Some of our favorite research stories from Stanford Earth scholars in 2016.
Stanford Earth scholars had a busy year. As part of their continual efforts to better understand the Earth and investigate solutions to some of our most pressing problems, they conducted research across a breathtaking span of topics and ages, covering everything from the "de-greening" of Asia millions of years ago to the use of satellites to identify poverty-stricken regions in modern-day Africa. Here, in chronological order, is a list of some of our favorite stories of 2016:
The findings could help solve an outstanding mystery about the global ocean conveyor belt and improve future climate forecasts.
On the fifth anniversary of the partial meltdown at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi Power Plant, Stanford's Rodney Ewing says we should rethink our language, reassess natural disaster risks and appreciate the links between nuclear energy and renewables.
Bubbles – yes, bubbles – could help protect coral reefs, oyster farms, and other coastal ecosystems from increasing ocean acidification, according to new research by Stanford scientists.
New research indicates that California’s Central Valley harbors three times more groundwater than previously estimated, but challenges to using it include pumping costs, ground subsidence and possible contamination from fracking and other oil and gas activities.
A new 3-D printing technique developed at Stanford will help pave the way for studying delicate or hard-to-collect rock samples from afar, whether they be from a volcano on Earth or the surface of Mars.
Accurate information on the location of impoverished zones is surprisingly lacking for much of the world. Applying machine learning to satellite images could identify regions of poverty in Africa.
In today’s oceans, larger-bodied marine animals are more likely to become extinct than smaller creatures, according to a Stanford-led report. It’s a pattern that is unprecedented in the history of life on Earth, and one that is likely driven by human fishing.
Efforts to adopt effective marine protected areas in the Southern Ocean, a global commons containing the world’s most pristine marine ecosystems, are being thwarted by political infighting and fishing interests.
The first large-scale map of rainfall declines revealed by signatures in ancient soil could help researchers better understand profound regional and global climate transformation.
A new study finds that just a few natural gas wells account for more than half of the total volume of leaked methane gas in the United States. Fixing leaks at those top emitters could significantly reduce leaks of methane, a potent greenhouse gas.
Using remote sensing tools to uncover the environmental impacts of war, researchers introduce novel approaches for hard-to-reach areas.