Archives for April 2017

Global pension funds warm to India’s solar power ambitions

MUMBAI/NEW DELHI (Reuters) – Some of the world’s biggest pension funds, seeking long-term returns on green investments, are scouting for deals in India’s solar power sector, where Prime Minister Narendra Modi is targeting $ 100 billion in investment in the next five years.

Reuters: Environment

Five killed in Texas tornadoes; rains, winds lash U.S. midsection: media

(Reuters) – Tornadoes killed five people east of Dallas in Texas, local media reported on Saturday, as heavy rains and damaging winds struck a broad swath of the U.S. heartland.

Reuters: Environment

Environmental protesters swarm outside White House as Trump hits milestone

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A sea of protesters swarmed in front of the White House on Saturday to voice displeasure with President Donald Trump’s stance on the environment and demand that he rethink plans to reverse the climate change policies backed by his predecessor.

Reuters: Environment

Hybrid Digital-Analog Circuits Can Increase Computational Power of Chaos-Based Systems

New research from North Carolina State University has found that combining digital and analog components in nonlinear, chaos-based integrated circuits can improve their computational power by enabling processing of a larger number of inputs. This “best of both worlds” approach could lead to circuits that can perform more computations without increasing their physical size.

Computer scientists and designers are struggling to keep up with Moore’s law, which states that the number of transistors on an integrated circuit will double every two years in order to meet processing demands. They are rapidly reaching the limits of physics in terms of transistor size – it isn’t possible to continue shrinking the transistors to fit more on a chip.

ENN: Top Stories

When bridges collapse: Stanford researchers study whether we're underestimating the risk

The United States is considering a $ 1 trillion budget proposal to update infrastructure, including its crumbling bridges. An obstacle to spending the money wisely is that the current means of assessing bridges may underestimate their vulnerability, according to a new study published in the Journal of Infrastructure Systems. 

Case in point is a bridge along California’s iconic Big Sur coast, which collapsed in March, isolating communities and costing local businesses millions of dollars. Although California’s recent unprecedented rains were likely to damage infrastructure, standard risk assessments made it hard to identify which bridges were most vulnerable.

ENN: Top Stories

Strong earthquake hits off Philippines, no major impact seen

MANILA (Reuters) – A strong earthquake measuring 7.2 struck off the coast of Mindanao island in the Philippines on Saturday, and the country’s seismology agency advised people to stay away from coastal areas but expected no major damage.

Reuters: Environment

A climate insurgency: building a Trump-free, fossil-free future

After 99 days of Donald Trump’s presidency, his only achievement is to pursue his anti-climate, anti-environment agenda with a cruel passion that is already alienating a clear majority of Americans, writes Jeremy Brecher. The Peoples Climate March tomorrow will signal the strength of the fightback. And while there will be no overnight victory, a national, indeed a global movement is forming to resist Trump and bring the age of fossil fuels to its long overdue end.
Environment news & analysis, climate change reports –
The Ecologist

U.S. appeals court grants Trump request on climate regulations case

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. appeals court on Friday granted a Trump administration request to put on hold a legal challenge by industry and a group of states to former President Barack Obama’s regulations aimed at curbing greenhouse emissions mainly from coal-fired power plants, rules that the Republican president is moving to undo.

Reuters: Environment

Thin Layers of Water Hold Promise for the Energy Storage of the Future

Researchers at North Carolina State University have found that a material which incorporates atomically thin layers of water is able to store and deliver energy much more quickly than the same material that doesn’t include the water layers. The finding raises some interesting questions about the behavior of liquids when confined at this scale and holds promise for shaping future energy-storage technologies.

ENN: Top Stories

Antarctica’s Penguins Are In Trouble, New Report Shows

Ocean Leadership ~

Adelie penguins walk on the ice at Cape Denison in Antarctica. (Credit: REUTERS/Paukine Askin/File)

(Click to enlarge) Adelie penguins walk on the ice at Cape Denison in Antarctica. (Credit: REUTERS/Paukine Askin/File)

In the rapidly warming Antarctic, two species of penguins are in dramatic decline.

(From CBS / By Shanika Gunaratna) — That’s the news out of a new study published by Oceanites, a nonprofit organization that closely monitors penguins and other Antarctic seabirds, in collaboration with researchers from NASA and Stony Brook University in New York.

Relying on satellite photos and on-the-ground analysis from more than 660 sites across the frozen continent, the study paints a broad picture of the health of several Antarctic penguin species: the Adélie, chinstrap, emperor, and gentoo. Like endangered polar bears, penguins have come to represent vulnerability in the face of rapidly unfolding climate change.

The report looked specifically at the Antarctic Peninsula, which has warmed by a year-round average of 5 degrees Fahrenheit in the past 60 years. 

There, two species — Adélie and chinstrap penguins — were reported to be in severe decline. Meanwhile, gentoo penguins appeared to be adapting to changing circumstances. 

“In one generation, I have personally witnessed the precipitous decline of once abundant Adélie and chinstrap penguin populations,” Oceanites founder and president Ron Naveen said in a statement. “These iconic birds are literally canaries in the coal mine. They provide critical insights into the dramatic changes taking place in the Antarctic.”

The researchers theorize that gentoo, Adélie and chinstrap penguins might be adapting differently to changes in their food supplies. Left without the same supplies of krill, a small crustacean, gentoo penguins appear to be supplementing their diet by eating more fish. Adélie and chinstrap penguins, however, do not demonstrate the same behaviors. 

Read the full story here:

The post Antarctica’s Penguins Are In Trouble, New Report Shows appeared on Consortium for Ocean Leadership.

Consortium for Ocean Leadership