News 2019



Results 101 - 120 of 151.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 09.04.2019
Tracking the sources of plastic pollution
Plastic pollution in the world's oceans is now widely recognised as a major global challenge - but we still know very little about how these plastics are actually reaching the sea. A new global initiative, led by the University of Birmingham shows how focussing on rivers and river mouths can yield vital clues about how we might manage this plastic crisis.

Environment - Paleontology - 08.04.2019
Earth’s recovery from mass extinction could take millions of years
How long will it take our biosphere to recover from the current climate crisis' It's a question that makes for a sobering examination of Earth's ongoing destruction. It's to the past, specifically the fossils of a tiny species that went out with the dinosaurs, that scientists have turned for the answer.

Environment - Music - 05.04.2019
Music consumption has unintended economic and environmental costs
Music consumption has unintended economic and environmental costs, according to new research published today (Monday 8 April 2019) in the run-up to worldwide Record Store Day. The price consumers have been willing to pay for listening to recorded music has never been lower, while the environmental impact of listening to music has never been higher, researchers have found.

Environment - Life Sciences - 01.04.2019
Marine heatwave proves devastating to Shark Bay and dolphins
Dolphin survival and reproductive rates suffered a significant decline following a 2011 marine heatwave affecting around 1,000km of Western Australia's coastline. The findings, published in Current Biology and representing an international collaboration of researchers and universities, including Zurich and Bristol, have important implications for marine conservation and mitigating the effects of climate change.

Environment - Life Sciences - 28.03.2019
Serengeti-Mara squeeze - one of the world’s most iconic ecosystems under pressure
Increased human activity around one of Africa's most iconic ecosystems is "squeezing the wildlife in its core", damaging habitation and disrupting the migration routes of wildebeest, zebra and gazelle, an international study has concluded. ‌ The Serengeti-Mara ecosystem is one of the largest and most protected ecosystems on Earth, spanning 40,000 square kilometres and taking in the Serengeti National Park and Maasai Mara National Reserve in East Africa.

Environment - Life Sciences - 28.03.2019
New, more efficient way to reduce water use and improve plant growth
A team of scientists has revealed a new, sustainable way for plants to increase carbon dioxide (CO2) uptake for photosynthesis while reducing water usage. The breakthrough was led by a team of plant scientists at the University of Glasgow and is published today . The researchers used a new, synthetic light-activated ion channel, engineered from plant and algal virus proteins, to speed up the opening and closing of the stomata - pores in the leaves of plants - through which carbon dioxide (CO2) enters for photosynthesis.

Environment - 28.03.2019
Be the change you want to see in the world: How individuals can help save the planet from climate catastrophe
Individuals have as big a role to play in tackling climate change as major corporations but only if they can be encouraged to make significant lifestyle changes by effective government policy, a major new European study co-authored by a University of Sussex academic has found. The study notes that voluntary lifestyle choices by well-meaning individuals would only achieve around half the required emission reductions needed to hit the 1.

Health - Environment - 27.03.2019
Improved housing doubles across Sub-Saharan Africa but millions remain in slums
The prevalence housing with improved water and sanitation has doubled in sub-Saharan Africa between 2000 and 2015, according to new research. Using state-of-the-art mapping, researchers from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Imperial College London and the Malaria Atlas Project, University of Oxford, have provided the first accurate estimate of urban and rural housing quality in sub-Saharan Africa.

Environment - Architecture - 25.03.2019
X-rays reveal termites' self-cooling, self-ventilating, self-draining skyscrapers
New insight into termites' architectural strategies could help us design more energy efficient self-sustaining buildings for humans. Many species of termite, whose societies are built on hierarchies of kings, queens, workers, and soldiers, live in towering nests that are ventilated by a complex system of tunnels.

Environment - 22.03.2019
Are 'natural' fibres really better for the environment than microplastic fibres’ A new study questions the impact of this plastic alternative
Are 'natural' fibres really better for the environment than microplastic fibres' A new study questions the impact of this plastic alternative Researchers from the University of Nottingham have found a much higher percentage of 'natural' fibres than microplastic fibres in freshwater and atmospheric samples in the UK.

Environment - Civil Engineering - 19.03.2019
What is on the ground in a city linked inequality in life satisfaction
Cities which have a balance between facilities, housing and natural green spaces have lower levels of socio-economic inequality in the life satisfaction of its residents, according to new research. ‌ In a European-wide study, led by the University of Glasgow MRC/CSO Social & Public Health Sciences Unit and published today in Social Science & Medicine, scientists found links between urban design and levels of inequality in life satisfaction.

Environment - 13.03.2019
Only 149 trees of a wild apple species found alive
Niedzwetzky's apple, a relative of the ancestor of supermarket varieties, faces extinction as less than 150 trees have been found in its native land. Niedzwetzky's apple ( Malus niedzwetzkyana ) shares its home in Central Asia with the iconic snow leopard, but a new study shows the tree is far more endangered than the big cat, and faces extinction if immediate action is not taken.

Environment - Life Sciences - 08.03.2019
Global analysis of billions of Wikipedia searches reveals a treasure trove of biodiversity secrets
An international team of researchers from the University of Oxford , the University of Birmingham and Ben-Gurion University of the Negev have found that the way in which people use the internet is closely tied to patterns and rhythms in the natural world. This finding, published in the open-access journal PLOS Biology , suggests new ways to monitor changes in the world's biodiversity.

Physics - Environment - 07.03.2019
First images of fuel debris fallout particles from Fukushima Daiichi
A joint UK-Japan team has used innovative visualisation techniques to analyse forensic materials in order to understand the sequence of events of the Fukushima nuclear accident. In April 2017, the joint team comprising the University of Bristol, Diamond Light Source (Diamond) and the Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) undertook the first experiment of its kind to be performed at Diamond.

Environment - 06.03.2019
Sea ice acts as ’pacemaker’ for abrupt climate change
Substantial variations in past sea ice cover in the Norwegian Sea were instrumental for several abrupt climate changes in large parts of the world, researchers have found. An international study involving researchers from the UK, Norway, Germany Australia, South Korea and the US has confirmed that changes in sea ice cover in the Norwegian Sea played a key role in driving abrupt climate change events between 32,000 and 40,000 years ago, where global temperatures shifted as much as 15 degrees Celsius.

Earth Sciences - Environment - 06.03.2019
Fossilised palm leaves give new insights into the geographical landscape of prehistoric central Tibet
A team of scientists from the UK and China have uncovered new evidence, using recently-discovered 25-million-year-old fossilised palm leaves, that Tibet's geography was not as 'high and dry' as previously thought. The new research, co-authored by academics from the University of Bristol's School of Geographical Sciences , suggests that central Tibet must have been no higher than 2.3km with large lakes fringed with subtropical vegetation and deep, hidden valleys.

Environment - Life Sciences - 06.03.2019
New tech could help keep better track of Serengeti wildbeest
New methods of counting wildlife could provide conservationists with fast and accurate methods for estimating the abundance of natural populations. In a new paper published in the journal Methods in Ecology and Evolution , mathematicians and conservationists from the UK, Africa and the United States discuss how they have used both machine-learning and citizen science techniques to accurately count wildebeest in the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania more rapidly than is possible using traditional methods.

Environment - Life Sciences - 06.03.2019
Scientists put ichthyosaurs in virtual water tanks
Using computer simulations and 3D models, palaeontologists from the University of Bristol have uncovered more detail on how Mesozoic sea dragons swam. The research, published today in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B , sheds new light on their energy demands while swimming, showing that even the first ichthyosaurs had body shapes well adapted to minimise resistance and maximise volume, in a similar way to modern dolphins.

Health - Environment - 05.03.2019
Enabling targeted interventions to reduce the burden of mosquito-borne diseases
The global population at risk from mosquito-borne diseases - including yellow fever, Zika and dengue - is expanding with changes in the distribution of two key mosquitoes: Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus . The spread of these species is largely driven by a combination of factors: human movements and climate change.

Environment - 04.03.2019
Chemical pollutants in the home degrade fertility in both men and dogs
New research by scientists at the University of Nottingham suggests that environmental contaminants found in the home and diet have the same adverse effects on male fertility in both humans and in domestic dogs. There has been increasing concern over declining human male fertility in recent decades with studies showing a 50% global reduction in sperm quality in the past 80 years.