How did Florida fail to respond to a coral disease epizootic and what’s to follow?

IMAGE: A colony of the large grooved brain coral, Colpophyllia natans, infected by Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease. The photo shows the progressive, rapid advance of disease, left-to-right, across the colony…. view more  Credit: William Precht By 2020, massive losses of large populations of corals have been observed throughout Florida and into the greater Caribbean basin. […]

A sea of rubbish: ocean floor landfills

The Messina Strait, a submarine bridge separating the island of Sicily from the Italian Peninsula, is the area with the largest marine litter density worldwide -more than a million objects per square kilometre in some parts-, as reported in a new review paper published in the journal Environmental Research Letters. Also, over the next thirty […]

Eliminating microplastics in wastewater directly at the source

IMAGE: Electro-analytical system used to identify appropriate electrodes for anodic oxidation processes. view more  Credit: INRS A research team from the Institut national de la recherche scientifique (INRS) has developed a process for the electrolytic treatment of wastewater that degrades microplastics at the source. The results of this research have been published in the Environmental Pollution […]

Changing resilience of oceans to climate change

Oxygen levels in the ancient oceans were surprisingly resilient to climate change, new research suggests. Scientists used geological samples to estimate ocean oxygen during a period of global warming 56 million years ago – and found “limited expansion” of seafloor anoxia (absence of oxygen). Global warming – both past and present – depletes ocean oxygen, […]

Positive ‘tipping points’ offer hope for climate

Positive “tipping points” could spark cascading changes that accelerate action on climate change, experts say. A tipping point is a moment when a small change triggers a large, often irreversible, response. Professor Tim Lenton, Director of the Global Systems Institute (GSI) at the University of Exeter, has previously warned the world is “dangerously close” […]

Harbor porpoises on the decline in the German North Sea

IMAGE: Populations of harbor porpoises were surveyed from a plane view more  Credit: D. Nachtsheim The North Sea is a heavily trafficked area, with major shipping routes crossing its waters, and fisheries, offshore oil rigs, and wind farms populating its waves. All this activity inevitably has an effect on marine wildlife, and scientists are particularly interested […]

Eurasian eagle owl diet reveals new records of threatened giant bush-crickets

IMAGE: Male specimen of the Big-Bellied Glandular Bush-Cricket (Bradyporus macrogaster) view more  Credit: Dragan Chobanov Bird diets provide a real treasure for research into the distribution and conservation of their prey, such as overlooked and rare bush-cricket species, point out scientists after studying the diet of the Eurasian Eagle Owl (Bubo bubo) in southeastern Bulgaria. In […]

How to identify heat-stressed corals

Researchers have found a novel way to identify heat-stressed corals, which could help scientists pinpoint the coral species that need protection from warming ocean waters linked to climate change, according to a Rutgers-led study. “This is similar to a blood test to assess human health,” said senior author Debashish Bhattacharya, a Distinguished Professor in the […]

Faster, greener way of producing carbon spheres

IMAGE: Carbon spheres – microscope images A fast, green and one-step method for producing porous carbon spheres, which are a vital component for carbon capture technology and for new ways of storing… view more  Credit: ESRI, Swansea University A fast, green and one-step method for producing porous carbon spheres, which are a vital component for […]

Plastic is blowing in the wind

As the plastic in our oceans breaks up into smaller and smaller bits without breaking down chemically, the resulting microplastics are becoming a serious ecological problem. A new study at the Weizmann Institute of Science reveals a troubling aspect of microplastics – defined as particles smaller than 5 mm across. They are swept up into […]