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Chris Rapley in '2071' at the Royal Court Theatre. Photo: Stephen Cummiskey.

Five stars! Scientist's dramatic climate change act is a winner

Tim Radford

25th November 2014

A spellbinding solo performance by veteran climate scientist Chris Rapley at London's Royal Court puts the climate debate centre stage, writes Tim Radford - and earns the admiration of hard-to-please theatre critics. more...
Families swimming in the Thames at Long Bridges, Oxford earlier this month. Photo: Zoe Broughton.

Climate deniers lost for words: 2014 set for hottest year on record

Richard Heasman / DeSmogUK

28th October 2014

Just as 2014 is looking like going down as the hottest year since records began, motor-mouthed climate change deniers are shrinking into the shadows, writes Richard Heasman. more...
These bananas in India are grown for their edible seed as well as their flesh. To increase food security in a warming world, we must increase the diversity of our food crops. Photo: VitaminGreen via Flickr.

In a warming world, food security means crop diversity

Sayed Azam-Ali

10th October 2014

The global homogenisation of food carries costs, writes Sayed Azam-Ali - notably the world's the increasing dependence on just a few 'elite crops', creating a precarious food system vulnerable to climate change. We must diversify our diets, and the crops that that feed us. more...
The 'flying rivers' of the Amazon are at risk from deforestation, fires and climate change. Without them, forest and farmland could turn to desert. Photo: Eli Duke via Flickr.

Drought bites as the Amazon's 'flying rivers' fail

Jan Rocha

20th September 2014

The Amazon forest both depends on, and sustains, vast 'flying rivers' that carry humid air and clouds deep into the continental interior, writes Jan Rocha. But scientists fear the flying rivers are failing due to deforestation, fire and climate change. more...
Chile's Lascar volano in eruption. Some geoengineering techniques would imitate the cooling effect of volcanic dust to reduce global warming. Photo: Neil via Flickr.

Geoengineering - the 'declaration' that never was may cause real harm

Andrew Lockley

28th August 2014

It was a great story, writes Andrew Lockley - scientists signing up to a 'Berlin Declaration' imposing an effective 'test ban' on outdoor geoengineering experiments. Except there was no declaration, and scientists never agreed to it. The world's media got it completely wrong, yet the mud will stick - and may cause severe harm in the fight against climate change. more...
The Navarre Plains are one of the areas under debate, and are an important site of glacial geology. Photo: Kevin Kiernan.

Tasmania's World Heritage debate must look beyond the trees

Kevin Kiernan

23rd June 2014

With Australia's still trying to 'de-list' 74,000 hectares of forest from the Tasmania Wilderness World Heritage Area, Kevin Kierman reminds us that it's not just about the trees. No less important are the area's unique geology, and ancient Aboriginal cultural sites. more...
Switchgrass - 65 tons of it - baled and delivered to a poultry farm. In future, it will be sent in far larger volumes to bioethanol plants. Photo: University of Delaware Carvel REC via Flickr.

GMO bug makes bioethanol direct from grass

Tim Radford

15th June 2014

A new GM bacterium can produce bioethanol from coarse switchgrass, rather than using food crops like maize, writes Tim Radford. It does this by 'digesting' the tough cellulose that yeasts are unable to break down. more...
Thanks to higher methane emissions and lower production than declared, gas from fracking is as bad for climate as coal. Photo: Fracking the Bakken Formation in North Dakota. Credit: Joshua Doubek / Wikimedia Commons.

Fracking 'as bad for climate as coal' - UK's dodgy dossier exposed

Paul Mobbs

30th May 2014

A wholesale corruption of science underlies the UK Government's insistence that gas from fracking offers a 'low carbon', low cost route to energy abundance, writes Paul Mobbs. On the contrary: it's expensive, over-hyped - and just as bad for climate change as coal. more...
Traces of submerged lands are visible today, if you know where to look. Richerman, CC BY-SA.

Melting glaciers have drowned lands before, and will again

Vince Gaffney

12th May 2014

The North Sea's 'Dogger Bank' was once dry land, inhabited by people and herds of Pleistocene megafauna, writes Vince Gaffney. The long-lost world of Doggerland shows how melting glaciers drowned land at the end of the last ice age. And surely not for the last time ... more...
Locally produced biochar. Photo: Carbon Gold.

Biochar doubles plant growth

Oliver Tickell

7th April 2014

New research shows that biochar in soil strongly stimulates plant growth, more than doubling yields. However the extra growth may come at the cost of reduced plant defences against pests. more...
Ancient tree - possibly a Black cottonwood -  on Big Tree Hike on Vancouver's North Shore. Photo: Rob Baxter via Flickr.com.

Big old trees grow faster, absorb more carbon

Adeshola Ore

28th January 2014

Large, older trees have been found to grow faster and absorb carbon dioxide more rapidly than younger, smaller trees, writes Adeshola Ore - contrary to the previous view that trees’ growth slowed as they developed. more...

If next summer is rained off, blame the melting Arctic

James Screen

November 5th, 2013

Fed up with rainy summers? Blame global warming, and specifically, the melting Arctic. But for the future, nothing is certain. more...

climate science: 1/25 of 78
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Carbon dioxide emissions

Risks and uncertainities accompany efforts to reduce Britain's carbon

Matthew Leach

20th January, 2012

A low carbon Britain rests on the electrification of our energy supply. But new research by the University of Surrey has highlighted the challenges facing government, market and civil society-led pathways to reducing emissions more...

Ecologist Film Unit

Investigative films on key environmental and climate change issues from the Ecologist Film Unit more...
An Iceberg as Big as Manhattan

An Iceberg as Big as Manhattan

Gervase Poulden

29th September

David Shukman’s book is both an entertaining collection of a journalist’s tales and the perfect introduction to the environmental challenges facing the world today, says Gervase Poulden more...
climate change denial

Climate Change Denial

Jeremy Williams

12th May, 2011

Haydn Washington and John Cook’s work has wise words for climate change activists and deniers alike, says Jeremy Williams more...
the fate of Greenland

The Fate of Greenland: Lessons from Abrupt Climate Change

Jeff Holman

5th May, 2011

The Fate of Greenland isn’t an easy read, says Jeff Holman, but what it lacks in style, it more than makes up in scholarship more...

Ecologist guide to courses

Matilda Lee

5th January, 2011

The path to many green careers begins as a student. Here are the Ecologist's tips for ensuring that your degree or educational course takes you where you want to go more...

Ecologist guide to courses

Matilda Lee

5th January, 2011

The path to many green careers begins as a student. Here are the Ecologist's tips for ensuring that your degree or educational course takes you where you want to go more...

Industry and activists clash over environmental footprint of nanotechnology

Kara Moses

25th November, 2010

Conflict grows between green campaigners and the nanotechnology sector following publication of a critical Friends of the Earth report into the industry's environmental impacts more...

Merchants of Doubt

Phil England

10th September 2010

In a hard-hitting new investigation, Naomi Oreskes & Erik M. Conway report on the scientists prepared to distort the truth on the key issues of our time - from tobacco to climate change to coal fired power stations more...
The mx-libris taxi concept

When will we see a green taxi industry?

Aimee Steen

23rd August, 2010

Buses don't go everywhere, and on some routes they might not even be an efficient option. But many taxis are heavy and polluting compared to ordinary cars - when will this change? more...
tools

Could open source technologies help us solve climate change?

Jamie Andrews

4th May, 2010

'Open source' is a familiar concept to many web users, providing free, well-supported software across the internet. But could the same principles be used to rapidly disseminate low-carbon technologies around the world? more...
Hands Off Mother Earth campaign logo

Join our campaign to halt geoengineering

Jim Thomas

4th May, 2010

It's time to say no to scientists and politicians considering geoengineering as a way of tackling climate change, says Jim Thomas more...
Downtown Honolulu

How deep sea aircon could cut the heat of climate change

Chris Pala

13th April, 2010

The deep ocean is cold; our cities are growing increasingly warm. What if we could tap those frigid depths to cool down energy-hungry metropolises? more...

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