Palm oil: The carbon cost of deforestation
Tue, 19 Jun 2018 12:30:18 EDT
Palm oil has become part of our daily lives, but a recent study serves as a reminder that intensive farming of this crop has a major impact on the environment. Both short- and long-term solutions exist, however. The article analyzed the carbon costs and benefits of converting rainforests into oil palm plantations.
Reduction in sulfur emissions from power plants in China
Mon, 18 Jun 2018 22:26:20 EDT
Air pollution has smothered China's cities in recent decades. In response, the Chinese government has implemented measures to clean up its skies. But are those policies effective? Now scholars show that one of China's key antipollution laws is indeed working -- but unevenly, with one particular set of polluters most readily adapting to it.
Overuse of agricultural chemicals on China's small farms harms health and environment
Mon, 18 Jun 2018 22:25:11 EDT
The size of farms in China is a key contributor to the overuse of agricultural chemicals, and as a result they may be too small to be environmentally sustainable, a new study has found.
Bolder targets needed to protect nature for people's sake
Mon, 18 Jun 2018 11:30:14 EDT
Researchers argue that the world needs more diverse, ambitious and area-specific targets for retaining important natural systems to safeguard humanity.
Large outdoor study shows biodiversity improves stability of algal biofuel systems
Mon, 18 Jun 2018 10:26:33 EDT
A diverse mix of species improves the stability and fuel-oil yield of algal biofuel systems, as well as their resistance to invasion by outsiders, according to the new findings.
Land-based portion of massive East Antarctic ice sheet retreated little during past eight million years
Fri, 15 Jun 2018 15:44:25 EDT
Large parts of the massive East Antarctic Ice Sheet did not retreat significantly during a time when atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations were similar to today's levels.
Leading Antarctic experts offer two possible views of continent's future
Thu, 14 Jun 2018 21:38:49 EDT
The next 10 years will be critical for the future of Antarctica, and choices made will have long-lasting consequences, says an international group of Antarctic research scientists. It lays out two different plausible future scenarios for the continent and its Southern Ocean over the next 50 years.
Who is to blame for marine litter?
Thu, 14 Jun 2018 21:37:03 EDT
Members of the public are more likely to blame the global marine litter crisis on retailers, industry and government, according to new research.
What saved the West Antarctic Ice Sheet 10,000 years ago will not save it today
Thu, 14 Jun 2018 10:12:45 EDT
The retreat of the West Antarctic ice masses after the last Ice Age was reversed surprisingly about 10,000 years ago, scientists found. The reason for the rebound is that, relieved from the weight of the retreating ice, the Earth crust lifted. This made the ice re-advance towards the ocean. Unfortunately, this mechanism is much to slow to prevent dangerous sea-level rise caused by West Antarctica's ice-loss in the present and near future.
Ammonia distribution in Earth's upper atmosphere
Wed, 13 Jun 2018 16:28:31 EDT
A new study helps clarify how ammonia is present in Earth's upper atmosphere. Using computer modeling, the researchers found ammonia molecules trapped in liquid cloud droplets are released during convection where these particles freeze and subsequently collide in the upper atmosphere.
To forecast winter rainfall in the Southwest, look to New Zealand in the summer
Wed, 13 Jun 2018 10:19:46 EDT
Scientists have discovered an atmospheric teleconnection that allows them to accurately predict winter precipitation in the southwestern United States by measuring summer sea surface temperatures near New Zealand.
New technology has bright prospects for understanding plant biodiversity
Tue, 12 Jun 2018 18:51:04 EDT
Biologists get a new look at plant biodiversity and function with new imaging technology.
Putting animals in their best light: Some shades of LED lamps threaten wildlife
Tue, 12 Jun 2018 09:06:18 EDT
A research team identifies harmful effects to wildlife as LED lights proliferate. Some hues, including blues and whites, imperil creatures while other wavelengths are more benign. They devised an interactive web-based tool to help people make wildlife-friendly choices in outdoor lighting.
Further drivers of ocean deoxygenation identified
Mon, 11 Jun 2018 13:38:07 EDT
Measurements as well as model calculations equally show that the oxygen inventory of the oceans is decreasing. However, the models underestimate this decrease significantly making projections into the future problematic.
Wastewater treatment plants are key route into UK rivers for microplastics
Mon, 11 Jun 2018 13:34:55 EDT
Water samples from UK rivers contained significantly higher concentrations of microplastics downstream from wastewater treatment plants, according to one of the first studies to determine potential sources of microplastics pollution.