Donate

RSSRadio

A Thirsty Town Debates Need for New Source of Water

KQED Science | December 22, 2014 | 3 Comments

A Thirsty Town Debates Need for New Source of Water

The central coast town of Cambria faced running out of water this year. This week, the town launches its new emergency water source, but some in the community believe a fight to shut it down is only just beginning.

Continue Reading

Designing the Interstellar Doorbell (Or How to Talk to ET)

KQED Science | December 15, 2014 | 0 Comments

Designing the Interstellar Doorbell (Or How to Talk to ET)

Humans have been sending messages into outer space for decades, hoping some intelligent extra-terrestrial might come upon them. Now, for the first time in history, we have addresses. So, what should we say?

Continue Reading

How California’s Water Rights Make It Tough to Manage Drought

KQED Science | December 8, 2014 | 12 Comments

How California’s Water Rights Make It Tough to Manage Drought

Here’s the thing: Water rights in California are based on who got there first. It’s as if you had to line up with all your coworkers to get a cup of coffee at work, and maybe the pot’s empty when the new guy gets to the front. Some are asking, in a drought like the one we’ve been having, is that really fair?

Continue Reading

California Drought Boosts ‘Cash for Grass’ Programs

KQED Science | December 1, 2014 | 5 Comments

California Drought Boosts ‘Cash for Grass’ Programs

California homeowners are replacing Kentucky bluegrass with native species and other water-friendly options to try and cut back on outdoor watering. Depending on what replacement residents choose, water districts may offer a cash reward for tearing out that thirsty lawn.

Continue Reading

California Utilities and Solar Companies Battle Over Electricity Prices

KQED Science | November 24, 2014 | 16 Comments

California Utilities and Solar Companies Battle Over Electricity Prices

Solar companies in California have long been able to tell homeowners they can save a lot of money on power bills by going solar. Now PG&E is proposing a rate change the company says will be more fair for everyone. But solar companies say it’s simply an attack on their industry.

Continue Reading

Designing California Cities for a Long-Term Drought

KQED Science | November 18, 2014 | 11 Comments

Designing California Cities for a Long-Term Drought

Scientists say it’s possible California’s drought may last a lot longer than a few years. No one knows for sure, but we could all simply have to adjust to a drier climate. That could mean changing the way we build cities to make them more porous. The 'Hydramax,' a futuristic design pictured above, rises with the tide and captures water from the air.

Continue Reading

Parched: California Wildlife Suffers in Drought

KQED Science | November 10, 2014 | 0 Comments

Parched: California Wildlife Suffers in Drought

Birds, salmon and snakes depend on marshes and rivers for survival and migration, and to propagate the species. But many wildlife species are unable to find the water they need as the drought shrinks rivers and dries up wetlands.

Continue Reading

Aging U.S. Icebreaker Fleet May Imperil Polar Science

KQED Science | November 3, 2014 | 0 Comments

Aging U.S. Icebreaker Fleet May Imperil Polar Science

The last of the Coast Guard's big icebreakers departs San Francisco Bay this week, a rare sight on the Bay and a reminder that the U.S. is falling behind in the race for polar dominance -- and knowledge.

Continue Reading

‘Bionic Eye’ Allows Some Blind People to See Light

KQED Science | October 27, 2014 | 1 Comment

‘Bionic Eye’ Allows Some Blind People to See Light

A California woman recently became the first person in the West to receive a new type of bionic eye, an implant that will help her see for the first time in nearly three decades.

Continue Reading

Drought-Stressed Crops May Be Better For You

KQED Science | October 20, 2014 | 1 Comment

Drought-Stressed Crops May Be Better For You

Scientists in California's Central Valley are testing the nutrient content of fruits grown with less-than-normal amounts of water. And the findings so far are raising a question: will consumers buy fruits that are just as nutritional, or sometimes higher in antioxidants, if they aren't as pretty?

Continue Reading

25 Years After the Loma Prieta Earthquake, Are We Safer?

KQED Science | October 13, 2014 | 1 Comment

25 Years After the Loma Prieta Earthquake, Are We Safer?

Bay Area taxpayers have spent billions of dollars over the last quarter-century to make our bridges, water pipes and power supplies safer in an earthquake. Experts say that means the Bay Area is much better off now. At the same time, the work is far from over.

Continue Reading

With Drought, New Scrutiny Over Fracking’s Water Use

KQED Science | October 10, 2014 | 6 Comments

With Drought, New Scrutiny Over Fracking’s Water Use

The drought is putting a spotlight on water use around California, including for hydraulic fracturing. How much water does fracking use and will it increase as companies tap into the Monterey Shale, estimated to be the largest oil resource in country?

Continue Reading

Anti-Fracking Activists in California Take Fight to County Ballots

KQED Science | October 10, 2014 | 16 Comments

Anti-Fracking Activists in California Take Fight to County Ballots

Activists are hoping local residents will do what state legislators haven’t done -- shut down the controversial oil production technique known as hydraulic fracturing.

Continue Reading

Do Wearables and Health Apps Belong in the Doctor’s Office?

KQED Science | October 6, 2014 | 2 Comments

Do Wearables and Health Apps Belong in the Doctor’s Office?

Wearables and health apps made a multi-billion-dollar industry out of healthy peoples' desires to count calories and rack up steps. Now can this technology make the transition to a medical setting, to help people with chronic illnesses?

Continue Reading

How Big Data Is Changing Medicine

KQED Science | September 29, 2014 | 3 Comments

How Big Data Is Changing Medicine

Used to be that medical researchers came up with a theory, recruited subjects, and gathered data, sometimes for years. Now, the answers are already there in data collections on the cloud. All researchers need is the right question.

Continue Reading

Finding Faults: Scientists Close in on Napa Quake Origins

KQED Science | September 22, 2014 | 1 Comment

Finding Faults: Scientists Close in on Napa Quake Origins

The South Napa Earthquake revealed how much we've yet to learn about seismic faults in the Napa Valley.

Continue Reading

Why More Trees in the Sierra Mean Less Water for California

KQED Science | September 15, 2014 | 26 Comments

Why More Trees in the Sierra Mean Less Water for California

California water districts are eyeing a potential new source of water: trees. After a century of fire suppression, Sierra Nevada forests are more dense than ever before. And those pine trees are taking up a lot of water that might otherwise run off into California rivers.

Continue Reading

Finding the Next Ebola Before it Breaks Out

KQED Science | September 8, 2014 | 0 Comments

Finding the Next Ebola Before it Breaks Out

Scientists at UC Davis are scouring the globe to find new viruses that can jump from animals to humans. Their goal is to prevent the next pandemic.

Continue Reading

Drought Myth-Busting: Why El Niño Is Never A Good Bet

KQED Science | September 1, 2014 | 3 Comments

Drought Myth-Busting: Why El Niño Is Never A Good Bet

The peculiar set of ocean conditions is known as a California rainmaker -- but El Niño's reputation has been greatly exaggerated.

Continue Reading

After Record-Breaking Rim Fire, Log Trees or Leave Them?

KQED Science | August 26, 2014 | 2 Comments

After Record-Breaking Rim Fire, Log Trees or Leave Them?

Later this week, the U.S. Forest Service will release plans to allow logging companies to harvest some of the dead trees. Some environmental groups say it would destroy important wildlife habitat.

Continue Reading