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Limited impact on decadal-scale climate change from increased use of natural gas

The reasons given: First, abundant gas makes energy cheaper, thereby encouraging higher energy consumption and discouraging investment in energy efficiency. Second, natural gas competes for market share not only with coal, but also with very-low-carbon energy sources such as renewables and nuclear. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature13837

EPA takes steps to prevent herbicide resistance in weeds: NRDC sues

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has approved a combination herbicide designed to be used with genetically modified (GM) resistant crops. However, the agency has time-limited its approval and included restrictions to address the problem of developing resistant weeds. The process has implications for existing and future herbicides… as a contingency of the approval, the [...]

The role of CITES in the conservation of marine fishes subject to international trade

All possible tools need to be marshalled for marine fish conservation. Yet controversy has swirled around what role, if any, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) should play for marine fishes. This paper analyses the relevance and applicability of CITES as a complementary tool for fisheries management. [...]

Social networks in elasmobranchs and teleost fishes- TERA

Over the last decade, there has been an exponential increase in studies using social network analysis to describe the structure of animal societies. In this synthesis, we examine the contribution of social network analysis towards developing our understanding of the social organization of elasmobranchs and teleost fishes. We review and discuss the current state of [...]

The Prevention Imperative: International Health and Environmental Governance Responses to Emerging Zoonotic Diseases- TERA

Despite widespread recognition of the threat posed by emerging zoonotic diseases (EZDs) to human and animal health and the economy, the root causes of EZDs are largely ignored by the international community. In particular, the links between wildlife health, human-induced land-use change, and EZDs have not been adequately addressed. Generally, states are not required to [...]

Climate windows for Polynesian voyaging to New Zealand and Easter Island- TERA

Debate about initial human migration across the immense area of East Polynesia has focused upon seafaring technology, both of navigation and canoe capabilities, while temporal variation in sailing conditions, notably through climate change, has received less attention. One model of Polynesian voyaging observes that as tradewind easterlies are currently dominant in the central Pacific, prehistoric [...]

A global inventory of lakes based on high-resolution satellite imagery- TERA

An accurate description of the abundance and size distribution of lakes is critical to quantifying limnetic contributions to the global carbon cycle. However, estimates of global lake abundance are poorly constrained. We used high-resolution satellite imagery to produce a GLObal WAter BOdies database (GLOWABO), comprising all lakes greater than 0.002 km2. GLOWABO contains geographic and morphometric [...]

Startup Alphabet Energy has its first product: what it says is the world’s largest thermoelectric generator- TERA

Power plants waste huge amounts of energy as heat—about 40 to 80 percent of the total in the fuel they burn. A new device could reduce that waste, cutting fuel consumption and carbon emissions by as much as 3 percent and saving companies millions of dollars. (Three percent might not seem like much, but for [...]

Pyrolysis touted as billion dollar US industry- TERA

Wider deployment of pyrolysis, where non-recycled plastics are heated in the absence of oxygen to convert them into valuable fuels and feedstocks, would not only reduce the amount of waste sent to landfills but also generate billions of dollars, according to a new analysis by the American Chemistry Council (ACC). The trade group concluded that [...]

Epigenetics and the environment: emerging patterns and implications

Epigenetic phenomena in animals and plants are mediated by DNA methylation and stable chromatin modifications. There has been considerable interest in whether environmental factors modulate the establishment and maintenance of epigenetic modifications, and could thereby influence gene expression and phenotype. Chemical pollutants, dietary components, temperature changes and other external stresses can indeed have long-lasting effects [...]