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News about environmental issues. Latest "Green" and sustainable technologies news.

Fracking wastewater accumulation found in freshwater mussels' shells

Elevated concentrations of strontium, an element associated with oil and gas wastewaters, have accumulated in the shells of freshwater mussels downstream from fracking wastewater disposal sites.

Earth’s inner core is solid, 'J waves' suggest

A new study could help us understand how our planet was formed. Scientists report that their research shows that Earth's inner core is solid -- a finding made possible by a new method for detecting shear waves, or 'J waves' in the inner core.

A clearer path to clean air in China

New research shows that a key to reducing extreme wintertime air pollution in China may be reducing formaldehyde emissions rather than sulfur dioxide.

Polluted city neighborhoods are bad news for asthmatic children

Children with asthma who grow up in a New York City neighborhood where air pollution is prevalent need emergency medical treatment more often than asthmatics in less polluted areas.

Biodiversity can also destabilize ecosystems

According to the prevailing opinion, species-rich ecosystems are more stable against environmental disruptions such as drought, hot spells or pesticides. The situation is not as simple as it seems, however, as ecologists have now discovered. Under certain environmental conditions, increased biodiversity can also lead to an ecosystem becoming more unstable.

Arctic greening thaws permafrost, boosts runoff

A new collaborative study has investigated Arctic shrub-snow interactions to obtain a better understanding of the far north's tundra and vast permafrost system. Incorporating extensive in situ observations, scientists tested their theories with a novel 3D computer model and confirmed that shrubs can lead to significant degradation of the permafrost layer that has remained frozen for tens of thousands of years. These interactions are driving increases in discharges of fresh water into rivers, lakes and oceans.

Eliminating emissions in India and China could add years to people's lives

In a recent study, researchers wanted to know how replacing coal-fired powerplants in China and India with clean, renewable energy could benefit human health and save lives in the future. The researchers found that eliminating harmful emissions from powerplants could save an estimated annual 15 million years of life in China and 11 million years of life in India.

Wind farms and reducing hurricane precipitation

New research reveals an unexpected benefit of large-scale offshore wind farms: the ability to lessen precipitation from hurricanes.

Dandelion seeds reveal newly discovered form of natural flight

A study of dandelion seeds in motion has revealed a form of flight not seen before, and explains why the plant is among nature's best fliers.

Arctic ice sets speed limit for major ocean current

Scientists have now identified a key mechanism, which they call the 'ice-ocean governor,' that controls how fast the Beaufort Gyre spins and how much fresh water it stores. Researchers report that the Arctic's ice cover essentially sets a speed limit on the gyre's spin.

Substantial changes in air pollution across China during 2015 to 2017

The first detailed analysis of air pollution trends in China reveals a 20 per cent drop in concentrations of particulate pollution over the last three years (2015-2017).

Moss rapidly detects, tracks air pollutants in real time

Moss, one of the world's oldest plants, is surprisingly in tune with the atmosphere around it. Now scientists report that they have found a simple and inexpensive way to detect air pollutants, specifically sulfur dioxide, in real time based on subtle changes in moss leaves. The discovery could rapidly alert authorities to potentially dangerous alterations in air quality using a sustainable, natural plant sensor.

Applying auto industry's fuel-efficiency standards to agriculture could net billions

Adopting benchmarks similar to the fuel-efficiency standards used by the auto industry in the production of fertilizer could yield $5-8 billion in economic benefits for the U.S. corn sector alone, researchers have concluded.

Predicting an El Niño or La Niña year 17 months in advance

El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) leads to extreme climatic variations called El Niño and La Niña that cause dangerous weather conditions in many regions throughout the world. Currently, a reliable forecast of the ENSO phases can be made about a year beforehand. This study details a novel method that allows for the accurate forecast of its phases up to 17 months in advance.

Tropical moths in the mountains are larger

Researchers have measured more than 19,000 tropical moths from 1,100 species to find out whether their size varies with elevation. The researchers found clear patterns: moths increase in size significantly at higher elevations.


Environmental News - NaturesList.org