Land under water: Estimating hydropower's land use impacts One of the key ways to combat global climate change is to boost the world's use of renewable energy. But even green energy has its environmental costs. A new approach describes just how hydropower measures up when it comes to land use effects.
Ultrashort laser pulses make greenhouse gas reactive It is a long-cherished dream: Removing the inert greenhouse gas carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and using it as a basic material for the chemical industry. This could address two major problems at once by containing climate change and at the same time
Global warming increases the risk of avalanches The impacts of global warming are felt especially in mountainous regions, where the rise in temperatures is above average. The repercussions of these changes are manifold and varied, from retreating glaciers to an increase in the frequency and intensity o
Key biological mechanism is disrupted by ocean acidification A team led by scientists from Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California San Diego and the J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI) has demonstrated that the excess carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere through the combustion of fossil f
A starfish cold case reopens, climate change remains suspect As ocean temperatures rise and oceanic diseases proliferate, species like sea stars struggle to survive, and scientists are looking for underlying causes. To bring clarity to the sea star disease problem, the scientists propose a new, broad nomenclature i
Warm summers could weaken ocean circulation Deep convection in the North Atlantic is one of the key components of the large-scale ocean circulation. Based on long-term observations, scientists from the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel have now demonstrated the influence of increase
The Alps are home to more than 3,000 lichens Widely used as biomonitors of air quality, forest health and climate change, lichens play a vital role. However, no overview of their diversity across the emblematic Alps had been provided up until recently, when an international team of lichenologists co
No laughing matter, yet humor inspires climate change activism Melting icecaps, mass flooding, megadroughts and erratic weather are no laughing matter. However, a new study shows that humor can be an effective means to inspire young people to pursue climate change activism. At the same time, fear proves to be an equa
Food abundance driving conflict in Africa, not food scarcity In Africa, food abundance may be driving violent conflict rather than food scarcity, according to a study published in the American Journal of Agricultural Economics, a publication of the Agricultural & Applied Economics Association. The study refutes
Converting CO2 into usable energy Scientists show that single nickel atoms are an efficient, cost-effective catalyst for converting carbon dioxide into useful chemicals.
Heart attacks often follow dramatic changes in outdoor temperature Large day-to-day swings in temperature were associated with significantly more heart attacks in a study being presented at the American College of Cardiology's 67th Annual Scientific Session. Given that some climate models link extreme weather events with
Soil cannot halt climate change Unique soils data from long-term experiments, stretching back to the middle of the nineteenth century, confirm the practical implausibility of burying carbon in the ground to halt climate change. The idea of using crops to collect more atmospheric carbon
Aqueous storage device needs only 20 seconds to go A KAIST research team developed a new hybrid energy storage device that can be charged in less than half a minute. It employs aqueous electrolytes instead of flammable organic solvents, so it is both environmentally friendly and safe. It also facilitates
To build up mussels, you need to know your fish Times are tough for 31 of Michigan's 45 varieties of freshwater mussels. Sporting evocative names like wavy-rayed lampmussel and round pigtoe, these residents of the state's rivers are imperiled by habitat disruption and pollution and are also threatened
King penguins may be on the move very soon More than 70 percent of the global King penguin population, currently forming colonies in Crozet, Kerguelen and Marion sub-Antarctic islands, may be nothing more than a memory in a matter of decades, as global warming will soon force the birds to move sou
Global fossil fuel emissions of hydrocarbons are underestimated Global levels of ethane and propane in the atmosphere have been underestimated by more than 50 percent, new research involving scientists at the University of York has revealed.These hydrocarbons are particularly harmful in large cities where, through che
Genetics makes Asians and Europeans susceptible to severe dengue As globalization and climate change spread tropical infectious diseases around the globe, not all populations have the same degree of susceptibility. Researchers from the Institut Pasteur, CNRS and the Institute for Research and Innovation in Health-Unive
Moths in mud can uncover prehistoric secrets A groundbreaking new technique for examining moth scales in forest lake sediments allows prehistoric outbreaks of these insects to be identified. The technique -- which could prove as revolutionary as fossil pollen and charcoal markers -- can provide info
Tropical trees use unique method to resist drought Tropical trees in the Amazon Rainforest may be more drought resistant than previously thought, according to a new study by researchers at the University of California, Riverside.That's good news, since the Amazon stores about 20 percent of all carbon in t
Land use change has warmed the Earth's surface Recent changes to vegetation cover are causing the Earth's surface to heat up. Activities like cutting down evergreen forests for agricultural expansion in the tropics create energy imbalances that lead to higher local surface temperatures and contribute
At last, butterflies get a bigger, better evolutionary tree Butterflies offer key insights into community ecology, how species originate and evolve, climate change and interactions between plants and insects. But a comprehensive map of how butterflies are related to each other has been lacking -- until now.
Maximizing the environmental benefits of autonomous vehicles The added weight, electricity demand and aerodynamic drag of the sensors and computers used in autonomous vehicles are significant contributors to their lifetime energy use and greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new study.
Genetics makes Asians, Europeans susceptible to dengue shock syndrome As globalization and climate change spread tropical diseases around the globe, not all populations are equally susceptible to infection. Gene variants common in people of Asian and European ancestry, for instance, make them more prone than those of Africa
How seafloor weathering drives the slow carbon cycle A previously unknown connection between geological atmospheric carbon dioxide cycles and the fluctuating capacity of the ocean crust to store carbon dioxide has been uncovered by two geoscientists from the University of Sydney. Better understanding of the
Polar vortex defies climate change in the Southeast Overwhelming scientific evidence has demonstrated that our planet is getting warmer due to climate change, yet parts of the eastern US are actually getting cooler. According to a Dartmouth-led study in Geophysical Research Letters, the location of this an
Pride tops guilt as a motivator for environmental decisions A lot of pro-environmental messages suggest that people will feel guilty if they don't make an effort to live more sustainably or takes steps to ameliorate climate change. But a recent study from Princeton University finds that highlighting the pride peop
Powerful LED-based train headlight optimized for energy savings Researchers have designed a new LED-based train headlight that uses a tenth of the energy required for headlights using conventional light sources. If operated 8 hours every day, the electricity savings of the new design would reduce emissions of the gree
Plants feel the heat Sainsbury Laboratory scientists have solved a 79-year-old mystery by discovering how plants vary their response to heat stress depending on the time of day. This understanding could help with breeding commercial crops able to produce higher yields in hott
Bats as barometer of change Bats spend every night hard at work for local farmers, consuming over half of their own weight in insects, many of which are harmful agricultural pests, such as the noctuid moths, corn earworm and fall armyworm. And now they are arriving earlier in the se
Why did gas hydrates melt at the end of the last ice age? Large amounts of the greenhouse gas methane are locked up as solid gas hydrates in the continental slopes of ocean margins. Their stability depends on low temperatures and high pressure. However, other factors that influence gas hydrate stability are not
Biochar could replace unsustainable peat moss in greenhouse industry Plant lovers are familiar with peat moss as the major component of potting mix, but harvest of the material is becoming unsustainable. Not only is peat being removed faster than it can re-form, its use in potting mix contributes to the release of carbon d
Rapid land changes forecast for East African savannahs A study, presenting a 5000-year environmental history of the popular tourist destination, Amboseli National Park in Kenya, has shown that the impact of climate change on land is more rapid than previously thought.
Who's your daddy? Good news for threatened sea turtles A groundbreaking study of sea turtle nests and hatchlings using paternity tests to uncover 'who are your daddies?' is the first to document multiple paternity in loggerhead sea turtle nests in southwest Florida. What started out as a study on female sea t
Climate variability -- past and future On the basis of a unique global comparison of data from core samples extracted from the ocean floor and the polar ice sheets, AWI researchers have now demonstrated that, though climate changes have indeed decreased around the globe from glacial to intergl
Ecuador: Deforestation destroys more dry forest than climate change Tropical forests worldwide are at risk. Two of the main threats are the deforestation for arable land and climate change. Scientists from Technical University of Munich (TUM) and Thünen-Institute compared the losses due to deforestation with those th
Coastal water absorbing more carbon dioxide New research by a University of Delaware oceanographer and colleagues at other universities reveals that the water over the continental shelves is shouldering a larger than expected portion of atmospheric carbon dioxide. The findings may have important im
Getting ready for the summer sun with 'green' sunscreens Although it's been a tough winter for many people in the US, summer is coming. And that means backyard barbecues, fun on the beach and, of course, slathering on sunscreen. But one particular environmentally friendly sunscreen ingredient has been difficult
An outdoor cat can damage your sustainability cred If you install solar panels on your roof and avoid dousing your lawn with chemicals and pesticides, your online peers may consider you to be environmentally friendly. But this street cred can all be erased if you let your cat roam around outdoors.
Running away from carbon dioxide: The terminal connection Like us, fish need oxygen, and swimming through a patch of carbon dioxide turns out not to be a pleasant experience. Instead, they prefer to avoid carbon dioxide altogether. In experiments published in Cell Reports on Jan. 30, researchers at the RIKEN Bra
Warming climate shrinks British Columbia beetles Some of B.C.'s beetles are shrinking as their habitats get warmer, according to new UBC research. The study provides evidence that climate change is affecting the size of organisms.
How to reduce heat extremes by 2-3 degrees C New research published in Nature Geoscience shows how simple, proven geo-engineering measures can reduce the hottest days by 2-3 degrees C. Lightening buildings, roads and infrastructure in densely populated areas and changing crop types and using no till
Mammals and birds could have best shot at surviving climate change New research that analyzed more than 270 million years of data on animals shows that mammals and birds -- both warm-blooded animals -- may have a better chance of evolving and adapting to the Earth's rapidly changing climate than their cold-blooded peers,
These carbon dioxide-sensing neurons wake up mice Stimulating a population of neurons in the midbrain with carbon dioxide (CO2) awakens adult male mice without enhancing breathing, finds a study published in JNeurosci. These findings are relevant to understanding disorders such as obstructive sleep apnea
Warming temperatures may cause birds to shrink Biologists have known for a long time that animals living in colder climates tend to have larger bodies, supposedly as an adaptation to reduce heat loss. However, a new study of European House Sparrows in Australia and New Zealand shows that this trend in
Record jump in 2014-2016 global temperatures largest since 1900 Global surface temperatures surged by a record amount from 2014 to 2016, boosting the total amount of warming since the start of the last century by more than 25 percent in just three years, according to a new University of Arizona-led paper. The research
Is your sandwich bad for the environment? The carbon footprint of your sandwich could be having a major impact on greenhouse gas emissions according to new research.Researchers at the University of Manchester have carried out the first ever study looking at the carbon footprint of 40 sandwich var
How wind turbines annoy residents and how to reduce it When falling asleep, relaxing or undertaking recreational activities, nearly a third of residents living near a wind farm are not at all annoyed or only slightly annoyed by the noise of wind turbines. One in ten people experience symptoms of stress. Howev
How climate change weakens coral 'immune systems' Researchers at The Ohio State University and their colleagues have demonstrated how two separate effects of climate change combine to destabilize different populations of coral microbes -- that is, unbalance the natural coral 'microbiome.'
Bio-renewable process could help 'green' plastic Plastics are often derived from petroleum, contributing to reliance on fossil fuels and driving harmful greenhouse gas emissions. To change that, Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center (GLBRC) scientists are trying to take the pliable nature of plastic in
Using data mining to make sense of climate change Georgia Techhas developed a new way of mining data from climate data sets that is more self-contained than traditional tools. The methodology brings out commonalities of data sets without as much expertise from the user, allowing scientists to trust the d
Timing of spring birdsong provides climate insights Climate change has scientists worried that birds' annual migration and reproduction will be thrown out of sync with the seasons. Because birds' songs are correlated with their breeding behavior and are easily identifiable to species, monitoring birdsong c
Researchers explore psychological effects of climate change While some people have little anxiety about the Earth's changing climate, others are experiencing high levels of stress, and even depression, based on their perception of the threat of global climate change, researchers found. Psychological responses to c
Coping with climate stress in Antarctica Some Antarctic fish living in the planet's coldest waters are able to cope with the stress of rising carbon dioxide levels the ocean. They can even tolerate slightly warmer waters. But they can't deal with both climate change stressors at the same time, a
New catalyst for hydrogen production is a step toward clean fuel A nanostructured composite material developed at UC Santa Cruz has shown impressive performance as a catalyst for the electrochemical splitting of water to produce hydrogen. An efficient, low-cost catalyst is essential for realizing the promise of hydroge
Unexpected environmental source of methane discovered Roughly 10 percent of nitrogen-fixing microorganisms contain the genetic code for manufacturing a back-up enzyme, called iron iron-only nitrogenase, to do their job. New research reveals that this enzyme allows these microorganisms to convert nitrogen ga
Hot topic Can a series of scorching summers be blamed on climate change, and what do they tell us?
How climate change alters plant growth Global warming affects more than just plant biodiversity -- it even alters the way plants grow. A team of researchers at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) joined forces with the Leibniz Institute for Plant Biochemistry (IPB) to discover whic
The negative impact of climate change on freshwater bodies A lot of research is being conducted into the acidification of the world's oceans. A recent study has proved that freshwater bodies are likewise affected. Rising carbon dioxide levels could upset the balance of species.
Hiding from a warmer climate in the forest Global warming threatens forest plants adapted to cooler temperatures. An international team of scientists from the universities of Stockholm, Marseille and Helsinki have unraveled where these species could survive within colder spots in the same forest.
California's water saving brings bonus effects Water-saving measures in California have also led to substantial reductions in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and electricity consumption in the state.That is the conclusion of new research from the University of California, Davis, published today in the
A biological solution to carbon capture and recycling? Scientists at the University of Dundee have discovered that E. coli bacteria could hold the key to an efficient method of capturing and storing or recycling carbon dioxide. Professor Frank Sargent and colleagues at the University of Dundee's School of Lif
A thermometer for the oceans The average sea temperature is an essential parameter of the global climate - but it is very difficult to measure. At least until now, because an international team of researchers including Empa scientists have now developed a novel method using the conce
New principles to guide corporate investment towards climate goals A new set of principles are needed to address the moral challenge of climate change. These principles, developed by a team of researchers at the Oxford Martin School, and published this week in Nature Climate Change, are a set of scientifically-grounded t
How genes will save or fail birds in the face of climate change A new study analyzing the genomes of yellow warblers in North America reveals how some subpopulations are more 'genetically vulnerable' to changes associated with climate change; furthermore, it finds that genes linked to exploratory and migratory behavio
The ocean is losing its breath. Here's the global scope In the past 50 years, the amount of water in the open ocean with zero oxygen has risen more than fourfold. In coastal water bodies, low-oxygen sites have increased more than 10-fold since 1950. Scientists expect oxygen to continue dropping even outside th
Predicting the effect of climate change on crop yields Scientists now have a new tool to predict the future effects of climate change on crop yields. Researchers from University of Illinois are attempting to bridge two types of computational crop models to become more reliable predictors of crop production in
A fossil fuel technology that doesn't pollute Engineers at The Ohio State University are developing technologies that have the potential to economically convert fossil fuels and biomass into useful products including electricity without emitting carbon dioxide to the atmosphere.
A changing climate, changing wine A new Harvard study suggests that, though vineyards might be able to counteract some of the effects of climate change by planting lesser-known grape varieties, scientists and vintners need to better understand the wide diversity of grapes and their adapti
Curbing climate change Humans may be the dominant cause of global temperature rise, but they may also be a crucial factor in helping to reduce it, according to a new study that for the first time builds a novel model to measure the effects of behavior on climate.
Study predicts a significantly drier world at 2ºC New research predicts a significantly drier world if global warming reaches 2ºC.Over a quarter of the world's land could become significantly drier and the change would cause an increased threat of drought and wildfires. Limiting warming to under 1.5
Busy year for storms Was the remarkable 2017 hurricane season the worst ever? And did climate change play any part?
Climate change: Soil animals cannot explain self-reinforcing effect Leipzig. When the soil warms up, it releases more carbon dioxide (CO2) -- an effect that further fuels climate change. Until now, it had been assumed that the reason for this was mainly due to the presence of small soil animals and microorganisms that wou
Climate change may favor large plant eaters over small competitors In the drive to survive changing climates, larger herbivores may fare slightly better than their smaller competitors, according to new research from the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis and the Yale School of Forestry and Envir