News and Updates

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Posted on February 6, 2018 - 9:34am, by raye


"New emergency water restrictions went into effect last week for the city that once was considered to be at the forefront of Africa's green movement. Only a month ago, level six restrictions had placed residents on a daily allowance of 87 liters (about 23 gallons), illustrating the severity of the crisis."

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Posted on February 5, 2018 - 4:25pm, by nwehner

By Nick Wehner, MarXiv Project Director

The primary method for obtaining full-text papers behind a journal’s paywall for those without institutional library access* is to email the author to ask for a free copy. But that cannot happen when you do not know the email address of the author, which SpringerNature does not offer.

SpringerNature does not show the email address for any corresponding author of any journal they publish. Not a one. Go take a look for yourself and see. Here’s one paper in Nature if you don’t feel like searching.

Community Updates - External Link
Posted on February 5, 2018 - 1:29pm, by raye

Via Sierra

"Bleaching doesn’t necessarily kill coral, though it does turn it an eerie bone white. A type of photosynthetic algae called zooanthellae lives in the tissues, producing nutrients and carbon that the coral uses for energy. The symbiotic algae also give corals their stunning colors. When coral undergoes stress from pollution, loss of light, or increasing water temperatures, the zooanthellae are ejected, causing the coral to lose its color and food supply. If things go back to normal relatively quickly, the algae can often recolonize the coral and the system survives."

Community Updates - External Link
Posted on February 5, 2018 - 1:19pm, by raye

Via Independent

"These creatures are filter feeders, meaning they consume large quantities of small prey by straining them out of the ocean water. In the process, they swallow hundreds to thousands of cubic metres of water daily, meaning there is the potential for them to take in substantial amounts of microplastic floating in the water."

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Posted on February 5, 2018 - 12:59pm, by abrown

By Kelly Martin

You open the newspaper or scroll through your newsfeed and it’s everywhere: another oil spill, natural disaster, or endangered species gone extinct. Doom and gloom fills the pages of most news we see, particularly news concerning the environment. After a while you may think to yourself, “is it even worth trying to fix the planet anymore?” You’re not alone in this sentiment: researchers at Columbia University’s Center for Research on Environmental Decisions (CRED) call this “emotional numbing,” a phenomenon that occurs after repeated exposure to emotionally draining scenarios. In a world saturated with information about the many environmental disasters happening all around us, it is easy to become numb to these issues. “Eco-anxiety” has also become an increasingly recognized problem, as issues ranging from devastating natural disasters to the more gradual impacts of climate change are linked to stress, a feelings of powerlessness, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder. One study found that in Australia, 25% of children are “so troubled about the state of the world that they honestly believe it will come to an end before they get older.”

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Posted on February 5, 2018 - 12:55pm, by abrown

By Spencer Showalter

In November 2017, more than 200 countries convened in Bonn, Germany for Conference of the Parties 23 (COP 23), the most recent in the yearly United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) conferences. These meetings began in the 1990s with the creation of the Kyoto Protocol, a pioneering international agreement that set the groundwork for substantially reducing global greenhouse gas emissions. COP 23 was a notable meeting for two reasons. Firstly, it was the first meeting since the Trump Administration announced its intention to pull out of the Paris Agreement, the major outcome of COP 21. Secondly, COP 23’s main goal was to iron out the details of the Paris Agreement in order to continue to chase the international goal of limiting warming to under 2˚C (3.6˚F)—a goal that is already on tenuous ground. So, given that the US is not participating in the Paris agreement, what did the American delegation do at the conference? What were the outcomes of the conference?