news 2021



Results 41 - 60 of 164.

Environment - Economics - 06.09.2021
Economic cost of climate change could be six times higher than previously thought
Economic models of climate change may have substantially underestimated the costs of continued warming, according to a new study involving UCL researchers. Published today in the journal Environmental Research Letters , the international team of scientists found that the economic damage could be six times higher by the end of this century than previously estimated.

Environment - 02.09.2021
Going up: birds and mammals evolve faster if their home is rising
Going up: birds and mammals evolve faster if their home is rising
The rise and fall of Earth's land surface over the last three million years shaped the evolution of birds and mammals, a new study has found, with new species evolving at higher rates where the land has risen most.

Environment - 27.08.2021
Finding plastic-free alternatives to protect young trees
Saplings should be planted without protective plastic guards, according to an environmental impact study led by UCL researchers. Young trees are usually planted in plastic tubes to protect them from being eaten by animals, but these plastic guards often break down into harmful microplastics. Manufacturing the guards also contribute to a range of environmental impacts, including fossil depletion, climate change and land use.

Life Sciences - Environment - 26.08.2021
Plants evolved ability to actively control water-loss earlier than previously thought
New research has shed light on when plants first evolved the ability to respond to changing humidity in the air around them, and was probably a feature of a common ancestor of both flowering plants and ferns. Key to the regulation mechanism are tiny holes, or pores, on the surface of leaves, called stomata.

Environment - 23.08.2021
Integrated conservation strategies could simultaneously meet biodiversity, climate, and water objectives
Integrated conservation strategies could simultaneously meet biodiversity, climate, and water objectives
Managing a strategically chosen 30% of land for conservation could safeguard 70% of all terrestrial plant and vertebrate animal species, while simultaneously conserving around two-thirds of the world's vulnerable carbon and clean water, according to a new study carried out by the Nature Map Consortium, involving the University of Cambridge.

Life Sciences - Environment - 16.08.2021
Restoring farmland ponds can help save our declining pollinators
Pollinating insects such as bees, butterflies, hoverflies and wasps, interact more with plants at well-managed farmland ponds than those that are severely overgrown by trees, finds a new study led by UCL researchers. The study, published in Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment , has been undertaken by the UCL Pond Restoration Group; since 2014 the research team has been working with the Norfolk Ponds Project, helping put pond restoration into practice, with the aim of showing how conservation and farming can work together.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 09.08.2021
Global climate report ’wake-up call for all governments to take climate change seriously’
Climate change is already widespread, rapid, and intensifying, according to a new report released today by the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), involving contributions from UCL academics. The report, which assesses the physical science behind climate change, highlights that changes in the Earth's climate have already been observed in every region of the globe and across the whole climate system - including the atmosphere, oceans, rivers and lakes, and land - many of which are unprecedented.

Life Sciences - Environment - 04.08.2021
Ancient human adaptation to agriculture and climate change in Middle East
Ancient human adaptation to agriculture and climate change in Middle East
The most comprehensive study so far of genetic diversity in the Middle East has given a glimpse into the lives of ancient humans who lived through such seismic events as the development of agriculture and the formation of the Arabian Desert. Researchers at the University of Birmingham and the Wellcome Sanger Institute, along with their international collaborators, have uncovered signals in DNA that indicate a population boom in the Levant coinciding with the transition to agriculture and a population crash in Arabia as the region dried up.

Environment - Agronomy / Food Science - 30.07.2021
New Oxford University research will help optimize environmentally friendly ways of fertilising plants
New Oxford University research will help optimize environmentally friendly ways of fertilising plants
New research from the University of Oxford's Departments of Plant Sciences and Engineering, as well as collaborators at VU Amsterdam, uses both mathematical modelling and experimental validation to study the metabolic processes controlling how bacteria provide ammonia to legumes, which is vastly important for sustainable agriculture Ammonia-based fertiliser is commonly used in industrial agriculture, and since the early 20 th  C.

Environment - Astronomy / Space - 30.07.2021
Winter winds blow Arctic sea ice into melt zone
Record-breaking winter winds have blown large swathes of old Arctic sea ice into warmer waters, putting them at high risk of melting this summer, according to a new study by a UCL-led research team. Old Arctic ice, known as "perennial" ice, is ice that has survived at least one summer. It is thicker than new ice, is less prone to melting, and helps keep Earth cool in summer by reflecting sunlight.

Environment - Health - 28.07.2021
Exploring how air pollution in indoor spaces affects human health
University of Birmingham experts are part of a new research programme investigating how air pollutants in indoor spaces such as homes, schools and workplaces can adversely affect human health. Researchers have received a share of £9 million funding from UK Research and Innovation across three separate four-year projects, each aimed at better understanding the composition, concentration and exposures of air pollutants and how these affect different health conditions.

Earth Sciences - Environment - 26.07.2021
Earth's interior is swallowing up more carbon than thought
Earth’s interior is swallowing up more carbon than thought
Scientists from Cambridge University and NTU Singapore have found that slow-motion collisions of tectonic plates drag more carbon into Earth's interior than previously thought.

Social Sciences - Environment - 19.07.2021
Living near woodlands is good for children and young people’s mental health
Children and young people's proximity to woodlands has been linked with better cognitive development and a lower risk of emotional and behavioural problems, in a study led by UCL and Imperial College London scientists that could influence planning decisions in urban areas. In what is believed to be one of the largest studies of its kind, researchers used longitudinal data relating to 3,568 children and teenagers, aged nine to 15 years, from 31 schools across London.

Life Sciences - Environment - 14.07.2021
Rapid evolution in waterfleas yields new conservation insights
The extraordinary ability of animals to rapidly evolve in response to predators has been demonstrated via genetic sequencing of a waterflea population across nearly two decades. In a new study , published , scientists at the Universities of Birmingham in the UK, the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven in Belgium, and the Leibniz Institute for Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (IGB), Berlin, were able to identify more than 300 genes that vary in the genome of the waterflea.

Environment - Psychology - 14.07.2021
Autistic people experience barriers to ’going green’
Autistic people can "face barriers" to taking positive environmental action - and need greater support to help them do so, according to a new study. Researchers from Cardiff University, along with the universities of Bath, Essex, and King's College London, explored the links between autistic personality traits and environmental attitudes in a study of 2,000 people in the US and UK.

Psychology - Environment - 14.07.2021
’Greta Thunberg Effect’ belies challenges for autistic community in going green
A new psychology study from researchers at the University of Bath focuses on the relationship between autism and green behaviours. Last updated on Wednesday 14 July 2021 Autistic people need extra help in going green say researchers behind a new study which argues for a more inclusive environmental agenda.

Environment - Life Sciences - 08.07.2021
Climate changed the size of our bodies and, to some extent, our brains
The average body size of humans has fluctuated significantly over the last million years and is strongly linked to temperature. Colder, harsher climates drove the evolution of larger body sizes, while warmer climates led to smaller bodies. Brain size also changed dramatically but did not evolve in tandem with body size.

Environment - 05.07.2021
Early humans were sheltered from worst effects of volcanic supereruption
Early humans were sheltered from worst effects of volcanic supereruption
A massive volcanic eruption in Indonesia about 74,000 years ago likely caused severe climate disruption in many areas of the globe, but early human populations were sheltered from the worst effects, suggests a new study published in the journal PNAS . Ultimately, this will help to mitigate the environmental and societal hazards from future volcanic eruptions Anja Schmidt The eruption of the Toba volcano was the largest volcanic eruption in the past two million years, but its impacts on climate and human evolution have been unclear.

Environment - 30.06.2021
Fairer finance could speed up net zero for Africa by a decade
Levelling up access to finance so that poorer countries can afford the funds needed to switch to renewable energy could see regions like Africa reaching net zero emissions a decade earlier, according to a study led by UCL researchers. Access to finance (credit) is vital for the green energy transition needed to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions, as laid out in the Paris Agreement.

Agronomy / Food Science - Environment - 24.06.2021
Nanotech and AI could hold key to unlocking global food security challenge
Nanotech and AI could hold key to unlocking global food security challenge
'Precision agriculture' where farmers respond in real time to changes in crop growth using nanotechnology and artificial intelligence (AI) could offer a practical solution to the challenges threatening global food security, a new study reveals. Climate change, increasing populations, competing demands on land for production of biofuels and declining soil quality mean it is becoming increasingly difficult to feed the world's populations.