Environmental Policy

Researchers find post-fire logging harms Spotted owls
January 18, 2018 12:05 PM - Pensoft Publishers

Wildlife ecologists studying the rare Spotted owl in the forests of California have discovered that large, intense wildfires are not responsible for the breeding territory extinction that has been reported recently.

With China's Ban on Waste Imports, Europe Announces New Recycling Initiatives
January 17, 2018 10:59 AM - Yale Environment 360

In the wake of China’s ban on the import of foreign garbage, which took effect earlier this month, countries across the globe are scrambling to figure out what to do with the thousands of tons of trash piling up at their ports. Now, Europe has announced it is launching an aggressive new recycling initiative to reduce plastic waste and garbage exports.

Thinking outside the box on climate mitigation
January 12, 2018 10:31 AM - International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis

In a new commentary in the journal Nature Climate Change, IIASA researchers argue that a broader range of scenarios is needed to support international policymakers in the target of limiting climate change to under 2°C above pre-industrial levels, and to avoid potential negative environmental and social consequences of carbon dioxide removal on a massive scale. 

U.S. Waterways Are Getting Saltier, With Possible Effects on Drinking Water
January 10, 2018 09:52 AM - Yale Environment 360

Streams and rivers across much of the U.S. are getting saltier and more alkaline due to an uptick in the use of road deicers and fertilizers in recent decades, according to a  50-year-long analysis of 232 monitoring sites by the U.S. Geological Survey.

Will Self-Driving Cars Usher in a Transportation Utopia or Dystopia?
January 8, 2018 11:36 AM - Yale Environment 360

The news sounds almost too good to be true.

Bound by Nature - Cul­tural Evol­u­tion Has Not Freed Hunter-Gather­ers from En­vir­on­men­tal For­cing
January 3, 2018 01:55 PM - University of Helsinki

Cultural evolution has made humans enormously potent ecosystem engineers and has enabled us to survive and flourish under a variety environmental conditions.

Algae on Greenland Ice Sheet Significantly Hasten Its Melting
December 28, 2017 11:21 AM - Yale Environment 360

Naturally occurring algae on Greenland’s massive ice sheet absorb large amounts of the sun’s energy and speed up the melting of the ice sheet even more than black carbon and mineral dust, according to a new study.

Short-term exposure to low levels of air pollution linked with premature death among U.S. seniors
December 28, 2017 11:12 AM - Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

Short-term exposures to fine particulate air pollution and ozone—even at levels well below current national safety standards—were linked to higher risk of premature death among the elderly in the U.S. according to a new study from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

The risk was even higher among elderly who were low-income, female, or Black.

The study was published December 26, 2017 in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).

Charcoal remains could accelerate CO2 emissions after forest fires
December 28, 2017 09:53 AM - Hokkaido University

Charcoal remains after a forest fire help decompose fine roots in the soil, potentially accelerating CO2 emissions in boreal forests.

Cleaner air, longer lives
December 27, 2017 03:12 PM - Massachusetts Institute of Technology

The air we breathe contains particulate matter from a range of natural and human-related sources. Particulate matter is responsible for thousands of premature deaths in the United States each year, but legislation from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is credited with significantly decreasing this number, as well as the amount of particulate matter in the atmosphere. However, the EPA may not be getting the full credit they deserve: New research from MIT’s Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) proposes that the EPA’s legislation may have saved even more lives than initially reported.

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