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In Pa., Drilling Comes Into Focus

The vast, untapped natural gas reserves in Pennsylvania's Marcellus Shale are the subject of much debate. Scientists who are trying to shed light on the safety of drilling are facing a host of obstacles, including lack of funding and data. Susan Phillips Scientists who are trying to shed light on the safety of drilling are facing a host of obstacles.
NPR

Climate Talks Go Longer Than Expected

The United Nations climate conference in Durban, South Africa, was scheduled to wrap up Friday, but the negotiations have gone into overtime. Host Scott Simon talks with NPR's Richard Harris about what is still under discussion.
NPR

Newly Discovered Black Holes Are Largest So Far

Astronomers at the University of California, Berkeley, recently discovered two massive black holes more than 300 million light-years away and 10 billion times the size of the sun. Host Scott Simon talks with Professor Chung-Pei Ma, who led the team that published the study.
NPR

Climate Strategists: To Cut Emissions, Focus On Forests

The basic idea is to have rich countries that emit lots of climate-warming gases pay poorer countries to keep their forests, or even expand them. That's because forests suck carbon from the atmosphere. But there's not yet a global system to make a plan like this work.
NPR

What Countries Are Doing To Tackle Climate Change

Key portions of the Kyoto Protocol are set to expire at the end of 2012. But many of the world's major greenhouse gas emitters have already set national targets to reduce emissions, and they're forging their own initiatives to meet those goals.
NPR

US Military Keeps Wary Eye On Asia's Space Race

In Asia's Space Race: National Motivations, Regional Rivalries, and International Risks, Naval Postgraduate School professor James Clay Moltz discusses the potential militarization of fast-growing space programs in China, India, and Japan--and why US military officials are keeping watch.
NPR

Rats Show Empathy, By Freeing Trapped Companions

Reporting in Science, researchers write of an experiment in which rats worked to open the cages of trapped rats, but not empty or dummy-filled cages. Author Peggy Mason discusses empathy in non-primates, and the value rats place on freeing a companion--about equal to that of a stash of chocolate chips.
NPR

Python Could Help Treat Heart Disease

Adult Burmese pythons can swallow prey as large as deer. Now, researchers from the University of Colorado, Boulder say the way the python's heart balloons after it eats could help treat human heart disease. Molecular biologist Leslie Leinwand discusses her team's python experiments.

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