After three consecutive years of below-normal rainfall, California faces its most severe drought emergency in decades. This image from NOAA of snow in the Sierra Mountains illustrates how the historic lack of rain has created a water shortfall.
Governor Jerry Brown has called for Californians to reduce water use by 20 percent voluntarily, and mandatory rationing could be ordered soon so that homes, businesses and farms don’t run dry over the summer. California’s drought has far-reaching consequences that include dramatically less water for farms and communities and increased fires in both urban and rural areas.
Does climate change influence drought? What should be done to both provide water and protect ecosystems? Reports from the National Research Council explore these questions. Our resources discuss the science of climate change, consider climate change impacts at community and national levels, and recommend areas for further research. We also have reports that discuss options to provide water by improving water management and promoting water reuse. All are free to download.
Advancing the Science of Climate Change Climate change is occurring, is caused largely by human activities, and poses significant risks for–and in many cases is already affecting–a broad range of human and natural systems. The compelling case for these conclusions is provided in … [more]
Adapting to the Impacts of Climate Change Across the United States, impacts of climate change are already evident. Heat waves have become more frequent and intense, cold extremes have become less frequent, and patterns of rainfall are likely changing. The proportion of precipitation that … [more]
Desalination: A National Perspective There has been an exponential increase in desalination capacity both globally and nationally since 1960, fueled in part by growing concern for local water scarcity and made possible to a great extent by a major federal investment for desalination … [more]
This year’s State of the Union address focused on topics including energy, education, climate change, and gun violence. The National Academies Press provides resources directly related to these issues. Below, we’ve annotated the complete text of the President’s State of the Union speech with relevant reports from the National Academies that provide authoritative, independent guidance on these issues.
January marks the 10-year anniversary of the landings on Mars of rovers Spirit and Opportunity. These marvels of engineering have inspired students all over the world to continue in the quest for understanding of the solar system. We’ve produced a number of reports that have helped to define the scientific goals and objectives for exploration of Mars. All are free to download.
An Astrobiology Strategy for the Exploration of Mars Three recent developments have greatly increased interest in the search for life on Mars. The first is new information about the Martian environment including evidence of a watery past and the possibility of atmospheric methane. The second is the … [more]
Preventing the Forward Contamination of Mars Recent spacecraft and robotic probes to Mars have yielded data that are changing our understanding significantly about the possibility of existing or past life on that planet. Coupled with advances in biology and life-detection techniques, these … [more]
Assessment of NASA’s Mars Architecture 2007-2016 The United States and the former Soviet Union have sent spacecraft to mars as early as 1966, with Mars’ exploration being priority for NASA spacecraft. Both sides, however, have failed as well as succeed. The inability to determine if life exists … [more]
Assessment of Mars Science and Mission Priorities Within the Office of Space Science of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) special importance is attached to exploration of the planet Mars, because it is the most like Earth of the planets in the solar system and the place … [more]
We’re always looking for ways that we can improve the experience of browsing, reading, and researching on NAP.edu, so it’s great to hear from frequent visitors about how they use the site and changes they’d like to see. Recently, we took some feedback and moved a few things around on the catalog page (the primary page for each book on NAP.edu).
First up are the share tools, which allow you to share to social networks and other places around the web with a single click. They used to be at the very bottom of the page, but we were hearing that they were a little hard to find there, so they will now appear along the very right hand side of the page when you’re viewing the site on a desktop computer and as a grey “Share” bar at the bottom of the page when you’re looking at a tablet or smartphone.
Another move that we made were the links to embed a book into your website or to email the page to a friend. That also used to be in that hard-to-find share bar at the bottom of each page, but will now be at the top of the right column in each page.
Last but definitely not least is the citations, where you can quickly copy and paste a citation to a book or download the citation in BibTeX, EndNote, or RefMan formats. The link to this used to be in the upper right column, but its now lost its “manager” title (it’s a lateral move) and has been moved it into the bottom of the “Overview” tab of each book.
As we approach the end of the year, we’re taking a quick look back at the best selling books that were released in 2013. In just the top 20 titles of the year, we can see the incredible variety of topics covered in the reports of the National Academies, including education, cancer care, preventing obesity, alternative vehicles and fuels, veterinary medicine, data, solar and space physics, veteran’s health, mathematical sciences, climate change and sports-related concussions.
Next Generation Science Standards identifies the science all K-12 students should know. These new standards are based on the National Research Council’s A Framework for K-12 Science Education. The National Research Council, the … [more]
America’s health care system has become too complex and costly to continue business as usual. Best Care at Lower Cost explains that inefficiencies, an overwhelming amount of data, and other economic and quality barriers hinder progress … [more]
The United States is among the wealthiest nations in the world, but it is far from the healthiest. Although life expectancy and survival rates in the United States have improved dramatically over the past century, Americans live shorter lives … [more]
In the United States, approximately 14 million people have had cancer and more than 1.6 million new cases are diagnosed each year. However, more than a decade after the Institute of Medicine (IOM) first studied the quality of cancer care, the … [more]
Every year, the Global Forum undertakes two workshops whose topics are selected by the more than 55 members of the Forum. It was decided in this first year of the Forum’s existence that the workshops should lay the foundation for future work of … [more]
Adolescence is a distinct, yet transient, period of development between childhood and adulthood characterized by increased experimentation and risk-taking, a tendency to discount long-term consequences, and heightened sensitivity to peers and … [more]
Across the United States, thousands of hazardous waste sites are contaminated with chemicals that prevent the underlying groundwater from meeting drinking water standards. These include Superfund sites and other facilities that handle and dispose … [more]
Obesity poses one of the greatest public health challenges of the 21st century, creating serious health, economic, and social consequences for individuals and society. Despite acceleration in efforts to characterize, comprehend, and act on this … [more]
Health care in the United States is more expensive than in other developed countries, costing $2.7 trillion in 2011, or 17.9 percent of the national gross domestic product. Increasing costs strain budgets at all levels of government and threaten … [more]
For a century, almost all light-duty vehicles (LDVs) have been powered by internal combustion engines operating on petroleum fuels. Energy security concerns about petroleum imports and the effect of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions on global … [more]
Data mining of massive data sets is transforming the way we think about crisis response, marketing, entertainment, cybersecurity and national intelligence. Collections of documents, images, videos, and networks are being thought of not merely as … [more]
Physical inactivity is a key determinant of health across the lifespan. A lack of activity increases the risk of heart disease, colon and breast cancer, diabetes mellitus, hypertension, osteoporosis, anxiety and depression and others diseases. … [more]
From the interior of the Sun, to the upper atmosphere and near-space environment of Earth, and outward to a region far beyond Pluto where the Sun’s influence wanes, advances during the past decade in space physics and solar physics–the … [more]
Optics and photonics technologies are ubiquitous: they are responsible for the displays on smart phones and computing devices, optical fiber that carries the information in the internet, advanced precision manufacturing, enhanced defense … [more]
As of December 2012, Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) in Afghanistan and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) in Iraq have resulted in the deployment of about 2.2 million troops; there have been 2,222 US fatalities in OEF and Operation New Dawn (OND)1 … [more]
The U.S. veterinary medical profession contributes to society in diverse ways, from developing drugs and protecting the food supply to treating companion animals and investigating animal diseases in the wild. In a study of the issues related to … [more]
The mathematical sciences are part of nearly all aspects of everyday life–the discipline has underpinned such beneficial modern capabilities as Internet search, medical imaging, computer animation, numerical weather predictions, and all types of … [more]
In the past decade, few subjects at the intersection of medicine and sports have generated as much public interest as sports-related concussions – especially among youth. Despite growing awareness of sports-related concussions and campaigns to … [more]
Climate is changing, forced out of the range of the past million years by levels of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases not seen in the Earth’s atmosphere for a very, very long time. Lacking action by the world’s nations, it is clear that … [more]
Using Science to Improve the BLM Wild Horse and Burro Program: A Way Forward reviews the science that underpins the Bureau of Land Management’s oversight of free-ranging horses and burros on federal public lands in the western United … [more]
Believe it or not, we’re coming up on the holidays already, and NAP has gift ideas for the science-and-math-minded person in your life, from good reads to science and math fun. And best of all? You can take 25% off of the list price on all these great books and merchandise. Use the code GIFT13 at checkout for a 25% discount.
Women’s Adventures In Science
Women’s Adventures in Science, a biography set of 9 books about contemporary women scientists and their fascinating careers, shows that the path from intellectually curious girl to talented innovator is a unique as the personality and circumstances of each scientist.
The results are in for our first Next Generation Science Standards give-away. Congratulations to our grand prize winner: Kirsten P.! She will receive the Next Generation Science Standards Teacher Prize Pack.
Congratulations as well to our four additional winners, who will each receive their own copy of Next Generation Science Standards:
Glenda D. F.
If you didn’t win this time, don’t worry. There will be more opportunities to win a Teacher Prize Pack or a print copy of Next Generation Science Standards.
According to a recent UN Population Fund/HelpAge International report, the population of planet Earth is aging quickly. The Global AgeWatch Index studies the social and economic well-being of elders in 91 countries and finds that, by the year 2050, seniors over the age of 60 will make up one fifth of the population. What are the implications of a growing elderly population? The National Research Council and the Institute of Medicine have produced studies that focus on economic, health care, and social challenges we can anticipate. All are free to download.
The United States is in the midst of a major demographic shift. In the coming decades, people aged 65 and over will make up an increasingly large percentage of the population: The ratio of people … [more]
The aging of the population of the United States is occurring at a time of major economic and social changes. These economic changes include consideration of increases in the age of eligibility … [more]
In the United States, approximately 14 million people have had cancer and more than 1.6 million new cases are diagnosed each year. However, more than a decade after the Institute of Medicine (IOM) … [more]
At least 5.6 million to 8 million–nearly one in five–older adults in America have one or more mental health and substance use conditions, which present unique challenges for their care. With the … [more]
The U.S. population of older adults is predicted to grow rapidly as “baby boomers” (those born between 1946 and 1964) begin to reach 65 years of age. Simultaneously, advancements in medical care … [more]
As the first of the nation’s 78 million baby boomers begin reaching age 65 in 2011, they will face a health care workforce that is too small and woefully unprepared to meet their specific health … [more]
Whether your state has already adopted the Next Generation Science Standards or is still waiting in line, you need to be prepared for the changes ahead. And we’re offering the chance to win a prize pack with all the resources you’ll need to implement the NGSS.
The first step is simple. Using the widget at the bottom of this post, tell us what inspired you to get involved in science education and you’ll instantly have three entries in the bag. You can earn extra entries by liking us on Facebook, tweeting, following our Pinterest boards, and more. The more you do, the better your chance of winning one of our five prizes.
One grand prize winner will receive the Next Generation Science Standards Teacher Prize Pack:
The print version of Next Generation Science Standards
A Framework for K-12 Science Education: Practices, Crosscutting Concepts, and Core Ideas
Ready, Set, Science!
A Disappearing Dinosaur Mug
Three finger puppets: Albert Einstein, Marie Curie, and George Washington Carver
All included in a limited-edition 150th Anniversary National Academy of Sciences tote bag!
Plus, four more winners will receive their own copy of Next Generation Science Standards.
You only have two weeks to improve your chances. At midnight, October 19, the giveaway will end and we’ll randomly select the winners.
Don’t get left behind, start earning entries now. And good luck!
Take this time to relax and indulge in inspiring vacation reads about innovation and scientific discovery. Recharge with this unique selection of titles that will set your mind soaring and take your imagination on new adventures.
Save 25% on ALL titles listed. Use discount code X3READ when you order online. Discount may not be combined with any other special or applied to previous purchase. Offer expires 9/21/13.
To get you started, we recommend these top titles:
Struck by Lightning: The Curious World of Probabilities270 pages | Paperback | Price: $20.65From terrorist attacks to big money jackpots, Struck by Lightning deconstructs the odds and oddities of chance, examining both the relevant and irreverent role of randomness in our everyday lives. Human beings have long been both fascinated and… [more]
Darwin’s Gift: To Science and Religion256 pages | Hardcover | Price: $22.45With the publication in 1859 of On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, Charles Darwin established evolution by common descent as the dominant scientific explanation for nature’s diversity. This was to be his gift to science and… [more]
America’s Climate Choices144 pages | Paperback | Price: $26.95Climate change is occurring. It is very likely caused by the emission of greenhouse gases from human activities, and poses significant risks for a range of human and natural systems. And these emissions continue to increase, which will result in further… [more]
Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System146 pages | Paperback | Price: $44.10The electric power delivery system that carries electricity from large central generators to customers could be severely damaged by a small number of well-informed attackers. The system is inherently vulnerable because transmission lines may span hundreds of… [more]
Gorilla Mountain: The Story of Wildlife Biologist Amy Vedder128 pages | Paperback | Price: $8.95Amy Vedder leads a wild life. How many people can say they were once a member of a mountain gorilla family? Amy Vedder is a wildlife biologist, a scientist who studies animals and their behavior. She uses her knowledge to save animals whose lives and habitats… [more]
Bone Detective: The Story of Forensic Anthropologist Diane France128 pages | Paperback | Price: $8.95Diane France loves bones. Why? Because they talk to her. Every skeleton she meets whispers secrets about the life and death of its owner. Diane France can hear those secrets because she’s a forensic anthropologist, a bone detective. She has the science skills… [more]
Robo World: The Story of Robot Designer Cynthia Breazeal128 pages | Paperback | Price: $8.95Cynthia Breazeal is a creature creator. Armed with electronic gadgets, software programs, and her endless imagination, she creates lifelike machines that can respond to the world around them. Cynthia Breazeal is a roboticist, a scientist who designs, builds, and… [more]
Space Rocks: The Story of Planetary Geologist Adriana Ocampo128 pages | Paperback | Price: $8.95Adriana Ocampo grew up in Buenos Aires, Argentina, dreaming about exploring planets. She never doubted that all her dreams would come true someday. How did Adriana land a job with NASA, the U.S. space agency, while still in her teens? How did a robot parked on… [more]
Beyond Jupiter: The Story of Planetary Astronomer Heidi Hammel128 pages | Paperback | Price: $8.95Heidi Hammel is an out-of-this world explorer. With her feet planted firmly on Earth, she takes trips millions of miles out into space. How does she do this? Heidi Hammel is a planetary astronomer, a scientist who uses the world’s most powerful telescopes to… [more]
Nature’s Machines: The Story of Biomechanist Mimi Koehl128 pages | Paperback | Price: $8.95Mimi Koehl tinkers with machines. Some are so tiny they can’t be seen by the naked eye, and some disappeared millions of years ago. But Mimi isn’t a mechanic. She’s a biomechanist. Mimi Koehl uses engineering and physics to study the designs of living things… [more]
Einstein Defiant: Genius Versus Genius in the Quantum Revolution356 pages | Hardcover | Price: $25.15“I find the idea quite intolerable that an electron exposed to radiation should choose of its own free will, not only its moment to jump off, but also its direction. In that case, I would rather be a cobbler, or even an employee in a gaming house, than a… [more]
Out of Thin Air: Dinosaurs, Birds, and Earth’s Ancient Atmosphere296 pages | Hardcover | Price: $25.15For 65 million years dinosaurs ruled the Earth–until a deadly asteroid forced their extinction. But what accounts for the incredible longevity of dinosaurs? A renowned scientist now provides a startling explanation that is rewriting the history of the Age of… [more]
Forecast Earth: The Story of Climate Scientist Inez Fung128 pages | Paperback | Price: $8.95Inez Fung forecasts the future, a future when Earth could look and feel a lot different than it does now. Why care about climate change? Because it affects every living thing on Earth, including you. What if the climate where you live began to change… [more]
Empire of Light: A History of Discovery in Science and Art248 pages | Paperback | Price: $22.45In Empire of Light, Sidney Perkowitz combines the expertise of a physicist with the vision of an art connoisseur and the skill of an accomplished writer to offer a unique view of the most fundamental feature of the universe: light.
Mountains of Madness: A Scientist’s Odyssey in Antarctica270 pages | Hardcover | Price: $22.45This extraordinary book is the first-person account of John Long’s two unforgettable “summers” on the southern continent. Told in a highly accessible and entertaining style, Mountains of Madness is the account of his three-month long fossil hunt. As the… [more]
The Third Domain312 pages | Hardcover | Price: $25.15The Third Domain is the untold story of how the discovery of a new form of life — first ridiculed, then ignored for the past thirty years by mainstream scientists — is revolutionizing science, industry, and even our search for extraterrestrial… [more]
Environmental Decisions in the Face of Uncertainty258 pages | Paperback | Price: $45.90The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is one of several federal agencies responsible for protecting Americans against significant risks to human health and the environment. As part of that mission, EPA estimates the nature, magnitude, and likelihood… [more]
Continuing Innovation in Information Technology42 pages | Paperback | Price: $24.30Information technology (IT) is widely understood to be the enabling technology of the 21st century. IT has transformed, and continues to transform, all aspects of our lives: commerce and finance, education, employment, energy, health care, manufacturing,… [more]