Climate

  1. sea ice
    Earth

    Earth’s oceans are storing record-breaking amounts of heat

    2020 was just the latest in a series of record-breaking years for ocean heat.

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  2. sea fireflies
    Climate

    Ocean acidification may make some species glow brighter

    Ocean organisms use bioluminescence for hunting, defense and more. A new analysis shows that declines in water pH might change who glows and how much.

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  3. a nearly empty city street in New York City
    Climate

    What the pandemic can teach us about ways to reduce air pollution

    Data collected during COVID-19 shutdowns may help tease out the complicated chemistry that brews poor air quality.

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  4. Jet flying across sky
    Chemistry

    A new iron-based catalyst converts carbon dioxide into jet fuel

    Jet fuel made from carbon dioxide could one day reduce pollution from air travel.

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  5. East Troublesome Fire
    Climate

    Wildfires, heat waves and hurricanes broke all kinds of records in 2020

    Climate change did not take a break during the pandemic.

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  6. big cloud of smoke hovering over the top of the hill tops
    Earth

    Towering fire-fueled thunderclouds can spew as many aerosols as volcanic eruptions

    A massive plume of smoke lofted into the stratosphere during Australia’s fires may represent a new class of “volcanic-scale” pyrocumulonimbus clouds.

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  7. remote sensing instruments in the Arctic
    Earth

    In the past 15 years, climate change has transformed the Arctic

    Accumulating evidence and new tools have helped scientists better understand how the Arctic is changing, but the pace has been faster than expected.

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  8. Lava tube in New Mexico
    Archaeology

    Ancient people may have survived desert droughts by melting ice in lava tubes

    Bands of charcoal from fires lit long ago, found in an ice core from a New Mexico cave, correspond to five periods of drought over 800 years.

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  9. a photo of clouds
    Microbes

    50 years ago, scientists suspected microbes flourished in clouds

    In 1970, scientists presented early evidence that microbes in clouds may be alive and kicking.

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  10. Hurricane Harvey
    Climate

    Once hurricanes make landfall, they’re lingering longer and staying stronger

    Warmer ocean waters due to human-caused climate change can help power hurricanes’ fury even after they roar ashore.

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  11. Subtropical Storm Theta in radar
    Earth

    With Theta, 2020 sets the record for most named Atlantic storms

    Climate change is expected to fuel fewer — yet more intense — Atlantic storms. With a whopping 29 storms but few strong ones, 2020 may be an outlier.

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  12. iguana motionless after Florida cold snap
    Animals

    How frigid lizards falling from trees revealed the reptiles’ growing cold tolerance

    Some Florida lizards’ ability to handle temperatures down to 5.5° C may provide clues to how they might deal with the extremes of climate change.

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