Articles on Earth science

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Spotting ancient volcanoes of Britain. University of Bristol

British volcanologist wins earth sciences ‘Nobel’ prize

A British volcanologist has won one of the most prestigious awards in science – the Vetlesen Prize, which is considered to be the earth sciences equivalent of the Nobel Prize. Stephen Sparks of the University…
Over time, Earth’s plates went from static to dynamic. Modestas Jonauskas/Flickr

What a crack up: hefty continents got tectonic plates moving

Plate tectonics – the large-scale movement of Earth’s lithosphere or outer layers – started around three billion years ago, but how those movements started was a bit of a mystery – until today. With colleagues…
We live in a ‘wide brown land’ – but we need to figure out how to use it sustainably. Duncan Rawlinson

Groundbreaking earth sciences for a smart – and lucky – country

AUSTRALIA 2025: How will science address the challenges of the future? In collaboration with Australia’s chief scientist Ian Chubb, we’re asking how each science discipline will contribute to Australia…
Broken plates? Thank your nearest shale gas well. pugshi

Can fracking cause bigger, more frequent earthquakes?

Injecting fluids into the Earth, whether to recover natural gas or to obtain thermal energy from the planet, can cause earthquakes. New reports that look at American fracking, deep waste-water injection…

Clouds not as cooling as thought

Clouds caused by air pollution have been overestimated in their ability to to reflect sunlight back into space, thus helping…
The public should be made aware of all possible scenarios within an earthquake sequence. Ettore Ferrari/EPA

L’Aquila charges leave earthquake scientists on shaky ground

You’ll know by now that six scientists and a government official have been found guilty of manslaughter (as reported yesterday) and sentenced to six years in prison for how they assessed and communicated…
We don’t know exactly how the Earth formed, but we know it was messy. adametrnal

Journey to the centre of the earth: how our planet evolved

We know a lot about how humans evolved. But when it comes to our planet, we’re on shakier ground. Inert (nonreactive) gases, such as helium, neon and argon, trapped inside the mantle (Earth’s thickest…
Dr Bernado de Bernardinis told residents to go home and enjoy a glass of red. Now he’s in the dock. AFP PHOTO/ TIZIANA FABI

Manslaughter trial of L'Aquila earthquake scientists will cause serious aftershocks

This week, a committee of six scientists (including Dr Enzo Boschi, formerly president of Italy’s National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology) and one government official, whose role was to advise…
The fish-eating dinosaur discovered in Victoria is a member of Spinosauridae, a group of fish-eating theropod dinosaurs found in Asia and Europe. Flickr

Australia’s first fish-eating spinosaurus discovered

Paleontologists think it had the snout of a crocodile, the claws of a bear and a taste for seafood. But what’s most interesting about the discovery of Australia’s first fish-eating dinosaur is its similarities…
Debate around climate science and proposed policy responses should be open and constructive, universities have said. AAP

Threats may chill climate research in long run

Death threats against climate scientists may make researchers reluctant to engage in public debate or even turn research…

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