hydrosphere

Press release for students - Hair ice mystery solved

EGU Planet Press

From EGU, 07/22/2015  --  Did you know that there is a type of ice called hair ice? It is shaped like fine, silky hairs and looks like white candy floss. It grows on the rotten branches of broad-leaf trees during humid winter nights when the air temperature drops slightly below 0°C. A 100-year old theory states that hair ice also needs something else to grow – a fungus – but, until now, no one had managed to confirm this.

EARTH Magazine: Endangered Icebreakers: The Future of Arctic Research, Exploration and Rescue at Risk

EARTH Magazine

From EARTH Magazine, 07/28/2015  --  The United States' Icebreaker Fleet - operated by the U.S. Coast Guard - consists of just two ships that are used for everything from search and rescue to national security operations to scientific research. In our August cover story, EARTH Magazine examines the various roles icebreakers play, especially in Arctic research, and how insufficient funding is affecting the icebreakers' roles.

PAESTA Podcast Series: Episode 4 - What is a Watershed?

You Asked, We Answered!

Transcript for the podcast

We all live in a watershed – think of it as your ecological address, and no matter where you are on land, any water that falls in that same location has a drainage destination determined by elevation and landforms. A watershed is an area of land where the surface water (including lakes, streams, reservoirs, and wetlands) and the underlying groundwater flows from a higher to lower elevation. Streams and rainfall within a watershed will typically drain to a common outlet, such as the outflow of a reservoir, mouth of a bay, or any point along a stream channel. The word watershed is sometimes used interchangeably with drainage basin or catchment.

Protect Your Groundwater Day on September 8, 2015

National Ground Water Association

The National Ground Water Association (NGWA) celebrates Protect Your Groundwater Day on September 8, 2015, promoting water conservation and contamination prevention as ways to protect groundwater resources.

"Every person can do something to protect local groundwater, from not polluting it to using water wisely," says NGWA Public Awareness Director Cliff Treyens. "The good news is that for most people all it takes is a small adjustment in their daily habits."

PAESTA Podcast Series: Episode 3 - How do Scientists Measure Rainfall?

You Asked, We Answered!

Transcript for the podcast

Many schools will have a rain gauge installed, where students can measure and record the amount of rain that falls each day. But scientists do not measure precipitation on the ground – they measure precipitation from space, using a combination of active and passive remote-sensing techniques, improving the spatial and temporal coverage of precipitation observations on a global scale.  You see, reliable ground-based precipitation measurements are difficult to obtain because most of the world is covered by water, and many countries do not have precise rain measuring equipment (such as rain gauges and radar). Precipitation is also difficult to measure because precipitation systems can be somewhat random and can evolve very rapidly. During a storm, precipitation amounts can vary greatly over a very small area and over a short time span.

Where does water go when it doesn't flow?

NSF

From NSF, 07/09/2015  -- More than a quarter of the rain and snow that falls on continents reaches the oceans as runoff. Where does the rest go? Now results of a new study help answer that question: two-thirds of the remaining water comes from plants, more than a quarter lands on leaves and evaporates, and what's left evaporates from soil and from lakes, rivers and streams.

Read the full article on the National Science Foundation website.

2014 State of the Climate: Highlights

NOAA

International report confirms: 2014 was Earth’s warmest year on record  --  Climate markers continue to show global warming trend

In 2014, the most essential indicators of Earth’s changing climate continued to reflect trends of a warming planet, with several  markers such as rising land and ocean temperature, sea levels and greenhouse gases ─ setting new records.  These key findings and others can be found in the State of the Climate in 2014 report released online today by the American Meteorological Society (AMS).

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