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Methane: It’s Not Just for Jupiter Any More






By Jason Klein, Environmental Writer and Editor The molecule methane (CH4) can be found on many planets in our solar system, including Earth. Its presence is essential for life as we know it, and can be found in the guts of cattle and termites. Methane is also a by-product of plant decomposition, and is the […]

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Part 7: Earth’s Carbon Cycle






Luisa Cristini, PhD, University of Hawaii at Manoa [Note from the editor: This is the seventh in a series of blog entries that will focus on introductory topics in climate dynamics and modeling, and will be a great insight into the current understanding of the science.] The carbon cycle is the biogeochemical cycle by which […]

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Should Methane Be Our First Line of Attack to Slow Global Heating?






By Penny Paugh Scientist Peter Cox, speaking at the University of Exeter (United Kingdom), recently suggests that the way to win the battle with greenhouse gases is to lower methane emissions. In fact, curbing methane may be the best way to stem dangerous warming. Methane is released in many ways: landfills, livestock, rice paddies, coal […]

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Tracking Pollutants in the Atmosphere






By Penny Paugh Researchers have launched the 5-phase HIPPO (HIAPER Pole-to-Pole Observation) project that generates detailed mapping, vertically and across latitudes, of the global distribution of greenhouse gases, black carbon and related chemical species in the atmosphere. Scientists hope HIPPO’s detailed view will allow them to more realistically approximate the global atmosphere’s chemical distribution and […]

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Recent studies on melting permafrost






Scientists in Siberia, Alaska and the Arctic are researching what happens when the tiny microbes, the residue of animals and plants that lived thousands of years ago, become exposed with melting that has been occurring with the warming of the planet. They have found that typically melting permafrost releases carbon dioxide. In September 2006, a […]

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