hrvatska (790627) writes "An article at wunderground.com reports that researchers have linked large snowstorms and cold spring weather across Britain and large parts of Europe and North America to the dramatic loss of Arctic sea ice. It is thought that the Arctic ice loss adds heat to the ocean and atmosphere, which shifts the position of the jet stream allowing cold air from the Arctic to plunge much further south. Researchers expect that a warming Arctic ocean will drive more extreme weather in North America and Europe." Link to Original Source top
Global warming may increase the cost of electrical production
hrvatska (790627) writes "An article in the journal Nature Climate Change, details the results of an analysis on the effect that lower summer river flows and higher river water temperatures would have on thermoelectric power plants, which includes nuclear and fossil fuel plants. Many of these plants depend on an adequate supply of river water below a specific temperature to operate at full capacity. During recent warm, dry summers in 2003, 2006 and 2009 several thermoelectric power plants in Europe were forced to reduce production, because of restricted availability of cooling water. The limited supply of electricity in combination with increased production costs lead to significant rises in electricity prices. In the US a similar event in 2007–2008 caused several power plants to reduce production, or shut down for several days owing to a lack of surface water for cooling and environmental restrictions on thermal discharges. The authors of the article conclude that climate change will impact thermoelectric power production in Europe and the US through a combination of increased water temperatures and reduced river flow, especially during summer. In particular, thermoelectric power plants in southern and southeastern Europe, and the southeastern US will be affected by climate change." Link to Original Source top
NRC approves the design of Westinghouse's AP1000 r
hrvatska (790627) writes "The NY Times has an article about the US NRC commission approval of the design of Westinghouse's AP1000 reactor for the US, clearing the way for two American utilities to continue the construction of projects in South Carolina and Georgia. The last time a nuclear power plant in the US entered service was 1996. The AP1000 was discussed on/. in April of 2009. Since that time we've had the Fukushima disaster. Has the Fukushima disaster shifted anyone's opinion on the merits of or problems with the design of the AP1000?" Link to Original Source top
hrvatska (790627) writes "An article in the New York Times reports on a ban by the history department at Middlebury College on citing Wikipedia in papers or exams. The ban came after a number of students used inaccurate information from the same article on an exam. The ban is being actively debated at the school, and does not apply to all departments. Jim Wales, co-founder of Wikipedia, is quoted as saying "Basically, they are recommending exactly what we suggested — students shouldn't be citing encyclopedias. I would hope they wouldn't be citing Encyclopaedia Britannica, either." The article does not say whether or not the history department permits Encyclopaedia Britannica to be cited as a source."