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Drought’s Lasting Impact on Forests

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In a global study of drought impacts, forest trees took an average of two to four years to resume normal growth rates, a revelation indicating that Earth's forests are capable of storing less carbon than climate models have assumed.

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Playing 'Tag' with Pollution Lets Scientists See Who's It

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Using a climate model that can tag sources of soot and track where it lands, researchers have determined which areas around the Tibetan Plateau contribute the most soot -- and where. The model can also suggest the most effective way to reduce soot on the plateau, easing the amount of warming the region undergoes. The study, which appeared in Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics in June, might help policy makers target pollution reduction efforts.

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Tiny Grains of Rice Hold Big Promise for Greenhouse Gas Reductions, Bioenergy

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Rice is the staple food for more than half of the world’s population, but the paddies it’s grown in contributes up to 17 percent of global methane emissions -- about 100 million tons a year. Now, with the addition of a single gene, rice can be cultivated to emit virtually no methane, more starch for a richer food source and biomass for energy production, as announced in the July 30 edition of Nature and online.

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Iowa State Professor Returns From Cuba with a Sense of Optimism

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Rose Caraway recently returned from Cuba after witnessing the opening of the U.S. Embassy in Havana. It’s a moment the Iowa State University assistant professor of religious studies has hoped for ever since she first traveled to Cuba 12 years ago.