The United Nations negotiations in Warsaw over a climate treaty are moving at glacial speed — and that's in part because there's a fundamental problem.
In the coming decades, carbon dioxide emissions from China, India and other rapidly developing countries are expected to grow quickly. Residents there aspire to lifestyles Americans and Europeans enjoy today, and those nations aren't willing to slash emissions, because doing so could slow their economic growth.
Methane is the source of the gas we burn in stoves. You can also use it to make plastics, antifreeze or fertilizer. It comes out of underground deposits, but it also seeps up from swamps, landfills, even the stomachs of cows.
And while methane is valuable, a lot of it gets up into the atmosphere, where it becomes a very damaging greenhouse gas.
The Food and Drug Administration has sent a warning letter to the company 23andMe demanding that its saliva test be taken off the market. The company claims the test can detect the genetic likelihood of more than a hundred diseases — a claim the FDA says the company has not proved sufficiently.
Originally published on Tue November 26, 2013 9:22 am
Credit Andres Florez / Screenshot/Vimeo
If you've ever sat through a (long, long) university graduation ceremony, you may have taken the time to peruse the dissertation titles of graduating doctoral students. Depending on the university and department, you'd probably find a sampling something like this:
Originally published on Mon November 25, 2013 3:03 pm
By Michaeleen Doucleff
Microbiologist Christina Agapakis (left) and artist Sissel Tolass show off the cheese they made with bacteria from human skin. The project was part of Agapakis' graduate thesis at Harvard Medical School.
Credit Courtesy of Grow Your Own ... Life After Nature at Science Gallery at Trinity College Dublin
Originally published on Tue November 26, 2013 4:06 pm
Graduate student Zach Dunseth carefully excavates wine jugs found in the ruins of a Canaanite palace that dates back to about 1700 B.C.
Credit Eric H. Cline / Courtesy of Eric H. Cline/George Washington University
It looks like our ancestors from the Bronze Age were way bigger lushes than we had ever realized.
Archaeologists have discovered a personal wine cellar in a palace that dates back to 1700 B.C. It's the oldest cellar known, and the personal stash was massive.
More than 500 gallons of wine were once stored in a room connected to the palace, located in modern-day northern Israel, scientists said Friday at a conference in Baltimore. That's enough vino to fill 3,000 wine bottles — or a seven-person hot tub.
Saltwater wetlands that include marshes and shoals on Virginia's Atlantic coast. U.S. coastal wetlands losses were 25 percent greater from 2004-2009, according to a recent federal study.
Credit U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
The U.S. lost an average of 80,000 acres of coastal wetlands from 2004 to 2009, according to the latest data published by federal agencies. More than 70 percent of the estimated loss came in the Gulf of Mexico; nationwide, most of the loss was blamed on development that incurred on freshwater wetlands.
"The losses of these vital wetlands were 25 percent greater than during the previous six years," NPR's Elizabeth Shogren reports for our Newscast unit. She also notes that the loss equals "about seven football fields every hour."
This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Celeste Headlee. Michel Martin is away. Coming up, Grammy award-winning musician Esperanza Spalding gets political with her new song. We'll talk to her about her battle to close Guantanamo in just a few minutes.
Originally published on Sat November 23, 2013 5:06 pm
University of California, Davis food safety field scientists Michele Jay-Russell, Paula Kahn-Rivadeneira, Anna Zwieniecka, Navreen Pandher and Peiman Aminabadi celebrate the first day of their experiment testing <em>E. coli</em> survival in soil.
Credit Courtesy of Fhon Saharuetai
Why are these scientists in hazmat suits smiling? They're standing in a field that they are about to spread with raw manure — four different kinds of raw manure, to be exact.