American pika disappears from large area of California's Sierra Nevada mountains

Study documents local extinction of pikas from the largest area yet reported and projects climate change will cause drastic decline for the charismatic mammal within decades.

One million premature deaths linked to ozone air pollution

Scientists at the University of York’s Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) have released new figures showing long-term exposure to ozone air pollution is linked to one million premature deaths per year due to respiratory diseases - more than double previous estimates.In 2010, long-term outdoor exposure to ozone air pollution contributed to about one million premature respiratory deaths globally – approximately one in five of all respiratory deaths.

MU Study Reveals Ways in which Collegiate Sports Venues can Move Beyond 'Zero Waste'

Officials at collegiate sporting venues have been leading efforts toward zero-waste events with many professional and collegiate leagues adopting energy and water conservation efforts as well as increased recycling and composting. Researchers at the University of Missouri recently published a study analyzing waste and recyclables during Mizzou’s 2014 home football season. By implementing several recommendations the team developed, such as offering better recycling receptacles and better sorting options for waste, sporting venues could be well on their way to achieving environmental benefits that exceed the standards for ‘zero-waste’ operations.

Scientists Warn of Toxins in Texas Floodwaters from Superfund Sites

Houston has been a hub of the petroleum and chemical industries for decades, leaving behind a landscape pocked with Superfund sites and other highly contaminated areas. Now, scientists are warning that these sites are likely leaking toxins into Tropical Storm Harvey’s floodwaters, exposing people in Harris County, where 30 percent of the land is now submerged, to dangerous contaminants, The Washington Post reported.

Robotic system monitors specific neurons

Recording electrical signals from inside a neuron in the living brain can reveal a great deal of information about that neuron’s function and how it coordinates with other cells in the brain. However, performing this kind of recording is extremely difficult, so only a handful of neuroscience labs around the world do it.To make this technique more widely available, MIT engineers have now devised a way to automate the process, using a computer algorithm that analyzes microscope images and guides a robotic arm to the target cell.

GPM Satellite Sees Tropical Storm Irma Forming Near Cape Verde Islands

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) upgraded a low pressure area in the far eastern Atlantic Ocean to tropical storm Irma on August 30, 2017 at 11 a.m. EDT (1500 UTC).Tropical cyclones that form in that part of the Atlantic Ocean are often the largest and most powerful hurricanes of the season. Hurricanes Ivan (2004), Isabel (2003), Hugo (1989) and Allen (1980) are examples of past powerful hurricanes that formed near the Cape Verde islands.

Study negates concerns regarding radioactivity in migratory seafood

When the Fukushima power plant released large quantities of radioactive materials into nearby coastal waters following Japan’s massive 2011 earthquake and tsunami, it raised concerns as to whether eating contaminated seafood might impair human health—not just locally but across the Pacific.A new study by an international research team shows that those concerns can now be laid to rest, at least for consumption of meat from migratory marine predators such as tuna, swordfish, and sharks.

Volcanic Eruptions Drove Ancient Global Warming Event

Warming event that took place 56 million years ago led to significant ecological disruption and could shed light on modern climate change.

Machine-learning earthquake prediction in lab shows promise

A computer science approach using machine learning can predict the time remaining before the fault fails.

New robot rolls with the rules of pedestrian conduct

Just as drivers observe the rules of the road, most pedestrians follow certain social codes when navigating a hallway or a crowded thoroughfare: Keep to the right, pass on the left, maintain a respectable berth, and be ready to weave or change course to avoid oncoming obstacles while keeping up a steady walking pace.Now engineers at MIT have designed an autonomous robot with “socially aware navigation,” that can keep pace with foot traffic while observing these general codes of pedestrian conduct.