SCIENCE IN THE NEWS WEEKLY
Arctic Warming Brings 'Very Dramatic Changes'
The BBC reported that a Canadian military expedition has uncovered dramatic evidence of the breakup of giant Arctic ice shelves in Canada's far north. The team found a network of cracks stretching for more than 10 miles on Ward Hunt, the area's largest shelf. Scientists with the troops said it could be another indicator of climate change.
In other environment news, marine scientists in Seattle said at a congressional field hearing last week that increasing acidity in coastal waters along the Pacific Northwest could threaten food chains and, ultimately, the shellfish industry there.
A massive coal-burning power plant under construction in Germany will be one of the biggest in the world, underscoring that however much Europe may be moving toward renewable energy, coal is still a big part of the energy equation there.
And the Associated Press profiled a scientist whose main mission is to protect the $17 billion U.S. wheat crop from such threats as the destructive fungus that has infected fields in Africa and the Middle East. But Congress has reportedly cut his research budget.
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PODCAST & VIDEO: Engineering Around Extreme Events
Extreme events, such as super floods and hurricanes, are becoming more common, so civil engineers are trying to adapt civil infrastructure such as bridges to these unpredictable and sometimes devastating meteorological events. Engineer Ana Barros discusses how engineering can prepare us for extreme weather events, but also how changing climate and population conditions can affect the ability of infrastructure to hold up over time.
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