Ecosystems

African nation seeks $1 billion to save its rainforest
May 23, 2014 07:24 AM - Editor, MONGABAY.COM

The Democratic Republic of Congo is seeking a billion dollars for a plan to protect up to 9 million hectares of rainforests, reports the Financial Times. In a presentation given at the Houses of Parliament on Tuesday, DR Congo Minister of Environment Bavon N'sa Mputu Elima said his country needed foreign assistance to protect forests. He cited Indonesia as a precedent for such an approach.

Fungi Clean Contaminated Soil
May 22, 2014 10:18 AM - The Ecologist, The Ecologist

A new system for cleaning soils contaminated with industrial toxins harnesses the power of White rot - a common fungus that decays fallen wood in forests. Research in Finland shows it can also destroy dioxins and poly-aromatic hydrocarbons.

Longer growing season does not yield growth increase for trees and shrubs
May 21, 2014 09:29 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

As the earth's temperatures rise, some have speculated that trees and shrubs in the colder climates might experience and increase in growth as a result of the extended growing season. "Not so," says a recent study authored by a University of Washington biology and applied mathematics postdoctoral student. Her study demonstrates that bushes achieve less yearly growth when cold winter temperatures are interrupted by warm spurts that trigger growth.

Antarctica dances to Carole King's "The Earth Moves Under My Feet"
May 20, 2014 02:07 PM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

Antarctica has apparently been living by the lyrics of Carole King's 1971 hit song "The Earth Moves Under My Feet". According to a study from Newcastle University in the United Kingdom, Antarctica has been moving "rapidly". Recently published in Earth and Planetary Science Letters, the study explains why the upward motion of the Earth's crust in the Northern Antarctic Peninsula is currently taking place so quickly. While earlier studies have shown the earth is 'rebounding' due to the overlying ice sheet shrinking in response to climate change, GPS data is suggesting otherwise. The international research team led in part by Newcastle researchers has revealed that this land is rising at a remarkable rate of 15mm a year.

Reintroducing the European Bison
May 20, 2014 09:47 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

In a coordinated effort to reintroduce the European bison to the grasslands of southern Romania, the World Wildlife Fund for Nature (WWF) and Rewilding Europe recently brought 20 bison to the Southern Carpathians. Ten more will be reintroduced over the summer. The species has been absent for about 200 years.

Alarming data on Arctic Ice Loss
May 20, 2014 06:43 AM - Alex Peel, Planet Earth online

The Antarctic ice sheet has lost ice twice as quickly in the past three years as when it was last surveyed between 2005 and 2010, say scientists. Results from the CryoSat-2 satellite mission, published today in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, say the largest ice sheet on Earth is now losing 159 billion tonnes of ice each year.

Fighting air pollution with innovation and technology
May 19, 2014 10:46 AM - ENN Editor

Air pollution has become one of the world's biggest threats to the future of our planet. Chronic air pollution shortens our lives and the lives of the ecologies around us. In parts of Asia, where air pollution is most pervasive, food crops and other plants are exhibiting signs of stress due to low air quality.

Greenland will be far greater contributor to sea rise than expected
May 19, 2014 07:58 AM - ClickGreen Staff, ClickGreen

Greenland's icy reaches are far more vulnerable to warm ocean waters from climate change than had been thought, according to new research by UC Irvine and NASA glaciologists. The work, published today in Nature Geoscience, shows previously uncharted deep valleys stretching for dozens of miles under the Greenland Ice Sheet. The bedrock canyons sit well below sea level, meaning that as subtropical Atlantic waters hit the fronts of hundreds of glaciers, those edges will erode much further than had been assumed and release far greater amounts of water.

A Greener Future For National Parks
May 16, 2014 09:44 AM - Jay Lund, Triple Pundit

Yellowstone National Park leaders in 2010 established a five-year plan to elevate Yellowstone as a world leader in environmental stewardship. In other words, lead by example by being one of the greenest parks in the world.

10,000-Gallons of Crude Oil Spilled in L.A.
May 16, 2014 07:23 AM - Allison Winter, ENN

Yesterday morning, black oil sprayed nearly 20 feet into the air in Atwater Village, a neighborhood in Los Angeles, California after a "valve malfunction" caused the oil to leak. The LA Fire Department (LAFD) estimates that 10,000 gallons have spilled and while much cleanup progress has been made, it will will take a few days to clean up all contamination. Crude oil was spilled across a half-mile area, according to an LAFD alert. The oil spill had created a pool approximately 40-feet wide and was knee-high in some areas.

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