Carbon isotopic evidence revealed Deepwater Horizon (DWH) oil entering coastal planktonic and lower terrestrial food webs. The integration of spilled oil into higher terrestrial trophic levels, however, remains uncertain. We measured radiocarbon (14C) and stable carbon (13C) in seaside sparrow (Ammodramus maritimus) feathers and crop contents. Lower 14C and 13C values in feathers and crop contents of birds from contaminated areas indicated incorporation of carbon from oil.

The recent dust storm in the Middle East (Sepember 2015) was publicized in the media as a sign of an impending 'Dust Bowl.' Its severity, demonstrated by extreme aerosol optical depth in the atmosphere in the 99th percentile compared to historical data, was attributed to the ongoing regional conflict.

Low-carbon electricity generation, i.e. renewable energy, nuclear power and carbon capture and storage, is more capital intensive than electricity generation through carbon emitting fossil fuel power stations. High capital costs, expressed as high weighted average cost of capital (WACC), thus tend to encourage the use of fossil fuels. To achieve the same degree of decarbonization, countries with high capital costs therefore need to impose a higher price on carbon emissions than countries with low capital costs.

Climate change may constrain future electricity supply adequacy by reducing electric transmission capacity and increasing electricity demand. The carrying capacity of electric power cables decreases as ambient air temperatures rise; similarly, during the summer peak period, electricity loads typically increase with hotter air temperatures due to increased air conditioning usage. As atmospheric carbon concentrations increase, higher ambient air temperatures may strain power infrastructure by simultaneously reducing transmission capacity and increasing peak electricity load.

Cannabis agriculture is a multi-billion dollar industry in the United States that is changing rapidly with policy liberalization. Anecdotal observations fuel speculation about associated environmental impacts, and there is an urgent need for systematic empirical research. An example from Humboldt County California, a principal cannabis-producing region, involved digitizing 4428 grow sites in 60 watersheds with Google Earth imagery. Grows were clustered, suggesting disproportionate impacts in ecologically important locales.

The long-term future of species composition in forests depends on regeneration. Many factors can affect regeneration, including human use, environmental conditions, and species' traits. This study examines the influence of these factors in a tropical deciduous forest of Central India, which is heavily used by local, forest-dependent residents for livestock grazing, fuel-wood extraction, construction and other livelihood needs.

Worldwide riverine thermal pollution patterns were investigated by combining mean annual heat rejection rates from power plants with once-through cooling systems with the global hydrological-water temperature model variable infiltration capacity (VIC)-RBM. The model simulates both streamflow and water temperature on 0.5° × 0.5° spatial resolution worldwide and by capturing their effect, identifies multiple thermal pollution hotspots.

Original Source

The Taj Mahal—an iconic World Heritage monument built of white marble—has become discolored with time, due, in part, to high levels of particulate matter (PM) soiling its surface. Such discoloration has required extensive and costly treatment and despite previous interventions to reduce pollution in its vicinity, the haze and darkening persists.

Original Source

The Southwestern United States has a greater vulnerability to climate change impacts on water security due to a reliance on snowmelt driven imported water. The State of California, which is the most populous and agriculturally productive in the United States, depends on an extensive artificial water storage and conveyance system primarily for irrigated agriculture, municipal and industrial supply and hydropower generation.

In September–October 2015, El Niño and positive Indian Ocean Dipole conditions set the stage for massive fires in Sumatra and Kalimantan (Indonesian Borneo), leading to persistently hazardous levels of smoke pollution across much of Equatorial Asia. Here we quantify the emission sources and health impacts of this haze episode and compare the sources and impacts to an event of similar magnitude occurring under similar meteorological conditions in September–October 2006.

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