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Saturday, January 10, 2015

ScienceDaily: Top Environment News

ScienceDaily: Top Environment News

Recreational fishing in the Mediterranean is more harmful than previously thought

Posted: 09 Jan 2015 07:10 AM PST

A total of 10 percent of adults living in developed countries practice recreational fishing, which in the Mediterranean Sea represents around 10 percent of the total production of fisheries. Despite its importance, this fishing is not as controlled or studied as professional fishing. For the first time, a study examines this activity, whose effects are increasingly more similar to traditional fishing. For this reason, scientists demand greater control.

Salt tolerance gene in soybean found

Posted: 09 Jan 2015 07:09 AM PST

A collaborative research project has shown how soybeans can be bred to better tolerate soil salinity. The researchers have identified a specific gene in soybean that has great potential for soybean crop improvement.

Devil is in the detail: Evolution of color in plants and animals

Posted: 09 Jan 2015 06:37 AM PST

Researchers have looked at a species of fish to help unravel one of the biggest mysteries in evolutionary biology. "The importance of this work lies in the fundamental question: how and why do variants of the same animal exist in nature," researchers explain.

Chitosan: Sustainable alternative for food packaging

Posted: 09 Jan 2015 05:46 AM PST

A material known as chitosan, made from crustacean shells, has been used to substitute petroleum by-products in food packaging. The environment is seriously affected by the use of food packaing: plastic bottles and films are present everywhere in our civilization and take between 100 and 400 years to degrade. So the quest for alternative materials to plastics produced from petroleum is an environmental priority.

Flexible methane production from electricity and bio-mass

Posted: 09 Jan 2015 01:55 AM PST

Interlinkage of the power and gas grids is planned to make electricity supply sustainable and robust in the future. Fluctuating amounts of wind and solar power, for instance, might be stored in the form of the chemical energy carrier methane. Now researchers have now proved that this is technically feasible.

More sun means fewer children, grandchildren, Norwegian study finds

Posted: 09 Jan 2015 01:55 AM PST

A new study shows that increased UV radiation can have an effect on human fertility over generations. On average, the lifespan of children born in years that had a great deal of solar activity was 5.2 years shorter than other children. Children who were born in years with lots of sunshine and who survived were also more likely to have fewer children, who in turn gave birth to fewer children than others. This finding shows that increased UV radiation during years of high solar activity had an effect across generations.

On a tropical island, fossils reveal past -- and possible future -- of polar ice

Posted: 08 Jan 2015 01:24 PM PST

The balmy islands of Seychelles couldn't feel farther from Antarctica, but their fossil corals could reveal much about the fate of polar ice sheets. About 125,000 years ago, the average global temperature was only slightly warmer, but sea levels rose high enough to submerge the locations of many of today's coastal cities. Understanding what caused seas to rise then could shed light on how to protect those cities today.

Grain market mystery solved

Posted: 06 Jan 2015 11:48 AM PST

In 2005, the wheat cash price and futures price, which normally converge by the time a grain contract matures, weren't coming together. By Sept. 2008, the wheat futures price was an unprecedented $2 higher per bushel than the spot price in Toledo at delivery. What caused this unusual non-convergence was a simple difference in the storage rate, but discovering that took several researchers almost three years of hard work and quite a bit of anxiety.

Drought led to massive 'dead zone' in Lake Erie

Posted: 06 Jan 2015 11:48 AM PST

Lake Erie just can't catch a break. The lake has experienced harmful algal blooms and severe oxygen-depleted 'dead zones' for years, but now a team of researchers has shown that the widespread drought in 2012 was associated with the largest dead zone since at least the mid-1980s.

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