Culvier’s Beaked Whale Species Sets Breath-Holding Record

How long can you hold your breath underwater? The Guinness Book of World Records reports that the longest time recorded for a human is 22 minutes. So how do we compare to other species? Dolphins can hold it for approximately 20-30 minutes while sea birds can dive underwater for 3-10 minutes. But none of us can compare to Cuvier's beaked whale - a species that has been recorded for holding it's breath for over two hours!

Antarctic ice study reveals accelerated sea level rise

Six massive glaciers in West Antarctica are moving faster than they did 40 years ago, causing more ice to discharge into the ocean and global sea level to rise, according to new research. The amount of ice draining collectively from those half-dozen glaciers increased by 77 percent from 1973 to 2013, scientists report this month in Geophysical Research Letters, a journal of the American Geophysical Union.

If Wolves are Protected in France, Why Are They Being Hunted?

The Big Bad Wolf stock figure of so many children’s fairy tales, has surfaced again. This time it's in France, where there has been an outcry from animal rights groups since wolf hunts have resumed due to increased attacks by the animals after their "European comeback."

Grocery giant commits to zero-deforestation policy for palm oil sourcing

Safeway has become the latest company to establish a policy that excludes deforestation-linked palm oil from its products. Safeway Inc. (NYSE: SWY), the second biggest U.S. grocery chain, made the commitment in response to a shareholder proposal by the New York State Common Retirement Fund.

Future cost of water is no small change

Water scarcity was, until recently, considered by most of the developed world to be like James Hilton's Lost Horizon: "far away, at the very limit of distance." However, the convergence of aquifer depletion from increasing agricultural, industrial and municipal water use with more frequent and intense extreme weather events creates an urgency to develop new, reliable sources of fresh water to "drought-proof" communities through a combination of desalinization technologies, water recovery and reuse programs and PPP (public private partnerships). The race is on to provide fresh water to satisfy ever-increasing human demands. In order to make responsible decisions, changing conditions require rethinking water policy and distribution.

Future costs of water is no small change

Water scarcity was, until recently, considered by most of the developed world to be like James Hilton's Lost Horizon: "far away, at the very limit of distance." However, the convergence of aquifer depletion from increasing agricultural, industrial and municipal water use with more frequent and intense extreme weather events creates an urgency to develop new, reliable sources of fresh water to "drought-proof" communities through a combination of desalinization technologies, water recovery and reuse programs and PPP (public private partnerships). The race is on to provide fresh water to satisfy ever-increasing human demands. In order to make responsible decisions, changing conditions require rethinking water policy and distribution.

Paintings Help Chart History of Air Pollution

An international research team has shown that the colors of sunsets painted by famous artists can be used to estimate pollution levels in the Earth's atmosphere. The paintings reveal that ash and gas released during major eruptions scatter the different colors of sunlight, making sunsets appear more red.

World’s river systems: Stressed OUT

According to the World Resources Institute (WRI) many, if not most of the world’s rivers are stressed. Determining a systems water stress is based upon measuring the ratio of total water withdrawals to the available renewable supplies within the catchment area. Rivers are an indispensible resource for our communities and ecosystems and we are hugely dependent upon them for agriculture, industry and our natural systems. A stressed river system can severely threaten regional water security and economic growth, and potentially contribute to political instability—especially in the absence of an adequate water-management plan.

Chernobyl: thirty years hence…

It's not just people, animals and trees that suffer from radiation at Chernobyl, writes Rachel Nuwer, but also decomposer fungi and microbes. And with the buildup of dead wood comes the risk of catastrophic fire - which could spread radiation far and wide. Nearly 30 years have passed since the Chernobyl plant exploded and caused an unprecedented nuclear disaster. The effects of that catastrophe, however, are still felt today.

British bird is an unlikely winner from changing climate

Climate change may be bad news for billions, but scientists at the University of Sheffield have discovered one unlikely winner – a tiny British bird, the long-tailed tit. Like other small animals that live for only two or three years, these birds had until now been thought to die in large numbers during cold winters. But new research suggests that warm weather during spring instead holds the key to their survival.