The Obama Administration’s new budget for NASA was released last week, and calls for cuts to many space programs. But one California-based project is likely to get more money. The SOFIA flying observatory, a telescope mounted on an airplane, is considered more nimble and cost-effective than other projects. Reporter Lauren Sommer recently caught a ride as it flew over the Pacific Ocean.
A third of Bay Area roads are in poor condition and funding is dwindling on the state and federal level. That’s something Congress is discussing in Washington this week. Meanwhile, researchers at two University of California campuses are trying to find ways to stretch those sparse dollars, by making pavement quieter, greener and more durable.
If you’ve ever spent time in Silicon Valley or among hi-tech entrepreneurs, you may have heard the term “Valley of Death.” It’s used to describe the huge gulf that can exist between coming up with a new idea, and getting a product to market. Well, this is a real problem in hospitals, too. Especially when it comes to kids.
California officials are considering the toughest regulations in the country to promote sales of cars powered by batteries, hydrogen fuel cells or other technology that produces little or no air pollution. These kind of tough mandates have been tried before but they failed. So is this finally the right time for the clean car?
Grab your binoculars and checklist! The annual Audubon Christmas Bird Count is under way. During the last two weeks of the year, from dawn to dusk volunteers spread out over 22,000 count areas, including Peru, Haiti, the U.S. and Canada. Their tally is used by scientists to understand changes in bird populations.
2011 has been a record-breaking year for extreme weather events. Both the government and insurance companies try to plan for these events by predicting the risk. But as Lauren Sommer reports, climate change is making that tougher.
A massive database like what the VA is building would allow scientists to compare thousands of anonymous medical records with just a few keystrokes, to study conditions such as cancer and PTSD.
Dumping garbage into the bay wasn’t only convenient, it served the larger goal of getting rid of the bay entirely.
Smart meters are providing California households with their hourly and daily energy use information for the first time. Consumers use less electricity, studies have shown, when they can see that data. But getting them to pay attention to energy in the first place may be the biggest hurdle.
The largest energy user in the United States is the U.S. Military. Its annual energy bill runs about $15 billion dollars a year, which is why the Department of Defense has developed a keen interest in finding other ways to meet its energy needs, including investing in alternative energy.
Coal produces nearly half the electricity in the U.S., but the mercury, sulfur dioxide and carbon dioxide it emits also makes it one of the most controversial energy sources. For many environmental activists, coal represents an old, dirty source of power, but for coal-mining communities around the country, the story is different.
Coal generates half of all the electricity in the U.S. It’s also the biggest source of global-warming emissions and other air pollution. The coal industry says the answer is not to phase out coal, but instead to produce “clean coal.” Anne Glausser of QUEST Ohio reports on the difficult path for clean coal.