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How Accurate are Disaster Movies?

Some disaster movies, though fun to watch, are grossly hyperbolized. You know the type: massive tsunamis that swallow cities whole, supersized tornadoes, pandemics that sweep the globe and render humans into flesh-eating zombies. As hyped up as some of these films may...

The Impact of Nuclear Disasters

Nuclear power has become a key component of the world’s energy supply. It is the only clean-air source of energy that produces electricity nonstop, 24/7. Yet, despite its ubiquity and the world’s reliance upon it, the word “nuclear” cannot be spoken without a reminder...

Biological Threats, Science, and Patriotism

Over the past several months, I had the privilege of serving as a science adviser to the production of a just released documentary entitled “Operation Whitecoat”. Operation Whitecoat was the name of an extraordinary program run by the U.S. Army from 1954-1973. It’s...

The Benefits and Dangers of Dual-Use Research

There are many things that were indelibly changed after the events of 9/11. One realization that both individuals and the government arrived at is: everything that is good can also be used for nefarious purposes. Good technology, developed with peaceful and scientific...

The Best Food Documentaries on Netflix

Since human history’s hunter-gatherer days, the task of acquiring food has come a long way. Food production and distribution has become a huge industry; farms all over the world and churn out tons of meat and produce each year. We know that there are more than 7...

The Founding of the EPA

EPA has been in the news more than ever these days, as dramatically reducing its size, scope, power, and influence has been a major public thrust of the Trump Administration. This has made me think back to why and how the Environmental Protection Agency was created. I...

How Are Oil Spills Cleaned And Contained?

An oil spill occurs when crude oil is released into a body of water. The oil can be released from an oil tanker, an underwater pipeline, a refinery, a storage facility or an offshore oil-drilling rig. Oil spills can have an extremely damaging effect on the environment...

8 Environmental Disasters Caused By Humans

In September, 1962, Rachel Carson’s remarkable book, Silent Spring, was published. It addressed the effects that synthetic insecticides, particularly DDT, were having on the environment. That book was the catalyst for the development of a more general environmental...

Environmental Impact of Terror

The terror attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon in September of 2001 were unthinkable. That day left a tragic mark in the memories of Americans, and had a long-lasting economic and political impact, which still affects us fifteen years later. It also...