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News and analysis on fundamental and applied environmental science

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US stands to save billions through renewable energy usage

Better air quality and climate change mitigation would bring a large net economic benefit, study finds

Evaporation drains Caspian Sea level

Lake only about one metre above its catastrophic low of 40 years ago

Irrigating crops with untreated wastewater exposes huge numbers to health risk

Area of affected cropland is 50% more than last estimate, putting more than 885 million people at risk

Flash news: limiting temperature increase to 1.5°C ‘not yet geophysically impossible’

But meeting target may require more ambitious emission reductions than pledged to date

Can agricultural changes save the monarch butterfly?

Restoring milkweed to marginal agricultural land could boost eastern migratory population

Honeybees under threat from pesticide use on oilseed rape

Oilseed rape is an important resource for bees, contrary to previous research

Glacial melt will wreck ecosystems

"From biodiversity to tourism, from hydropower to clean water supply, the breadth of risk to our current way of life is vast,” says scientist

Wildfire complicates climate analysis

Hayman Fire shows that impact on satellite-derived ‘start of season’ variability can persist for decades

Scale is key to predicting climate-change responses

Sweden’s Torneträsk lake reacted much more slowly than smaller lakes nearby, sediments reveal

Understanding vanadium leaching improves prospects for reuse of steel slag

Discovery could also aid risk assessment of legacy slag heaps

Keeping buildings cool by sending heat into outer space

Photonic devices could cut air-conditioning bills

1°C rise has massive polar impact

Heating water almost doubled growth of life on Antarctic seabed

US public backs carbon tax, and spending revenue on renewables

Average American household willing to pay around $177 a year in carbon tax on energy bills

Smartphone app reveals product carbon footprint during supermarket shop

Real-time info provided in aisles during trial

Community spirit led to people staying put during Hurricane Matthew

People in Florida with better access to resources and support were less likely to evacuate their homes during hurricane

Warming linked to Storm Harvey devastation

Climate change did not cause hurricane but likely to have intensified the storm

Fewer hurricanes in the near-future, study suggests

Researchers predict a decrease in seasonal tropical cyclone activity over the North Atlantic for 2016–2030

Tropical forests could survive warming

Photosynthesis may be more resilient than previously thought, research suggests

Did the Pacific ‘warm blob’ cause El Niño?

Ocean hotspot was a precursor, study finds, and could help predict El Niño variability

City trees boost health and wealth

By delivering shade, soaking up carbon, disposing of airborne pollution and absorbing water, trees ameliorate climate, cut heating and air-conditioning costs, and improve public health