Tag Archives: impact

Tracking the impact of climate change on bumblebees

A new study links climate change to the decline of bumblebee species in North America and Europe.

The study, published in the journal Science, found that bumblebee ranges are shrinking in the south and the insects are not moving north. In addition, some species are moving to higher elevations on both continents. (more…)

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Impact of Radiant Temperature on Comfort

What is radiant temperature? One way to think about radiant temperature is to think about stepping into a car on a hot summer day. The heat from the dash board and steering wheel can be hot to the touch and unbearable. The heat can linger for minutes until the cars air conditioner cools the cabin. In your home the fire place is often a form of radiant heat.   In the days before electricity, the warmth from a fire could mean the difference between life and death during a harsh winter. Today many use space heaters as a form of radiant heat in the home.

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Don’t Underestimate Your Mind’s Eye

UA study finds that objects in our visual environment needn’t be seen in order to impact decision making.

Take a look around, and what do you see? Much more than you think you do, thanks to your finely tuned mind’s eye, which processes images without your even knowing. (more…)

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Noise pollution impacts fish species differently

Acoustic disturbance has different effects on different species of fish, according to a new study from the Universities of Exeter and Bristol which tested fish anti-predator behaviour.

Three-spined sticklebacks responded sooner to a flying seagull predator model when exposed to additional noise, whereas no effects were observed in European minnows.

Lead author Dr Irene Voellmy of Bristol’s School of Biological Sciences said: “Noise levels in many aquatic environments have increased substantially during the last few decades, often due to increased shipping traffic. Potential impacts of noise on aquatic ecosystems are therefore of growing concern.” (more…)

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Great Lakes evaporation study dispels misconceptions, points to need for expanded monitoring program

ANN ARBOR — The recent Arctic blast that gripped much of the nation will likely contribute to a healthy rise in Great Lakes water levels in 2014, new research shows. But the processes responsible for that welcome outcome are not as simple and straightforward as you might think.

Yes, extreme winter cold increases ice cover on the Great Lakes, which in turn reduces evaporation by preventing water vapor from escaping into the air. But this simplistic view of winter ice as a mere “cap” on Great Lakes evaporation is giving way to a more nuanced conception, one that considers the complex interplay among evaporation, ice cover and water temperature at different times of year. (more…)

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‘Life as Research Scientist’: Jo Varner, Biologist

Jo Varner, University of Utah biology doctoral student, is currently conducting research on how small mammals like Pikas are coping with Earth’s warming climate. Her study is concentrated on Pikas in the Columbia River Gorge area in the U.S, which is an unusual habitat for this species. Recently we had the opportunity to talk to Miss Varner about her research, why it is important and how life as a research scientist is. Here is what we learned from Miss Jo Varner:

Q. Let us start with your research topic. What is your research area? Will you please tell us a bit more on this? What did you find?

Jo Varner: Glad to talk with you! Broadly, I am interested in how climate change is impacting animals, particularly in sensitive environments like the high mountains. Specifically, I am working with American pikas, which are a small mammal closely related to rabbits. Pikas are typically restricted to high elevation mountains in western North America. They appear to be very sensitive to climate change in parts of their range, but in other parts they seem to be less vulnerable. (more…)

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Neue Klimamodelle zeigen: Gletscher werden dramatisch zurückgehen, Georisiken zunehmen

Das zunehmende Schwinden der Gletscher im 21. Jahrhundert wird weltweit zu massiven Veränderungen führen und das potenzielle Risiko von Naturgefahren, wie Überschwemmungen und Erdrutschen, erhöhen. Zu diesem Ergebnis kam ein Forschungsteam aus Österreich und Schweden in Zusammenarbeit mit Zentralasien im Rahmen eines zweijährigen EU-Projekts. Hermann Häusler, Umweltgeowissenschafter an der Universität Wien, modellierte mit seinem Team die Gletscherentwicklung im Tien-Shan-Gebirge in Kirgisien bis zum Jahr 2050.

An dem CIRCLE-2 MOUNTain Projekt (Climate Impact Research & Response Coordination for a Larger Europe) sind WissenschafterInnen aus Österreich, Deutschland, der Schweiz, der Tschechischen Republik, Schweden, Kirgisien, Kasachstan, Usbekistan und den USA beteiligt. (more…)

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New book ‘Going Viral’ explores nature, impact of Internet virality

How will we of the early 21th century be remembered? By our technological innovations, social movements and many wars, to be sure.

But also by pepper-spraying campus cops, epic fails and Gangnam-style? In the fullness of time, will history remember us for — Grumpy Cat? (more…)

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