The U.S. Geological Survey joins its many partners in other
federal agencies, at universities, and in state and local
governments in recognizing the importance of the Water
Resources Research Act (WRRA) of 1964.
Signed into law 50 years ago by President Lyndon B. Johnson on
July 17, 1964, the WRRA established a Water Resources Research
Institute in each state and Puerto Rico.
A new global geologic map of Mars –the most thorough
representation of the “Red Planet’s” surface – has been published
by the U.S. Geological Survey. This map provides a framework for
continued scientific investigation of Mars as the long-range
target for human space exploration.
Seasonal carbon dioxide frost, not liquid water, is the main
driver in forming gullies on Mars today, according to a recent
U.S. Geological Survey study that relied on NASA’s Mars
Reconnaissance Orbiter’s (MRO) repeated high-resolution
[Jim] Walker and construction crews building a new 220-foot-high
dam at Calaveras Reservoir in the remote canyons east of Milpitas
have been digging up a prehistoric treasure trove: the teeth of
an extinct hippopotamus-like creature called a Desmostylus,
clams, barnacles and the giant teeth from a 40-foot-long shark –
and what could turn out to be an entire whale skeleton.
“During the last year, whole oceans worth of water have been
found in the [Earth's] mantle, hundreds of kilometers below the
crust. And a paper in today’s [June 12] issue of Science traces
water’s influence all the way down to an important boundary
inside the Earth, the top of the lower mantle.”
“California’s drought is imperiling tricolored blackbirds, large
trees and native fish, with some of the affected species already
on the state’s endangered list and others likely headed there
because of rapidly declining numbers, scientists say.”
“On her way to visit the Kearney Agricultural Research and
Extension Center in Parlier on Monday, University of California
President Janet Napolitano got a bird’s eye view of California
cropland and rivers dry from the drought — a sight she hopes the
universities can help fix through continued research and
“By crunching data from the Central Valley, eBird can generate
maps showing where virtually every species congregates in the
remaining wetlands. … The BirdReturns program, financed by
the Nature Conservancy, then pays rice farmers in the birds’
flight path to keep their fields flooded with irrigation water
from the Sacramento River as migrating flocks arrive.
From the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
National Climatic Data Center (NCDC):
“Drought is a unique climate event, which often begins with
subtle effects but can end up being incredibly costly and
devastating. Paleoclimatology, or the study of past climate prior
to instrumental records, allows scientists not only to collect
evidence of past climate conditions, such as drought, but also
provides them with a means to investigate the climate processes
underlying these conditions.
“Inside a moon of Saturn, beneath its icy veneer and above its
rocky core, is a sea of water the size of Lake Superior,
scientists announced on Thursday.
“The findings, published in the journal Science, confirm what
planetary scientists have suspected about the moon, Enceladus,
ever since they were astonished in 2005 by photographs showing
geysers of ice crystals shooting out of its south pole.”
From the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Science Features blog:
“The 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia will be
featuring many exciting events for the world to see. Though the
Olympics Games is the premier athletic competition worldwide,
the games also bridge the gap between science and sports by
covering a number of Earth science topics as well. …
“The U.S. Geological Survey compiles water use statistics every
five years and hopes to build towards a National Water Census.
From Greenversations, An EPA Blog About Science Matters, in a
post by Marguerite Huber:
“EPA researchers studying green infrastructure (using
vegetation, soil, and other naturalistic techniques to reduce
stormwater runoff) collaborated with colleagues in the Agency’s
New England office (EPA Region 1) to develop a new
public-domain software app called the Watershed Management
Optimization Support Tool (WMOST).
“The goal of the tool is to help water resource managers and
planners identify cost effective, sustainable green
infrastructure options for their local jurisdictions.
“California’s current drought is being billed as the driest
period in the state’s recorded rainfall history. But scientists
who study the West’s long-term climate patterns say the state has
been parched for much longer stretches before that 163-year
historical period began.”