Biomass over Coal: Burning Different Carbon to Mitigate Climate Change

by Jordan Wilkerson figures by Daniel Utter Ever since the Industrial Revolution around 150 years ago, most of the electricity used in the United States has come from burning fossil fuels. These fuels, such as coal and oil, are all made of carbon. They’re such an important form of the element that the name “carbon” comes from the Latin word for coal. However, burning all … Continue reading Biomass over Coal: Burning Different Carbon to Mitigate Climate Change

Solar Geoengineering: Is controlling our climate possible?

by Colleen Golja figures by Brad Wierbowski Articles with dystopian titles like “Is it OK to Tinker With the Environment to Combat Climate Change?” and “To Curb Global Warming Science Fiction May Become Fact” have begun to surface regularly in prominent news sources like The New York Times, The Guardian, NPR, The Economist, and many others. Just this past October, a cinematic portrayal of a climate-modified … Continue reading Solar Geoengineering: Is controlling our climate possible?

Plant Viruses: An oft-forgotten threat to food security

by Fernanda Ferreira figures by Shannon McArdel Semper augustus was once the most coveted flower in Holland . The Dutch were used to single-hued tulips, collectively called Couleren, but Semper augustus was something else. With its splashes of red on white, this bi-colored or variegated tulip became the symbol of tulipomania, a brief period during the Dutch Golden Age when a single tulip bulb could … Continue reading Plant Viruses: An oft-forgotten threat to food security

The Hot, New Normal: Temperature records broken… again

For the third year in a row, global average temperature records have been broken . Earth experienced the highest temperatures since we began keeping records back in 1880 and, compared to the average temperature of the 20th century (1901-2000), 2016 was nearly a full degree Celsius (0.94 oC) higher. Furthermore, since the beginning of the 21st century, average temperature records have been broken five times … Continue reading The Hot, New Normal: Temperature records broken… again

House Science Committee Retweets A Breitbart Denial of Global Warming

In an affront to the scientific community, the Science Committee of the House of Representatives recently retweeted a questionable Breitbart article which denied global warming. The cited Breitbart article claimed that warm temperatures in 2015 were due to a particularly strong El Niño, not a longer term trend of global warming, and that previous to 2015, there was actually a “global warming hiatus.” The article was … Continue reading House Science Committee Retweets A Breitbart Denial of Global Warming

Reconsidering the Risks of Nuclear Power

by Jordan Wilkerson figures by Shannon McArdel The United States emits an immense amount of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, it is extremely likely that the rising global temperature trends since the mid-20th century is dominantly due to human activity. No scientific organization of national or international standing disputes this. Furthermore, the US Department of Defense has … Continue reading Reconsidering the Risks of Nuclear Power

Engineering the Earth to Fight Climate Change

by Katie Dagon Imagine if we had an “undo” button for climate change – we could remove all the greenhouse gases from the air or cool the planet’s temperature in an instant. While this might sound like science fiction, the basic idea is not as far off as you might think. Reducing fossil fuel use is really important, but also really difficult. And even if … Continue reading Engineering the Earth to Fight Climate Change