARTH Magazine. The rising waters wiped out crops, drowned livestock, cut off bridges, and caused prolonged famine in many rural villages. Now, a new study that tracked long-term health impacts on children from the affected region has found that a decade later, the children continue to bear signs of the hardship endured early in their lives.
From EARTH Magazine, 02/26/15 -- After the Aug. 24, 2014, Napa Valley earthquake, movement continued along the principal fault to the north of the epicenter, according to a report released by the U.S. Geological Survey. Such "afterslip" is known from previous quakes, but this is the first time that strong afterslip has been observed in a populated residential community. While the majority of shaking on the main strand of the West Napa Fault Zone occurred in rural fields, approximately 20 homes were immediately affected.
From EARTH Magazine -- Hydraulic fracturing, the natural gas extraction method known popularly as fracking, has been controversial in large part to the concern about groundwater contamination by the fluids used in the process, especially the so-called flowback fluids that re-emerge at the surface from fracking wells and are usually disposed of by waste water fluid injection into other formations. Now, researchers have developed a geochemical method of identifying fracking fluids in the environment.
From EARTH Magazine, 01/29/2015 -- In 2011, geologists at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, began discovering asbestos where none should be — in granite rocks with a geologic history not previously known to produce asbestos.
The discoveries, in Clark County in southern Nevada and across the border in northwestern Arizona, suggest that asbestos may be more widespread than previously thought; they also raise questions about the potential health hazards of naturally occurring asbestos (NOA).
From EARTH Magazine, 01/26/2015 -- At times last year, 100 percent of California experienced moderate to exceptional drought conditions; even after massive storms in December, almost 80 percent of the state was still under extreme drought, the second-worst category. The drought has been ongoing for a few years now, and last year, state and local officials created new drought restrictions designed to mitigate the effects. But whether these restrictions will make a dent in California’s water shortage amid the ongoing and historic drought remains to be seen.
From EARTH Magazine, 01/21/15 -- In 2003, scientists visited the Stornes Peninsula in Antarctica’s Larsemann Hills to study the rocks — especially those containing boron and phosphorus minerals. What they found set them on a decade-long path to protect the geology, culminating in 2014 with the naming of the site as an Antarctic Specially Protected Area. Stornes Peninsula became only the fifth location in Antarctica with geologic features deemed sufficiently precious to the geologic community to receive this high level of protection.