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The sharp increase in tornadoes in the U.S.
April 13, 2017 | WMU News
A rising tide of large-scale tornado outbreaks this spring was noted in research published recently in Science. Tornadoes have risen dramatically this year, says Dr. Todd Ellis, a WMU assistant professor of geography in the WMU Mallinson Institute for Science Education.
The slow comeback of domestic oil
April 6, 2017 | WMU News
Domestic oil production, spurred by $100 a barrel prices and advances in drilling and fracturing technology, was booming. That changed with the sharp decline in oil prices starting in 2014, but the domestic oil industry is inching its way back, says Dr. William Harrison, director of the Michigan Geological Repository for Research and Education at WMU.
The further erosion of internet privacy
March 31, 2017 | WMU News
A Congressional resolution overturns a broadband privacy regulation the Federal Communications Commission adopted in October. The move allows internet service providers like cable and phone companies to sell the browsing histories of their customers without getting their approval, the same privilege web companies like Facebook and Google enjoy, says Dr. Alan Rea, a WMU professor of business information systems.
New state laws compensate wrongfully convicted
March 24, 2017 | WMU News
New bills take effect March 29 and provide $50,000 for each year of wrongful incarceration and the same re-entry services Michigan parolees receive. The compensation people receive, if any, varies widely by state, says Marla Mitchell-Cichon, director of the WMU-Cooley Innocence Project, which tries to exonerate wrongfully convicted citizens.
The wacky winter weather
March 16, 2017 | WMU News
The first day of spring is Monday, but Midwest residents have already seen spring-like conditions in January and February. The return of wintry weather in March is actually good news, says Dr. Robert Ruhf, a meteorologist and senior research associate in the WMU Mallinson Institute for Science Education.
The discovery of new, Earth-like planets
March 9, 2017 | WMU News
Scientests announced recently that they have found a new solar system with seven planets capable of hosting water. Studying the planets could reveal life there and also set off a decades-long explosion of celestial discovery, says Dr. Kirk Korista, chair of the WMU Department of Physics.
The flu outbreak in Southwest Michigan
March 2, 2017 | WMU News
A large flu outbreak prompted four Kalamazoo County school districts to close late last week. Though the outbreak has caused a disruption, the flu strain that hit the area is not new and is not a big concern, says Dr. Karim Essani, a WMU virologist and professor of biological sciences.