Scientists at Florida State University are researching the fate of carbon released from during the thawing of long frozen permafrost soils in the arctic. According to their Geophysical Research Letter published this week, microorganisms are rapidly consuming the ancient carbon released from the permafrost, metabolizing it into carbon dioxide, and releasing it back into the environment. A dangerous cycle is underway whereby the regions of the Earth where permafrost is found continue to warm due to climate change and release more carbon which makes its way to the atmosphere as carbon dioxide via microorganisms and further contributes to climate change.
With death toll from Saturday's devastating magnitude 7.8 earthquake reaching 3,000, Nepal is struggling to deal with the problems caused by the main as well as the strong aftershocks taking place in the region. United Nations estimate that nearly 5 million people were affected by the worst earthquake in Nepal in the last 80 years.
A London-based architecture firm says it can eliminate the shadows that buildings cast over urban areas starved of sunlight. The firm devised a plan to build paired skyscrapers in such a way that sunlight reflected by one fills in the shadow of the other. Thought the shadow of the reflecting building would remain, calculations show that the concept would reduce the total amount of shade produced by the buildings by up to 60 percent, according to the NBBJ firm.
As of April 24th, Costa Rica has generated all of its electricity this year using only renewable resources. In a report released last week, the Costa Rican Electricity Institute believes the energy streak is likely to continue, estimating that Costa Rica will end 2015 having obtained 97% percent of its energy from renewables.
Accurate measurement of water flow has been for years difficult to perform, not to mention prediction of the water's path which is easily altered by the smallest soil details. Very fine details diverging the groundwater's flow from the straight sequential line is a phenomenon also referred to as "preferential flow" and may deadly affect crops that depend on moisture, as well as chemical spills requiring containment. The new study deals with some important obstacles in the monitoring of the "preferential flow".
Slated at $10 billion, construction on the Fehmarn Belt Fixed Link could start as early as this year. At 11 miles long, the completed project will be the longest immersed tunnel in the world. It will run beneath the Baltic Sea and connect Denmark to Germany between the islands of Lolland and Fehmarn. Long in the planning, the bill finally giving the project the green light passed its first reading in the Danish Parliament this month. Construction could be completed as early as 2024.