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Research News

04 Nov 2021

Aviation’s present-day contribution to human-induced global warming is 4% and will increase over the next 30 years should pre-Covid growth resume

Major new study reveals that aviation could consume up to one-sixth of the remaining temperature budget to limit warming to 1.5 ˚C Aviation is responsible for more global warming than implied by its carbon footprint alone. According to new research published today, aviation could consume up one-sixth of the remaining temperature budget required to limit...

06 Jul 2021

Long-term urban emissions data show a decrease in high-income countries

A new study shows how urbanisation has influenced anthropogenic CO2 and air pollutant emissions across all world regions, by making use of the latest developments in the Emissions Database for Global Atmospheric Research (EDGAR, https://edgar.jrc.ec.europa.eu/) developed by the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission. The results show that by 2015 urban centres were the...

08 Jun 2021

Projected acidification of the Great Barrier Reef could be offset by ten years

New research has shown that by injecting an alkalinizing agent into the ocean along the length of the Great Barrier Reef, it would be possible, at the present rate of anthropogenic carbon emissions, to offset ten years’ worth of ocean acidification. The research, by CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere, Hobart, used a high-resolution model developed for...

18 May 2021

The environmental trade-offs of autonomous vehicles

Optimistic predictions expect reliable autonomous vehicles to be commercially available by 2030, at a time when mobility is undergoing a profound shift away from traditional modes of transportation and towards door-to-door services. Previous analysis suggested that public transport will lose market share to autonomous vehicles, but the environmental impact of changing transport use has hardly...

24 Mar 2021

1º of global warming causes a ~50% increase in population displacement risk

A new study shows that if the population were fixed at current levels, the risk of population displacement due to river floods would rise by ~50% for each degree of global warming. However, if population increases are taken into account, the relative global flood displacement risk is significantly higher. The research, by an international team...

17 Mar 2021

Flat brain organoids grown on 3D-printed scaffolds show intrinsic gyrification

Gyrification has been observed for the first time in brain organoids grown in vitro using 3D-printed scaffolds. The research, by an international team from the Autonomous University of Madrid and the Technical University of Denmark, used 3D printing to create scaffolds for engineered flat brain organoids. The scaffolds allowed the brain organoid size to be...

16 Feb 2021

Groundwater recharge rates mapped for Africa

Effective governance and investment decisions need to be informed by reliable data, not only about where groundwater exists, but also the rate at which groundwater is replenished. For the first time using ground measurements, a recent study has quantified groundwater recharge rates across the whole of Africa – averaged over a fifty-year period – which...

23 Dec 2020

Are two phases of quarantine better than one?

New research into this question shows that the second wave of an epidemic is very different if a population has a homogenous distribution of contacts, compared to the scenario of subpopulations with diverse number of contacts. The research, by American authors from Oakland University, Novi High School, and California Polytechnic State University, used a simulation...

25 Aug 2020

Study identifies first step to beating water scarcity

New research has revealed the locations and industries in the USA where efforts to improve water consumption would have the greatest benefit for economic activity and the environment. The study, led by researchers from Virginia Tech, used a spatially detailed database of water productivity to set realistic benchmarks for more than 400 industries and products....

24 Aug 2020

Ocean hitchhiker’s sucker mechanism offers potential for underwater adhesion

A new study has revealed how remora suckerfish detach themselves from the surfaces they’ve clung to – and how the mechanism could provide inspiration for future reversible underwater adhesion devices. The research, by an international, multidisciplinary team working across robotics, comparative biology, and electrical engineering, investigated the detachment mechanism of the remora’s suction disc, and...

28 Jul 2020

Lockdown saw modest drop in China air pollution – study

Large improvements of air quality in China during the COVID-19 lockdown have been widely reported, but new research reveals that the two pollutants most harmful to human health, fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and ozone, were only slightly reduced. The study, by scientists from the University of Leeds, UK and the Southern University of Science and...