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Ecologists publish research on soil’s potential to increase the Earth’s CO2

MANHATTAN, KANSAS — Soil, an important part of the carbon cycle, might compound the world’s carbon dioxide problem, according to a global study involving Kansas State University researchers and Konza Prairie Biological Station. The study, “Quantifying global soil carbon losses in response to warming,” recently published in Nature, predicts that soils may release large quantities of carbon dioxide in response …

Avoiding spiritual struggles and existential questions is linked with poorer mental health

Fear of confronting the tensions and conflicts brought on by existential concerns—the “big questions” of life—is linked with poorer mental health, including higher levels of depression, anxiety and difficulty regulating emotions, according to a new Case Western Reserve University study. “Religious and spiritual struggles—conflicts with God or religious people, tough questions about faith, morality, and the meaning of life—these are …

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Research into extreme weather effects may explain recent butterfly decline

Increasingly frequent extreme weather events could threaten butterfly populations in the UK and could be the cause of recently reported butterfly population crashes, according to research from the University of East Anglia (UEA). Researchers investigated the impact of Extreme Climatic Events (ECEs) on butterfly populations. The study shows that the impact can be significantly positive and negative, but questions remain …

Drone

US Drone Program to Remain in Shadows as Obama Abandons Key Reform Promise – Deirdre Fulton

U.S. President Barack Obama has made a sharp U-turn on his two-year-old promise to move the CIA’s controversial drone program out of the “legal shadows,” according to new reporting by the Huffington Post. In a May 2013 speech at the National Defense University, Obama vowed to move the “out of the covert shadows and into the relative sunlight of the Defense Department,” writes HuffPo reporter Ali Watkins, …

boeing emp

Boeing Unveils Amazing, Slightly Terrifying New Electromagnetic Pulse Weapon – Rich Smith

Born into Generation X, I grew up with the threat of nuclear war — and all its corollaries, from visions of mushroom clouds to “duck and cover” drills in high school to Terminator movies, and of course, the ever-present worry that one day a sneaky Soviet satellite would detonate way up in the sky and fry all of our electronics with an …

nano water wires

WATER’S CURVY SURFACE FORMS TINIEST WIRES

A new technique that uses water to create patterns of wires less than 10 nanometers wide could be promising for the semiconductor industry as it seeks to make circuits ever smaller. The technique, developed by the lab of chemist James Tour at Rice University, builds upon its discovery that the meniscus–the curvy surface of water at its edge–can be an …