What the World’s Largest Dump Truck Can Tell Us About the Physics of the Sun

Liebherr T- 282

Behold the mighty Liebherr T 282B dump truck! It is one of the two or three largest dump trucks in production. By many measures, it’s the largest dump truck in the world.  The Leibherr T 282B  is 14.55 metter long (48 feet), 8.7 meters wide (29 feet) and stands 7.4 meters tall—a towering 24 feet! … Continue reading

Natural History Books-“The Shark and the Jellyfish” and “Dawn Light”

Lonely Beach

I have loved and read natural history books since I was a small boy. In my teens, I discovered the natural history writing of the great anthropologist Loren Eiseley.  His writings and outlook made a huge impression on me. You can read some excerpts from his books at my Metta Refuge blog: The Star Thrower Finding … Continue reading

The Size and Scale of the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill

BP Gulf Oil Rig Explosion

Day after day, night after night, the oil from the BP Deepwater Horizon oil well boils out into the Gulf: Click HERE to see the oil discharge live.  The speed and volume of the outflow is truly incredible. Largely due to BP’s unwillingness to share data with outside experts, it’s very hard to determine just … Continue reading

The BP Gulf Oil Disaster-Send in the Microbes!

Our Friend - Alcanivorax borkumensis

As readers of my Extreme Science blog know, I try to bring to people’s attention the environmental disaster Earth’s ocean’s face if humanity doesn’t radically change its relationship to our planet. Here are some past posts on the subject: We’re Killing Our Oceans Global Warming and the Loss of Earth’s Coral Reefs The Moral Math … Continue reading

Biologist discovers world’s smallest snake, lizard, and frog!

Dwarf Gecko - Sphaerodactylus parthenopion

My article “The Largest Snake that Ever Lived” proved to be my most popular post to date.  It’s not surprising. First of all, snakes can be incredibly beautiful: And a truly big snake is an amazing sight: Big snakes naturally evoke both awe and fear—who knows, maybe we have ancient memories of being their prey: … Continue reading

How “Avatar” Inspires Love of Nature and Love of Science

Avatar - Yerik

Few recent movies have moved this nature-lover’s heart as much as the smash-hit “Avatar.” For anyone who loves nature and astonishingly beautiful plants and animals, the experiencing the world of Pandora was like entering a dream-come-true. In fact, that’s exactly how one New York Times reviewer described the movie—”a biologist’s dream.” The reviewer should know, … Continue reading

Amazing Oxygen-Key to Planetary Life

Great White Strike

One of the best science books I read in 2009 was Life Ascending: The Ten Great Inventions of Evolution by biochemist Nick Lane. Although I think I have a good basic understanding of fundamental biological processes, I didn’t find the book an easy read, frankly. This is no criticism of Lane’s writing. The biological processes … Continue reading

We’re Killing Our Oceans

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch may contain over 100 million tons of debris and is nearly the size of the continental United States.

As readers of my blog know, I’m passionate about saving our environment from the effects of human pollution and reckless industrialization. In Global Warming and the Loss of Earth’s Coral Reefs I discussed the scientific evidence for the disastrous effects of ocean warming and increasing CO2 in ocean water on our planets reefs. In The … Continue reading

The Moral Math of Climate Change

Moral Math of Climate Change

Click to listen to: The Moral Math of Climate Change [Speaking of Faith® from American Public Media] “A conversation about climate change and moral imagination with Bill McKibben, a leading environmentalist and writer who has been ahead of the curve on this issue since he wrote The End of Nature in 1989. We explore his … Continue reading

Global warming and the Loss of Earth’s Coral Reefs

divaricate_tree_coral_dendronephthya_roxasia_IMG_2328

I’ve been studying weather and climate almost my whole life. As a little boy and into my teen years, I was an avid amateur meteorologist and had my own backyard weather station.  Alas, except for hot weather, there wasn’t much extreme weather in Las Vegas, though we did have some exciting flash floods from time … Continue reading