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99-million-year-old beetle trapped in amber served as pollinator to evergreen cycads

Science Daily - Thu, 08/16/2018 - 13:32
Flowering plants are well known for their special relationship to the insects and other animals that serve as their pollinators. But, before the rise of angiosperms, another group of unusual evergreen gymnosperms, known as cycads, may have been the first insect-pollinated plants. Now, researchers have uncovered the earliest definitive fossil evidence of that intimate relationship between cycads and insects.

'Abrupt thaw' of permafrost beneath lakes could significantly affect climate change models

Science Daily - Thu, 08/16/2018 - 13:30
Methane released by thawing permafrost from some Arctic lakes could significantly accelerate climate change, according to a new study. Unlike shallow, gradual thawing of terrestrial permafrost, the abrupt thaw beneath thermokarst lakes is irreversible this century. Even climate models that project only moderate warming this century will have to factor in their emissions, according to the researchers.

Diving robots find Antarctic winter seas exhale surprising amounts of carbon dioxide

Science Daily - Tue, 08/14/2018 - 12:41
A new study uses data gathered by floating drones in the Southern Ocean over past winters to learn how much carbon dioxide is transferred by the surrounding seas. Results show that in winter the open water nearest the sea ice surrounding Antarctica releases significantly more carbon dioxide than previously believed.

Glacier depth affects plankton blooms off Greenland

Science Daily - Tue, 08/14/2018 - 09:14
The unusual timing of highly-productive summer plankton blooms off Greenland indicates a connection between increasing amounts of meltwater and nutrients in these coastal waters. Researchers now show that this connection exists, but is much more complex than widely supposed. Whether increasing meltwater has a positive or negative effect on summertime phytoplankton depends on the depth at which a glacier sits in the ocean.

How Neolithic people adapted to climate change

Science Daily - Mon, 08/13/2018 - 15:05
Research has uncovered evidence that early farmers were adapting to climate change 8,200 years ago.

Europe needs coastal adaptation measures to avoid catastrophic flooding by the end of the century

Science Daily - Mon, 08/13/2018 - 11:52
Coastal floods could impact up to 3.65 million people every year in Europe by 2100, according to a new study.

Melt-rate of West Antarctic Ice Sheet highly sensitive to changes in ocean temperatures

Science Daily - Mon, 08/13/2018 - 10:35
Melting of ice shelves in West Antarctica speeds up and slows down in response to changes in deep ocean temperature, and is far more variable than previously thought, according to new research.

Scientists trace atmospheric rise in CO2 during deglaciation to deep Pacific Ocean

Science Daily - Mon, 08/13/2018 - 10:33
How carbon made it out of the ocean and into the atmosphere has remained one of the most important mysteries of science. A new study, provides some of the most compelling evidence for how it happened -- a 'flushing' of the deep Pacific Ocean caused by the acceleration of water circulation patterns that begin around Antarctica.

Ice sheets of the last ice age seeded the ocean with essential nutrient silica

Science Daily - Fri, 08/10/2018 - 08:10
New research led by glaciologists and isotope geochemists has found that melting ice sheets provide the surrounding oceans with the essential nutrient silica.

The underestimated cooling effect on the planet from historic fires

Science Daily - Thu, 08/09/2018 - 08:34
Historic levels of particles in the atmosphere released from pre-industrial era fires, and their cooling effect on the planet, may have been significantly underestimated according to a new study.

Lost Norse of Greenland fueled the medieval ivory trade, ancient walrus DNA suggests

Science Daily - Tue, 08/07/2018 - 18:28
New DNA analysis reveals that, before their mysterious disappearance, the Norse colonies of Greenland had a 'near monopoly' on Europe's walrus ivory supply. An overreliance on this trade may have contributed to Norse Greenland's collapse when the medieval market declined.

Pacific Ocean's effect on Arctic warming

Science Daily - Tue, 08/07/2018 - 08:51
New research shows that changes in the heat flow of the northern Pacific Ocean may have a larger effect on the Arctic climate than previously thought.

Rediscovering the sources of Egyptian metals

Science Daily - Tue, 08/07/2018 - 08:51
Two new studies offer the first comprehensive analytical datasets of Protodynastic to Old Kingdom Egyptian copper-based artifacts (c. 3rd millennium BC), analyzing the provenance of Egyptian copper. As elaborated in a methodological comment, the studies constitute an important step forward in current knowledge on copper provenance and the subsequent economic, social and cultural insights into ancient Egypt.

Earth at risk of heading towards 'hothouse Earth' state

Science Daily - Mon, 08/06/2018 - 14:20
An international team of scientists is showing that even if the carbon emission reductions called for in the Paris Agreement are met, there is a risk of Earth entering what the scientists call 'hothouse Earth' conditions.

Possible connection between U.S. tornado activity, Arctic sea ice

Science Daily - Mon, 08/06/2018 - 09:42
The effects of global climate change taking place in the Arctic may influence weather much closer to home for millions of Americans, researchers report.

The fate of Arctic mosquitoes depends on habitat and access to blood meals

Science Daily - Fri, 08/03/2018 - 09:33
The future of Arctic mosquitoes (Aedes nigripes) in western Greenland depends on aquatic habitat and access to blood meals, according to a new study. The study found that female mosquitoes carrying eggs were most abundant near ponds, especially in areas frequented by animals such as caribou, birds and the Arctic hare.

Microbes go dark to stay warm in cooler climates

Science Daily - Thu, 08/02/2018 - 13:16
Microorganisms in colder climates darken themselves to capture more heat from the sun and improve their ability to survive, according to a new study.

Severity of drought during the Maya collapse

Science Daily - Thu, 08/02/2018 - 13:16
The severity of drought conditions during the demise of the Maya civilization about 1,000 years ago has been quantified, representing another piece of evidence that could be used to solve the longstanding mystery of what caused the downfall of one of the ancient world's great civilizations.

Icy Greenland's heated geologic past

Science Daily - Wed, 08/01/2018 - 11:50
By mapping the heat escaping from below the Greenland Ice Sheet, a scientist has sharpened our understanding of the dynamics that dominate and shape terrestrial planets.

Arctic cyclone limits the time-scale of precise sea-ice prediction in Northern Sea Route?

Science Daily - Wed, 08/01/2018 - 08:37
Climate change has accelerated sea-ice retreat in the Arctic Ocean, leading to new opportunities for summer commercial maritime navigation along the Northern Sea Route. International researchers have demonstrated a new system for forecasting sea-ice thickness in early summer in the East Siberian Sea. The system was accurate up to 3 days ahead, representing high potential for use in operational maritime navigation of the Northern Sea Route.

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