News Center

Scientists Dig Deep to Track Down California’s Ever-Changing Groundwater Supply

Erica Woodburn, a research scientist in Berkeley Lab’s Earth and Environmental Sciences Area, is developing a new modeling technique that employs remote sensing technology to understand the effects of climate change on California’s groundwater supply.

Erica Woodburn first fell in love with hydrogeology as an undergraduate majoring in geology. Today, she is a research scientist in the Lab’s Earth and Environmental Sciences Area.

New Simulations Break Down Potential Impact of a Major Quake by Building Location and Size

With unprecedented resolution, scientists and engineers are simulating precisely how a large-magnitude earthquake along the Hayward Fault would affect different locations and buildings across the San Francisco Bay Area.

4 Berkeley Lab-affiliated Scientists Elected as National Academy of Sciences Members

Four scientists affiliated with the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) are among the group of 84 new members elected to the National Academy of Sciences (NAS); three are also professors at UC Berkeley.

First Direct Observations of Methane’s Increasing Greenhouse Effect at the Earth’s Surface

A Berkeley Lab research team tracked a rise in the warming effect of methane – one of the most important greenhouse gases for the Earth’s atmosphere – over a 10-year period at a DOE field observation site in northern Oklahoma.

Sewage Sludge Leads to Biofuels Breakthrough

Researchers at Joint BioEnergy Institute and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have discovered a new enzyme that will enable microbial production of a renewable alternative to petroleum-based toluene, a widely used octane booster in gasoline that has a global market of 29 million tons per year.

Plants Really Do Feed Their Friends

Researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and UC Berkeley have discovered that as plants develop they craft their root microbiome, favoring microbes that consume very specific metabolites. Their study could help scientists identify ways to enhance the soil microbiome for improved carbon storage and plant productivity.

Understanding Effects of Climate Change on California Watersheds

California relies on the Sierra Nevada snowpack for a significant portion of its water needs, yet scientists understand very little about how future changes in snowpack volume and timing will influence surface water and groundwater. Now researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory are developing an advanced hydrologic model to study how climate change might affect California watersheds.

Berkeley Lab Aims for Big Breakthroughs in Water Technology

Berkeley Lab is launching a new research institute to focus resources on its growing portfolio of projects for water innovation – from nano-engineered desalination solutions to ultra-high resolution climate modeling for watershed predictions to novel groundwater management approaches.

Digging Deep: Harnessing the Power of Soil Microbes for More Sustainable Farming

How will the farms of the future feed a projected 9.8 billion people by 2050? Berkeley Lab’s “smart farm” project marries microbiology and machine learning in an effort to reduce the need for chemical fertilizers and enhance soil carbon uptake, thus improving the long-term viability of the land while increasing crop yields.

Assessing the Impact of Hurricanes on Puerto Rico’s Forests

Building on methods they used to assess the impact of hurricanes such as Katrina, Gustav, and Rita on forests and tree mortality, scientists at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have produced a rapid mapping of the disturbance intensity across Puerto Rico’s forests with the help of Google Earth Engine.