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Environment - History / Archeology - 24.04.2024 - Today
On the trail of pollution in Lausanne
On the trail of pollution in Lausanne
A team of researchers from EPFL, UNIL, and Unisanté have published a report that goes through about the legacy of pollution from a trash incinerator that burned in the Lausanne Vallon neighborhood from 1958 to 2005. Photo: Anonymous, Overview of the City, taken from the Hermitage with the smoking chimney of the Vallon incineration plant in the foreground, photograph, 1967, coll.

Environment - Chemistry - 23.04.2024
Bacteria for climate-neutral chemicals of the future
Bacteria for climate-neutral chemicals of the future
Researchers at ETH Zurich have engineered bacteria in the laboratory to efficiently use methanol. The metabolism of these bacteria can now be tapped into to produce valuable products currently made by the chemical industry from fossil fuels. To produce various chemicals such as plastics, dyes or artificial flavours, the chemical industry currently relies heavily on fossil resources such as crude oil.

Environment - 23.04.2024
More support needed to help households transition to green energy, research concludes
Citizens will need greater financial support and advice as they make the switch to decarbonised heat sources, research from Cardiff University shows. Published in the journal Nature Energy , this is the first paper to examine in-depth householder perceptions across a diverse range of low carbon heating technologies including heat pumps, hydrogen, hybrid heating and heat networks, as well as upgrades to home insulation and energy networks that will be needed to make each technology work.

Physics - Environment - 23.04.2024
How light can vaporize water without the need for heat
How light can vaporize water without the need for heat
Surprising "photomolecular effect" discovered by MIT researchers could affect calculations of climate change and may lead to improved desalination and drying processes. It's the most fundamental of processes - the evaporation of water from the surfaces of oceans and lakes, the burning off of fog in the morning sun, and the drying of briny ponds that leaves solid salt behind.

Environment - Social Sciences - 18.04.2024
New study on Amazonia’s fire crises urges action ahead of the next burning season
In response to the escalating fire crises in the Amazon, a timely study has revealed alarming shortcomings in the emergency fire bans implemented by the Brazilian Government. Initially seen as a promising solution in 2019, these bans have consistently fallen short in subsequent years, revealing a pressing need for strategies that address the underlying causes of each type of fire.

Life Sciences - Environment - 18.04.2024
Environmental changes influence microbial diversity
Environmental changes influence microbial diversity
Environmental changes influence microbial communities, which are crucial for the health of the earth and humans. For instance, altered eating habits with heavily processed foods can lead to disrupted gut flora, or intensive agricultural practices can disturb the carbon cycle in the soil, respectively.

History / Archeology - Environment - 18.04.2024
Secrets of cave from the Early Upper Palaeolithic, when Neanderthals and the first Homo sapiens co-existed
Secrets of cave from the Early Upper Palaeolithic, when Neanderthals and the first Homo sapiens co-existed
VUB researcher reveals secrets of cave from the Early Upper Palaeolithic, when Neanderthals and the first Homo sapiens co-existed Mughr el-Hamamah, meaning "pigeon cave" in Arabic, is a site in northwestern Jordan, renowned for its prehistoric findings dating between 39,000 and 45,000 years old. Numerous stone tools, hearths, and animal and hominin bones have been excavated there.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 18.04.2024
The Earth, precariously balanced
Aerial view of slash-and-burn agriculture in the state of Amazonas, western Brazil (September 2022). On our planet, everything is interconnected, from terrestrial and marine ecosystems and biodiversity to ice sheets, rivers and oceans. But a recent report reveals that the dynamics of these different systems is being destabilised by human activities to such an extent that they are reaching points of no return.

Environment - 17.04.2024
Group antenatal care still too little known, despite proven benefits
The Horizon2020 programme Group Care for the First 1000 Days is coming to an end. Researchers in seven countries, including three from the VUB, have worked with colleagues in the US to investigate the provision of antenatal care in participating countries. The study looked at group sessions rather than traditional monitoring through individual consultations, as is standard in Belgium.

Life Sciences - Environment - 17.04.2024
How soil microbes survive in harsh desert environments
How soil microbes survive in harsh desert environments
As desertification spreads worldwide, scientists discover how desert microbes endure harsh drought periods Prolonged droughts followed by sudden bursts of rainfall - how do desert soil bacteria manage to survive such harsh conditions? This long-debated question has now been answered by an ERC project led by microbiologist Dagmar Woebken from the Centre for Microbiology and Environmental Systems Science (CeMESS) at the University of Vienna.

Life Sciences - Environment - 17.04.2024
Interspecies competition led to even more forms of ancient human - defying evolutionary trends in vertebrates
Interspecies competition led to even more forms of ancient human - defying evolutionary trends in vertebrates
Competition between species played a major role in the rise and fall of hominins, and produced a "bizarre" evolutionary pattern for the Homo lineage. This is almost unparalleled in evolutionary science Laura van Holstein Climate has long been held responsible for the emergence and extinction of hominin species.

Environment - Agronomy / Food Science - 17.04.2024
Wind turbines: a smaller footprint than you might think
Wind turbines: a smaller footprint than you might think
Wind power is an affordable and renewable energy source. Yet decision-makers are reluctant to invest in this sector because they generally believe that wind farms require more land than fossil fuel power plants. A McGill University study assessing the extent of land occupied by nearly 320 wind farms in the USA - the largest study of its kind - paints a very different picture.

Environment - 17.04.2024
Understanding carbon release from the tundra
The warming climate shifts the dynamics of tundra environments and makes them release trapped carbon, according to a new study published in Nature. These changes could transform tundras from carbon sinks into a carbon source, exacerbating the effects of climate change. Open-top chambers (OTCs) in Latnjajaure, Sweden provide a controlled environment to study simulated warming of the tundra ecosystem.

Environment - Life Sciences - 17.04.2024
Coral reef microbes point to new way to assess ecosystem health
Coral reef microbes point to new way to assess ecosystem health
A new study shows that ocean acidification is changing the mix of microbes in coral reef systems, which can be used to assess ecosystem health. The study, published today in Microbiome , looked at coral reefs specifically, but the researchers say it could be widely applicable as a method for measuring how ecosystems are responding to human activities.

Environment - Life Sciences - 16.04.2024
The response capacity of marine phytoplankton species to global warming confirmed
Mara Segovia, Erasmus+ researcher at the Cavanilles Institute of Biodiversity and Evolutionary Biology (ICBiBe) of the University of Valencia, has participated in a study that reveals the response capacity of seaweed to the effects of climate change. Over the last 60 years, diatoms - the subject of this study - have increased their optimal temperature by 1°C to adapt to global warming.

Environment - Economics - 16.04.2024
For more sustainable palm oil production
For more sustainable palm oil production
Research team outlines ways to make oil palm cultivation more ecologically and economically sustainable Palm oil is a widely used ingredient in many foods and cosmetics. The boom in oil palm cultivation in Indonesia in recent decades has improved the living conditions of many farmers, but has led to a loss of biodiversity and the large-scale destruction of rainforests.

Environment - Economics - 16.04.2024
Most countries struggle to meet climate pledges from 2009
Nineteen out of 34 countries surveyed failed to fully meet their 2020 climate commitments set 15 years ago in Copenhagen, according to a new study led by UCL researchers. The study, published in Nature Climate Change , compared the actual net carbon emissions of more than 30 nations to their 2009 pledged emission reduction targets set during the Copenhagen Climate Summit.

Environment - Life Sciences - 15.04.2024
Bumblebees don't care about pesticide cocktails
Bumblebees don’t care about pesticide cocktails
In their natural environment, wild bees are exposed to various pesticides that can have a potentially toxic effect. A study by the University of Würzburg has now shown that bumblebees are relatively resistant to these products. Bumblebees appear to be quite resistant to common pesticides. This is shown by a new study, the results of which have now been published by scientists from Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg (JMU) in the journal Environment International .

Life Sciences - Environment - 15.04.2024
How blue-green algae manipulate microorganisms
How blue-green algae manipulate microorganisms
Research team at the University of Freiburg discovers previously unknown gene that indirectly promotes photosynthesis Cyanobacteria - also called blue-green algae - are known as the "plants of the ocean" because they carry out photosynthesis on a gigantic scale, produce oxygen and extract the greenhouse gas CO2 from the environment.

Life Sciences - Environment - 15.04.2024
How blue-green algae manipulate microorganisms
How blue-green algae manipulate microorganisms
Research team at the University of Freiburg discovers a previously unknown gene that indirectly promotes photosynthesis Cyanobacteria are also known as blue-green algae and are considered the "plants of the ocean" because they photosynthesize on a gigantic scale, produce oxygen and extract the greenhouse gas CO2 from the environment.
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