Along the coast of the Carolinas, cameras attached to kites are collecting aerial images of protective barrier dunes in order to observe how they are changing over time, Sierra Magazine reports.

Why it matters: Barrier dunes buffer beaches from storm destruction. Elsemarie DeVries, who leads a team of researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill carrying out the study, told Sierra her primary concern is that rising ocean tides and powerful storms threaten dune ecosystems that don't have enough time to rebuild themselves between storms.

How they do it: The cameras take 200 to 400 images that are digitally combined to produce a topographical model of the dunes which researchers can use to track height, width and volume. Kites were chosen because they are far less expensive than drones.

The solution:

Spencer Rogers, coastal construction and erosion specialist at the University of North Carolina, says one option is beach nourishment — the practice of moving sand from one part of the beach to another. Still, these man-made dunes lack the stability of naturally formed ones that are anchored by plants.

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BP's in the red, slashing its dividend and vowing a greener future

Photo: Ben Stansall/AFP via Getty Images

BP posted a $6.7 billion second-quarter loss and cut its dividend in half Tuesday while unveiling accelerated steps to transition its portfolio toward low-carbon sources.

Why it matters: The announcement adds new targets and details to its February vow to become a "net-zero" emissions company by mid-century.

Women-focused non-profit newsrooms surge forward in 2020

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Women are pushing back against the gender imbalance in media by launching their own news nonprofits and focusing on topics many traditional news companies have long ignored.

Why it matters: "The news business is already gendered," says Emily Ramshaw, co-founder and CEO of The 19th*, a new nonprofit, nonpartisan newsroom reporting at the intersection of women, politics and policy.

The U.S. is now playing by China's internet rules

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

President Trump's crackdown on TikTok suggests that the U.S. government is starting to see the internet more like China does — as a network that countries can and should control within their borders.

The big picture: Today's global internet has split into three zones, according to many observers: The EU's privacy-focused network; China's government-dominated network; and the U.S.-led network dominated by a handful of American companies. TikTok's fate suggests China's model has U.S. fans as well.