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A Matchmaker for Microbiomes

A unique neural network tool is making it possible to accurately infer the interactions between the microbes that are present in a community and the metabolites they produce – a capability that will greatly advance research into the microbiomes in the environment and inside our bodies.

Underwater Telecom Cables Make Superb Seismic Network

Adapted from a news release by UC Berkeley: Fiber-optic cables that constitute a global undersea telecommunications network could one day help scientists study offshore earthquakes and the geologic structures hidden deep beneath the ocean surface. In a recent paper in the journal Science, researchers from UC Berkeley, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), Monterey Bay

Six Berkeley Lab Scientists Named AAAS Fellows

Berkeley Lab’s Rebecca Abergel, Roland Bürgmann, Cheryl A. Kerfeld, Michael Manga, Natalie Roe, and David V. Schaffer have been named Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Election as a AAAS Fellow is an honor bestowed upon AAAS members by their peers.

Climate Change Expected to Shift Location of East Asian Monsoons

More than a billion people in Asia depend on seasonal monsoons for their water needs. The Asian monsoon is closely linked to a planetary-scale tropical air flow which, according to a new study by Berkeley Lab, will most likely shift geographically as the climate continues to warm, resulting in less rainfall in certain regions.

Better Predicting Earthquake Damage to Infrastructure with Faster Computing

Researchers at Berkeley Lab are using high-performance computing systems to better predict how structures will respond to an earthquake along one of the Bay Area’s most dangerous faults.

How Does Climate Change Affect Mountainous Watersheds That Give Us Our Water?

Ecologist Heidi Steltzer, a Fort Lewis College professor and member of the Department of Energy’s Watershed Function Scientific Focus Area (SFA) project led by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, studies how reduced snowpack and earlier snowmelt caused by climate change impact water supply in high-mountain areas. She is a contributing lead author of a new report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate.

New $100M Innovation Hub to Accelerate R&D for a Secure Water Future

The National Alliance for Water Innovation, which is led by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, has been awarded a five-year, $100-million Energy-Water Desalination Hub by DOE to address water security issues in the United States.

How California Wildfires Can Impact Water Availability

In recent years, wildfires in the western United States have occurred with increasing frequency and scale. Climate change scenarios in California predict prolonged periods of drought with potential for conditions even more amenable to wildfires. The Sierra Nevada Mountains provide up to 70% of the state’s water resources, yet there is little known on how

Tiny Toxins: How Algal Blooms Affect Coastal Systems Through a Complex Web of Interactions

A Q&A with scientist Michelle Newcomer on looking for unexpected causes of harmful algal blooms. Harmful and nuisance algal blooms are thought to have a number of contributing causal factors, including a build-up of nutrients, unusually high water temperatures, and extreme weather events such as floods and drought. But an understanding of the connectivity between these triggers is missing, as is an ability to predict the onset of the blooms.

Wildfires Could Permanently Alter Alaska’s Forest Composition

This summer, Alaska has experienced record high temperatures and devastating wildfires. If such events become more frequent, how might that impact our northernmost forests? A team of researchers projected that the combination of climate change and increased wildfires will cause the iconic evergreen conifer trees of Alaska to get pushed out in favor of broadleaf deciduous trees, which shed their leaves seasonally.