The Anthropocene epoch — the proposed name for this time of significant human effect on the planet and its systems — represents a new context in which to study literature. A new book of essays co-edited by a UW English faculty member argues that literary studies, in turn, also can help us better understand the Anthropocene. (more…)
Tag Archives: Anthropocene
Millions of people across the world live or depend on deltas for their livelihoods.
Formed at the lowest part of a river where its water flow slows and spreads into the sea, deltas are sediment-rich, biodiverse areas, a valuable source of seafood, fertile ground for agriculture, and host to ports important for transportation.
At least half of the deltas around the world are so-called “wave dominated deltas” – open to the sea and under the impact of wave erosion. And many more deltas will come under wave dominance as dammed rivers carry less and less sediment. In a warming climate, sea levels are rising and storms are increasing in frequency and severity, posing threats to these deltas and the people and habitats dependent on them. (more…)
Nitrogen derived from human activities has polluted lakes throughout the Northern Hemisphere for more than a century and the fingerprint of these changes is evident even in remote lakes located thousands of miles from the nearest city, industrial area or farm.
The findings, published in the journal Science Dec. 16, are based on historical changes in the chemical composition of bottom deposits in 36 lakes using an approach similar to aquatic archeology. More than three quarters of the lakes, ranging from the U.S. Rocky Mountains to northern Europe, showed a distinctive signal of nitrogen released from human activities before the start of the 20th century, said Gordon Holtgrieve, a postdoctoral researcher at University of Washington School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences and lead author of the report. The UW and a dozen other research institutions contributed to the research. (more…)
WASHINGTON — Even before the dawn of agriculture, people may have caused the planet to warm up, a new study suggests.