DNR weekend reading: The science of super-storm Sandy and what climate change means for coffee drinkers

Elk on DNR wind lease
These elk on a DNR wind lease on state trust lands near Vantage, Wash., are some of the estimated 1,000 elk that winter in the area each year. Photo: Mike Williams/DNR.

Here are links to recent articles of interest about the environment, climate change and other science topics for your DNR weekend reading:

Dot Earth (New York Times): How Natural Gas Kept Some Spots Bright and Warm as Sandy Blasted New York City
As New York City and other communities buffeted, flooded or darkened by the remains of Hurricane Sandy consider steps beyond the immediate recovery, officials, business owners and residents would be wise to spend time examining places where the power did not fail because of a parallel power network: natural gas lines.

Scientific American: The Science behind Superstorm Sandy’s Crippling Storm Surge
Would the East Coast’s best defense against future storms like Sandy be to accept the inevitability of flooding and prepare infrastructure to withstand it, as is common in other regions more historically prone to storm surge flooding? Or are there other options?

National Geographic Daily News: The Last Drop? Climate Change May Raise Coffee Prices, Lower Quality
A new study warns that, thanks to climate change, the most consumed coffee species, Arabica, could be extinct in the wild by 2080. While the stuff in our cups is brewed from their domesticated descendants, wild losses leave cultivated crops genetically vulnerable to a host of enemies, which could ultimately lead to lower quality and higher prices for coffee consumers.

Science Daily: Nanosilver from Clothing Can Pose Major Environmental Problems
Silver nanoparticles can have a severe environmental impact if their utilization in clothing continues to increase, especially when waste water treatment sludge containing the nanoparticles is subsequently used as fertilizer on agricultural land.

 

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