NOAA: Alaska fisheries and communities at risk from ocean acidification
Published Jul 29, 2014 - 8:02:51 AM
Ocean acidification is driving changes in waters vital to Alaska's valuable commercial fisheries and subsistence way of life, according to new NOAA-led research that will be published online in Progress in Oceanography.
Industrial lead pollution beat explorers to the South Pole by 22 years and persists today
Published Jul 28, 2014 - 11:00:58 AM
Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen became the first man to reach the South Pole in December of 1911. More than 100 years later, an international team of scientists led by Joe McConnell of Nevada's Desert Research Institute (DRI) have proven that air pollution from industrial activities arrived long before.
Climate Change Could Alter Range of Caribou and May Impact Hunters’ Access
Published Jul 25, 2014 - 12:22:23 PM
Due to climate change, some communities in rural Alaska and the Yukon Territory of Canada may face a future with fewer caribou according to new research published by the U.S. Geological Survey and the University of Alaska, Fairbanks in the recent issue of PLoS ONE. Scientists examined the future effects of fires on winter habitats of caribou herds and determined that wildfires will reduce the amount of winter habitat for caribou, thus caribou may need to shift their wintering grounds
Legal Petition to EPA: Protect People, Wildlife From Dangerous Chemicals in PVC Plastic
Published Jul 25, 2014 - 9:59:25 AM
The Center for Biological Diversity filed a legal petition today urging the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to protect people, wildlife and the environment from toxic and carcinogenic chemicals found in polyvinyl chloride (PVC), the same material once common in household plumbing. If successful, the petition will require that PVC be classified as hazardous waste, resulting in better regulations for disposal and, ultimately, a reduction in the amount of plastic trash and toxic chemicals additives contaminating communities across the country and polluting oceans worldwide.
Study gives new perspective on agricultural plastic, debris burning, and air quality
Published Jul 24, 2014 - 9:05:41 AM
To reduce fire hazard in the United States, wildland managers often utilize the silvicultural practice of mechanically cutting woody shrubs and suppressed trees (ladder fuels). These cuttings and other post-logging debris are then burned during periods of low fire danger in order to dispose of the material. To improve the burning and minimize hazardous air pollutants, managers often cover all or part of the debris pile with low-density polyethylene plastic, commonly referred to as agricultural plastic, in order to keep water out. A recent study published in the Journal of the Air and Water Association shows that inclusion of agricultural plastic in debris piles has no effect on smoke emissions.
Genetic study shows major impact of climate change on Antarctic fur seals
Published Jul 24, 2014 - 8:48:18 AM
Genetic analysis of Antarctic fur seals, alongside decades of in-depth monitoring, has provided unique insights into the effect of climate change on a population of top-predators. Published in Nature this week, the findings show that the seals have significantly altered in accordance with changes in food availability that are associated with climate conditions. Despite a shift in the population towards 'fitter' individuals, this fitness is not passing down through generations, leaving the population in decline.
The geography of the global electronic waste ('e-waste') burden
Published Jul 24, 2014 - 8:44:55 AM
As local and national governments struggle to deal with ever-growing piles of electronic waste (or "e-waste"), scientists are now refining the picture of just how much there is and where it really ends up. Published in the ACS journal Environmental Science & Technology, their study found that nearly a quarter of e-waste that developed countries discard floods into just seven developing countries — with major potential health risks for the people who live there.
Amazon oil spill has killed tons of fish, sickened native people
Published Jul 23, 2014 - 12:14:16 PM
On the last day of June, Roger Mangía Vega watched an oil slick and a mass of dead fish float past this tiny Kukama Indian community and into the Marañón River, a major tributary of the Amazon.
Germany and UK top "Dirty 30" pollution league
Published Jul 22, 2014 - 7:57:14 AM
It's not the sort of league table that anyone is proud of leading, but a new report on the European Union's power sector lists the EU's 30 most polluting energy plants – all powered by coal.
Microplastics worse for crabs and other marine life than previously thought, study shows
Published Jul 21, 2014 - 6:04:24 PM
The tiny plastic particles polluting our seas are not only orally ingested by marine creatures, but also enter their systems through their gills, according to a new study led by the University of Exeter.
Sea level rise in western tropical Pacific will continue to rise as humans alter the climate
Published Jul 21, 2014 - 6:03:26 PM
A new study led by Old Dominion University and the University of Colorado Boulder indicates sea levels likely will continue to rise in the tropical Pacific Ocean off the coasts of the Philippines and northeastern Australia as humans continue to alter the climate.
Study led by indigenous people uncovers grizzly bear 'highway'
Published Jul 18, 2014 - 10:35:33 AM
A novel, First Nations-led research collaboration has revealed a previously undocumented grizzly bear aggregation in coastal British ColumbiA, one of the most southerly aggregations of salmon-feeding grizzlies in North America. Using non-invasive DNA analysis, the authors describe a grizzly bear "highway," identifying nearly 60 individual bears, many who travelled hundreds of miles from surrounding areas to feed on autumn-spawning salmon in the Koeye River. The research was guided by the customary law and cultural practices of the Heiltsuk First Nation and recently published in the journal Ecology and Society.
China and US boost search for carbon capture and storage solution
Published Jul 18, 2014 - 10:32:09 AM
For years, the energy companies have been telling us not to worry. Yes, mounting carbon emissions threaten to heat up the world – but technology, particularly carbon capture and storage (CCS), will come to the rescue.
Panthera Celebrates Efforts Undertaken to Protect Wild Sumatran Tigers
Published Jul 17, 2014 - 12:23:10 PM
On July 16th, 2014, Panthera, the world's leading wild cat conservation organization, at their annual Tigers Forever meeting, recognized notable successes from numerous partners across tiger range in the fight to save wild tigers. Long-term conservation efforts in Indonesia to protect the endangered Sumatran tiger were celebrated, specifically those undertaken by the Artha Graha Peduli Foundation-Tambling Wildlife Nature Conservation, the Ministry of Forestry, Ministry of Environment, the provincial government of Lampung, and the National Council on Climate Change.
Wetlands Are Just Ducky: Duck Migration Study Reveals Importance of Conserving Wetlands
Published Jul 17, 2014 - 8:47:39 AM
During the 2011 and 2012 migration seasons, University of Missouri researchers monitored mallard ducks with new remote satellite tracking technology, marking the first time ducks have been tracked closely during the entirety of their migration from Canada to the American Midwest and back. The research revealed that mallards use public and private wetland conservation areas extensively as they travel hundreds of miles across the continent. Dylan Kesler, an assistant professor of fisheries and wildlife in the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources at MU, says these findings illustrate the importance of maintaining protected wetland areas.
Europe faces deadly cost for climate inaction
Published Jul 14, 2014 - 8:49:55 AM
Inaction over climate change costs lives. And in the case of European inaction, it is estimated that this could one day cost 200,000 lives a year.
Two new atlases reveal climate and weather impacts
Published Jul 14, 2014 - 8:01:04 AM
For people who find it hard to believe the Earth really is warming, new visual evidence will soon be available – two atlases, one showing graphically the retreat of Arctic ice, the other the human and economic price exacted by extreme weather.
Arctic warming upsets birds’ breeding calendar
Published Jul 8, 2014 - 10:53:20 AM
Arctic migrants are nesting up to seven days earlier as the world warms. The sandpiper makes a beeline for the Alaskan shores, to join the phalarope on the beach and the songbirds in the woods − and all because the winter snows are melting earlier.
Who is responsible for climate change?
Published Jul 7, 2014 - 7:56:56 AM
Calculating the cumulative cost of carbon dioxide emissions gives new insights into the question of who is responsible for climate change.
Quick fixes won't solve CO2 danger
Published Jul 7, 2014 - 7:25:46 AM
Once again, US scientists have come to the same conclusion: there really is no alternative. The only way to contain climate change and limit global warming, they say, is to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
From despair to repair: Dramatic decline of Caribbean corals can be reversed
Published Jul 2, 2014 - 7:24:16 AM
With only about one-sixth of the original coral cover left, most Caribbean coral reefs may disappear in the next 20 years, primarily due to the loss of grazers in the region, according to the latest report by the Global Coral Reef Monitoring Network (GCRMN), the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
A Case Study of Manta Rays and Lagoons
Published Jul 1, 2014 - 9:01:13 AM
Douglas McCauley, a new assistant professor in UC Santa Barbara's Department of Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology, does fieldwork in one of the most isolated places in the world — Palmyra Atoll. About halfway between Hawaii and American Samoa, this complex of small islands and inlets in the central Pacific is surrounded by more than 15,000 acres of coral reefs and encircles three lagoons.
Oil palm plantations threaten water quality, Stanford scientists say
Published Jul 1, 2014 - 8:12:31 AM
If you've gone grocery shopping lately, you've probably bought palm oil.
Found in thousands of products, from peanut butter and packaged bread to shampoo and shaving cream, palm oil is a booming multibillion-dollar industry. While it isn't always clearly labeled in supermarket staples, the unintended consequences of producing this ubiquitous ingredient have been widely publicized.
Deforestation in Indonesia highest in world, alleges study
Published Jun 30, 2014 - 9:15:44 AM
A study in the journal Nature Climate Change alleges that the rate of deforestation in Indonesia is now the highest in the world. The study claims Indonesia lost 840,000 hectares of forest in 2012 compared to 460,000 hectares in Brazil.
Study Finds Emperor Penguin in Peril
Published Jun 30, 2014 - 7:49:03 AM
An international team of scientists studying Emperor penguin populations across Antarctica finds the iconic animals in danger of dramatic declines by the end of the century due to climate change. Their study, published today in Nature Climate Change, finds the Emperor penguin "fully deserving of endangered status due to climate change."
New tests find bee-killing pesticides in 51% of "bee-friendly" plants from garden centers across U.S. and Canada
Published Jun 25, 2014 - 8:00:06 AM
Many "bee-friendly" home garden plants sold at Home Depot (NYSE: HD), Lowe's (NYSE: LOW) and Walmart (NYSE: WMT) have been pre-treated with pesticides shown to harm and kill bees, according to a study released today by Friends of the Earth and allies.
Hot cities: Climate change may lead to air stagnation, Stanford scientists say
Published Jun 24, 2014 - 10:22:53 AM
Air quality for countries around the world could worsen in the 21st century as the occurrence of atmospheric stagnation events – in which still air lingers over a region – increases due to climate-change-related shifts in global wind and rainfall patterns, according to new research by scientists at Stanford University.
New Report: Electric Cars Are Putting the Brakes on Pollution
Published Jun 24, 2014 - 9:11:52 AM
More than 220,000 electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles are on America's roads today, delivering real benefits for our health and our environment, according to a new report released today by Environment America Research and Policy Center. In just the last two years, annual sales of electric vehicles have increased by 500 percent.
Protecting and connecting the Flathead National Forest
Published Jun 24, 2014 - 7:52:10 AM
A new report from the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) calls for completing the legacy of Wilderness lands on the Flathead National Forest in Montana. The report identifies important, secure habitats and landscape connections for five species—bull trout, westslope cutthroat trout, grizzly bears, wolverines, and mountain goats. These iconic species are vulnerable to loss of secure habitat from industrial land uses and/or climate change.
Icebergs strip away rich Antarctic habitat
Published Jun 23, 2014 - 7:23:57 AM
A once-rich habitat in the Antarctic has become an impoverished zone as icebergs, increasingly breaking free from the surrounding sea ice because of global warming, scour the shallow-water rocks and boulders on which a diversity of creatures cling to life.