Pipe: Climate and Health

Globe? Warm? Who, Me? 

Sat, 2015-03-14 00:00
The popular response to questions about climate change and global warming seems to be: I’m not a scientist.

New NASA Mission to Study Ocean Color, Airborne Particles and Clouds

Fri, 2015-03-13 12:00
NASA is beginning work on a new satellite mission that will extend critical climate measurements of Earth’s oceans and atmosphere and advance studies of the impact of environmental changes on ocean health, fisheries and the carbon cycle.

The Political Art of Not Being a Scientist

Thu, 2015-03-12 14:57
A report alleges that after Florida Gov. Rick Scott took office, state officials were barred from using the term “climate change.”

Payments for ecosystem services? Here's the guidebook

Thu, 2015-03-12 14:30
A team of investors, development organizations, conservationists, economists, and ecologists have published six natural science principles to ensure success of Payments for Ecosystem Services, mechanisms that have helped preserve carbon stocks stored in Madagascar's rainforests, maintain wildlife populations important for tourism in Tanzania, and protect watersheds in France by working with local farmers.

Humans adapted to living in rainforests much sooner than thought

Thu, 2015-03-12 14:29
An international research team has shed new light on the diet of some of the earliest recorded humans in Sri Lanka. The researchers analyzed the carbon and oxygen isotopes in the teeth of 26 individuals, with the oldest dating back 20,000 years. They found that nearly all the teeth analyzed suggested a diet largely sourced from the rainforest.

New material captures carbon at half the energy cost

Wed, 2015-03-11 18:58
Capturing carbon from power plants will likely be necessary in the future to avoid the worst effects of climate change, but current technologies are very expensive. Chemists have now developed a new material, a diamine-appended metal-organic framework, that captures carbon dioxide with much reduced energy costs compared to today's technologies, potentially lowering the cost of capturing and sequestering this greenhouse gas.

Epoch-defining study pinpoints when humans came to dominate planet Earth

Wed, 2015-03-11 16:04
The human-dominated geological epoch known as the Anthropocene probably began around the year 1610, with an unusual drop in atmospheric carbon dioxide and the irreversible exchange of species between the New and Old Worlds, according to new research.

Small eddies produce global effects on climate change

Tue, 2015-03-10 10:53
The increasing strength of winds over the Southern Ocean has extended its ability to absorb carbon dioxide, effectively delaying the impacts of global warming. New research found the intensifying wind over that ocean increased the speed and energy of eddies and jets. The increased movement and overturning of these eddies and jets has accelerated the carbon cycle and driven more heat into the deep ocean.

New carbon accounting method proposed

Tue, 2015-03-10 10:48
Established ways of measuring carbon emissions can sometimes give misleading feedback on how national policies affect global emissions. In some cases, countries are even rewarded for policies that increase global emissions, and punished for policies that contribute to reducing them. Consumption-based accounting, also known as carbon footprints, has been suggested as an alternative to today’s production-based accounting

New information helps predict future climate change impacts on global tropics

Mon, 2015-03-09 14:50
New measurements of tropical forests are being collected by scientists to gain a better understanding of how they respond to seasonal climate variations. "A better understanding of tropical forest behavior is needed because tropical forests serve as the lungs of Earth," noted a contributor to the study. "Tropical forests breathe in carbon dioxide -- a potent greenhouse gas -- and store it as vegetation biomass through photosynthesis."

Saving Chilean mummies from climate change

Mon, 2015-03-09 09:32
At least two thousand years before the ancient Egyptians began mummifying their pharaohs, a hunter-gatherer people called the Chinchorro living along the coast of modern-day Chile and Peru developed elaborate methods to mummify not just elites but all types of community members--men, women, children, and even unborn fetuses. Radiocarbon dating as far back as 5050 BC makes them the world's oldest human-made mummies.

Researchers create artificial methane hydrates, open an innovative pathway for use of new fuels

Fri, 2015-03-06 07:38
A technology that allows the preparation of artificial methane hydrates has been developed by researchers. These researchers have demonstrated that it is possible to prepare methane hydrates in a laboratory by imitating, and even enhancing, natural processes through the use of activated carbon materials as nano-reactors. One of the keys of this research was that scientists were able to reduce the process to form methane hydrates, which takes a long time in nature, to just a few minutes, thus making its technological applicability much easier.

Green lungs of our planet are changing

Fri, 2015-03-06 07:37
Are leaves and buds developing earlier in the spring? And do leaves stay on the trees longer in autumn? Do steppe ecosystems remain green longer and are the savannas becoming drier and drier? In fact, over recent decades, the growing seasons have changed everywhere around the world, according to research based on satellite data. The results are expected to have consequences for agriculture, interactions between species, the functioning of ecosystems, and the exchange of carbon dioxide and energy between the land surface and the atmosphere. 

Snffing out origins of methane: instrument identifies methane's origins in mines, deep-sea vents, and cows

Thu, 2015-03-05 15:21
Methane is a potent greenhouse gas, second only to carbon dioxide in its capacity to trap heat in Earth's atmosphere for a long time. The gas can originate from lakes and swamps, natural-gas pipelines, deep-sea vents, and livestock. Understanding the sources of methane, and how the gas is formed, could give scientists a better understanding of its role in warming the planet.

Nutrient pollution damages streams in ways previously unknown, ecologists find

Thu, 2015-03-05 15:21
An important food resource has been disappearing from streams without anyone noticing until now. Ecologists reports that nutrient pollution causes a significant loss of forest-derived carbon from stream ecosystems, reducing the ability of streams to support aquatic life.

AbbVie wins three-way Pharmacyclics fight

Thu, 2015-03-05 14:32
Value of healthcare deals in past 15 months reaches nearly $500bn

A Faustian bargain

Thu, 2015-03-05 10:49

HUNTINGTON’S disease is awful. It slowly robs its victims of mobility, wits and emotions. And there is no cure. The idea that it might be the obverse of something good sounds, to say the least, counter-intuitive. Yet that is the contention of a small band of neuroscientists who have been studying it. They suggest the underlying cause of Huntington’s, a strange form of genetic mutation called a triplet-repeat expansion, might also be one of the driving forces behind the expansion of the human brain. Huntington’s, these people suspect, may be a price humanity pays for being clever.

Most genetic diseases are recessive. This means a faulty gene inherited from one parent can be covered for by a healthy one from the other. For someone to suffer symptoms, both of his or her parents must have a faulty copy of the gene in question—unless the victim is a man and the faulty gene is on his single X chromosome. Huntington’s by contrast is a dominant disease. A faulty gene from either parent is enough to cause it.

The fault’s nature is also strange. Usually when a gene goes wrong, part of it is either missing or has the wrong genetic letters in it...

McConnell Urges States to Defy U.S. Plan to Cut Greenhouse Gas

Thu, 2015-03-05 00:00
Mr. McConnell, the Senate majority leader, is from Kentucky, a leading coal-producing state. He has vowed to fight President Obama on climate change issues like regulating coal-fired power plants.

How drowsy microbes in Arctic tundra change to methane-makers as permafrost thaws

Wed, 2015-03-04 19:02
As the Arctic warms, tons of carbon locked away in Arctic tundra will be transformed into the powerful greenhouse gases carbon dioxide and methane, but scientists know little about how that transition takes place. Scientists looking at microbes in different types of Arctic soil now have a new picture of life in permafrost that reveals entirely new species and hints that subzero microbes might be active.

The Economist explains: Why global warming does not necessarily result in warmer winters

Wed, 2015-03-04 18:50
ON FEBRUARY 26th James Inhofe, a senator from Oklahoma, threw a snowball at another senator inside America’s upper chamber. He did it to back up his contention that man-made climate change is not the threat President Barack Obama (and many others) say it is. Mr Inhofe is chairman of the Senate’s environment committee and his argument has a simple and persuasive logic: much of the United States has experienced four unusually freezing winters in succession. Surely that contradicts the notion that the Earth’s climate is warming up?Not necessarily, for two reasons. First, the climate and the weather are not the same: they are related, but weather patterns develop and change over hours, days and weeks; the climate changes over years and decades. And second, the American landmass is just one small part of the surface of the globe. While temperatures have been well below average across much of the United States, other parts of the world have been abnormally warm. And indeed, there may be a connection between climate change and colder winters in parts of the northern hemisphere. The link is the Arctic region.&nbsp;Because the poles are colder than the equator, air streams north and south in order to equalise temperatures. In the northern hemisphere, this flow is called the jet stream. Because of the rotation of the Earth, the stream turns right as the planet spins, and flows in ...<div class="og_rss_groups"></div>