The University of Arizona

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  • Thawing permafrost vents gases, worsening warming
    Saturday, December 3, 2011

    WASHINGTON - Massive amounts of greenhouse gases trapped below thawing permafrost will likely seep into the air over the next several decades, accelerating and amplifying global warming, scientists warn.

    Those heat-trapping gases under the frozen Arctic ground may be a bigger factor in global warming than the cutting down of forests, and a scenario that climate scientists hadn't accounted for, according to a group of permafrost experts. The gases won't contribute as much as...

  • Economics Professor Weighs Options for Climate Management
    Friday, December 2, 2011

    Derek Lemoine discusses options for managing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels.

    Combining policies aimed at removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere with those aimed at reducing emissions could decrease CO2 concentrations faster than natural processes alone, according to a new paper published in Climatic Change and co-authored by University of Arizona assistant professor of economics Derek Lemoine.

    ...

  • The Wild Cats in our Backyard
    Thursday, December 1, 2011

    The University of Arizona mascot is the Wild Cat, or bobcat, so it is only fitting that the university is involved in research and conservation initiatives for the benefit of wild cats all over the world. “Our mission is to conserve and research all 36 species of wild cats worldwide,” Lisa Haynes, of the University of Arizona Wild Cat Research & Conservation, told me at the recent BioBlitz in Saguaro National Park....

  • Big Solar Project Moves Forward Without Uncle Sam
    Wednesday, November 30, 2011

    We've heard a lot about Solyndra, a solar panel maker that went bankrupt despite lots of federal subsidies. But on Wednesday, a solar installation company and one of the country's biggest banks announced a billion-dollar project to put solar systems on the roofs of military housing. And they're doing it without the kind of federal help Solyndra got.

    When SolarCity CEO Lyndon Rive came up with a plan to put solar on the rooftops of military housing around the country, he...

  • University of Arizona Launches Community Garden
    Wednesday, November 30, 2011

    The north end of the Highland Parking Garage at the University of Arizona may look like a plot of vacant land right now, but plans for the facility call for greenery, both edible and not.

    “It’s about 16,000 square foot, in terms of the plot. Within that piece of land, you’re looking at a number of 20-by-3-foot sunken beds filled with compost and soil, ready to be planted,” says Chester “Chet” Phillips, a...

  • Arizona Illustrated Biosphere 2 Interview
    Tuesday, November 29, 2011

    Christopher Conover talks about the Biosphere 2 and we speak with local filmmakers.

  • Nations stake out positions as UN climate summit begins
    Tuesday, November 29, 2011

    DURBAN, South Africa - With heat-trapping carbon at record levels in the atmosphere, U.N. climate negotiations opened Monday with pressure building to salvage the only treaty limiting greenhouse gas emissions.

    The U.S., Europe and the developing countries laid out diverging positions at the outset, signaling tough talks ahead even as South African President Jacob Zuma called for national interests to be laid aside "for a common good and benefit of all humanity."

    As if...

  • Solar energy-storage project slow to develop but ready to ramp up
    Tuesday, November 29, 2011

    An energy storage-system research project at the University of Arizona Science and Technology Park has been slow to get going.

    But things will be ramping up soon, with the installation of a revamped compressed-air storage system and new battery systems in the next couple of months.

    Tucson-based photovoltaics maker Solon Corp. is teaming up with Tucson Electric Power Co. and the University of Arizona's Arizona Research Institute for Solar Energy (AzRISE) to build an energy...

  • Stern Discusses Possible Outcomes Of Climate Talks
    Tuesday, November 29, 2011

    Guy Raz speaks with Todd Stern, the U.S. special envoy for climate change. He talks about what will — and won't — be accomplished at the U.N. climate talks in Durban, South Africa. Stern predicts no binding agreement to reduce carbon emissions will come out of these talks. He says that's because developing countries such as China and India are not prepared to agree to reductions that would treat developing and developed nations equally. Stern points to the previous round...

  • Rain not enough to end Tucson's extreme drought
    Monday, November 28, 2011

    Tucson is still in an extreme drought, many experts say, although you wouldn't know it to look at some of our weather statistics:

    • The city has had near-normal rainfall totals, in the 10-plus-inch range, for two years running.

    • At Tucson International Airport, last summer's monsoon season was the 10th-wettest on record. The airport had its wettest September on record.

    • Enough rain fell here in early November that wildflower experts say this...