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Sunday, January 25, 2015

ScienceDaily: Top Environment News

ScienceDaily: Top Environment News

Providing better data on the Ebola virus

Posted: 22 Jan 2015 10:30 AM PST

Researchers are exploring new and innovative methods to solve the complex mystery that is the Ebola virus. A new article studies the use of phylodynamics to discover how the Ebola virus has spread throughout the West African country of Sierra-Leone. Phylodynamics is the study of genetic variations in pathogens, and the effect of such variations on their transmissions.

Using less fish to test chemicals safety

Posted: 22 Jan 2015 10:30 AM PST

A new strategy has been proposed on how to replace, reduce and refine the use of fish in testing of chemicals' effect on flora and fauna in water (aquatic toxicity) and chemicals' uptake and concentration in living organisms (bioaccumulation). Out of the 11.5 million animals used for experimental purposes in the EU (2011 data), cold blooded animals, namely reptiles, amphibians and fish represent 12.4%. In the case of specific testing for toxicological safety assessment, fish represent 18% of the one million animals used.

California's policies can significantly cut greenhouse gas emissions through 2030

Posted: 22 Jan 2015 10:28 AM PST

A new model of the impact of California's existing and proposed policies on its greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction goals suggests that the state is on track to meet 2020 goals, and could achieve greater emission reductions by 2030, but the state will need to do more to reach its 2050 climate goals, experts say.

Blended ecological knowledge systems yield insight for managing beargrass

Posted: 21 Jan 2015 12:56 PM PST

In a study that blended tribal cultural knowledge with scientific methods, researchers identified the ecological conditions of forest sites preferred by harvesters of beargrass for use in traditional weaving.

Warmer, drier climate altering forests throughout California

Posted: 21 Jan 2015 12:55 PM PST

Thanks to historical data, botanists have been able to compare California tree survey data from the 1920s and '30s with forest service data today. They find a decline in large trees and an increase in the density of small trees in forests throughout the state. The large tree decline seems to be caused by water stress, while the denser forests are probably related to fire suppression.

Ecocentricity: How Do Consumers Decide What Makes a Product 'Green'?

Posted: 21 Jan 2015 08:47 AM PST

The greenness of a product has become increasingly important to consumers, but how do they decide how green a product is in the first place? A new study suggests that consumers believe that products with central rather than peripheral recycled features are greener (even when they are not).

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