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Newswise Special Wire
Thursday, October 31, 2019

Public edition |

Climate and the Environment News from Newswise 31-Oct-2019

Climate Change and Environmental News and Experts for the Media

Newswise provides experts for the media on hurricanes, wildfires, and other natural disasters, as well as the latest research in Environmental Science and Climate Science.

Vampire bats give a little help to their “friends”

Vampire bats could be said to be sort of like people – not because of their blood-sucking ways, but because they help their neighbors in need even if it’s of no obvious benefit to them.

– Ohio State University

Current Biology

Embargo expired on 31-Oct-2019 at 11:00 ET

Alongside Ötzi the Iceman: A Bounty of Ancient Mosses and Liverworts

Frozen flora holds clues to the ancient Alps ecosystem and to the Iceman’s final journey



Embargo expired on 30-Oct-2019 at 14:00 ET

CARBON BOMB: Study Says Climate Impact from Loss of Intact Tropical Forests Grossly Underreported

A new study in the journal Science Advances says that carbon impacts from the loss of intact tropical forests has been grossly undereported.

– Wildlife Conservation Society

Science Advances

Embargo expired on 30-Oct-2019 at 14:00 ET

Preserved pollen tells the history of floodplains

Fossil pollen can help reconstruct the past and predict the future

– American Society of Agronomy (ASA), Crop Science Society of America (CSSA), Soil Science Society of America (SSSA)

Soil Science Society of America Journal; 2007-35107-17799

Drones help map Iceland's disappearing glaciers

A new 3D process which involves old aerial photos and modern-day drone photography has shed light on accelerated ice loss from some of Iceland's largest glaciers.

– University of Dundee

Improving ecology restoration outcomes

Taking into account the target species, their interactions with existing species and the site’s environmental conditions may increase the success of restoration projects.

– South Dakota State University

Restoration Ecology, Nov. 2018

Bye-Bye, Beaches

Those beaches, as we know them today at least, almost certainly will not last. By the end of the 21st century, more than $150 billion in property along our coast could be under water. That's because the level of the sea is rising at an alarming rate,...

– California State University (CSU) Chancellor's Office

A deadly fungus is wiping out North American bats while Eurasian bats have learned to live with it. An international team wants to know why.

Wildlife disease ecologist Jeff Foster of Northern Arizona University is partnering with researchers throughout the world to study the spread of white-nose syndrome, which was discovered in North America in 2006. Researchers believed it migrated from...

– Northern Arizona University

Global Warming’s Impact on Undernourishment

Global warming may increase undernutrition through the effects of heat exposure on people, according to a new study published this week in PLOS Medicine by Yuming Guo of Monash University, Australia, and colleagues.


PLOS Medicine

Embargo expired on 29-Oct-2019 at 14:00 ET

Red Algae Thrive Despite Ancestor’s Massive Loss of Genes

You’d think that losing 25 percent of your genes would be a big problem for survival. But not for red algae, including the seaweed used to wrap sushi. An ancestor of red algae lost about a quarter of its genes roughly one billion years ago, but the...

– Rutgers University-New Brunswick

Nature Communications; Rutgers Today

Improving governance is key for adaptive capacity

Governance in climate vulnerable countries will take decades to improve, substantially impeding the ability of nations to adapt to climate change and affecting billions of people globally, according to new research published in Nature Sustainability....

– International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis

Nature Sustainability

Exposing blind spots in the carbon budget space

An international research group that included researchers from IIASA and Japan, identified biases towards some selected carbon budgets in the current scenario literature.

– International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis

Nature Climate Change

Bird bacteria is key to communication and mating

Birds use odor to identify other birds, and researchers at Michigan State University have shown that if the bacteria that produce the odor is altered, it could negatively impact a bird's ability to communicate with other birds or find a mate.

– Michigan State University

Journal of Experimental Biology 16 October 2019

Research On Large Storm Waves Could Help Lessen Their Impact On Coasts

An international team of researchers has analyzed months of data of large nearshore waves to provide new insights that could help improve the designs of a variety of coastal structures from seaports to seawalls to better withstand destructive waves. ...

– Georgia Institute of Technology

Scientific Reports; Science Foundation Ireland

Safeguarding Our Water Supply

University of Delaware environmental engineer Chin-Pao Huang has been studying ways to remove perchlorate from drinking water for nearly a decade. He and a former doctoral student have patented a novel membrane that can selectively filter perchlorate...

– University of Delaware

Climate change could drive British crop farming north and west

Unchecked climate change could drive Britain's crop growing north and west, leaving the east and south east unable to support crop growing, new research suggests.

– University of Exeter

Environmental Research Letters

Argonne lends a hand toward climate and weather understanding

The Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) User Facility, supported by the DOE Office of Science, has been providing researchers the data to understand the complex global climate picture for 27 years. The first ARM facility, the Southern Great Plain...

– Argonne National Laboratory

Viable alternatives to trophy hunting exist, say scientists

A recent letter in Science cited a lack of alternatives to trophy hunting. The authors suggested that bans on imports of hunting trophies would undermine biodiversity conservation efforts

– University of Hong Kong


Mutated ferns shed light on ancient mass extinction

Most researchers believe that the mass extinction 201 million years ago was caused by release of CO2 by volcanism with global warming as a consequence. Now, new data from fern spores suggest there might have been more to it than that.

– Aarhus University

Science Advances

'DNA Time Capsule' Reveals Birthplace of Modern Humans

A landmark study led by Sydney researchers pinpoints the birthplace of modern humans in southern Africa and suggests how climate change may have driven the first migrations.

– University of Sydney


To rid electric grid of carbon, shore up green energy support

Cornell and Northwestern University engineers, along with a federal economist, have created an energy model that helps to remove carbon-generated power from the U.S. electric grid – replacing it with a greener, financially feasible wind, solar and ...

– Cornell University

Nature Energy, Oct-2019

Project partners researchers, librarians and AI to fight hunger

Ceres2030, a global effort led by International Programs in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, is employing machine learning, librarian expertise and cutting-edge research analysis to use existing knowledge to help eliminate hunger by 2030...

– Cornell University

Energy Regulation Rollbacks Threaten Progress Against Harmful Ozone

The fight against harmful ozone is under legal threat. Air quality and carbon emissions regulations are currently in limbo in courts and congress, from core legislation from the 1970s to rules from the last U.S. administration. This study models the ...

– Georgia Institute of Technology

One Earth; R835880; 1444745

Embargo expired on 25-Oct-2019 at 11:00 ET

U.S. Carbon and Pollution Emissions Policies are ‘Up in the Air’

Tangles in courts and in Congress threaten emissions-related energy regulations and incentives. If these are lost, carbon emissions are projected to climb, and the fight against health-damaging ozone may lose traction, allowing it to resurge, too. An...

Expert Available

– Georgia Institute of Technology

One Earth; R835880; 1444745

Embargo expired on 25-Oct-2019 at 11:00 ET

New Study Reveals Important yet Unprotected Global Ocean Areas

The largest synthesis and a first of its kind study of important marine areas conducted to date reveals that a large portion of earth’s oceans are considered important and are good candidates for protection.

– Stony Brook University

Frontiers in Marine Science

Reframing Antarctica’s Meltwater Pond Dangers to Ice Shelves and Sea Level

Meltwater ponds riddle a kilometer-thick ice shelf, which then shatters in just weeks, shocking scientists and speeding the flow of the glacier behind it into the ocean to drive up sea level. A new study puts damage by meltwater ponds to ice shelves ...

– Georgia Institute of Technology

Geophysical Research Letters; NSF PLR-1735715 ; NSF PLR-1841607

Cold, hard data: ORNL data scientists support historic Arctic expedition

MOSAiC, the largest polar expedition of all time, will produce demanding quantities of data. ORNL staff in the field and the lab collect, store and process it to share with collaborators around the world.

– Oak Ridge National Laboratory


Microsoft HoloLens meets ‘unicorn of the sea’

“Narwhal: Revealing an Arctic Legend” has been on exhibit at The Smithsonian’s Museum of Natural History since 2017 and is due to go on tour of North America in 2020. Museum visitors can view panoramic Arctic landscape images, touch a cast of a...

– Case Western Reserve University

Microsoft HoloLens

Strong winter dust storms may have caused the collapse of the Akkadian Empire

Fossil coral records provide new evidence that frequent winter shamals, or dust storms, and a prolonged cold winter season contributed to the collapse of the ancient Akkadian Empire in Mesopotamia.

– Hokkaido University


Micro-satellites offer a fresh view of NYS agriculture

Cornell University researchers are deploying thumbnail-size satellites to monitor environmental conditions as a dry run for using the technology for future space research. At the same time, he is harvesting valuable data that will help growers make m...

– Cornell University

Study Provides Framework For One Billion Years Of Green Plant Evolution

Gene sequences for more than 1100 plant species have been released by an international consortium of nearly 200 plant scientists who were involved in a nine-year research project, One Thousand Plant Transcriptomes Initiative (1KP).

– Donald Danforth Plant Science Center


Scientists tout ocean protection progress, give road map for more

World governments and other leadership bodies are taking vital steps to protect the ocean but more progress is urgently needed, Oregon State University scientists reported today at the Our Ocean Conference.

– Oregon State University

Our Ocean Conference

Ancient Molecules from the Sea Burst Into the Air From Ocean Waves

When waves crash in the ocean, they inject tiny particles into the air that carry organic molecules more than 5,000 years old. This discovery, published in Science Advances by a national team of scientists, helps to solve a long-standing mystery as t...

– Stony Brook University

Journal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres

"Science By The People" Book Explores Promise and Pitfalls of Citizen Science

Involving the public in scientific research can help to solve complex environmental problems, but according to Science by the People, a new book co-authored by sociologists Abby Kinchy of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Aya Kimura of the Univers...

– Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)

Science by the People


HARC Aims to Reduce Climate Risk in Urban and Coastal Systems with New Research Program

HARC (the Houston Advanced Research Center) announced today the creation of a new research program to help reduce the negative consequences of climate change on urban and coastal areas in Texas.

– Houston Advanced Research Center (HARC)

Higher Education Events

An “Evening of Denial” to Feature Advocates and Experts on the Impact of the Rejection of Scientific Knowledge—Nov. 4

New York University will host a “An Evening of Denial,” a panel discussion centering on the rejection of scientific knowledge, on Mon., Nov. 4.

– New York University

SUNY and CUNY Chancellors Convene National Conference at UAlbany to Explore Disaster Preparedness, Recovery, and Response In Face of Climate Change

The University at Albany is hosting a national conference designed to explore ways that higher education institutions can strengthen disaster preparedness, response, and recovery efforts in an era of increasingly extreme weather caused by climate cha...

– University at Albany, State University of New York

Expert Pitch

California wildfires threaten grapevines, wine production

– Cornell University

UCLA expert available to discuss the stress, emotional trauma and psychological impact of the California wildfires

– University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Health Sciences

Rutgers Expert Available to Discuss ‘New Jersey’s Rising Coastal Risk’ Report

– Rutgers University-New Brunswick

@UCSDHealth expert available to talk about lung issues caused by smoke from wildfires

– University of California San Diego Health

Rajan Chakrabarty studies environmental effects of the particles and gases which are emitted during wildfires.

– Washington University in St. Louis

Rutgers Experts Can Discuss Climate Change Resilience on Sandy Anniversary

– Rutgers University-New Brunswick

How wildfires in California are impacting health

– University of Delaware

USC experts share expertise about wildfires

– Keck Medicine of USC

California wildfires: Evacuation, health concerns and care for vulnerable

– University of Delaware

Rutgers Expert Available to Discuss Walt Disney’s Connection to Natural Sciences as Seen in “Fantasia”

– Rutgers University-New Brunswick


Climate engineering should not be considered a public good, new research shows

– Binghamton University, State University of New York

Global Transitions, Aug-2019





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