Science & Environment

Humans
5:12 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

Pitch-Perfect: Why Our Shoulders Are Key To Throwing

Harry Kaplan practices pitching during Home Run Baseball Camp at Friendship Recreation Center in June. Kaplan's arm is stretched long and toward the ground as his hips are faced away from the catcher. A chimp, in contrast, could never throw a fastball.
Heather Rousseau NPR

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 5:01 pm

The ability to throw a baseball or any object with speed and precision is unique to us humans. And that ability depends on certain features of our anatomy that arose in our ancestors over 2 million years ago, according to a study published in this week's issue of the journal Nature.

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The Salt
4:16 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

Can You Be Addicted To Carbs? Scientists Are Checking That Out

Eating refined carbohydrates like bagels may stimulate brain regions involved in reward and cravings, research suggests.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Sat June 29, 2013 9:33 pm

Fresh research adds weight to the notion that certain foods (think empty carbs like bagels and sweet treats) can lead to more intense hunger and overeating.

Fast-digesting carbohydrates can stimulate regions of the brain involved in cravings and addiction, according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

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Shots - Health News
4:10 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

NIH Takes Another Step Toward Retirement Of Research Chimps

Chimpanzees play at Chimp Haven, a retirement home for former research animals, in Keithville, La.
Gerald Herbert AP

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 9:32 am

The National Institutes of Health says it will retire hundreds of chimpanzees that the agency had been using for research. Animal rights activists see the move as a big step towards ending the use of chimps in research, but it will be awhile before any of the research chimps find their way into retirement homes.

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The Two-Way
2:42 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

Black Bear Roams In D.C., Days After Red Panda's Jaunt

A black bear was captured in northwest Washington, D.C., Wednesday, two days after Rusty the red panda escaped from the National Zoo into a nearby area.
YouTube

First there was Rusty, the red panda. Now there are reports that a bear was captured after roaming around in Washington, D.C., Wednesday, prompting (mostly unserious) concerns of a possible siege on the nation's capital.

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The Salt
9:03 am
Wed June 26, 2013

Fruity With A Hint Of Bologna: A Slacker's Guide To Wine Tasting

Swigging for science: A hint of oak, our wine tasting newbies learned, is more common in reds than whites. It's a marker for expense in both.
Heather Rousseau NPR

Originally published on Sat June 29, 2013 9:29 pm

Wine tasting has taken it on the chin recently.

"There are no two ways about it: the bullsh*t is strong with wine."

That's what Robert T. Gonzales recently wrote on io9.com in a post that eviscerated wine tasting as a form of skilled craft. "Wine tasting. Wine rating. Wine reviews. Wine descriptions," he writes. "They're all related. And they're all egregious offenders, from a [expletive deleted] standpoint."

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Environment
4:51 am
Wed June 26, 2013

Coal Industry Concerned By Obama's Climate Change Plans

Originally published on Wed June 26, 2013 11:13 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And before leaving on his trip to Africa, President Obama had some other words on another subject. He announced a wide-ranging plan to address climate change. Rather than taking that plan to Congress and fighting it out, Obama is using his executive powers to implement it without new laws. The president wants the Environmental Protection Agency to restrict carbon-dioxide emissions from power plants. The biggest source of those emissions is coal-fired facilities.

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Environment
7:06 pm
Tue June 25, 2013

Obama's Climate Strategy Doesn't Require Congressional Approval

President Obama unveils his plan on climate change Tuesday at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. The president laid out his plan to reduce carbon pollution and to prepare the country for the impacts of climate change.
Alex Wong Getty Images

President Obama unveiled a sweeping plan Tuesday designed to deal with climate change. For the first time, carbon emissions from power plants would be regulated. The policy, which can be implemented by the administration without congressional approval, calls for a broad range of actions, including steps to deal with extreme weather events that are already occurring.

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The Salt
3:06 pm
Tue June 25, 2013

How Well Do You Know Your Fish Fillet? Even Chefs Can Be Fooled

Jessica McConnell, 26, of Silver Spring, Md., tries to identify halibut, red snapper and salmon at a dinner hosted by Oceana and the National Aquarium in Washington, D.C.
Heather Rousseau NPR

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 12:42 pm

In the world of seafood, looks can be very deceiving. And unfortunately for anyone who buys fish, it's easy for people above you in the supply chain to sell you something other than what you want.

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Krulwich Wonders...
11:49 am
Tue June 25, 2013

The Man With A 'Battery Operated Brain'

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1PFknl5YFsE

He calls himself the "human with the battery operated brain" because he does, in fact, have electrodes in his head, put there by his New Zealand doctors.

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The Two-Way
8:28 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Obama To Lay Out Broad Plan To Address Climate Change

The Capitol dome is seen behind the Capitol Power Plant, which provides power to buildings in the Capitol complex in Washington, D.C.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Tue June 25, 2013 2:45 pm

Update at 2:38 p.m. ET. Obama Lays Out Plan:

In an address at Georgetown University in Washington, President Obama laid out a sweeping new plan to address climate change.

As expected, Obama said his plan seeks to cap the carbon emissions of power plants.

Obama also said the Keystone XL pipeline, which would carry oil from Canada to Texas, would only be approved by the State Department if it aligned with the "nation's interest."

That is if "this project does not significantly exacerbate the problem of carbon pollution," Obama said.

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