Though summer melting is a yearly occurrence in the Arctic sea, this year set a new benchmark: Three-fourths of the ice melted away. Scientists say the effects of this unprecedented melting are likely to result in extreme weather changes throughout the Northern Hemisphere.
Melissa Block talks to Jack Crayon, an environmental scientist at California's Department of Fish and Game, about odd smells that have invaded a large area in Southern California. He says it smells like the gases from the Salton Sea.
A center for scientists to study what helps dogs succeed in search-and-rescue operations opens Tuesday at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Cynthia Otto, who created the center, and Annemarie DeAngelo, the center's training director, tell Fresh Air why they depend on their canine companions.
More sea ice in the Arctic Ocean melted in the summer of 2012 than at any time since scientists began tracking the phenomenon. NPR science correspondent Richard Harris discusses how the historic loss of ice cover could affect weather conditions around the world.
Birds are drawn to the blue berries of the tropical Pollia condensata plant; scientists are just as intrigued with the small shiny fruits. A recent study shows that the berries are more intensely reflective than any other living thing.
In a study with about 4,000 Thai schoolchildren, a vaccine for dengue fever works well against some strains of the dengue virus. But the overall level of protection was lower than hoped for. The results suggest that a vaccine for dengue fever can be developed eventually.
Emerging science shows that people respond more favorably to warnings about climate change when it's portrayed as a health issue rather than as an environmental problem. Should the symbol for danger be a child instead of a polar bear?
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