What would happen if an ocean current were pushed off course - and why might that occur? The Agulhas Current, which flows southwest along the eastern coast of Africa, presents an opportunity to test these questions. Although the conventional understanding suggests that currents would intensify along their existing paths, a recent study in Nature suggests that stronger surface winds are causing the Agulhas' path to broaden and meander, and to become more chaotic. Read the full story in EARTH Magzine.
Some of the world's richest fossil locales are in Mongolia: For instance, you can find dinosaur fossils every few steps in the country's Flaming Cliffs. But many Mongolians have no idea their country has such a treasure trove of dinosaurs because the specimens are often removed and displayed in other countries. However, one Mongolian paleontologist is working to change this paradigm by introducing children to dinosaur science and rebuilding Mongolia's fossil collection. Read the full story in EARTH Magazine.
Alexandria, VA - M.J. Tykoski, an eighth grade teacher at Cooper Junior High School in Wylie, Texas, has been named the 2017 recipient of the Edward C. Roy, Jr. Award for Excellence in K-8 Earth Science Teaching. Tykoski earned her Master's degree in Educational Leadership from Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona. She is a member of several professional organizations, including the Texas Earth Science Teachers Association, and is the recipient of numerous grants and awards. She was a finalist for last year’s award.
A series of "atmospheric river" storms have brought thirst-quenching rain to much of California, but much of that water is contributing to high - and in some cases dangerous, as seen with the Oroville Dam - levels of runoff. In the April comment for EARTH Magazine, Jeffrey Mount, a senior fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California Water Policy Center, provides timely insight into what he calls "a blessing and a challenge for California water managers." Read more in EARTH Magazine's April comment, live today at EARTH online.
Where there's smoke, there's fire - but what's in the smoke? A recent air quality study from the University of Colorado Boulder has confirmed earlier laboratory experiments that show that grass and crop fire smoke carries greater amounts of nitrogen-containing volatile organic compounds (NVOCs) than wood fire smoke. Read the full story in EARTH Magazine.
Alexandria, VA - The American Geosciences Institute (AGI) Workforce Program announces the release of its annual Status of Recent Geoscience Graduates report. The report details the results of the 2016 Geoscience Student Exit Survey, documenting trends trends in geoscience coursework, enrollment, student experiences, as well as a recent shift in hiring patterns for new graduates.
Do you know the earthquake risk in your neighborhood? If not, that information is now available in the palm of your hand. Founded by two former U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) employees, Temblor is a free app that allows people to view interactive seismic hazard maps on their smartphones, tablets or computers. It also teaches U.S. homeowners to factor earthquake and landslide risk into their financial decisions, like where to live and what insurance to buy. The February issue of EARTH Magazine takes a closer a look at Temblor, highlighting the app's recent successes and goals for the future.
It makes for a dramatic narrative: Roughly 252 million years ago, a mass extinction event killed up to 96 percent of marine life, earning an infamous name in the geologic record, "the Great Dying." However, a new study suggests that this cataclysmic event has been overestimated. In the February issue of EARTH Magazine, read how a University of Hawaii paleontologist is improving our understanding of mass extinction events by exploring the effects of natural variability on background extinction levels, revealing a clearer signal in the noise.
In April and May 2015, a bloom of toxic algae spanned more than a thousand miles of Pacific coastline, from Santa Barbara, Calif., to British Columbia. Marine organisms were poisoned throughout the food web, disrupting coastal ecosystems and economies for months. Similar events are expected to become more frequent as the oceans and atmosphere adjust to a warming climate. In the February issue of EARTH Magazine, read how scientists are working to better understand the 2015 Pacific bloom, hoping to apply lessons learned in responding to future events.
The latest research suggests humans first arrived in the Americas as early as 16,000 years ago, but using which path - along the Pacific coast, through an inland ice-free corridor, or from the East along the Atlantic coast - remains controversial. Archaeologists and geologists are working to try to answer the question of how and when the first Americans arrived. In the January issue of EARTH Magazine, their work is showcased, reexamining the origins of our shared geoheritage in light of new evidence.