The Science of Sustainability

QUEST Community Science Blog

Geological Side Trips from Interstate 80: Through Folsom to Loomis

Geological Side Trips from Interstate 80: Through Folsom to Loomis

An hour of crowded freeway or a jaunt through granite, greenery and history? The choice is yours.

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Top Cats: How Pumas and Other Apex Predators' Populations Affect The Big Biodiversity Picture

Top Cats: How Pumas and Other Apex Predators' Populations Affect The Big Biodiversity Picture

Apex predators exert far-reaching effects on ecosystems that surface just decades after their disappearance. Santa Cruz researchers hope to understand how human activities and development affect how pumas use the landscape to help mitigate conflicts and plan for the species' long-term survival.

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Air Pollution Lurks Inside Your Home

Air Pollution Lurks Inside Your Home

Californians spend over 45 billion dollars each year on health impacts due to indoor air pollution. Scientists at Berkeley Lab have identified the indoor air pollutants with the greatest health consequences, and they are now looking for ways to improve indoor air quality.

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Another Try For California's Second National Conservation Area

Another Try For California's Second National Conservation Area

Just north of the Bay Area is a vast and varied expanse of land and water that could be in line for new federal protections. The proposed Berryessa-Snow Mountain National Conservation Area would link wilderness zones and other lands in five counties. But it’s been a tough sell in some parts.

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Grappling with Rising Tides

Grappling with Rising Tides

Climate change and rising tides are predicted to take a toll on our shoreline areas in the Bay Area. Find out more about last winter's King Tides and what actions are underway to help plan for future sea level rise.

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Landslide at the Calaveras Reservoir

Landslide at the Calaveras Reservoir

The long-running dam replacement project must pause to deal with a sleeping monster.

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Do Now #74: Earth Day

Do Now #74: Earth Day

Calling all students on this Earth Day: Do you make it a regular practice to care for the environment? If so, what do you do? If not, why?

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Fund Basic Research, It’s For Your Own Good

Fund Basic Research, It’s For Your Own Good

The budget proposal by the Obama administration is a mixed bag in terms of funding for science.

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Two Local Kids Are Semi-Finalists in a National Wildlife Art Contest

Two Local Kids Are Semi-Finalists in a National Wildlife Art Contest

A pair of local young artists have won a big environmental prize.

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Brain Mapping: From the Basics to Science Fiction

Brain Mapping: From the Basics to Science Fiction

Obama's BRAIN Initiative directs $100 million in public money toward basic brain research. But what's the goal?

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Antiques Roadshow of the Solar System

Antiques Roadshow of the Solar System

As a space-faring culture, we have now left our marks across the solar system, on planets, moons, asteroids, and in the empty space between them. Some of these “marks” are yet-functioning robotic spacecraft. Some are litter, scattered about the place like so many discarded soda cans, plastic grocery bags, depleted batteries, and defunct electronic devices. Are we trashing our solar system?

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Gallegos Winery and the Hayward Fault

Gallegos Winery and the Hayward Fault

The new BART extension will bring riders to one of the best exposures of the Hayward fault.

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Fire Safety without Harm

Fire Safety without Harm

Last week, scientists and regulators from more than 20 countries gathered in San Francisco to discuss the latest research on flame retardants. The conference lasted four days, but the theme of the meeting was clear from just a few talks: Do we need toxic chemicals to achieve fire safety?

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Bay Area Biotech Industry Braces for Gene Patenting Court Case

Bay Area Biotech Industry Braces for Gene Patenting Court Case

The Supreme Court is hearing a case on a key question: can you patent a human gene?

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Dabbling and Diving Ducks: Catch the Spring Show

Dabbling and Diving Ducks: Catch the Spring Show

Ducks are getting ready to make their seasonal migration away from San Francisco Bay. Come see them in their breeding finery before they're gone for the summer.

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Beavers Return to San Jose

Beavers Return to San Jose

A family of beavers has taken up residence in the Guadalupe River, across from the HP Pavilion.

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Side Trips from Interstate 5: Great Valley Rivers and Grasslands

Side Trips from Interstate 5: Great Valley Rivers and Grasslands

It takes a million years to make a land this big and flat. Take a few hours to experience it.

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DNA Ancestry Tests: Simultaneously Powerful and Limited

DNA Ancestry Tests: Simultaneously Powerful and Limited

Don’t count on mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) ancestry tests giving you a broad understanding of your own family history. They won’t.

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Navy Training Raises New Concerns for Whales off California Coast

Navy Training Raises New Concerns for Whales off California Coast

As the whale migration season reaches its peak, new concerns arise over naval training exercises off the California coast.

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Solar Maximum: Fizzle, or Finale Yet to Come?

Solar Maximum: Fizzle, or Finale Yet to Come?

Has the sun's predicted Solar Maximum in magnetic activity ended early and after a disappointing performance–or is it getting ready to delivery a spectacular finale and a double-peak Solarmax?

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