Scientists create strain of bacteria that consumes carbon dioxide

Researchers have engineered Escherichia coli bacteria to make energy exclusively from carbon dioxide, according to a paper published November 27 in Cell. E. coli are normally heterotrophs—organisms that get their energy sources from ingesting organic compounds, such as glucose—but the new study shows that they can be turned into autotrophs, making their own energy byContinue reading “Scientists create strain of bacteria that consumes carbon dioxide”

How the U.S. betrayed the Marshall Islands, kindling the next nuclear disaster

By SUSANNE RUST Five thousand miles west of Los Angeles and 500 miles north of the equator, on a far-flung spit of white coral sand in the central Pacific, a massive, aging and weathered concrete dome bobs up and down with the tide. Here in the Marshall Islands, Runit Dome holds more than 3.1 millionContinue reading “How the U.S. betrayed the Marshall Islands, kindling the next nuclear disaster”

Seaweed helps trap carbon dioxide in sediment

Every beachgoer can spot seaweed in the ocean or piling up on the beach, but Florida State University researchers working with colleagues in the United Kingdom have found that these slimy macroalgae play an important role in permanently removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Their work is published in the journal Ecological Monographs by theContinue reading “Seaweed helps trap carbon dioxide in sediment”

Eat less meat: UN climate-change report calls for change to human diet

by Quirin Schiermeier Efforts to curb greenhouse-gas emissions and the impacts of global warming will fall significantly short without drastic changes in global land use, agriculture and human diets, leading researchers warn in a high-level report commissioned by the United Nations. The special report on climate change and land by the Intergovernmental Panel on ClimateContinue reading “Eat less meat: UN climate-change report calls for change to human diet”

First sun-dimming experiment will test a way to cool Earth

Frank Keutsch, Zhen Dai and David Keith (left to right) in Keutsch’s laboratory at Harvard University. Zhen Dai holds up a small glass tube coated with a white powder: calcium carbonate, a ubiquitous compound used in everything from paper and cement to toothpaste and cake mixes. Plop a tablet of it into water, and theContinue reading “First sun-dimming experiment will test a way to cool Earth”

A drastic plan that might prevent catastrophic Antarctic ice sheet collapse

By Adam Vaughan Pumping colossal amounts of ocean water onto the West Antarctic ice sheet could stop it collapsing and causing drastic sea level rise that would threaten cities including Tokyo and New York. But the German and US researchers who have explored the idea admit the drastic intervention would require an “unprecedented effort forContinue reading “A drastic plan that might prevent catastrophic Antarctic ice sheet collapse”

Soviet Union’s collapse led to massive drop in carbon emissions when people could not long afford meat-heavy diets.

A Soviet cow-fattening complex pictured in 1982.Credit: Nikolai Akimov/TASS by Quirin Schiermeier The collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 led to a huge drop in greenhouse-gas emissions because the resulting economic crisis meant many people stopped eating meat. Meat from domestic livestock farming was a main food staple during communist rule in the region.Continue reading “Soviet Union’s collapse led to massive drop in carbon emissions when people could not long afford meat-heavy diets.”

A Large Lake Has Just Appeared in The Driest Place in North America

by JACINTA BOWLER Death Valley, the hottest and driest place in North America, isn’t exactly known for record rainfall or pop-up lakes stretching as far as the eye can see. But after a massive storm lashed the desert with rain and brought chilly temperatures through Southern California, that’s exactly what happened, according to photographer ElliottContinue reading “A Large Lake Has Just Appeared in The Driest Place in North America”

New ‘planetary health diet’ can save lives and the planet, major review suggests

By Nina Avramova An international team of scientists has developed a diet it says can improve health while ensuring sustainable food production to reduce further damage to the planet. The “planetary health diet” is based on cutting red meat and sugar consumption in half and upping intake of fruits, vegetables and nuts. And it canContinue reading “New ‘planetary health diet’ can save lives and the planet, major review suggests”

In 2012, in order to boost real estate profits, North Carolina passed a bill that barred policymakers and developers from using up-to-date climate science to plan for rising sea levels on the state’s coast.

After passing legislation 6 years ago that prohibited North Carolina policymakers from considering climate change data in planning for rising sea levels along their coast, Hurricane Florence now threatens to cause a devastating storm surge that could put thousands of lives in danger and cost North Carolina billions of dollars worth of damage. The hurricane,Continue reading “In 2012, in order to boost real estate profits, North Carolina passed a bill that barred policymakers and developers from using up-to-date climate science to plan for rising sea levels on the state’s coast.”