sustainability

News articles classified as sustainability

Solar panels largely confined to wealthy Americans

Tax rebates for installing residential solar power have done little to spur adoption in low-income communities in the United States, while a less common incentive seems to succeed, according to new research using AI and satellite images.

Stanford Engineering —

The cleanest drinking water is recycled

New research shows treated wastewater can be safer and more dependable than common tap water sources, including rivers and groundwater.

Beaver dams buffer rivers against climate extremes

American beaver populations are booming in the western United States as conditions grow hotter and drier. New research shows their prolific dam building benefits river water quality so much, it outweighs the damaging influence of climate-driven droughts.

For a longer-lasting battery, make the most of each cell

The secret to long life for rechargeable batteries may lie in an embrace of difference. New modeling of how lithium-ion cells in a pack degrade show a way to tailor charging to each cell’s capacity so EV batteries can handle more charge cycles and stave off failure.

Whales eat colossal amounts of microplastics

Analysis of ocean plastic pollution and whale foraging behavior tracked with noninvasive tags shows whales are ingesting tiny specks of plastic in far bigger quantities than previously thought, and nearly all of it comes from the animals they eat – not the water they gulp.

Predicting drought development using plant processes

Based on new analyses of satellite data, scientists have found that hydrologic conditions that increase flash drought risk occur more often than current models predict. The research also shows that incorporating how plants change soil structures can improve Earth system models.

Sustainable health care

The health care sector accounts for almost 10% of U.S. emissions and is one of the country’s largest producers of waste. What can be done to make it more sustainable, while maintaining safety?

Wildfire smoke exposure hurts learning outcomes

Pollution from wildfires is linked to lower test scores and possibly lower future earnings for kids growing up with more smoke days at school, a new study finds. Impacts of smoke exposure on earnings are disproportionately borne by economically disadvantaged communities of color.