• The Sea Wanted to Take This California Lighthouse. Now, It’s Part of a Conflict Between a Town and Two Tribes

    For decades, the Trinidad Memorial Lighthouse stood like atop the coastal bluff overlooking the rocky outcrops of Trinidad Bay in northern California. But then, climate change began to take its toll: “the ground began to crumble. Rain moved the earth. The bluff cracked, a sidewalk warped, and thus ended the charmed life of the Trinidad Memorial Lighthouse, which suddenly threatened to slide into the Pacific,” Hailey Branson-Potts writes.

  • Port Neches Plant Rocked by Multiple Explosions, Was Declared High Priority Violator by EPA

    The Southeast Texas chemical manufacturing plant, owned by Houston-based Texas Petroleum Chemical Group, has a long history of environmental violations and been out of compliance with federal clean air laws for years.

  • Newly Proposed Barrier Could Have Limited Radiation Release at Chernobyl, Fukushima

    Following the most serious nuclear accidents in the history — at Three Mile Island (1979), Chernobyl (1986) and Fukushima (2011), in which release of radiation occurred as a result of core meltdown — many countries around the world have committed to phase out nuclear power. Afuture powered by nuclear energy, however, may be neither a lost cause nor a game of “Russian roulette,” according to researchers.

  • Adding Hard-to-Reach Water to the Water Supply

    More than 20 percent of the world’s population are dependent on karst groundwater. In these regions, large amounts of water seep into the porous rock and are available at great depths only. Moreover, karst water is susceptible to pollution. Use for sustainable water supply is a challenge in threshold and developing countries.

  • Policy Decisions' Effect on Migration from Sea Level Rise

    A new modeling approach can help researchers, policymakers and the public better understand how policy decisions will influence human migration as sea levels rise around the globe. “Sea level rise is going to reorganize the human population around the globe,” says one researcher.

  • Using Hemp to Repair Deteriorating Kentucky Bridges

    Bridges are a crucial component of Kentucky’s infrastructure — providing access between regions and cities and linking workers to jobs. But as traffic continues to increase, bridges across the state are aging at an accelerated pace. Experts say that 7 percent of Kentucky’s bridges—or 1,100 bridges — are classified as “structurally deficient.” Researchers have developed innovative products — dubbed CatStrong — for restoring bridges.

  • Lack of Preparation Hampers Protection against Bushfires

    As Australia confronts devastating bushfire conditions, people across the nation are doing all they can to ensure the safety of their homes, property and loved ones. But while many individuals are responding well to bushfire risks, a lack of preparation on the community level could be hampering their efforts, according to a new research.

  • FCC Bans Use of Federal Funds in Purchases of Chinese Telecom

    The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on 22 November blocked U.S. telecommunications providers from using an $8.5 billion subsidy fund – the FCC’s Universal Service Fund (USF) — to buy Chinese-made telecommunications gear deemed a national security threat to critical infrastructure. The U.S. said that given Huawei and ZTE’s close relationship and legal obligations to the Chinese government, their gear poses a threat to telecommunications critical infrastructure, as well as to national security.

  • Studying Large Storm to Help Lessen Their Impact on Coasts

    When cyclones or other massive oceanic storms make landfall, their giant waves batter coastlines and sometimes cause widespread damage. Researchers have analyzed months of data of large nearshore waves to provide new insights that could help improve the designs of a variety of coastal structures from seaports to seawalls to better withstand destructive waves.

  • Beavers to help U.K. Flood Management

    Having once been an important part of the ecosystem, beavers became extinct in the United Kingdom in the sixteenth century due to hunting for their fur, meat and scent glands. The U.K. National Trust has announced plans to release Eurasian beavers at two sites in the south of England next spring to help with flood management.

  • Using the Internet of Things for Water Security

    A cluster of internet-enabled devices, including a water-flow sensor, pH sensor, ultrasonic sensor, and “PIC” microcontroller, may be used together as a watchdog system for water quality.The simple and low-cost system being developed by the team of researchers in India makes water quality assessment and water security widely available without the need for sophisticated technical knowledge.

  • Switching to Renewable Energy May Save Thousands of Lives in Africa

    With economies and populations surging, an industrial revolution is inevitable on the African continent. The question is, what’s going to power it? With renewable energy cheaper and more efficient than ever, countries in Africa have the unique opportunity to harness abundant renewable sources like wind, solar and geothermal to leapfrog the dependence on fossil fuels that has poisoned the air and environment in Europe, the U.S., India and China. But will they?

  • Lessons from the Cyberattack on India’s Largest Nuclear Power Plant

    In early September, a cyberattack occurred at the Kudankulam nuclear power plant in India. The Indian nuclear monitoring agency finally admitted that the nuclear plant was hacked, and on 30 October Indian government officials acknowledged the intrusion. “As the digitalization of nuclear reactor instrumentation and control systems increases, so does the potential for malicious and accidental cyber incidents alike to cause harm,” Alexander Campbell and Vickram Singh write.

  • Florida’s Building Code Doesn’t Take Sea Rise into Account. That Could Change This Year.

    The last time the Florida building code changed, in 2016, it required any new construction along the coast to elevate buildings by one foot. Three years later, this does not look to be enough. Experts call for going up yet another foot. Alex Harris notes that elevating the base of homes is a clear sign that political debates over climate change notwithstanding, “the people who plan and build in coastal Florida consider the threat of sea rise very real.”

  • Rising Seas Threaten Low-Lying Coastal Cities, 10 percent of World Population

    A new report from the Coalition for Urban Transitions finds that, because sea level rise exacerbates flooding and storm surge, it is a critical threat to urban coastal areas. More than 10 percent of the world’s population now resides in urban centers or quasi-urban clusters situated at less than 10 meters above sea level.