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Climate Change and Habitat Conversion Combine to Homogenize Nature

Fri, 18 Aug 2017 13:11:00 EST

Climate change and habitat conversion to agriculture are working together to homogenize nature, indicates a study in the journal Global Change Biology led by the University of California, Davis.In other words, the more things change, the more they are the same.While the individual impacts of climate change and habitat conversion on wildlife are well-recognized, little is known about how species respond to both stressors at once.(image)



Study Reveals Evolutionary History of Imperiled Salmon Stocks

Fri, 18 Aug 2017 13:07:00 EST

New technologies for analyzing DNA may transform how imperiled species are considered and managed for conservation protection, according to a study published today in the journal Science Advances and led by the University of California, Davis.These technologies can be applied to a wide range of species around the world — from mushrooms to walruses — but the study focuses on two iconic species of Pacific salmon: steelhead and chinook. While steelhead are a legendary sport fish, chinook are considered the workhorse of the West Coast salmon industry.(image)



Right kind of collaboration is key to solving environmental problems

Fri, 18 Aug 2017 11:43:00 EST

The coming decade may determine whether humanity will set a course toward a more socially and ecologically sustainable society. A crucial part of this goal is to develop a better understanding of how cooperation can be improved and become more effective, both within and among private stakeholders and public institutions.“Collaborative governance is often highlighted as a solution to different environmental problems. For example, when small-scale fishermen agree to avoid overfishing or when states agree to reduce greenhouse gases. But we don’t know so much about how cooperation around environmental issues works in a complex world. Different actors want different things, different environmental problems are related to each other, and different groups have differing amounts of influence. Does cooperation actually lead to a better environment?” says Örjan Bodin, lecturer at the Stockholm Resilience Centre who conducts interdisciplinary research on better ways to handle diverse environmental problems.(image)



Mosses used to evaluate atmospheric conditions in urban areas

Thu, 17 Aug 2017 16:51:00 EST

Researchers have developed a method to evaluate atmospheric conditions using mosses (bryophytes) in urban areas, a development that could facilitate broader evaluations of atmospheric environments.Many urban areas face atmospheric problems such as pollution and the heat island effect. With the need to evaluate atmospheric conditions, bioindicators—organisms whose response to environmental changes indicates the health of an ecosystem—have attracted considerable attention. Their merits include being able to evaluate an environment over a wide area at a low cost; detect environmental changes over an extended period; and assess these changes’ effects on the ecosystem. Bryophytes are one such group of plants known to be sensitive to environmental changes, in particular to atmospheric conditions.(image)



How future volcanic eruptions will impact Earth's ozone layer

Thu, 17 Aug 2017 14:55:00 EST

CFCs, greenhouse gases, and naturally occurring emissions of halogens will shape how volcanoes impact the ozone layer into the next century (image)



Algal blooms cost Ohio homeowners $152 million over six years

Thu, 17 Aug 2017 11:48:00 EST

In a new study, researchers at The Ohio State University estimate algal blooms at two Ohio lakes cost Ohio homeowners $152 million in lost property value over six years.Meanwhile, a related study suggests that algae is driving anglers away from Lake Erie, causing fishing license sales to drop at least 10 percent every time a bloom reaches a moderate level of health risk. Based on those numbers, a computer model projects that a severe, summer-long bloom would cause up to $5.6 million in lost fishing revenue and associated expenditures by anglers.(image)



Neonics Put Bumblebees at Risk of Extinction, Study Reveals

Thu, 17 Aug 2017 07:58:00 EST

Bumblebees are less able to start colonies when exposed to a common neonicotinoid pesticide, according to a new University of Guelph study.Prof. Nigel Raine has discovered that exposure to thiamethoxam reduces the chances of a bumblebee queen starting a new colony by more than one-quarter.(image)