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Water World

FROM THERMAL VENTS SEEPING ON THE SEAFLOOR to thunderheads massing in the mountains, Earth’s water is in constant flux. Nearly all of it is salty, held in oceans that cover most of the planet. Much of what’s left is frozen, locked up in glaciers, icecaps, snowpack, sea ice and permafrost. Of Earth’s freshwater, only a […]

An Educational Leap into the Shimmering Sea

THE OCEAN IS KEY TO LIFE ON OUR PLANET, supplying every second breath of oxygen and transporting heat from equator to pole. Over 1 billion people receive their primary source of protein from the sea, and humans will be looking increasingly to marine aquaculture to feed a hungry planet. Over 90 percent of goods travel […]

The Blue Economy

IN THE FALL OF 2002, as the Klamath River dwindled in the wake of a dry summer, dead fish began piling up in eddies and small tributaries. Over a two-month period, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologists counted more than 34,000, mostly adult chinook salmon that had died on their way upstream to spawn. The […]

Changes in the Wind

When Peter Ruggiero meets with people in coastal communities to discuss climate change, he asks them to consider what they like most about where they live. And then he asks them to imagine the future. “We get people to think about the positive aspects of the coast, what they like about working and playing along […]

Facing Cascadia

IN JAPAN, NEARLY 20,000 PEOPLE DIED in the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami. The tragic aftermath struck home in the Pacific Northwest, which faces a similar risk from the Cascadia subduction zone. But we often forget the silver lining. In Japan, there were nearly 200,000 people in the inundation zones, so 90 percent of the […]

Coral Bleaching Goes Viral

WHEN TROPICAL WATERS WARM or get polluted, coral reefs may take drastic measures. They can expel the algae that provide them with stunning colors — and vital nutrients. So-called bleaching events have been documented across the globe with increasing frequency and can be fatal to the corals. Oregon State University researchers have discovered a new twist: […]