The Science of Sustainability

Biology

The Fungus Among Us Could Help Clean Oily Soil

The Fungus Among Us Could Help Clean Oily Soil

There’s more to fungi than just mushrooms. Buried in the soil live large fiber networks of fungi. And these fibrous microbes might be able to help clean up polluted soil.

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The Man Who Made California Safe for Mountain Lions

The Man Who Made California Safe for Mountain Lions

More than 40 years ago, Sen. John Dunlap (D-Napa) made conservation history when his mountain lion hunting moratorium passed the California Legislature and became law in 1971. He recalls the fight to pass the bill and his guiding principle, "when in doubt, preserve."

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Why Your Newfound Uniqueness is a Nightmare for Your Doctor

Why Your Newfound Uniqueness is a Nightmare for Your Doctor

A couple of new studies confirm what many of us have feared: each of us is surprisingly unique genetically. This is to be feared because of the impact it will have on the future of personalized medicine.

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It's Summer Vacation Time for the California Least Tern

It's Summer Vacation Time for the California Least Tern

The least tern, smallest of our three tern species, will be with us for the summer.  They arrive along California’s shore with their tuxedo colors and distinctive white “V” on their forehead in late April.

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California's Deadlocked Delta: Is Carbon Farming the Future?

California's Deadlocked Delta: Is Carbon Farming the Future?

California’s Delta has a rich agricultural legacy, but farming there can be a risky business. Dozens of farms have been flooded over the past half century as aging levees have collapsed. Now, scientists are encouraging farmers to switch to a new crop. Instead of growing vegetables, they’d grow something that has all but disappeared in the Delta: wetlands.

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Making Women Partners in Breast Cancer Research

Making Women Partners in Breast Cancer Research

Dr. Susan Love, breast cancer surgeon and women's health advocate, has long railed against cancer researchers' fixation on treatments and cures. After spending more than $4 billion on breast cancer research, we still don't know what causes the disease or how to prevent it. It's time to focus on looking for causes, she says. And she wants your help.

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Tomorrow’s Science Illustrators Step Up To the Plate

Tomorrow’s Science Illustrators Step Up To the Plate

Science illustration began in a time when drawing was the only way to record the anatomy of a bird or the life stages of a flower. But is illustration still useful today, when it seems every cell phone has an 8 MB camera with zoom, auto-focus and image stabilization?

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Your Videos on QUEST: Kip Evans

Your Videos on QUEST: Kip Evans

Kip Evans is a natural history documentary filmmaker and photographer from Pacific Grove, California. This is an excerpt of his short film, “Isla Holbox: Whale Shark Island."

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Heron Spotting in Golden Gate Park

Heron Spotting in Golden Gate Park

It's prime time for Great Blue Heron viewing at Golden Gate Park's Stow Lake. Visit in the next couple of weeks to see newly-hatched chicks learning to fly. Heron chicks hatch from eggs that are slightly bigger than a chicken’s and grow to full size in just 10-12 weeks.

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Personalized Medicine: A Potential Tool for Predicting Disease?

Personalized Medicine: A Potential Tool for Predicting Disease?

We may finally be at the threshold of the age of personalized medicine. In a recent study, scientists were able to predict that a man was at a higher risk for developing Type 2 diabetes and over a two-year period tracked his health as he developed the disease.

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Tag Along On Science Adventures: The Field Trip Podcast

Tag Along On Science Adventures: The Field Trip Podcast

Season 2 of the science podcast, "The Field Trip" premieres today.

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California's Deadlocked Delta: Can We Bring Back What We've Lost?

California's Deadlocked Delta: Can We Bring Back What We've Lost?

California's Delta is a far cry from what it once was. About 97% of its historic marshes have been lost and scientists aren’t quite sure what the Delta once looked like. Now, a Bay Area group is working to reconstruct it through ecological detective work.

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“The Art of Nature” Educates and Inspires

“The Art of Nature” Educates and Inspires

The First Friday Art Tour took place on May 4th at the Santa Cruz Museum of Natural History's exhibit, "The Art of Nature."

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Exploring Corals of the Deep

Exploring Corals of the Deep

Off California's coastline, thousands of feet below the deep blue ocean where the sun's rays don't reach, teems a diverse community of deep sea corals. Armed with unmanned submarines equipped with robotic arms, sensors and HD cameras, scientists are exploring this treasure trove of corals and the rich marine life living among them.

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California's Deadlocked Delta: Can it Be Fixed?

California's Deadlocked Delta: Can it Be Fixed?

The Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta has been the subject of a decades-long water war, but most Californians have never heard of it. Why is it so important? And can the state ever break the water deadlock?

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Different Deltas: Q&A with Jason Peltier of Westlands Water District

Different Deltas: Q&A with Jason Peltier of Westlands Water District

QUEST Radio Reporter Lauren Sommer interviews Jason Peltier, Deputy General Manager of Westlands Water District, a 600,000 acre agricultural district on the west side of the San Joaquin valley.

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Different Deltas: Q&A with Barry Nelson of the Natural Resources Defense Council

Different Deltas: Q&A with Barry Nelson of the Natural Resources Defense Council

QUEST Radio Reporter Lauren Sommer interviews Barry Nelson, Senior Policy Analyst with the Natural Resources Defense Council about the pressures on the Delta ecosystem and the competing plans to manage them.

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What is California’s Delta?

What is California’s Delta?

If you’re like most Californians, you’ve probably never heard of the Delta or why it’s important to the state’s economy and wildlife. In three minutes, we’ll explain how the Delta is a key part of California’s water supply and why it’s been the focus of a decades-long water battle.

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Classification Challenge: Documenting Microbes, Biodiversity’s Hidden Treasure

Classification Challenge: Documenting Microbes, Biodiversity’s Hidden Treasure

Figuring out how many species inhabit Earth remains one of science’s most enduring, and elusive, challenges.

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Can Ancient Fish Art Inform Modern Fish Science?

Can Ancient Fish Art Inform Modern Fish Science?

Groupers are enormous fish. Some species grow over two meters long and weigh hundreds of kilograms. Fortunately for groupers and for the scientists studying them, these fish are aesthetically appealing as well as huge and tasty.

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