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Thursday, January 23, 2020

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Climate and the Environment News from Newswise 23-Jan-2020

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.


New Investments and Research Indicate Multi-Trillion Dollar Market for Climate Restoration Through Carbon-Capture

Climate restoration is the global movement to remove the trillion tons of excess CO2 from the atmosphere to restore our air to preindustrial levels of carbon dioxide and to preserve the Arctic ice. Given the climate emergency, climate restoration is...

– Thunderbird School of Global Management


Embargo expired on 21-Jan-2020 at 10:55 ET

Native Americans Did Not Make Large-Scale Changes to Environment Prior to European Contact

Contrary to long-held beliefs, humans did not make major changes to the landscape prior to European colonization, according to new research conducted in New England featuring faculty at Binghamton University, State University of New York. These new i...

– Binghamton University, State University of New York

Nature Sustainability, Jan-2019

Embargo expired on 20-Jan-2020 at 11:00 ET

For now, river deltas gain land worldwide

Researchers from Utrecht University in the Netherlands, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), and colleagues found that delta areas worldwide have actually gained land in the past 30 years, despite river damming. However, recent land gains are...

– Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution


Helping roadside soils bounce back after construction

Research shows tillage and vegetation can help alleviate compaction

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

2019 ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Annual Meeting

Johns Hopkins Researchers: Climate Change Threatens to Unlock New Microbes and Increase Heat-Related Illness and Death

The Journal of Clinical Investigation (JCI) recently published “Viewpoint” articles by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine professors who warn that global climate change is likely to unlock dangerous new microbes, as well as threaten huma...

– Johns Hopkins Medicine

The Journal of Clinical Investigation

Mapping the Path of Climate Change

Predicting a major transition, such as climate change, is extremely difficult, but the probabilistic framework developed by the authors is the first step in identifying the path between a shift in two environmental states.

– American Institute of Physics (AIP)


The color of your clothing can impact wildlife

Your choice of clothing could affect the behavioral habits of wildlife around you, according to a study conducted by a team of researchers, including faculty at Binghamton University, State University of New York.

– Binghamton University, State University of New York

Biotropica, Dec-2019

Genetic marking discovery improves fruit quality, bolsters climate defenses

Transferring genetic markers in plant breeding is a challenge, but a team of grapevine breeders and scientists at Cornell University have come up with a powerful new method that improves fruit quality and acts as a key defense against pests and a cha...

– Cornell University

Nature Communications, Jan-2020

Air pollution in New York City linked to wildfires hundreds of miles away

A new study shows that air pollutants from the smoke of fires from as far as Canada and the southeastern U.S. traveled hundreds of miles and several days to reach Connecticut and New York City, where it caused significant increases in pollution conce...

– European Geosciences Union (EGU)

Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics

Caterpillar loss in tropical forest linked to extreme rain, temperature events

Using a 22-year dataset of plant-caterpillar-parasitoid interactions collected within a patch of protected Costa Rican lowland Caribbean forest, scientists report declines in caterpillar and parasitoid diversity and density that are paralleled by los...

– University of Nevada, Reno

Scientific Reports

Walking sharks discovered in the tropics

Four new species of tropical sharks that use their fins to walk are causing a stir in waters off northern Australia and New Guinea.

– University of Queensland

Marine & Freshwater Research Journal

FSU Research: Despite less ozone pollution, not all plants benefit

Policies and new technologies have reduced emissions of precursor gases that lead to ozone air pollution, but despite those improvements, the amount of ozone that plants are taking in has not followed the same trend, according to Florida State Univer...

– Florida State University

Elementa: Science of the Anthropocene

What's in Puget Sound? New technique casts a wide net for concerning chemicals

Using a new “non-targeted” approach, University of Washington and UW Tacoma researchers screened samples from multiple regions of Puget Sound to look for potentially harmful compounds that might be present.

– University of Washington

Environmental Science & Technology

Chemistry finding could make solar energy more efficient

Scientists for the first time have developed a single molecule that can absorb sunlight efficiently and also act as a catalyst to transform solar energy into hydrogen, a clean alternative to fuel for things like gas-powered vehicles. This new mole...

– Ohio State University

Nature Chemistry

Global river deltas increasingly shaped by humans, study says

The study by current and former researchers at Tulane University looked at nearly every delta in the world.

– Tulane University


UCI, other researchers find collaborative flood modeling process effective

Irvine, Calif., Jan. 21, 2020 – Community collaboration and high-resolution maps are key to effective flood risk management, according to civil engineers and social scientists at the University of California, Irvine and other institutions. In a stu...

– University of California, Irvine

Earth's Future, Jan-2020

Ozone-depleting substances caused half of late 20th-century Arctic warming, says study

A scientific paper published in 1985 was the first to report a burgeoning hole in Earth's stratospheric ozone over Antarctica. Scientists determined the cause to be ozone-depleting substances - long-lived artificial halogen compounds.

– Earth Institute at Columbia University

Nature Climate Change

Insecticides are becoming more toxic to honey bees

During the past 20 years, insecticides applied to U.S. agricultural landscapes have become significantly more toxic -- over 120-fold in some midwestern states -- to honey bees when ingested, according to a team of researchers, who identified rising n...

– Newswise Review

Scientific Reports

Mosquitoes are drawn to flowers as much as people — and now scientists know why

Scientists have identified the chemical cues in flowers that stimulate mosquitoes’ sense of smell and draw them in. Their findings show how cues from flowers can stimulate the mosquito brain as much as a warm-blooded host — information that could...

– University of Washington

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

Arctic sea ice can't 'bounce back'

Arctic sea ice cannot "quickly bounce back" if climate change causes it to melt, new research suggests.

– University of Exeter

Scientific Reports

Rising global temperatures turn northern permafrost region into significant carbon source

A new study that incorporates datasets gathered from more than 100 sites by institutions including the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory, suggests that decomposition of organic matter in permafrost soil is substantially ...

– Argonne National Laboratory

Nature Climate Change, Oct-2019

Domestic Mallards Gone Wild

A recent study published in the journal Molecular Ecology presents significant findings related to the genetic makeup of two North American iconic ducks: mallards and American black ducks.

– University of Texas at El Paso

Ecology and Evolution

Climate may play a bigger role than deforestation in rainforest biodiversity

"Save the rainforests" is a snappy slogan, but it doesn't tell the full story of how complicated it is to do just that.

– Field Museum


Human-caused biodiversity decline started millions of years ago

The human-caused biodiversity decline started much earlier than researchers used to believe. According to a new study published in the scientific journal Ecology Letters the process was not started by our own species but by some of our ancestors.

– University of Gothenburg

Ecology Letters

What Is An Endangered Species?

What makes for an endangered species classification isn’t always obvious.

– Michigan Technological University

Environmental Research Letters

New Method Detects Toxin Exposure from Harmful Algal Blooms in Human Urine

A newly developed method can detect even low-dose human exposure to microcystins and nodularin in human urine. During harmful algal blooms (HABs), species of cyanobacteria release toxic peptides, including microcystins and nodularin into waterways, ...

– Florida Atlantic University


Diverse cropping systems don’t increase carbon storage compared to corn-soybean rotations

Diversified crop rotations protect water quality and have other environmental benefits, but recent experiments show that farms can’t rely on such rotations to improve carbon storage in the soil. The findings contradict widely held expectations that...

– Iowa State University

Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment Volume 291, 1 April 2020, 106810

Fossil Is the Oldest-Known Scorpion

Scientists studying fossils collected 35 years ago have identified them as the oldest-known scorpion species, a prehistoric animal from about 437 million years ago. The researchers found that the animal likely had the capacity to breathe in both anci...

– Ohio State University

Scientific Reports

Study Weighs Deep-Sea Mining’s Impact on Microbes

The essential roles that microbes play in deep-sea ecosystems are at risk from the potential environmental impacts of mining.

– Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Limnology and Oceanography

AgriLife Research Develops Tropical Hibiscus Hybrids Ready for Market

Winter-hardy hibiscus cultivars are what initially attracted Dariusz Malinowski, Ph.D., Texas A&M AgriLife Research plant physiologist and breeder, to the world of flowers, but now he’s ready to splash a little tropical color into the market.

– Texas A&M AgriLife

Frontiers of Science

New Penguin Colony Discovered in Argentina

Just in time for Penguin Awareness Day on January 20th, WCS researchers announced the discovery of a new colony of Magellanic penguins (Spheniscus magellanicus) on a remote island in Argentina.

– Wildlife Conservation Society

Report reveals ‘unseen’ human benefits from ocean twilight zone

A new report from researchers at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) reveals for the first time the unseen—and somewhat surprising—benefits that people receive from the ocean’s twilight zone. Also known as the “mesopelagic,” this is...

– Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution


Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore Lab Foundation, ClimateWorks to unveil report on California’s road to carbon neutrality

LLNL will host a briefing to unveil the new report “Getting to Neutral: Options for Negative Carbon Emissions in California,” which identifies a robust suite of technologies to help California clear the last hurdle and become carbon neutral by 20...

– Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

What do nutrients do for plants?

What do nutrients do for plants?

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

Sustainable, Secure Food

Maintaining momentum: WVU researchers promote maple syrup production through education

A team of West Virginia University experts wants to educate landowners, foresters and loggers on the nuances of southern sugarbush management.

– West Virginia University

University of Kentucky Project Seeks to Create More Environmentally Friendly, Stronger Cement

The UK Center for Applied Energy Research has received a two-year, $1.3 million grant to develop extremely durable belite-based cement — an alternative to ordinary Portland cement — that is low-energy consuming and low-carbon dioxide releasing....

– University of Kentucky

Seeking a New Pest Solution, UF Scientists Study Fruit Fly’s Gut Bacteria

A team of University of Florida scientists, in partnership with a team of Israeli researchers, is now looking into whether the gut bacteria of two invasive fruit fly species could hold the key to preventing future outbreaks.

– University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences


Spock versus the volcano

Kolumbo volcano—which sits 500 meters below the surface within the fault-heavy Hellenic Volcanic Arc just off Santorini—is the Aegean Sea’s most active and potentially dangerous volcano.

– Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

eDNA techniques to transform subterranean environmental assessment

A new project is set to transform understanding of the impact of mining on Australian subterranean species.

– University of Adelaide

MITRE Uses Earth Shadow to Determine Satellite Range

Until now, determining the orbit of satellites has required many measurements or multiple telescopes. A team of MITRE scientists took their equipment to Chile to view an eclipse—and proved an easier way.



Taal volcano threatens life, climate, agriculture

– Cornell University


Major NSF-sponsored grant will help researchers discover ways to improve urban sustainability

A new $2.5 million grant will help an interdisciplinary team of researchers analyze innovative approaches to improving urban sustainability. The team will study various approaches to bolstering local food production in Des Moines and the surrounding ...

– Iowa State University

DHS S&T Awards Minority Serving Institutions $373K to Advance Summer Research Team Projects

DHS S&T announced that eight faculty members from MSI across the United States were recently selected to receive funding awards totaling $373,000 to continue their 2019 SRT Program for Minority Serving Institutions research projects at several DHS S&...

– Homeland Security's Science And Technology Directorate





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