[Image: Australia’s Cadia gold mine, photographed by Jacky Ghossein for Getty Images, spotted at the Big Picture].
L.A. Times | “Ozone from Asia is wafting across the Pacific on springtime winds and boosting the amount of the smog-producing gas found in the skies above the Western United States,” the L.A. Times reports.
Economist | “Much of [California’s central valley] was an inland sea in its geological past,” we read in the Economist, “and its alluvial soils and Mediterranean climate make parts of it, particularly the San Joaquin valley in the south, about the most fertile agricultural region in the world. But this status is at risk because water, the vital ingredient to make the soil productive, is increasingly scarce.”
Popular Science | Undersea Cables Could Be Used as an Early Tsunami Detection System: “Monstrous tsunami waves, like the one that killed over 200,000 people in the Indian Ocean in 2004, create an electric field as they form. This field could possibly be sensed by a network of underwater sensors.”
ABC | “U.S. military veterans are sorting through a massive government archaeological collection that has been neglected for decades, with the hope of archiving the stone tools, arrows and American Indian beads that were found beneath major public works projects.”
Scientific American | Simulating the growth of the Tokyo subway system using slime mold: “A Japan-based research team found that if they placed bits of food (oat flakes) around a central Physarum polycephalum [slime mold] in the same location as 36 outlying cities around Tokyo, the mold created a network connecting the food sources that looked rather like the existing rail system.”
[Image: A “shipworm invasion” is threatening “thousands of Viking vessels and other historic shipwrecks” in the Baltic Sea, National Geographic reports; photo by Paul Kay, Oxford Scientific Photolibrary].
Scientific American | “Wind energy could generate 20 percent of the electricity needed by households and businesses in the eastern half of the United States by 2024, but it would require up to $90 billion in investment,” according to Scientific American.
BBC | “A new US assessment of Venezuela’s oil reserves could give the country double the supplies of Saudi Arabia,” we read at the BBC.
Brookings Institution | The Suburbanization of Poverty: “Suburbs saw by far the greatest growth in their poor population and by 2008 had become home to the largest share of the nation’s poor.”
Washington Post | “The gravelly beaches of Prince William Sound are trapping the oil [from the Exxon Valdez] between two layers of rock, with larger rocks on top and finer gravel underneath… creating a nearly oxygen-free environment with low nutrient levels that slowed the ability of the oil to biodegrade.”
Financial Times | Stray dogs in Moscow are “evolving greater intelligence and wolf-like characteristics”—as well as an ability to use the subway.