Tag Archives: hurricane katrina

New Research Will Help Shed Light on Role of Amazon Forests in Global Carbon Cycle

Berkeley Lab scientists devise new tools for detecting previously unknown tree mortality.

The Earth’s forests perform a well-known service to the planet, absorbing a great deal of the carbon dioxide pollution emitted into the atmosphere from human activities. But when trees are killed by natural disturbances, such as fire, drought or wind, their decay also releases carbon back into the atmosphere, making it critical to quantify tree mortality in order to understand the role of forests in the global climate system. Tropical old-growth forests may play a large role in this absorption service, yet tree mortality patterns for these forests are not well understood.

Now scientist Jeffrey Chambers and colleagues at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have devised an analytical method that combines satellite images, simulation modeling and painstaking fieldwork to help researchers detect forest mortality patterns and trends. This new tool will enhance understanding of the role of forests in carbon sequestration and the impact of climate change on such disturbances. (more…)

Read More

NASA to Launch Ocean Wind Monitor to Space Station

PASADENA, Calif. – In a clever reuse of hardware originally built to test parts of NASA’s QuikScat satellite, the agency will launch the ISS-RapidScat instrument to the International Space Station in 2014 to measure ocean surface wind speed and direction.

The ISS-RapidScat instrument will help improve weather forecasts, including hurricane monitoring, and understanding of how ocean-atmosphere interactions influence Earth’s climate. (more…)

Read More

Raising Science, Nature Awareness through Essay Writing

UA Professor Alison Hawthorne Deming is a highly regarded poet and essayist who, at most every turn, works to translate matters of science and nature into poetry and prose.

Consider your tactile and sensory reality.

For some, the sound of birds stirring awake with the dawn of day, the plop fish make when hitting water, the strong scent of sagebrush and moist pine or the feel of soft soil underfoot are all foreign.

Given the tremendous rate of scientific and technological advancements at a time when people are increasing moving to urban areas, the bond between humans and the natural world seems, at times – and is, indeed, for some – strained.

But the association is not foregone. (more…)

Read More

UA Studies Social Dynamics in Post-Katrina New Orleans

Gifting during Mardi Gras in New Orleans fostered social cohesion, researchers found in a study.

In the immediate aftermath of a natural disaster, the focus is on physical repair and reestablishment of the market economy.

“But the moral economy – the relationships between people – also needs repair. In the case of Hurricane Katrina, residents’ sense of New Orleans as a connected community was damaged,” said Soldwedel Professor of Marketing Melanie Wallendorf of the University of Arizona Eller College of Management. (more…)

Read More

One Year after Triple Disasters, Japan Continues to Struggle

EAST LANSING, Mich. — A year after Japan was struck by triple disasters – earthquake, tsunami and nuclear meltdown – many citizens cannot find regular work and face the possibility of never returning to their homes and seeing their communities disappear, according to a Michigan State University scholar.

Ethan Segal, associate professor of Japanese history, made two trips to Japan following the March 11, 2011, catastrophe, spending close to two weeks in the northeastern part of the country that was most directly affected. (more…)

Read More

Good Journalism, not 24-7 News Cycle, Will Drive New York Times, Says Top Editor

The new top editor of The New York Times told a Yale audience Friday that her overriding mission is to enforce the paper’s high standards as it continually adapts to the dynamics of digital age news delivery.

“What joins us every day is that we’re all working to produce the best news report in the world,” Jill Abramson, the Times’ executive editor, said during a packed Berkeley College Master’s Tea held at Sterling Memorial Library. (more…)

Read More

Irene Highlights Critical Roles of Government, Public

EAST LANSING, Mich. — As Tropical Storm Irene shows, dealing with natural disasters is a two-way street: Both the government and the public play a critical role in curtailing the effects, according to a Michigan State University political scientist.

In her new book “Dealing with Disaster,” Saundra Schneider contends it’s not the size of the disaster or the amount of money spent on relief that determine success or failure of an emergency response. Instead, it’s the “inevitable gap” between government procedures and the collective behavior of victims. (more…)

Read More