10 in 2 - Week of December 11th - climate change broke the algorithm

  • This is your 10 in 2 for the week of December 11th

 

 

...so here we go:

 

  1. New research, published Wednesday in Science Advances, is the largest study ever conducted on fracking’s health effects. It found that mothers who live very close to a fracking well are more likely to give birth to a less healthy child with a low birth weight—and low birth weight can lead to poorer health throughout a person’s life. (The Atlantic)

  2. When checking November meteorological data from a site in Alaska, scientists discovered their climate monitoring station had reported no data for the entire month. Upon closer inspection, they realized an algorithm had removed all the data from that Arctic site for the month of November; it simply thought it was an outlier. It was not. Climate change broke the algorithm. (CNN)

  3. Rock salt helps reduce winter road accidents. But it can also have serious, negative effects on aquatic ecosystems. At high concentrations, salt can be fatal to some aquatic animals and can also change the way the water mixes and lead to the formation of salty pockets near the bottom of lakes, creating biological dead zones. (CNN)

  4. Boyan Slat, an 18-year-old from the Netherlands, created a  u-shaped buoy made of high-density polyethylene nearly two kilometers in length, with a screen extending a few meters below. With any luck, five of these buoys will be deployed in the great pacific garbage patch by 2020. (Singularity Hub)

  5. David Attenborough warns that “The damage we are inflicting on species and ecosystems is so extensive and profound that scientists now believe we are witnessing Earth’s sixth mass extinction event – the last one marked the end of the dinosaurs,” (Inverse)

  6. World Bank, which provides loans to developing countries to foster economic growth, announced on December 12 that it will no longer offer financial support for oil and gas exploration after 2019. It is important to note that this is not necessarily a moral decision: The economics surrounding the energy sector are increasingly making it more fiscally attractive to switch to renewable energy. (Science Alert)

  7. In the opinion section of the Guardian, an atmospheric scientist for NASA named Peter Kalmus argues that because 25,000 of his colleagues flew to a conference last weekend, leaving a colossal carbon footprint in their wake, such action makes their warnings less credible to the public. He calculates the emissions from these flights emitted 30,000 tonnes of CO2. (The Guardian)

  8. A new report, conducted by the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research in Germany,  found that around 90 percent of the plastic polluting our oceans comes from just ten rivers. The biggest offenders are indeed two of the largest rivers in the world, the Yangtze and the Ganges carrying over 900,000 tons of plastic between them to the ocean every year. (New York Post)

  9. Using taxpayer dollars, the Environmental Protection Agency has hired a cutting-edge Republican PR firm that specializes in digging up opposition research, to help Administrator Scott Pruitt’s office track and shape press coverage of the agency. This. Is. fine. (Mother Jones)

  10. The tiny Pacific island nation of Palau has introduced a new law requiring visitors to sign a pledge not to harm the environment before entering the country. Visitors will be required to sign before proceeding through immigration, making a formal promise to the children of Palau to “tread lightly, act kindly and explore lightly”. (The Guardian)

 



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