Invasive Species

Emerald ash borer by Bill Schlesinger Even a century ago, the arrival of pests and pathogens from Europe wreaked havoc on American elm and chestnut trees, leading to their near…

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The Pursuit of Happiness

by Bill Schlesinger Numerous studies link per capita energy consumption to the greater health and well-being of people in various nations worldwide.  Question is: does this correlation extend continuously from…

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Oil and water don’t mix

by Bill Schlesinger Each time an accidental spill coats thousands of seabirds with oil, worldwide opinion is galvanized against off-shore oil production.  Witness the wreck of the Exxon Valdez tanker…

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What is BECCS anyway?

by Bill Schlesinger When trees are used for biomass energy, they are first pelleted, then dried and shipped to a power plant—all energy consuming activities. When burned, all the carbon…

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Greenland Ice

by Bill Schlesinger Warming springtime temperatures bring another season of melting to the icepack on Greenland.  Containing roughly 2,850,000 km3 of ice, in some places more than 3000 m thick, Greenland…

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Forest attributes

by Bill Schlesinger When we think of tropical deforestation, we usually focus on its contributions to global climate change.  Burning is associated with deforestation, converting the carbon in the trees…

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Drugs in your drinking water

by Bill Schlesinger In the developed world, humans enjoy the benefits of a wide variety of pharmaceuticals that can regulate almost any aspect of our physiology—blood pressure, blood sugar, blood…

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No good deed goes unpunished

by Bill Schlesinger About 15 years ago, the Environmental Protection Agency instituted the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) for cars to reduce our nation’s emissions of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere…

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Methane: a synoptic view

by Bill Schlesinger In recent months, there has been a lot of attention devoted to methane emission as a contribution to the gases in the atmosphere that cause global warming.  …

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Smoke, mirrors, and wood pellets

by Bill Schlesinger Wood-pellet producer, Enviva, recently announced that it would double its harvest of forest biomass in the Southeast as a contribution to reducing the impact of climate change. …

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