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Monday, September 18th, 2017

NASA Flights Map Summer Melt of Greenland Ice

Operation IceBridge is flying in Greenland to measure how much ice has melted during the summer. The flights, which began on Aug. 25, 2017, and will go on until Sept. 21, 2017, repeat paths flown this spring and aim to monitor seasonal changes in the elevation of the ice sheet. “We started to mount these

Monday, September 11th, 2017

Darkness Blooms off Brazil

In early September 2017, ocean scientists noticed something swirling in the waters off the coast of the Brazilian state of São Paulo. The sinuous threads of darkness amid the blue Atlantic Ocean were not caused by oil; they were the result of a phytoplankton bloom. The dark colors are probably high concentrations of dinoflagellates, according

Tuesday, August 1st, 2017

Rusting Fool’s Gold in Glaciers a Sign of Increased Carbon

According to a new study published by USC scientists in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, rock and soil breakdown in glaciers generates more acidity and releases more carbon than other forms of natural weathering. Perhaps most interestingly, it is the elevated oxidation of pyrite, popularly known as “fool’s gold,” in the glacial

Tuesday, July 25th, 2017

The Remote Paradise with a Plastic Problem

In the middle of the South Pacific Ocean, far from the urban, developed world, there’s a small, lush, green island with white sand beaches. However, this uninhabited, remote corner of the tropics—Henderson Island—also has a trash problem. The beaches of Henderson Island have the highest density of plastic waste in the world, according to a

Monday, July 17th, 2017

Esri and Microsoft Partner to Accelerate Conservation

Land-cover mapping is a critical part of conservation planning, but current methods for collecting detailed geographic data are highly labor-intensive. Advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) can help, but they’re not yet widely accessible to those on the front lines of conservation and mapping. To improve this situation, Esri is collaborating with Microsoft to

Tuesday, July 11th, 2017

SSL to Provide WorldView Legion Constellation to DigitalGlobe

  MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. announced that its subsidiary Space Systems Loral (SSL) was selected to provide a next-generation satellite constellation for high-resolution Earth imaging to DigitalGlobe. Called WorldView Legion, the Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites will more than double DigitalGlobe’s high-resolution capacity in important regions. The contract is valued at several hundred million

Tuesday, June 27th, 2017

Satellites Predicting Locust Plagues

Satellites are helping to predict favorable conditions for desert locusts to swarm, which poses a threat to agricultural production and, subsequently, livelihoods and food security. Desert locusts are a type of grasshopper found primarily in the Sahara, across the Arabian Peninsula and into India. The insect is usually harmless, but when they swarm they can

Tuesday, June 20th, 2017

High Temperatures Linked to Changes in Loggerhead Turtle Nesting

  Loggerhead turtles are particularly susceptible to climate change as the risk of nest flooding increases and the health of hatchlings declines. Florida holds the world’s largest nesting population of loggerheads, yet little is known about the species’ activity in nearby Cuba. A recent article published in Chelonian Conservation and Biology suggests changing climate may

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017

AGS White Paper: There Is No Downside to Sustainability

The American Geographical Society (AGS) released a White Paper, “A Geographical Framework for Sustainable Development,” which offers leaders in the public sector and private enterprise a geographically inspired long-term plan for confronting sustainability challenges facing the planet. With critical ecosystems increasingly under threat, conserving and restoring these ecosystems is key to promoting a sustainable future

Monday, June 5th, 2017

Satellites Observe More Bleaching of Great Barrier Reef

Studying European Space Agency (ESA) Sentinel-2 images captured over the reef between January and April 2017, scientists working under ESA’s Sen2Coral project noticed areas that were likely to be coral appearing to turn bright white, then darken as time went on. The event was confirmed by two successive images captured in February, indicating the approximate

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