Articles from 2013 (33 found)

Hurricane Season: Do Warmer Oceans Mean More Cyclone Damage?

As ocean surface temperatures heat up and urban coastal populations continue to grow, climate models predict an increase in the number of intense storms and corresponding economic damage.

Can playing games protect cities from climate change?

Social strategy games can help urban planners and developers learn the complex trade-offs between climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies in cities.

Valuing South Africa's food waste

In countries like South Africa where food takes up as much as one-fifth of household spending, reducing waste from ‘farm to table’ is much more than a moral obligation - it is an economical way to maximize resources.

Bioenergy and Biochar – Two concepts brought together for sustainable land use?

Increasing carbon storage in soils through biochar and producing bioenergy from perennial plants can be a powerful means to mitigate climate change. Understanding soil microbial processes is crucial to achieve improved soil fertility, biodiversity, and carbon sequestration.

Melting ice in the arctic may change the equation on greenhouse gases

With sea-ice hitting an all-time low in September 2012, scientists are examining how the melt will affect the transfer of greenhouse gases in arctic plant communities.

Remote Sensing Closing in On Wildfire Prediction

Researchers are exploring the potential of using remote sensing of Live Fuel Moisture Content as a landscape level fire predictor.

Water for All, Disease for Some?

The most widespread techniques for increasing water supplies under climate uncertainty are also those with the greatest potential to spread disease. How can communities best adapt?

Repeated exposures may improve consumer acceptance of meat substitutes

Environmentally sustainable alternatives to meat have a greater chance of gaining a permanent place on the dinner plate if consumers increase familiarity of product.

Are wolves and road construction compatible?

Wolf movement is negatively affected by road construction, but more due to human activity than the presence of human infrastructure and machinery.

Diving tourists with environmental awareness can conserve oceans

Diving tourism can help conserve marine wildlife and coastal ecosystems. To live up to its potential to conserve nature as well as to sustain popularity diving management including environmental education is key.

Food for the city, by the city

The unprecedented growth of cities in African countries has the potential to convert urban farming, a historical means of survival, into a viable livelihood for urban dwellers.

Assessing tools for formalizing property rights

Offering property licenses to “squatter communities” may not make property rights more secure as investment and property markets fail to take newly registered property licenses seriously

How and why environmental issues are neglected

Understanding how and why people fail to recognize the importance of future environmental problems can be used to tailor responses to environmental information problems

Orchids flourish with assisted migration

Assisted migration is hotly debated as an aid for species adapting to climate change, but new research reveals survival success for orchids.

Utility demand-side management programs show lasting and lagged effects

Utility companies’ demand-side programs produced a 0.9 percent savings in electricity consumption over the period between 1992 and 2006 and a 1.8 percent savings overall. They also achieved their maximum impact a few years after launching and had a long-lasting effect.  Policy-makers should incorporate consideration of lasting and lagged effects of DSM programs into consideration.

Invasive species follow in human wake

Human population density is the strongest driving force behind invasive species in protected areas.

Identifying Waste Currents in Hawai’i

Local waste sources, accumulation points, and marine pathways around Hawai’i Island were determined to address the origin of the debris accumulating in Kamilo Point through the deployment of debris-catching booms and wooden drifter blocks.  

Quantifying the energy paradox: US consumers undervalue future fuel costs by 32 percent

When choosing fuel efficient vehicles, US consumers undervalue future fuel costs by valuing one dollar’s worth of future savings at 76 cents for the present price, a value gap of 32 percent.

Green spaces for all: A South African case study

Individuals of all economic backgrounds in developing countries demand public green spaces and are willing to give time and money for their maintenance. 

Fukushima radiation found in food webs in the Pacific

Radioactive material from the Fukushima disaster was detected in food webs in the Pacific. However, it isn’t substantial enough to be dangerous to humans or animals.

Developing national plans of action to protect sharks saves threatened species

Little is known about whether regional shark management plans are robust enough to sustainably manage shark stocks. However, implementing national action plans that adhere to international guidelines and that build on experiences from other fisheries can help save endangered shark species from extinction.

Friendliness linked to longer lives

Research into ancestral associations between personality and survival reveals that extraverted gorillas, like humans, live longer lives.

Can forests earn more money than oil palm plantations?

Sustainable forest management that aims at Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD+) includes payments to landowners and can provide economic benefits over alternative land uses such as oil palm plantations. If certain key factors are resolved, REDD+ can simultaneously achieve economic and social success while bringing ecological benefits and contributing to climate change mitigation.

Beer Hops Beneficial to Honey Bees

The key ingredient in beer is proven to reduce parasitic mite populations in honey bee colonies.

Using Land Use Policy and Zoning to protect environmentally sensitive areas from informal settlements

Scientists examine how zoning and land use policy can protect environmentally sensitive areas at the fringe of the cities from damage by shantytowns. Political and social factors can often cause these policies to fail.

Local solutions for local problems

In the search for effective adaptations to climate change, governments and international organizations may have little need to cast their nets far from home.

Shifting bee seasons could disrupt pollination

Spring is coming earlier for wild bees in the Northeast. This could have serious ecological consequences if bee seasons go out of sync with plant seasons.

Insect species with specialized diets may weather climate change after all

Butterflies and moths with specialized diets are utilizing human-altered environments to expand their ranges with climate change.

Finding wildlife habitat in urban areas

Scientists find that golf courses can be suitable nesting habitat for turtles.

Bed sheets and beyond: life cycle assessment results that can influence customer choice

Life-cycle assessments on bed sheets reveal criteria for ideal product.

Ecological and social price of mega-dam power projects might be too high

The Malaysian state of Sarawak started its implementation of a gigantic hydropower project with the goal to leapfrog into modernity. This causes a range of unfavorable consequences that should be carefully assessed by other countries in the region that plan to install similar projects.

Can cultural conservation pay biodiversity dividends?

Regions containing much of the biological diversity on Earth should be conserved for reasons beyond the plant and animal species within them.

Siting wind without the negative impacts

In Kansas, researchers are finding easy ways to minimize the negative impacts of wind energy while greatly surpassing the U.S. Department of Energy’s 2030 goals.