US oceans and atmosphere agency releases scientific integrity policy

US oceans and atmosphere agency releases scientific integrity policy

It has been a long time in the making, but the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) finally released its scientific integrity policy, which prohibits agency employees from distorting science and protects the rights of NOAA scientists to speak openly about their work and to report wrongdoing.

The Dead (and departed) Sea

The Dead (and departed) Sea

Sediments pulled up from a drilling project in the Dead Sea suggest that the salty lake completely disappeared about 120,000 years ago, a finding that violates assumptions long held by scientists. The results, reported at a meeting of the American Geophysical Union in San Francisco on 5 December, raise questions about how the warming climate will affect the endangered sea, where water levels have been dropping rapidly in the past few decades.  Read more

Earthquake shakes eastern United States

Earthquake shakes eastern United States

Vibrations from a major earthquake in rural Virginia rattled residents across much of the Eastern United States today, prompting evacuations of many buildings in Washington DC, New York and Boston. Ivan Semeniuk, from Nature’s Washington DC bureau, snapped this image of evacuees on Pennsylvania Avenue, within sight of the Capitol building.

Evidence of puddles on Mars

Evidence of puddles on Mars

Posted on behalf of Adam Mann Scientists no longer debate whether water exists on Mars. There is water ice at the planet’s poles and abundant evidence of frost and subsurface ice in other spots. What’s not settled is whether water currently flows openly on the surface at times, creating gullies in craters and dunes. Most of the time, Mars’ surface stays below the freezing point of water and its atmosphere is so thin and dry that any open water should quickly evaporate. On 10 March, a couple of scientists presented new evidence of liquid water on the Martian surface. The  … Read more

Oil spill commission calls for stronger science role

Oil spill commission calls for stronger science role

In its final report, the presidential commission investigating the Gulf Oil Spill called for scientists to play a more important role in the federal government’s decisions about where to allow offshore oil production and also in how the government responds to spills.