The Real-Life Effects of Trump’s Environmental Rollbacks: 5 Takeaways From Our Investigation
Dec 27, 2018

By Eric Lipton, Steve Eder, and John Branch For nearly two years, President Trump has pursued an aggressive, far-reaching effort, lobbied for and cheered on by industry, to free American business from what he and many of his supporters view as excessive environmental regulation. The consequences are starting to play out in noticeable ways in …

Apollo Astronaut Says It Would Be ‘Stupid’ to Send People to Mars
Dec 27, 2018 · 1 

By Dan Robitzski According to one of the astronauts aboard NASA’s 1968 Apollo 8 mission, it would be “stupid” and “almost ridiculous” to pursue a crewed mission to Mars. “What’s the imperative? What’s pushing us to go to Mars? I don’t think the public is that interested,” said Bill Anders, who orbited the Moon before …

Romaine to Honey Smacks Cereal: Why Were There So Many Foodborne Outbreaks in 2018?
Dec 26, 2018

By Rachael Rettner From E. coli-tainted romaine lettuce to Salmonella in cereal, this year certainly had its fair share of foodborne illness outbreaks. Health warnings had consumers discarding bags of lettuce, searching their cupboards for recalled cereal and avoiding premade wraps at grocery stores. All of this might have left you wondering: Why did we seem to have so …

If Science and Religion are at War, Science is Winning
Dec 26, 2018 · 1 

By David G. McAfee The conflicts between religion and science have existed and been well studied for generations, yet many people deny they exist at all. As someone who studied religion in college, I’ve seen both sides of this. On one hand, it’s true that many people apply religion and science in different ways, meaning they …

Measles outbreaks in U.S. and Europe should be a wake-up call for states with loose immunization rules
Dec 26, 2018

By the LA Times Editorial Board Public health officials in New York and New Jersey are fighting a measles outbreak that has sickened dozens of people since November, most of them unvaccinated members of orthodox Jewish communities. The virus was traced to travelers from Israel, which is dealing with its own measles outbreak at the …

Winter Solstice: The Science of the Shortest Day of 2018
Dec 21, 2018

By Laura Geggel The winter solstice is in full stride today (Dec. 21), which boasts the fewest hours of daylight for 2018 in the Northern Hemisphere. Although the solstice gets an entire day of recognition, it happens in an instant: at 15:23 p.m. EST (10:23 p.m. GMT), when the North Pole is at its farthest tilt of …

Ancient genomes help to pinpoint origins of Aboriginal remains
Dec 20, 2018

By Ewen Callaway The remains of Indigenous Australians — taken from their resting places after European colonization — could now be returned, with help from ancient-DNA sequencing techniques. In a 19 December paper1 in Science Advances, researchers showed that they could accurately match DNA from ancient Aboriginal Australian remains to modern inhabitants from the same geographical area. The …

“Farout!” Newfound Object Is the Farthest Solar System Body Ever Spotted
Dec 18, 2018 · 3 

By Sarah Lewin A newly discovered object is the most-distant body ever observed in the solar system—and the first object ever found orbiting at more than 100 times the distance from Earth to the sun. The discovery team nicknamed the object “Farout,” and its provisional designation from the International Astronomical Union is 2018 VG18. Preliminary …

Caught in the Act—Astronomers Get Their Best Look Yet at a Supernova Blowing Up
Dec 17, 2018

By Shannon Hall Georgios Dimitriadis thought he had botched the data. It was late on a Friday night and the University of California, Santa Cruz, astronomer was the last one in the office. He had been waiting anxiously for NASA’s planet-hunting Kepler space telescope to stream a batch of data toward Earth—not because he wanted …

The Anti-Choice War on Fetal Tissue Research Got a Congressional Hearing
Dec 17, 2018

By Katelyn Burns The anti-choice movement’s ongoing war on fetal tissue research moved to the halls of the U.S. Congress on Thursday as lawmakers held a congressional committee hearing seeking input on potential fetal tissue alternatives for use in medical and scientific research. The hearing, held by two House Oversight and Government Reform subcommittees, was chaired by anti-choice Rep. Mark …

What’s the Weather On Mars? How NASA’s Insight Lander Will Find Out.
Dec 17, 2018 · 1 

By Sarah Lewin NASA’s new Mars lander isn’t quite ready to probe the Red Planet’s interior yet, but it’s starting to get the lay of the land on the surface — and in the atmosphere. The InSight lander is already deploying its powerful meteorology package to monitor the Red Planet’s weather. InSight touched down on the …

Half-Size, Ruffle-Headed Relative of Triceratops Discovered
Dec 14, 2018

By Laura Geggel If head frills were a fashion statement, a newly identified 73-million-year-old triceratops relative was certainly at the top of its game. The newfound dinosaur named Crittendenceratops krzyzanowskii sported a fancy frill on the top of its head, a new study finds. In fact, it’s the youngest-known dinosaur of its clade (the nasutoceratopsins), as well …