Ah, petroleum used in everything from lipstick and lubricants to motor oil and medications, oil is one product the world just can’t seem to get enough of. The United States especially, which consumes roughly 21 million barrels of the stuff a day, has quite an attachment to this ubiquitous product [source: EIA]. And while oil can be refined into a variety of products, Americans seem to prefer theirs in the form of gasoline.

Chris Baraniuk hitched a ride onboard a container ship through the busiest seas in the world. Nearly everything you own comes to you by sea and, as we discovered, it means the oceans are getting crowded. Sandrine Ceurstemont visited one of the world largest solar power plants on the rugged plains beneath Morocco High Atlas mountains.

For the military, then, finding renewable sources of energy especially those which don’t require fuel to be transported, like solar power is a matter of saving the lives of Americans. While we all love the environment and want to be good stewards of the earth, the military isn’t on some kind of ecological mission when it comes to renewables. They’re trying to help ensure men and women come home to their loved ones..

In a presentation to the American Geophysical Union in December, Brown presented a paper (along with Cliff Frohlich of the University of Texas at Austin and Michael Brunt of Eagle Pass Independent School District) on an earlier quake near Timpson. That paper found that the May 17, 2012 Timpson quake and another near San Antonio larger than any previous historically reported earthquakes in central and east Texas. Residents of Nacogdoches were awakened by the quake in Timpson, the report says.

NATHAN ROTT, BYLINE: There are more than 3,000 firefighters on the Carlton Complex, plowing fire line, cooling hotspots and trying to get a handle on a fire that’s been tearing through the forest and grazing pastures of North Central Washington for two weeks. Pete Buist is a public information officer on the fire. He says that fire crews are making good headway but they’ve still got a big task ahead of them..

BEIRUT The Syrian opposition said Wednesday that state security forces had launched intense artillery and rocket barrages on the eastern suburbs of the capital Damascus, claiming that hundreds of people died in what was being called a “poisonous gas” attack. Chemical weapons team to Syria to investigate three sites where chemical weapons attacks allegedly occurred during the past year. Their presence raises questions about why the regime which called the claims of the attack Wednesday “absolutely baseless” would use chemical agents at this time.