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Thursday, February 6, 2020

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Climate and the Environment News from Newswise 06-Feb-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.

Fecal excretion of PFAS by pets

Researchers report in Environmental Science & Technology Letters that cats and dogs excrete some PFAS in their feces at levels that suggest exposures above the minimum risk level, which could have implications for pet owners.

– American Chemical Society (ACS)

Environmental Science & Technology Letters

Embargo expired on 05-Feb-2020 at 08:00 ET

DIII-D Researchers Use Machine Learning to Steer Fusion Plasmas Near Operational Limits

Researchers at the DIII-D National Fusion Facility recently achieved a scientific first when they used machine learning calculations to automatically prevent fusion plasma disruptions in real time, while simultaneously optimizing the plasma for peak ...

– General Atomics

Embargo expired on 03-Feb-2020 at 06:00 ET

Past climate safe havens now most vulnerable

The profound threat of future climate change to biodiversity demands that scientists seek ever more effective ways to identify the most vulnerable species, communities, and ecosystems. In a new study, published in Nature Climate Change, an interna...

– University of Adelaide

Nature Climate Change

Embargo expired on 03-Feb-2020 at 11:00 ET

Sugar Ants’ Preference for Pee May Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions

An unlikely penchant for pee is putting a common sugar ant on the map, as new research from the University of South Australia shows their taste for urine could play a role in reducing greenhouse gases.

– University of South Australia

Austral Ecology

Conflict between ranchers and wildlife intensifies as climate change worsens in Chile

Scientists from the University of La Serena, Newcastle University, UK, and the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile surveyed ranchers to find out what they thought were the drivers of conflict between people and guanacos (a wild camelid species cl...

– Newcastle University


Global Cooling After Nuclear War Would Harm Ocean Life

A nuclear war that cooled Earth could worsen the impact of ocean acidification on corals, clams, oysters and other marine life with shells or skeletons, according to the first study of its kind.

– Rutgers University-New Brunswick

Geophysical Research Letters; Rutgers Today

Engineering a Better World Using Mirrors, Sun, and Steam

Partha Dutta, a professor of electrical, computer, and systems engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, envisions a not-so-distant future where even the most remote parts of the world would have access to clean and renewable energy. His visio...

– Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)

Engineering a Better World Using Mirrors, Sun, and Steam

Onion growers have new tool versus fungicide-resistant disease

Five years ago, onion growers in New York state started reporting large incidents of premature leaf death in their fields. It affected nearly 75% of growers’ crops and put a dent in the state’s onion industry, which has a four-year average value ...

– Cornell University

Plant Disease, Oct-2019

Research Brief: Ocean Temperatures Impact Central American Climate More than Once Thought

In a study published today in the journal Nature Communications, UNLV climate scientists and colleagues examined the rainfall history of Central America over the last 11,000 years. The results provide long-sought answers to what has been controlling ...

– University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV)

Nature Communications 11, 716 (2020).

Colossal oysters have disappeared from Florida's 'most pristine' coastlines

Hundreds of years ago, colossal oysters were commonplace across much of Florida's northern Gulf Coast. Today, those oysters have disappeared, leaving behind a new generation roughly a third smaller - a massive decline that continues to have both econ...

– University of South Florida

Biology Letters

Faster than a speeding bullet: Asian hornet invasion spreads to Northern Germany

In early September 2019, an Asian hornet (Vespa velutina nigrithorax) was collected alive in Hamburg, Germany, representing the northernmost find of the species so far in Europe and indicating its further spread to the north.

– Pensoft Publishers

Evolutionary Systematics

First-of-its-kind study examines toll of nuclear war on world’s oceans

A new study finds that a nuclear war could throw the world's ocean chemistry for a loop—and coral reefs could pay the price.

– University of Colorado Boulder

Geophysical Research Letters

Proximity to Green Spaces Impacts Health

A University at Albany team worked with colleagues around the globe on two separate studies to determine the effects that greenery has on our health – finding that the greener our surroundings, the better.

– University at Albany, State University of New York

Environmental Pollution; Science of the Total Environment

Flyception 2.0: New Imaging Technology Tracks Complex Social Behavior

An advanced imaging technology developed at UC San Diego is allowing scientists unprecedented access into brain activities during intricate behaviors. The “Flyception2” has produced the first-ever picture of what happens in the brain during matin...

– University of California San Diego

Nature Communications, Feb-2019

New Thalattosaur Species Discovered in Southeast Alaska

Scientists at the University of Alaska Fairbanks have identified a new species of thalattosaur, a marine reptile that lived more than 200 million years ago.

– University of Alaska Fairbanks

Scientific Reports

Deep learning accurately forecasts heat waves, cold spells

Rice University engineers have created a deep learning computer system that taught itself to accurately predict extreme weather events, like heat waves, up to five days in advance using minimal information about current weather conditions.

– Rice University

Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems

Does animal size in zoos matter?

As a sixth mass extinction sends shock waves through whole categories of species, modern zoos and aquariums stand as leading sources of conservation funding and safe havens for populations deemed threatened in the wild.

– University of Southern Denmark

Nature Communications

Peeking at the plumbing of one of the Aleutian's most-active volcanoes

A new approach to analyzing seismic data reveals deep vertical zones of low seismic velocity in the plumbing system underlying Alaska's Cleveland volcano, one of the most-active of the more than 70 Aleutian volcanoes

– Carnegie Institution for Science

Scientific Reports

Argonne and Washington University scientists unravel mystery of photosynthesis

Scientists solved a critical part of the mystery of photosynthesis, focusing on the initial, ultrafast events through which photosynthetic proteins capture light and use it to initiate a series of electron transfer reactions.

– Argonne National Laboratory

PNAS, Jan-2020

Hollywood's dirtiest secret? Its environmental toll

Just in time for Academy Awards, new book sheds light on ecological impact of filmmaking

– University of Colorado Boulder

NUS discovery: Butterflies can acquire new scent preferences and pass these on to their offspring

Two studies from the National University of Singapore demonstrate that insects can learn from their previous experiences and adjust their future behaviour for survival and reproduction.

– National University of Singapore

Nature Communications; Evolution

Save Your Soybeans and Corn, Iowa’s ‘Goldilocks’ Period Won’t Last

Over the past few decades, Iowa’s agriculture has experienced a period of consistently high yields. The perfect distribution and timing of humidity, rainfall and heat have led to bumper crops of corn and soybeans. This “Goldilocks” period is pa...

– American Institute of Physics (AIP)

Physics Today

Research sheds light on the evolutionary puzzle of coupling

A UTSA researcher has discovered that, whether in a pair or in groups, success in primate social systems may also provide insight into organization of human social life.

– University of Texas at San Antonio

Science Advances

Microplastic Hotspots

A new study from the University of Delaware found high concentrations of microplastics in so-called convergence zones, the areas where the fresher water from the Delaware River meets the saltier water of the Atlantic Ocean and the surface currents co...

– University of Delaware

Environmental Science and Technology

Extinction is difficult to prove for Earth's ultra-rare species

A recent study by the University of Kent has called for an increase in scientific surveys and collection of specimens to confirm the extinction of ultra-rare species.

– University of Kent

The International Journal of Conservation

Supercomputer Models Improve Oregon/Washington Coastal Forecasts

Researchers at Oregon State University have been using the Comet supercomputer at the San Diego Supercomputer Center to test an algorithm that they believe will reduce errors in the widely used three-day forecasts for water temperature, salinity leve...

– University of California San Diego

Ocean Modelling, Dec-2019; NA13NOS0120139

More grocery stores means less food waste — and a big carbon cut

One strategy for reducing food waste’s environmental impact is as counterintuitive as it is straightforward: Open more grocery stores.

– Cornell University

Manufacturing and Service Operations Management, Jan. 2020

Researchers study the intricate link between climate and conflict

New research from the University of Notre Dame is shedding light on the unexpected effects climate change could have on regional instability and violent conflict.

– University of Notre Dame

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

The First Potentially Invasive Species to Reach the Antarctica on Drifting Marine Algae

Drifting algae in the Austral Ocean can bring invasive species to the Antarctic coasts, according to a study published in the journal Scientific Reports.

– Universitat de Barcelona

Scientific Reports

Researchers make critical advances in quantifying methane released from the Arctic Ocean

A new study, lead by researchers at Stockholm university and published in Science Advances, now demonstrate that the amount of methane presently leaking to the atmosphere from the Arctic Ocean is much lower than previously claimed in recent studies. ...

– Stockholm University

Science Advances

If it takes a hike, riders won’t go for bike sharing

Even a relatively short walk to find the nearest bicycle is enough to deter many potential users of bike sharing systems, new Cornell research suggests.

– Cornell University

Management Science, Nov. 2019

Trees might be 'aware' of their size

Trees are known for their great, but not unlimited, trunk height and diameter.

– University of Helsinki

Current Biology

MSU partners to establish network to help coastal birds

A Mississippi State researcher is co-leading a new network of more than 100 wildlife scientists and land managers from across the U.S. to monitor and aid birds along the Gulf of Mexico.

– Mississippi State University

Great American Prairies – the most endangered ecosystem on Earth?

Agricultural advances are primary culprit of the lost prairie

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

University of North Dakota’s Petroleum Engineering Department to host world’s largest oil drilling simulator

The University of North Dakota will soon host the world’s largest – and only – full scale oil drilling and completion lab. Petroleum engineering students will be able to simulate general drilling and deep drilling, along with testing different ...

– University of North Dakota

A Viral Gold Rush

Researchers developed open-source software that can classify viruses in ways that previous tools could not.

– Department of Energy, Office of Science

Cornell co-leads effort to use big data to combat catastrophes

With a team of experts in fields including data science, statistics, computer science, finance, energy, agriculture, ecology, hydrology, climate and space weather, The Predictive Risk Investigation System for Multilayer Dynamic Interconnection Analys...

– Cornell University

Outcomes published following Iowa State workshop discussing land use, infrastructure issues within Mississippi River watershed

A new network of researchers and community officials is working to find solutions to some of the biggest challenges within the Mississippi River watershed.

Expert Available

– Iowa State University

1929601; Proceedings

Danforth Center Unveils Robust Line-up for Inaugural AgTech NEXT Summit

The Donald Danforth Plant Science Center today announced the preliminary lineup of presentations and panel discussions by innovative thinkers for AgTech NEXT, the bold new food and agtech innovation summit will be held May 4 – 6, 2020 at the Danfor...

– Donald Danforth Plant Science Center

AgTech NEXT, May 4 – 6, 2020, Danforth Center St. Louis, MO

UAlbany Atmospheric Scientist Leads $2 Million Project to Study Hurricane Intensity

Atmospheric scientist Brian Tang has been awarded $2.145 million from the Office of Naval Research (ONR) to help forecasters better understand and predict the rapid intensification of hurricanes.

– University at Albany, State University of New York

Proposed NY pipeline undermines green energy goals

– Cornell University

UCLA Expert available for comment on public health issues tied to brushfires and climate change

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

Rutgers Experts Available to Discuss Mild January, Low Snowfall in N.J.

– Rutgers University-New Brunswick





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