WASHINGTON – The Arctic isn’t nearly as bright and white as it used to be because of more ice melting in the ocean, and that’s turning out to be a global problem, according to a new study.
With more dark, open water in the summer, less of the sun’s heat is reflected back into space. So the entire Earth is absorbing more heat than expected, according to a study published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
That extra absorbed energy equals about a quarter of the entire heat-trapping effect of carbon dioxide, said the study’s lead author, Ian Eisenman, a climate scientist at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in California.
The Arctic grew 8 percent darker between 1979 and 2011, Eisenman found, measuring the sunlight reflected back into space.
Penn State names new president
Eric Barron, a former professor and dean at Penn State University and president of Florida State University, was chosen Monday to lead Pennsylvania’s largest university as it continues grappling with fallout from the Jerry Sandusky scandal.
He’ll bring with him the experience of managing a major state university known as much for its for storied athletic program as its academic mission, as well as the fallout from a sex-abuse scandal with ties to big-time college football.
Barron will succeed President Rodney Erickson, who plans to retire. Erickson was named president in November 2011 after then-president Graham Spanier was forced out after child molestation accusations against Sandusky, a former assistant football coach.
Avalanche gear led to bomb scare
The employer of a man whose carry-on bag was found to contain a small explosive device at the Anchorage airport says he was carrying avalanche-control equipment.
The device triggered an hour-long shutdown of security screening at the airport Sunday afternoon.
A statement Monday by ConocoPhillips Alaska said the device was for avalanche control and there was no ill will intended.
Irked artist breaks $1 million vase
A South Florida artist is facing a criminal charge after police say he smashed a $1 million vase at Miami’s new art museum to protest what he called its favoritism for international rather than local art.
Maximo Caminero, 51, was charged with criminal mischief after Sunday’s incident at the Perez Art Museum Miami. According to police, a security guard said Caminero picked up a colored vase by Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei. When told to put it down, the guard said Caminero smashed it on the floor.
Roof collapse kills 9 in South Korea
A resort auditorium’s roof loaded down with snow and rain collapsed during a welcoming ceremony for South Korean university freshmen, killing 10 and injuring more than 100, officials said early today.
Emergency staff worked through the night to pull people from beneath twisted metal and other debris and rush the injured on stretchers to waiting ambulances. Snow, sleet and icy roads hampered rescue operations.
The collapse happened late Monday. About 560 students from Busan University of Foreign Studies had gathered for a two-day freshman orientation at the Manua Ocean Resort in the southeastern city of Gyeongju.
Immigrant camp riot turns deadly
An asylum seeker was killed and scores were injured when a violent protest ended with a breakout from an immigration detention camp run by Australia on the island nation of Papua New Guinea, an official said early today.
In recent years, thousands of people seeking asylum in Australia have attempted to reach the country by boat, mostly from Indonesia. The government has intercepted them at sea and sent to detention camps at Manus Island, part of Papua New Guinea, or the tiny Pacific atoll nation of Nauru.
Syrian rebels pick new military chief
After losing ground to Syrian forces and Islamic extremists for months, the Western-backed rebel movement announced Monday that it is replacing its military chief with an experienced, moderate field commander from the south.
The move is part of a broader restructuring aimed at persuading the U.S. and its allies to provide more sophisticated weapons to confront President Bashar Assad’s army after diplomatic efforts to end the war have failed.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, meanwhile, accused Assad of stonewalling in peace talks and called on Russia to push its ally to negotiate with opposition leaders.