The Science of Sustainability

QUEST Community Science Blog

Reflections on Friends and Heroes

Reflections on Friends and Heroes

One of the things I enjoy most about my job as a media producer is the opportunity to interact with the amazing people, places and things we profile in our stories.

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Has the Hydrogen Highway Become a Good Idea Again?

Has the Hydrogen Highway Become a Good Idea Again?

Now, after an exciting discovery at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), the hydrogen highway is a good idea whose time may have come around.

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Local Hair Cleaning Up Gulf Oil

Local Hair Cleaning Up Gulf Oil

Clean up for the recent spill in the San Francisco Bay was partially cleaned up by hair. Hair is a great catalyst in absorbing oil.

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Hepatitis C: The Silent Epidemic

Hepatitis C: The Silent Epidemic

Hepatitis C is a virus that causes cirrhosis of the liver and liver cancer. It's the leading cause for liver transplants in the U.S., and an estimated 4 million Americans have the disease. Current treatments are difficult to tolerate and are often ineffective, but recent breakthroughs from Bay Area scientists may soon produce a cure for the disease that claims more than 10,000 American lives each year.

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Producer's Notes: Hepatitis C, Hope and Humanity

Producer's Notes: Hepatitis C, Hope and Humanity

I came to realize that hope has a lot to do with science. It’s the driving force for those who seek cures, for those who work to protect the environment, for those who search for solutions to the pain and problems facing humanity.

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Greening The Grow

Greening The Grow

Voters in California will consider a measure on the November ballot to legalize and tax marijuana. Amid the debate over pros and cons, another issue has been gaining visibility — the environmental damage pot cultivation can incur. Illegal pesticide use and creek water diversion at large-scale outdoor operations are well-documented. But environmental concerns are also growing over indoor marijuana cultivation, as Lisa Morehouse reports.

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What if the Geneticists are Wrong?

What if the Geneticists are Wrong?

What if most people or families had unique DNA differences that led to their disease? Then scientists have been going about finding the causes of genetic disease in the wrong way.

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Reporter's Notes: Greening The Grow

Reporter's Notes: Greening The Grow

Hardy’s lived in the hills of southern Humboldt County since the early ‘70s, when many people shared sense of idealism and environmental responsibility. That’s why he’s so upset about the environmental impacts of the big, indoor marijuana growing operations that have proliferated in the region.

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The Sun—Live In Your Own Backyard!

The Sun—Live In Your Own Backyard!

Chabot volunteers are running a live solar observatory for the public.

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The Great Migration

The Great Migration

For thousands of years and countless generations, migratory birds have flown the same long-distance paths between their breeding and feeding grounds. Understanding the routes these birds take, called "flyways," helps conservation efforts and gives scientists better knowledge of global changes, both natural and man-made. QUEST heads out to the Pacific Flyway with California biologists to track the rhythm of migration.

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QUEST Lab: Bridge Thermometer

QUEST Lab: Bridge Thermometer

The roadway across the Golden Gate Bridge rises and falls as much as 16 feet depending on the temperature. When the sun hits the bridge, the metal expands and the bridge cables stretch. As the fog rolls in, the cables contract and the bridge goes up. Curators from the Outdoor Exploratorium in San Francisco have set up a scope two miles away so you can see how the bridge is moving up or down depending on the weather.

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Producer's Notes: The Great Migration

Producer's Notes: The Great Migration

When people think of bird migration, most naturally think of water fowl. Ducks and geese seem to get a lot of attention in that regard.

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Sea Water Showdown

Sea Water Showdown

A plan being considered by California's State Water Resources Control Board would end the practice of allowing power plants along the coast to suck in ocean water to cool their machinery. Environmentalists say it kills millions of fish larvae, small animals and other ocean life, but the power industry says tighter rules would raise California's electricity prices, already among the nation's highest.

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Reporter's Notes: Sea Water Showdown

Reporter's Notes: Sea Water Showdown

Read about John Vincent's brush with death due to a cooling plant.

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Field Notes From New Orleans

Field Notes From New Orleans

Historians will one day come to view the post-Katrina rebuilding of New Orleans and the Gulf Coast as the first major example of green design and technologies.

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Would You Eat A Tiger For Lunch?

Would You Eat A Tiger For Lunch?

Most people don’t know that the animals we are eating from the ocean are vastly different from the animals we eat on land.

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Cool Critters: Dwarf Cuttlefish

Cool Critters: Dwarf Cuttlefish

What's the coolest critter in the ocean under 4 inches long? The Dwarf Cuttlefish! These little guys can change their color and texture, and feeding time is a show like no other. Get an up-close look at these tiny underwater aliens as QUEST visits them at the California Academy of Sciences.

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Science of Taste

Science of Taste

Did you know that about 95 percent of what we think is taste is actually smell? Or that the way we perceive flavor comes from a complex relationship between our senses, emotions and memories? As scientists decode how our taste and olfactory receptors work, top California chefs are taking that knowledge and creating alchemy in the kitchen.

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Producer's Notes: The Science Of Taste

Producer's Notes: The Science Of Taste

I love producing QUEST stories because there's so much I learn in the process. Who knew that 95 percent of what we think is taste is actually smell?

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Producer's Notes: Cool Critters – Dwarf Cuttlefish

Producer's Notes: Cool Critters – Dwarf Cuttlefish

They’re kind of like an octopus and kind of like a squid; they aren’t fish, and they’re not cuddly. But cuttlefish are some of the coolest critters you’ll ever find in the ocean.

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