Environment

The headlines of record-crushing heat in the Northern Hemisphere began in June and haven’t stopped midway through August. Scores of locations on every continent north of the equator have witnessed their hottest weather in recorded history.   The swelter has intensified raging wildfires in western North America, Scandinavia and Siberia, while leading to heat-related deaths in
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During this week 106 years ago, New Zealand was talking about the future of our planet. The predictions weren’t uplifting. On August 14, 1912, a newspaper called the Rodney and Otamatea Times, Waitemata and Kaipara Gazette printed a prescient paragraph in its “science notes and news” section.   The brief note warned that Earth’s atmosphere
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The heat wave that has swept Europe over the summer may not be very pleasant for the human population, but rare pink tropical birds at a nature reserve in southwest England sure seem excited.   Officials at Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust (WWT) Slimbridge, a wetland wildlife reserve in Gloucestershire, said in a statement Thursday that six Andean flamingos
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The wildfires tearing through California have scorched hundreds of thousands of acres of land, destroyed thousands of structures, and forced evacuations across the state. The Mendocino Complex Fire, currently burning in northern California, is the largest in the state’s history. The Carr Fire is already the sixth-most destructive in the state’s history, having claimed six lives and burned through thousands of structures around
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On September 8, a massive and controversial plastic-cleaning system will be launched into the Pacific Ocean. The goal of the system, created by The Ocean Cleanup, a nonprofit organisation founded in 2013 by 24-year-old Dutch innovator Boyan Slat, is to remove plastic debris from the now-famous marine area known as the “Great Pacific Garbage Patch“.
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  Mounting science is painting a very bleak picture of a future of soaring temperatures, and the accompanying death toll those soaring temperatures will demand. New research has given us the first solid prediction of how more heatwaves like the one that’s struck Europe this year will affect future death rates, finding tropical heatwaves in
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Hopes for fewer large wildfires in 2018, after last year’s disastrous fire season, are rapidly disappearing across the West. Six deaths have been reported in Northern California’s Carr Fire, including two firefighters. Fires have scorched Yosemite, Yellowstone, Crater Lake, Sequoia and Grand Canyon national parks.   A blaze in June forced Colorado to shut down
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The mantle beneath Tibet has been torn into four massive pieces, according to a new computer model that gives an unprecedented glimpse at what’s going on under the surface our planet.   Determining exactly what’s happening so far underground isn’t always easy, but can help in everything from predicting earthquakes to understanding how terrain evolves
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The headlines in recent months read like an international eco-thriller. At Mauna Loa Observatory, perched high on a Hawaiian volcano, researchers measure unusual levels of CFC-11 in the atmosphere.   The measurements baffle the scientific community: CFC-11, a potent ozone-depleting gas, has been carefully monitored since it was banned under the 1987 Montreal Protocol. But
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The Carr Fire tearing through Northern California is so powerful that it’s creating its own weather patterns. The explosive blaze reached the city of Redding on Thursday night. By Saturday morning, the fire grew to 80,906 acres and is only around 5 percent contained, according to officials.   The fire has destroyed 500 structures, and officials say 5,000 more are threatened.
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The radioactive fallout of the Fukushima nuclear disaster in 2011 cast an irrevocable toll on the environment within Japan – and outside of it – and years later, the legacy of its toxic contamination is still being discovered.   Even the sun-kissed vineyards of California weren’t immune to Fukushima’s shadow, it seems, with scientists having
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Poring over four decades of satellite data, climate scientists have concluded for the first time that humans are pushing seasonal temperatures out of balance – shifting what one researcher called the very “march of the seasons themselves.”   Ever-mindful of calculable uncertainty and climate deniers, the authors give “odds of roughly 5 in 1 million”
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Global warming isn’t the cause of slowdown in a huge circulation pattern in the Atlantic Ocean, which is, in fact, part of regular, decades-long cycle that will affect temperatures in coming decades, according to a new study.   Oceanographers are concerned about the long-term stability of the Atlantic Ocean circulation, and previous studies show that
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It materialised out of almost nowhere. Thousands of years after disappearing from human sight and knowledge, an ancient ‘henge’ site has been discovered hidden within the archaeological landscape of Ireland’s Brú na Bóinne.   To reveal this long-forgotten structure, it took a chance intersection between an aerial drone flight and a brutal hot streak that’s
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