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Environment - Life Sciences - 03.11.2022
Come rain or shine, viruses live on in soil
Come rain or shine, viruses live on in soil
Soils contain diverse communities of microorganisms, including bacteria, fungi, protists and viruses. Interactions between these tiny organisms shape the ability of soils to store carbon underground. However, not much is known about the spatial patterns and dynamics of viral communities in soil. New research by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) scientists and collaborators show that grassland viral communities are highly spatially stratified across just a single field, suggesting strong dispersal limitations at the local scale.

Environment - 02.11.2022
Light competition drives the effects of herbivores and nutrients on plant diversity
Light competition drives the effects of herbivores and nutrients on plant diversity
Nutrient enrichment via fertilization leads to the loss of plant diversity via increased competition for light between plants, while herbivores protect plant diversity by alleviating competition for light. Utrecht University-researcher Yann Hautier and international colleagues provide the first direct evidence for these mechanisms in natural systems.

Chemistry - Environment - 02.11.2022
Iodine accelerates formation of cloud condensation nuclei in the atmosphere
Iodine accelerates formation of cloud condensation nuclei in the atmosphere
International research team reports effect of iodine-organic chemistry on the generation of new particles in the marine atmosphere and the recycling of iodine during particle growth The natural cycles of exchange of substances between the biosphere and the atmosphere are of major relevance to the Earth's climatic system.

Environment - Agronomy / Food Science - 02.11.2022
A comprehensive view of the world food system
A comprehensive view of the world food system
Agriculture practices that preserve resources? Enough food to make sure that everyone can enjoy a healthy and balanced diet? We still are a long way from that, finds Robert Finger - and outlines the most important fields of action to make the food system more sustainable. Today, the global system that supplies us with food is facing major challenges.

Environment - 02.11.2022
Permanent daylight saving time would reduce deer-vehicle collisions
In much of the United States, there is a twice-yearly shift in timekeeping between standard time and daylight saving time, or DST, which delays both sunrise and sunset to make mornings darker and evenings brighter. Recently, scientists, policy experts, lawmakers and citizens have debated abandoning the twice-a-year switch and adopting either year-round standard time or DST.

Environment - History / Archeology - 02.11.2022
Congo peatlands could release billions of tonnes of carbon
Congo peatlands could release billions of tonnes of carbon
The world's largest tropical peatland turned from being a major store of carbon to a source of carbon dioxide emissions as a result of climate change thousands of years ago, new research has revealed. Around the time that Stonehenge was built, 5,000 years ago, the climate of central Congo began to dry, leading to the peatlands emitting carbon dioxide.

Environment - 02.11.2022
Congo peatlands could emit billions of tonnes of carbon in drier climate
Congo peatlands could emit billions of tonnes of carbon in drier climate
The Congo peatlands turned from a major store of carbon to a source of carbon dioxide emissions thousands of years ago due to a drying climate, according to a new study involving UCL researchers. , the study highlights the potential of the Congo peatlands - the largest tropical peatland in the world - to again release billions of tonnes of stored carbon into the atmosphere in a future warmer world.

Environment - Life Sciences - 02.11.2022
Ancient fish colonized the deep sea
The deep sea contains more than 90% of the water in our oceans, but only about a third of all fish species. Scientists have long thought the explanation for this was intuitive - shallow ocean waters are warm and full of resources, making them a prime location for new species to evolve and thrive. But a new University of Washington study led by Elizabeth Miller reports that throughout Earth's ancient history, there were several periods of time when many fish actually favored the cold, dark, barren waters of the deep sea.

Religions - Environment - 01.11.2022
Catholic Church can curb carbon emissions by returning to meat-free Fridays
Catholic Church can curb carbon emissions by returning to meat-free Fridays
Even a small dietary change by a minority of UK Catholics had significant environmental benefits, say researchers, who argue that a papal decree reinstating meatless Fridays across the global church would save millions of tonnes of carbon a year. If the Pope was to reinstate the obligation for meatless Fridays to all Catholics globally, it could be a major source of low-cost emissions reductions Shaun Larcom In 2011, the Catholic bishops of England and Wales called on congregations to return to foregoing meat on Fridays.

Environment - 31.10.2022
Vegetation Regulates Energy Exchange in the Arctic
Vegetation Regulates Energy Exchange in the Arctic
Global warming is changing the Arctic by causing permafrost thaw, glacier melt, droughts, fires and changes in vegetation. These developments are strongly linked to the energy exchange between land and the atmosphere. Researchers at the University of Zurich have now shown that different plant communities in the tundra play a key role in this energy exchange but are not taken into account in climate models.

Environment - 31.10.2022
Sustainable and climate-resilient urban development
Sustainable and climate-resilient urban development
Research project "Urban Oases in Times of Climate Change" investigates green spaces in Munich Sophie Arzberger is passionate about urban climate and ecology.

Environment - Mathematics - 31.10.2022
A better way to tell which species are vulnerable
A better way to tell which species are vulnerable
New analysis takes account of natural fluctuations and predictability to assess which parts of an ecosystem are most threatened by climate change and other disruptions. Wildfires, floods, pollution, and overfishing are among the many disruptions that can change the balance of ecosystems, sometimes endangering the future of entire species.

Environment - Chemistry - 28.10.2022
Controlling spin and Alzheimer's biological pathway: News from the College
Controlling spin and Alzheimer’s biological pathway: News from the College
Here's a batch of fresh news and announcements from across Imperial. From materials research that could help with the development of low-power next-generation technologies, to the discovery of a biological pathway that may explain the underlying mechanisms of Alzheimer's disease, here is some quick-read news from across the College.

Environment - 28.10.2022
Finding the unknown processes of the evolutionary history of green lizards in the Mediterranean
Finding the unknown processes of the evolutionary history of green lizards in the Mediterranean
The evolutionary clade and biodiversity of green lizards of the genera Lacerta and Timon —reptiles common in the Mediterranean basin and surrounding areas of the European continent, North Africa and Asia— have never been studied in detail from the perspective of historical biogeography. Now, a paper published in the Journal of Biogeography presents a new scenario for deciphering the potential evolutionary processes that have acted —separately or together— to give rise to the biodiversity of species in this group in Mediterranean ecosystems.

Environment - 28.10.2022
Companies' 'deforestation-free' supply chain pledges have barely impacted forest clearance in the Amazon
Companies’ ’deforestation-free’ supply chain pledges have barely impacted forest clearance in the Amazon
More companies must make and implement zero-deforestation supply chain commitments in order to significantly reduce deforestation and protect diverse ecosystems, say researchers. Zero-deforestation pledges are a great first step, but they need to be implemented to have an effect on forests. Rachael Garrett Corporate pledges not to buy soybeans produced on land deforested after 2006 have reduced tree clearance in the Brazilian Amazon by just 1.6% between 2006 and 2015.

Environment - 28.10.2022
Brazil on the wrong track
Brazil on the wrong track
To protect tropical forests in Brazil, commodities traders have made voluntary commitments to avoid buying soybeans grown in areas that have recently been deforested. Two new studies reveal just how inadequate these guidelines are in protecting Brazil from deforestation and assess the potential effect of implementing the commitments on a much larger scale.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 27.10.2022
River longer than the Thames beneath Antarctic ice sheet could affect ice loss
River longer than the Thames beneath Antarctic ice sheet could affect ice loss
An unexpected river under the Antarctic ice sheet affects the flow and melting of ice, potentially accelerating ice loss as the climate warms. The 460km-long river is revealed in a new study, which details how it collects water at the base of the Antarctic ice sheet from an area the size of Germany and France combined.

Environment - Health - 27.10.2022
Traffic-related air pollution linked to increased risk of dementia
Traffic-related air pollution linked to increased risk of dementia
Higher exposure to a certain type of traffic-related air pollution called particulate matter may be linked to an increased risk of dementia, according to a meta-analysis by Western researchers published this week in Neurology , the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. While at Western, graduate student Dr. Ehasan Abolhasani specifically looked at fine particulate matter which consists of pollutant particles of less than 2.5 microns in diameter suspended in air.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 27.10.2022
Iodine accelerates formation of cloud condensation nuclei in the atmosphere
International research collaboration shows influence of iodine chemistry on formation of new particles in marine atmosphere and recycling of iodine during particle growth The natural cycling of materials between the biosphere and the atmosphere is of great importance to the Earth's climate system. The best known example is the cycling of carbon between the atmosphere, the land biosphere and the ocean.

Environment - 27.10.2022
Birds getting smaller, ’wingier’ as planet warms, UCLA-led research finds
Key takeaways: In a study of 105 North American species, birds' body mass declined by an average of 0.6% over the past three decades. Researchers say the change is dramatic for such a short period of time. The evidence suggests that climate change is the main culprit. A UCLA-led study published today reveals that migratory birds across North America are getting smaller, a change the researchers attribute to the rapidly warming climate.
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