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Thursday, January 30, 2020

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Climate and the Environment News from Newswise 30-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.


Microplastics from ocean fishing can ‘hide’ in deep sediments

Researchers reporting in ACS’ Environmental Science & Technology have linked microplastics in China’s Beibu Gulf with heavy fishing activities.

– American Chemical Society (ACS)

Environmental Science & Technology

Embargo expired on 29-Jan-2020 at 08:00 ET

Finer particulate matter (PM1) could increase cardiovascular disease risk

Researchers report in Environmental Science & Technology Letters that particles with diameters less than 1 μm (PM1) are more strongly correlated with cardiovascular disease.

– American Chemical Society (ACS)

Environmental Science & Technology Letters

Embargo expired on 29-Jan-2020 at 08:00 ET

Beating the Heat in the Living Wings of Butterflies

Columbia engineers and Harvard biologists discover that butterflies have specialized behaviors and wing scales to protect the living parts of their wings. The nanostructures found in the wing scales could inspire the design of radiative-cooling mater...

– Columbia University School of Engineering and Applied Science

Nature Communications Jan 28 2020

Embargo expired on 28-Jan-2020 at 05:00 ET

Self-learning heat­ing control system saves energy

Can buildings learn to save all by themselves? Empa researchers think so. In their experiments, they fed a new self-learning heat­ing control system with temperature data from the previous year and the current weather forecast. The “smart” contr...

– Empa, Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology

Energy and Buildings Volume 211, 15 March 2020, 109792; Empa media release

Fungal decisions can affect climate

Research shows fungi may slow climate change by storing more carbon

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

ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Annual Meeting

Scientists Find Far Higher than Expected Rate of Underwater Glacial Melting

Tidewater glaciers, the massive rivers of ice that end in the ocean, may be melting underwater much faster than previously thought, according to a Rutgers co-authored study that used robotic kayaks. The findings, which challenge current frameworks fo...

– Rutgers University-New Brunswick

Geophysical Research Letters; Rutgers Today

Cycling to work? You may live longer

People who cycle to work have a lower risk of dying, a New Zealand study has found.

– University of Otago

International Journal of Epidemiology

Robotic Submarine Snaps First Images at Foundation of Notorious Antarctic Glacier

These are the first-ever images taken at the foundations of the glacier that inspires more fear of sea-level rise than any other - Thwaites Glacier. The grounding line is integral to Thwaites' fate and that of the world's coastlines.

– Georgia Institute of Technology

National Science Foundation; UK Natural Environment Research Council; U.S. Antarctic Program; British Antarctic Survey

Rethinking land conservation to protect species that will need to move with climate change

A new study finds that many species of animals and plants likely will need to migrate under climate change, and that conservation efforts will also need to shift to be effective.

– University of Washington

Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, Jan-2020

Study analyses potential global spread of new coronavirus

Experts in population mapping at the University of Southampton have identified cities and provinces within mainland China, and cities and countries worldwide, which are at high-risk from the spread of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV).

– University of Southampton


New Portable Tool Analyzes Microbes in the Environment

Imagine a device that could swiftly analyze microbes in oceans and other aquatic environments, revealing the health of these organisms – too tiny to be seen by the naked eye – and their response to threats to their ecosystems. Rutgers researchers...

– Rutgers University-New Brunswick

Scientific Reports; Rutgers Today

Sea level rise to cause major economic impact in the absence of further climate action

Rising sea levels, a direct impact of the Earth’s warming climate, is intensifying coastal flooding. The findings of a new study show that the projected negative economy-wide effects of coastal flooding are already significant until 2050, but are t...

– International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis

Environmental Research Communications

Children to bear the burden of negative health effects from climate change

The grim effects that climate change will have on pediatric health outcomes was the focus of a “Viewpoint” article published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation by Susan E. Pacheco, MD, an expert at The University of Texas Health Science Cen...

– University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston

Journal of Clinical Investigation

Current model for storing nuclear waste is incomplete

The materials the United States and other countries plan to use to store high-level nuclear waste will likely degrade faster than anyone previously knew because of the way those materials interact, new research shows. The findings, published today in...

– Ohio State University

Nature Materials

Contradicting prevalent view, UCI oceanographers predict increase in phytoplankton

Irvine, Calif., Jan. 27, 2020 – A neural network-driven Earth system model has led University of California, Irvine oceanographers to a surprising conclusion: Phytoplankton populations in low-latitude waters will expand by the end of the 21st centu...

– University of California, Irvine

Nature Geoscience, Jan.-2020

‘Profound’ evolution: Wasps learn to recognize faces

One wasp species has evolved the ability to recognize individual faces among their peers – something that most other insects cannot do – signaling an evolution in how they have learned to work together.

– Cornell University

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

Getting to the root of plant survival

Researchers have new insight into plant survival after identifying hormones and proteins that interact to regulate root emergence. The findings may lead to the ability to control when and how many additional roots a plant can form – a key weapon in...

– University of Delaware

Nature Communications

Earth's most biodiverse ecosystems face a perfect storm

A combination of climate change, extreme weather and pressure from local human activity is causing a collapse in global biodiversity and ecosystems across the tropics, new research shows.

– Lancaster University

Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B

Dance of the honey bee reveals fondness for strawberries

Bees are pollinators of many wild and crop plants, but in many places their diversity and density is declining.

– University of Göttingen

Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment

Acetone plus light creates a green jet fuel additive

Take biomass-derived acetone—common nail polish remover—use light to upgrade it to higher-mass hydrocarbons, and, voila, you have a domestically generated product that can be blended with conventional jet fuel to fly while providing environmental...

– Los Alamos National Laboratory

Sustainable Energy and Fuels

Here, There and Everywhere: Large and Giant Viruses Abound Globally

In Nature, a team led by U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Joint Genome Institute (JGI) researchers uncovered a broad diversity of large and giant viruses that belong to the nucleocytoplasmic large DNA viruses (NCLDV) supergroup, expanding virus divers...

– Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory


Plane travel destroys polar bear habitat

We all know we should fly less as a way to reduce our individual and collective effect on the global climate. But transforming that vague understanding into concrete reasons for action can be difficult -- until now.

– Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU)

Environmental International

Researcher looking for clues in the mystery of the Grand Canyon’s water supply

Research technician Natalie Jones is the lead author on a paper that looked at how scientists model the vulnerability of karst formations around the Grand Canyon. Along with professor Abe Springer, she created a new model that can give land and water...

– Northern Arizona University

Hydrogeology Journal

Rising from the ashes: volunteers and good science will be vital to bush recovery after catastrophic fires

University of South Australia ecologist Joan Gibbs describes the day that fires tore through her property in the Adelaide Hills, leaving a trail of devastation. One month on, there are signs of recovery.

– University of South Australia


Sleet? Freezing rain? Polar vortex? Veteran meteorology expert can explain winter weather forecast terms

Paul Roebber is one of the leading forecasting experts in the United States and the world. He’s a leader in bringing new approaches to meteorology, and his research has changed how experts around the world forecast weather.

Expert Available

– University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Dr. Jeanne Fair, LANL biosecurity and public health expert, can address novel coronavirus and animal/human disease transfer.

– Los Alamos National Laboratory

Better hygiene won’t stop coronavirus: It’s time to shut down wet markets

– Cornell University

UCLA expert available for comment on planned Trump Administration revisions of federal protections for streams and wetlands.

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

Trump pollution control cuts ‘not consistent with science,’ will cost Americans

– Cornell University

Rutgers Expert Available to Discuss Doomsday Clock and Nuclear and Climate Threats

– Rutgers University-New Brunswick

New Doomsday Clock time signals inability or direct unwillingness of leaders to cooperatively respond to devastating threats to our planet

– University of Notre Dame


Industry Leaders, Scholars to Convene at UVA Darden for Global Summit on Climate Change Risks and Opportunities

Industry experts, scholars and MBA students from around the globe will convene 21–22 February at the University of Virginia Darden School of Business for ClimateCAP: The Global MBA Summit on Climate, Capital, & Business.

– University of Virginia Darden School of Business

ClimateCAP: The Global MBA Summit on Climate, Capital, & Business, 21–22 February

UTEP Introduces Bachelor’s Degree in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

The new degree is the campus’ latest effort in an ongoing mission of providing competitive academic and research opportunities at one of the most reasonable prices for a U.S. top tier university.

– University of Texas at El Paso





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