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Environment - 08.03.2017
Genetic sequencing offers same-day TB testing
Researchers from the University's Department of Engineering Science and the School of Geography and the Environment believe they have discovered a new way of accurately estimating groundwater resources in Africa, using low-cost mobile technologies fitted to existing hand pumps. Around one million hand pumps supply groundwater to people in rural Africa.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 06.03.2017
U.S. grasslands affected more by atmospheric aridity than by rain
U.S. grasslands affected more by atmospheric aridity than by rain
According to 33 years of remote sensing data, productivity of U.S. grasslands is more sensitive to dryness of the atmosphere than precipitation, important information for understanding how ecosystems will respond to climate change. A new study showing dryness of the atmosphere affects U.S. grassland productivity more than rainfall could have important implications for predicting how plants will respond to warming climate conditions.

Environment - Health - 06.03.2017
Mercury in Hawaiian bigeye, yellowfin tuna rising
Mercury in Hawaiian bigeye, yellowfin tuna rising
ANN ARBOR?Mercury concentrations in Hawaiian-caught bigeye and yellowfin tuna are steadily rising and mirror increases in North Pacific waters that have been linked to atmospheric mercury emissions from Asia. Researchers compiled and re-analyzed data from previously published reports on yellowfin and bigeye tuna caught near Hawaii over the past four decades, then used a mathematical model to look for trends.

Environment - History / Archeology - 03.03.2017
Ancient peoples shaped the Amazon rainforest
Ancient peoples shaped the Amazon rainforest
An international team of ecologists and social scientists, including french researchers from IRD, Cirad and Inra, has shown in a new study published on 3 March 2017 in the journal Science that tree species domesticated and distributed throughout the Amazon basin by indigenous peoples before 1492 continue to play an important role in modern-day forests.

Environment - Life Sciences - 02.03.2017
Fossil plankton may be the key to understanding prehistoric climate change
Over 4,000 different bird species, including White Fronted Bee Eaters, were observed in the study, which found that survival instinct did not influence species cooperative breeding decisions. Instead, it shows communal living and helping behaviour to be a natural result of monogamous relationships reinforcing stronger genetic bonds in family groups.

Environment - 01.03.2017
Heathrow: strategy to reduce take-off emissions is reaching its limits
Heathrow: strategy to reduce take-off emissions is reaching its limits
Engineers report that a strategy to reduce aircraft emissions during takeoff at London's Heathrow Airport is reaching its limits. This is the first time we've been able to look at detailed flight operations on a second-by-second basis and our study has shown that pilots routinely use an engine thrust for take-off that leads to lower fuel consumption and emissions, without compromising safety standards.

Environment - Agronomy / Food Science - 01.03.2017
No meaningful results from $5 billion water reform
New research from ANU has found no meaningful results from more than $5 billion spent on water reform in the Murray Darling Basin since 2001. The research focuses on water use since the Murray Darling Basin Plan came into effect in 2012, tracking the key indicators of how much water is diverted from the basin for agriculture, and the efficiency of how well that water is used.

Earth Sciences - Environment - 28.02.2017
First direct measurements of Pacific seabed sediments reveal strong methane source
First direct measurements of Pacific seabed sediments reveal strong methane source
Researchers from Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) have discovered a major source of an important greenhouse gas in the Tropical Pacific Ocean for the first time. Methane is a powerful greenhouse gas, and a major contributor to increasing global temperatures. The largest pool of marine methane on Earth spans from the coast of Central America to Hawaii in the Tropical Pacific Ocean.

Environment - 28.02.2017
Calculating recharge of groundwater more precisely
Calculating recharge of groundwater more precisely
An international team of researchers has demonstrated that key processes in models used for the global assessment of water resources for climate change are currently missing. This could mean climate change impact models are wrong in some parts of the world and cannot yet be used to guide water management.

Life Sciences - Environment - 24.02.2017
Where do flowers come from? Shedding light on Darwin's 'abominable mystery'
Where do flowers come from? Shedding light on Darwin’s ‘abominable mystery’
The mystery that is the origin of flowering plants has been partially solved thanks to a team from the Laboratoire de Physiologie Cellulaire et Végétale (CNRS/Inra/CEA/Université Grenoble Alpes), in

Chemistry - Environment - 24.02.2017
Getting Rid of the Last Bits of Sulfur in Fuel
Getting Rid of the Last Bits of Sulfur in Fuel
Scientists led by a team at Caltech have developed a new method for potentially removing nearly all sulfur compounds from gas and diesel fuel. Sulfur compounds in fuels such as gasoline and diesel create air pollution when the fuel is burned. To address that challenge, large-scale oil refinery processes remove the majority of sulfur from fuel down to a government-mandated level.

Media - Environment - 24.02.2017
’Computer bots are like humans, having fights lasting years’
Researchers say 'benevolent bots', otherwise known as software robots, that are designed to make articles on Wikipedia better often end up having online fights lasting years over changes in content. Editing bots on Wikipedia undo vandalism, enforce bans, check spelling, create links and import content automatically, whereas other bots (which are non-editing) can mine data, identify data or identify copyright infringements.

Astronomy / Space Science - Environment - 22.02.2017
From rocks in Colorado, evidence of a ‘chaotic solar system’
For News Media Hold for Noon Central Time Release Wednesday, Feb. Alternating layers of shale and limestone near Big Bend, Texas, characteristic of the rock laid down at the bottom of a shallow ocean during the late Cretaceous period. The rock holds definitive geologic evidence that the planets in our solar system behave differently than the prevailing theory that the they orbit like clockwork in a quasiperiodic manner.

Life Sciences - Environment - 22.02.2017
Blood ties fuel cooperation among species, not survival instinct
Over 4,000 different bird species, including White Fronted Bee Eaters, were observed in the study, which found that survival instinct did not influence species cooperative breeding decisions. Instead, it shows communal living and helping behaviour to be a natural result of monogamous relationships reinforcing stronger genetic bonds in family groups.

Environment - Chemistry - 17.02.2017
The University of Nottingham launches new tool to evaluate peatland sensitivity to global climate change
Scientists at The University of Nottingham are using radar waves as part of a new tool developed to evaluate peatland sensitivity to global climate change. The new method is based upon an Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) technique that uses radar waves to measure vertical land surface motion.

Earth Sciences - Environment - 17.02.2017
China’s severe weather patterns changing drastically since 1960
"A monsoon is one of the major drivers of severe weather because it affects the three necessary 'ingredients' for severe weather, which are wind shear, instability and triggering," said Fuqing Zhang, professor of meteorology and atmospheric science, Penn State. UNIVERSITY PARK, PA. In one of the most comprehensive studies on trends in local severe weather patterns to date, an international team of researchers found that the frequency of hail storms, thunderstorms and high wind events has decreased by nearly 50 percent on average throughout China since 1960.

Environment - 16.02.2017
Less snow and a shorter ski season in the Alps
Less snow and a shorter ski season in the Alps
After long-awaited snowfall in January, parts of the Alps are now covered with fresh powder and happy skiers. But the Swiss side of the iconic mountain range had the driest December since record-keeping began over 150 years ago, and 2016 was the third year in a row with scarce snow over the Christmas period.

Environment - 15.02.2017
Alien species on the rise worldwide
Alien species on the rise worldwide
The increase in numbers of alien species does not show any sign of saturation at a global level, an international team of 45 researchers led by scientists from Senckenberg, Germany, and University of Vienna, Austria, has discovered. They found that during the last centuries the number of new introductions has continuously increased worldwide, with more than a third of all first introductions recorded between 1970 and 2014.

Environment - 15.02.2017
Risk of rapid North Atlantic cooling in 21st century greater than previously estimated
Risk of rapid North Atlantic cooling in 21st century greater than previously estimated
The possibility of major climate change in the Atlantic region has long been recognized and has even been the subject of a Hollywood movie: The Day After Tomorrow .

Environment - Physics - 15.02.2017
'The blob' of abnormal conditions boosted Western U.S. ozone levels
’The blob’ of abnormal conditions boosted Western U.S. ozone levels
An unusually warm patch of seawater off the West Coast in late 2014 and 2015, nicknamed "the blob,” had cascading effects up and down the coast. Its sphere of influence was centered on the marine environment but extended to weather on land. A University of Washington Bothell study now shows that this strong offshore pattern also influenced air quality.
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