Scientists at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne in Switzerland created a new breed of robots to advance their research in robotic movements. But the cheetah-cub robot is not the first animal to bound across laboratory floors. Scientists have produced a “mechanical menagerie” of robots that mimic four legged mammals, compact insects, and everything in between.
As the Earth progressively warms with climate change, species that are not able to adapt to shifting temperatures will be propelled towards extinction. Yet according to a new study by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) published in research journal Plos One, the majority of species that are most vulnerable to climate change are not given conservation priority.
A national park on the moon? Preposterous? Not if the Apollo Lunar Landing Legacy Act, put forward by Congresswomen Donna Reed (D – Maryland) and Eddie Bernice Johnson (D – Texas) passes. We could very well be on our way to having a national park on the Moon protecting sites of historical value – where men first set foot on the moon.
Lists are immensely popular these days and there are lists for almost anything. I was curious if there is a list for oxymora, or contradictions in terms, and sure enough there is – oxymoronlist.com. I was prompted on my search because of the recent appearance of the term “sustainable intensification” and I wanted to see if it appeared on the site. It turns out Sustainable Intensification is not listed on oxymoron.com, which begs the question as to whether someone should go online and add it to the list?
In 2011, the U.N. announced that the world population had reached 7 billion. This year’s new projections for future population growth are higher than previously expected. Projects like Millennium Cities hope to alleviate many of the pressures that crowded cities place on infrastructure, public services, and the environment.
Trees play a vital role in cleaning air and absorbing carbon dioxide.
The Biosphere really needs its own newspaper. Yes, there are lots of newspapers out there, but when it comes to the Biosphere, important stories just don’t get the top billing they deserve. Take discoveries of new species, for example. Just in the last month, a new spoon worm, white toothed shrew, corpse flower, and tailorbird were all discovered – this would be front-page material for the Biosphere Times, if such a paper existed, but good luck finding these stories in the mainstream papers.
In the nine-hour drive on the great Dalton Highway to Toolik Field Station one starts out in the boreal forest, which is also called the “taiga,” but the forest eventually disappears. More accurately, trees disappear. Leaving Fairbanks, one drives through beautiful stands of spruce, birch, and aspen trees, but as one gets closer and closer to the Brooks Range, a beautiful mountain range one has to cross to get to the tundra, the climate gets colder, the permafrost builds, and the forest begins to disappear.
When you travel northbound on Alaska’s famous Dalton Highway heading toward the Arctic Sea, the northern edge of the world, you carry a radio to communicate with the enormous rigs that roar along the road, the giant trucks made famous by the History Channel’s Ice Road Truckers. Radio messages between truckers and non-truckers are simple and polite. They let each other know when it’s safe to pass, if a wide load is coming your way, or if the conditions ahead are dangerous or treacherous – snow drifts, slush flows, avalanches, washouts and the like.
It is well known that biological diversity underpins the functioning of ecosystems and the services that they provide. However, in a new study, researchers at the University of California-Santa Cruz demonstrate that higher levels of biodiversity are required in order to maintain multiple ecosystem functions simultaneously, over time.