At last, butterflies get a bigger, better evolutionary tree Butterflies offer key insights into community ecology, how species originate and evolve, climate change and interactions between plants and insects. But a comprehensive map of how butterflies are related to each other has been lacking -- until now.
Maximizing the environmental benefits of autonomous vehicles The added weight, electricity demand and aerodynamic drag of the sensors and computers used in autonomous vehicles are significant contributors to their lifetime energy use and greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new study.
Genetics makes Asians, Europeans susceptible to dengue shock syndrome As globalization and climate change spread tropical diseases around the globe, not all populations are equally susceptible to infection. Gene variants common in people of Asian and European ancestry, for instance, make them more prone than those of Africa
How seafloor weathering drives the slow carbon cycle A previously unknown connection between geological atmospheric carbon dioxide cycles and the fluctuating capacity of the ocean crust to store carbon dioxide has been uncovered by two geoscientists from the University of Sydney. Better understanding of the
Polar vortex defies climate change in the Southeast Overwhelming scientific evidence has demonstrated that our planet is getting warmer due to climate change, yet parts of the eastern US are actually getting cooler. According to a Dartmouth-led study in Geophysical Research Letters, the location of this an
Pride tops guilt as a motivator for environmental decisions A lot of pro-environmental messages suggest that people will feel guilty if they don't make an effort to live more sustainably or takes steps to ameliorate climate change. But a recent study from Princeton University finds that highlighting the pride peop
Powerful LED-based train headlight optimized for energy savings Researchers have designed a new LED-based train headlight that uses a tenth of the energy required for headlights using conventional light sources. If operated 8 hours every day, the electricity savings of the new design would reduce emissions of the gree
Plants feel the heat Sainsbury Laboratory scientists have solved a 79-year-old mystery by discovering how plants vary their response to heat stress depending on the time of day. This understanding could help with breeding commercial crops able to produce higher yields in hott
Bats as barometer of change Bats spend every night hard at work for local farmers, consuming over half of their own weight in insects, many of which are harmful agricultural pests, such as the noctuid moths, corn earworm and fall armyworm. And now they are arriving earlier in the se
Why did gas hydrates melt at the end of the last ice age? Large amounts of the greenhouse gas methane are locked up as solid gas hydrates in the continental slopes of ocean margins. Their stability depends on low temperatures and high pressure. However, other factors that influence gas hydrate stability are not
Biochar could replace unsustainable peat moss in greenhouse industry Plant lovers are familiar with peat moss as the major component of potting mix, but harvest of the material is becoming unsustainable. Not only is peat being removed faster than it can re-form, its use in potting mix contributes to the release of carbon d
Rapid land changes forecast for East African savannahs A study, presenting a 5000-year environmental history of the popular tourist destination, Amboseli National Park in Kenya, has shown that the impact of climate change on land is more rapid than previously thought.
Who's your daddy? Good news for threatened sea turtles A groundbreaking study of sea turtle nests and hatchlings using paternity tests to uncover 'who are your daddies?' is the first to document multiple paternity in loggerhead sea turtle nests in southwest Florida. What started out as a study on female sea t
Climate variability -- past and future On the basis of a unique global comparison of data from core samples extracted from the ocean floor and the polar ice sheets, AWI researchers have now demonstrated that, though climate changes have indeed decreased around the globe from glacial to intergl
Ecuador: Deforestation destroys more dry forest than climate change Tropical forests worldwide are at risk. Two of the main threats are the deforestation for arable land and climate change. Scientists from Technical University of Munich (TUM) and Thünen-Institute compared the losses due to deforestation with those th
Coastal water absorbing more carbon dioxide New research by a University of Delaware oceanographer and colleagues at other universities reveals that the water over the continental shelves is shouldering a larger than expected portion of atmospheric carbon dioxide. The findings may have important im
Getting ready for the summer sun with 'green' sunscreens Although it's been a tough winter for many people in the US, summer is coming. And that means backyard barbecues, fun on the beach and, of course, slathering on sunscreen. But one particular environmentally friendly sunscreen ingredient has been difficult
An outdoor cat can damage your sustainability cred If you install solar panels on your roof and avoid dousing your lawn with chemicals and pesticides, your online peers may consider you to be environmentally friendly. But this street cred can all be erased if you let your cat roam around outdoors.
Running away from carbon dioxide: The terminal connection Like us, fish need oxygen, and swimming through a patch of carbon dioxide turns out not to be a pleasant experience. Instead, they prefer to avoid carbon dioxide altogether. In experiments published in Cell Reports on Jan. 30, researchers at the RIKEN Bra
Warming climate shrinks British Columbia beetles Some of B.C.'s beetles are shrinking as their habitats get warmer, according to new UBC research. The study provides evidence that climate change is affecting the size of organisms.
How to reduce heat extremes by 2-3 degrees C New research published in Nature Geoscience shows how simple, proven geo-engineering measures can reduce the hottest days by 2-3 degrees C. Lightening buildings, roads and infrastructure in densely populated areas and changing crop types and using no till
Mammals and birds could have best shot at surviving climate change New research that analyzed more than 270 million years of data on animals shows that mammals and birds -- both warm-blooded animals -- may have a better chance of evolving and adapting to the Earth's rapidly changing climate than their cold-blooded peers,
These carbon dioxide-sensing neurons wake up mice Stimulating a population of neurons in the midbrain with carbon dioxide (CO2) awakens adult male mice without enhancing breathing, finds a study published in JNeurosci. These findings are relevant to understanding disorders such as obstructive sleep apnea
Warming temperatures may cause birds to shrink Biologists have known for a long time that animals living in colder climates tend to have larger bodies, supposedly as an adaptation to reduce heat loss. However, a new study of European House Sparrows in Australia and New Zealand shows that this trend in
Record jump in 2014-2016 global temperatures largest since 1900 Global surface temperatures surged by a record amount from 2014 to 2016, boosting the total amount of warming since the start of the last century by more than 25 percent in just three years, according to a new University of Arizona-led paper. The research
Is your sandwich bad for the environment? The carbon footprint of your sandwich could be having a major impact on greenhouse gas emissions according to new research.Researchers at the University of Manchester have carried out the first ever study looking at the carbon footprint of 40 sandwich var
How wind turbines annoy residents and how to reduce it When falling asleep, relaxing or undertaking recreational activities, nearly a third of residents living near a wind farm are not at all annoyed or only slightly annoyed by the noise of wind turbines. One in ten people experience symptoms of stress. Howev
How climate change weakens coral 'immune systems' Researchers at The Ohio State University and their colleagues have demonstrated how two separate effects of climate change combine to destabilize different populations of coral microbes -- that is, unbalance the natural coral 'microbiome.'
Bio-renewable process could help 'green' plastic Plastics are often derived from petroleum, contributing to reliance on fossil fuels and driving harmful greenhouse gas emissions. To change that, Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center (GLBRC) scientists are trying to take the pliable nature of plastic in
Using data mining to make sense of climate change Georgia Techhas developed a new way of mining data from climate data sets that is more self-contained than traditional tools. The methodology brings out commonalities of data sets without as much expertise from the user, allowing scientists to trust the d
Timing of spring birdsong provides climate insights Climate change has scientists worried that birds' annual migration and reproduction will be thrown out of sync with the seasons. Because birds' songs are correlated with their breeding behavior and are easily identifiable to species, monitoring birdsong c
Researchers explore psychological effects of climate change While some people have little anxiety about the Earth's changing climate, others are experiencing high levels of stress, and even depression, based on their perception of the threat of global climate change, researchers found. Psychological responses to c
Coping with climate stress in Antarctica Some Antarctic fish living in the planet's coldest waters are able to cope with the stress of rising carbon dioxide levels the ocean. They can even tolerate slightly warmer waters. But they can't deal with both climate change stressors at the same time, a
New catalyst for hydrogen production is a step toward clean fuel A nanostructured composite material developed at UC Santa Cruz has shown impressive performance as a catalyst for the electrochemical splitting of water to produce hydrogen. An efficient, low-cost catalyst is essential for realizing the promise of hydroge
Unexpected environmental source of methane discovered Roughly 10 percent of nitrogen-fixing microorganisms contain the genetic code for manufacturing a back-up enzyme, called iron iron-only nitrogenase, to do their job. New research reveals that this enzyme allows these microorganisms to convert nitrogen ga
Hot topic Can a series of scorching summers be blamed on climate change, and what do they tell us?
How climate change alters plant growth Global warming affects more than just plant biodiversity -- it even alters the way plants grow. A team of researchers at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) joined forces with the Leibniz Institute for Plant Biochemistry (IPB) to discover whic
The negative impact of climate change on freshwater bodies A lot of research is being conducted into the acidification of the world's oceans. A recent study has proved that freshwater bodies are likewise affected. Rising carbon dioxide levels could upset the balance of species.
Hiding from a warmer climate in the forest Global warming threatens forest plants adapted to cooler temperatures. An international team of scientists from the universities of Stockholm, Marseille and Helsinki have unraveled where these species could survive within colder spots in the same forest.
California's water saving brings bonus effects Water-saving measures in California have also led to substantial reductions in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and electricity consumption in the state.That is the conclusion of new research from the University of California, Davis, published today in the
A biological solution to carbon capture and recycling? Scientists at the University of Dundee have discovered that E. coli bacteria could hold the key to an efficient method of capturing and storing or recycling carbon dioxide. Professor Frank Sargent and colleagues at the University of Dundee's School of Lif
A thermometer for the oceans The average sea temperature is an essential parameter of the global climate - but it is very difficult to measure. At least until now, because an international team of researchers including Empa scientists have now developed a novel method using the conce
New principles to guide corporate investment towards climate goals A new set of principles are needed to address the moral challenge of climate change. These principles, developed by a team of researchers at the Oxford Martin School, and published this week in Nature Climate Change, are a set of scientifically-grounded t
How genes will save or fail birds in the face of climate change A new study analyzing the genomes of yellow warblers in North America reveals how some subpopulations are more 'genetically vulnerable' to changes associated with climate change; furthermore, it finds that genes linked to exploratory and migratory behavio
The ocean is losing its breath. Here's the global scope In the past 50 years, the amount of water in the open ocean with zero oxygen has risen more than fourfold. In coastal water bodies, low-oxygen sites have increased more than 10-fold since 1950. Scientists expect oxygen to continue dropping even outside th
Predicting the effect of climate change on crop yields Scientists now have a new tool to predict the future effects of climate change on crop yields. Researchers from University of Illinois are attempting to bridge two types of computational crop models to become more reliable predictors of crop production in
A fossil fuel technology that doesn't pollute Engineers at The Ohio State University are developing technologies that have the potential to economically convert fossil fuels and biomass into useful products including electricity without emitting carbon dioxide to the atmosphere.
A changing climate, changing wine A new Harvard study suggests that, though vineyards might be able to counteract some of the effects of climate change by planting lesser-known grape varieties, scientists and vintners need to better understand the wide diversity of grapes and their adapti
Curbing climate change Humans may be the dominant cause of global temperature rise, but they may also be a crucial factor in helping to reduce it, according to a new study that for the first time builds a novel model to measure the effects of behavior on climate.
Study predicts a significantly drier world at 2ºC New research predicts a significantly drier world if global warming reaches 2ºC.Over a quarter of the world's land could become significantly drier and the change would cause an increased threat of drought and wildfires. Limiting warming to under 1.5
Busy year for storms Was the remarkable 2017 hurricane season the worst ever? And did climate change play any part?
Climate change: Soil animals cannot explain self-reinforcing effect Leipzig. When the soil warms up, it releases more carbon dioxide (CO2) -- an effect that further fuels climate change. Until now, it had been assumed that the reason for this was mainly due to the presence of small soil animals and microorganisms that wou
Climate change may favor large plant eaters over small competitors In the drive to survive changing climates, larger herbivores may fare slightly better than their smaller competitors, according to new research from the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis and the Yale School of Forestry and Envir
Warmer, wetter climate could mean stronger, more intense storms How would today's weather patterns look in a warmer, wetter atmosphere -- an expected shift portended by climate change?In a new paper, Colorado State University researcher Kristen Rasmussen offers new insight into this question -- specifically, how thund
The shrinking moose of Isle Royale Climate change and predator-prey dynamics with wolves make for smaller moose. Ecologists compare skull measurements spanning four decades gathered at Isle Royale National Park. For the booming moose population of Isle Royale, a key species in the world's
New technique could make captured carbon more valuable Carbon capture could help coal plants reduce emissions if economic challenges can be overcome. Turning captured carbon into a useable product is one solution. Scientists have developed an efficient process for turning captured carbon dioxide into syngas t
Northeast farmers weigh warming climate, drenched fields Farmers in the Northeast are adapting to longer growing seasons and warming climate conditions -- but they may face spring-planting whiplash as they confront fields increasingly saturated with rain, according to a research paper published in the journal C
Climate change made Harvey rainfall 15 percent more intense Scientists from World Weather Attribution and Rice University have found that human-caused climate change made the record rainfall that fell over Houston during Hurricane Harvey roughly three times more likely and 15 percent more intense.
UVB radiation influences behavior of sticklebacks Fish cannot see ultraviolet B rays but still change their behavior when they grow up under increased UVB intensity. According to studies by biologists at the University of Bonn on three-spined sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus), increased UVB leads to
Sea-level rise projections made hazy by Antarctic instability It may take until the 2060s to know how much the sea level will rise by the end of this century, according to a new Rutgers University-New Brunswick-led analysis. The study is the first to link global and local sea-level rise projections with simulations
Arctic influences Eurasian weather and climate Over the past decades the Arctic has lost 65% of its sea ice volume. The atmosphere above the Arctic has been rapidly warming and moistening at the same time. The Arctic might be perceived as a remote and sparsely populated area, the changes there may be
Birth of a storm in the Arabian Sea validates climate model Researchers from Princeton University and NOAA report in the journal Nature Climate Change that extreme cyclones that formed in the Arabian Sea for the first time in 2014 are the result of global warming and will likely increase in frequency. Their model
Researchers model optimal amount of rainfall for plants Researchers have determined what could be considered a 'Goldilocks' climate for rainfall use by plants: not too wet and not too dry. But those landscapes are likely to shrink and become less productive in the future through climate change.
Quantifying the greenhouse gas footprint of crop cultivation The GHG footprint is an index used to indicate the climate change impact potential exerted by crop production. However, severe problems or drawbacks in the quantification of GHG footprints still exist, which has limited the applicability of the GHG footpr
The human race has peaked Newly emerging trends in data suggests humans may have reached their maximum limits for height, lifespan and physical performance. These biological limitations may be affected by anthropogenic impacts on the environment -- including climate change -- whic
More-severe climate model predictions could be the most accurate The climate models that project greater amounts of warming this century are the ones that best align with observations of the current climate, according to a new paper from Carnegie's Patrick Brown and Ken Caldeira published by Nature. Their findings sug
Catalyzing carbon dioxide Scientists at the Rowland Institute at Harvard have developed a system that uses renewable electricity to electrochemically transform carbon dioxide into carbon monoxide -- a key commodity used in any number of industrial processes.
To drop CO2 emissions, look to local transportation and housing Local efforts in the transportation and residential-housing sectors could help the United States meet the greenhouse gas reduction commitment it made as a Paris Climate Accord signatory, according to research from John Landis and Erick Guerra of the Unive
Highly efficient photocatalyst capable of carbon dioxide recycling A research team from Korea has developed titanium dioxide-based photocatalyst with the highest efficiency in the world that converts carbon dioxide into methane.The result is expected to be applied to technologies to reduce and reuse carbon dioxide.
Debate over doubt New research shows more varied opinions about climate change among Republicans than political leaders suggest.
Science community considers approaches to climate disinformation Although human-caused global warming is accepted by leading scientific organization around the world, public opinion about humanity's role fails to keep pace with consensus views. Numerous Internet blogs have contributed to this 'consensus gap' by misrepr
Getting a better handle on methane emissions from livestock Cattle, swine and poultry contribute a hefty portion to the average American's diet, but raising all this livestock comes at a cost to the environment: The industry produces a lot of methane, a potent greenhouse gas. Just how much gas the animals release,
Not all Republicans are climate change doubters The idea that all Republicans think climate change isn't happening is a myth. A new study published in Springer's journal Climatic Change finds substantial differences in the climate change views of both Republicans and Democrats across different states a