Earth

Lobsters are turning ocean pollution into harmful microplastics

Lobsters are turning ocean pollution into harmful microplastics

Human activity has resulted in a large number of plastic items in the ocean, where it slowly breaks down into small bits of plastic. These smaller pieces of plastic are then transformed into harmful microplastics, a process that includes an unlikely element: lobsters. According to a new study, lobsters that eat small pieces of plastic end up introducing microplastics into the water, which then puts smaller creatures at risk.

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NASA’s Aqua satellite snaps new image of Tropical Cyclone Herold

NASA’s Aqua satellite snaps new image of Tropical Cyclone Herold

Tropical Cyclone Herold, the big storm impacting northeastern Madagascar, is the subject of a new satellite image from NASA. The space agency's Aqua satellite captured an image of the storm's eye on Monday, the same day the image was published and only days after the cyclone began to form. The satellite image shows the eye of the storm, as well as higher clouds and 'powerful bands.'

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Study finds discarded LEGOs may last for up to 1,300 years in the ocean

Study finds discarded LEGOs may last for up to 1,300 years in the ocean

A newly published study has found that ordinary plastic LEGO bricks may last for up to 1,300 years in the ocean, highlighting the need to carefully dispose of plastic waste. The research involved LEGO bricks that had washed up on the South West England coastlines, thousands of pieces of which have been collected during beach cleanup efforts.

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NASA warns climate change is disrupting a major ocean current

NASA warns climate change is disrupting a major ocean current

Climate change resulting from human activities has caused a major ocean current to become more turbulent, according to a new study from NASA. The space agency, which also spends considerable time monitoring and studying our own planet, used satellite data spanning a dozen years to measure the Beaufort Gyre ocean current, finding that it is moving faster as a result of rapidly melting sea ice.

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Can NASA’s planetary system keep us safe from asteroids?

Can NASA’s planetary system keep us safe from asteroids?

While we’re struggling to get out of bed, deciding which pair of socks to wear to work, there is a group of people working hard to track asteroids that could literally end all life on Earth. No, it’s not the Avengers - they’re called the Planetary Defense Coordination Office (PDCO), but they may just be Earth’s mightiest heroes.

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The Galactic origin of Earth’s gold

The Galactic origin of Earth’s gold

This week a research paper was released with information about the most likely origin of all of Earth's most notorious precious metal. Two neutron stars, 4.6-billion years ago, smashed their bodies together and splashed out waves of matter, a bit of which eventually came to rest in our still-forming solar system.

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Oil-eating bacteria has been discovered in the deepest part of the ocean

Oil-eating bacteria has been discovered in the deepest part of the ocean

Researchers with the University of East Anglia have reported a unique discovery: bacteria that eats oil in one of the most mysterious parts of our planet. The microscopic critters were discovered in the Mariana Trench, the deepest ocean trench in the world. According to the study, the Mariana Trench has the highest proportion of oil-eating bacteria on Earth.

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Four-legged whale skeleton found in Peru is 43 million years old

Four-legged whale skeleton found in Peru is 43 million years old

Newly published research sheds light on the ancestors of modern day whales, describing creatures that lived millions of years ago and, oddly enough, swam through water using four legs. According to the study, paleontologists discovered the skeletal remains of one of these creatures in a Peruvian cave back in 2011. The fossil has enabled researchers to better understand the evolution of modern whales.

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North Dakota killing field offers snapshot of Earth’s last mass extinction

North Dakota killing field offers snapshot of Earth’s last mass extinction

For more than half a decade at a North Dakota site called Tanis in the Hell Creek Formation, paleontologist Robert DePalma has worked to unearth evidence of what is believed to be a 'killing field' established shortly after the impact of the asteroid that ushered in Earth's last mass extinction event. The site is home to the fossilized remains of many dead creatures ranging from fish to a dinosaur.

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Earth Day with Pokemon GO: A chat with Niantic about Civic & Social Impact

Earth Day with Pokemon GO: A chat with Niantic about Civic & Social Impact

In 2019, Niantic's got another Earth Day campaign planned. In a manner similar to 2018, Niantic and masses of gamers - Pokemon GO and Ingress included - will head out and clean up the planet. In 68 events and with "countless NGOs" taking part in the celebration, 6.5 tons of garbage were collected - and presumably put into landfills, mostly - but still, progress!* Here in 2019 we had a chat with Niantic's Civic & Social Impact Manager, Yennie Solheim Fuller, to see what the future holds.

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Philippines whale died after eating 88lbs of plastic garbage

Philippines whale died after eating 88lbs of plastic garbage

Earlier this month, workers with the D'Bone Collector Museum in the Philippines recovered the remains of a beaked whale that had appeared near Davao City. In its most recent update about the deceased animal, the museum revealed the whale's cause of death: the ingestion of approximately 88lbs of plastic. The materials were primarily composed of plastic bags, including shopping bags and rice sacks.

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Study finds some people can sense Earth’s magnetic field

Study finds some people can sense Earth’s magnetic field

Researchers with the University of Tokyo and Caltech have found evidence that humans may have the ability to sense magnetic fields. Many animals are known to possess magnetoreception, including birds and bees, but questions have remained over whether humans have the same ability. A newly published study potentially has the answer, detailing brain wave changes observed in isolated participants.

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