hydrosphere

EARTH: Staking a Claim: Deep-Sea Mining Nears Fruition

EARTH Magazine

From EARTH Magazine  --  The existence of seafloor sediments containing valuable minerals and metals has been known since the late 19th century, but it wasn't until the 1960s that the earliest attempts to recover mineral wealth from the deep sea were made. Technical challenges, as well as discoveries in the 1970s of more economical and previously unknown terrestrial mineral deposits, shelved the idea until the 1990s.

Press release for students - A breath of fresh (1.5 million year old!) air

EGU Planet Press

From EGU  --  Scientists drilling for ice in Antarctica have been able to find ice with bubbles up to 800,000 years old, but now they want to find out what Earth’s atmosphere was like before then. Swiss-based scientist Hubertus Fischer and other researchers want to find ice that is up to 1.5 million years old, so that they can study really old air to know what the Earth’s climate was like even further in the past.

Naturally occurring methane found in groundwater in New York

Water samples were taken from 66 wells across five counties in south-central New York. Credit: Paul Heisig/USGS

From EARTH Magazine  --  Since hydraulic fracturing operations began in the Marcellus Shale region, debate has raged over whether drilling operations are causing high levels of methane in drinking-water wells. But few systematic scientific studies have been published to date, so it's unknown if high methane levels are natural or the result of contamination from nearby gas wells. Now, a new study is adding some much-needed baseline data for methane levels in groundwater in New York.

USGS capturing glacial decline in Glacier National Park through repeat photography

Glacier National Park Decline

From USGS  --  Climate change research in Glacier National Park, Montana entails many methods of documenting the landscape change, including the decline of the parks namesake glaciers. While less quantitative than other high-tech methods of recording glacial mass, depth, and rate of retreat, repeat photography has become a valuable tool for communicating effects of global warming.

EPA “How’s My Waterway” App & Website Lets Users Check Health of Waterways Anywhere in the US

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released an enhanced version of How’s My Waterway an app and website to help people find information on the condition of thousands of lakes, rivers and streams across the United States from their smart phone, tablet or desktop computer.

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