2017 News Archive

It’s a fish eat tree world

Most of the planet’s freshwater stores are found in the northern hemisphere, a region that is changing rapidly in response to human activity and shifting climatic trends. An international team of scientists analyzed 147 northern lakes and found that many rely on nutrients from tree leaves, pine needles, and other land-grown plants to feed aquatic life.

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Forbidding forecast for Lyme disease in the Northeast

Rick Ostfeld and Felicia Keesing have been studying Lyme disease and ways to stop it for more than 20 years. The couple has come up with a way to predict how bad a Lyme season will be a full year in advance.

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Eugene P. Odum Award for Excellence in Ecology Education: Kathleen Weathers

The Odum Award recognizes outstanding efforts to relate basic ecological principles to human affairs through teaching, outreach, and mentoring.

Regulation–a new dirty word

The White House has decreed that for every new regulation enacted, two existing regulations must be nullified. Regulatory overseers are now assigned to every Federal agency that might consider adding a new regulation. What a mindless way to ensure the health and safety of society.

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Trump to order water rule to be reconsidered

President Trump will sign an executive order Tuesday directing federal agencies to channel the wisdom of late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia in reconsidering an Obama administration rule that expanded Washington’s jurisdiction over state and local waterways under the Clean Water Act.

science in progress

Why Science Matters

A statement by the Presidents, past and present, of the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies.

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Study: Invasive bugs found in fallen trees years after storm

They may be down but they're not out: Damaging insects can emerge from fallen trees and logs for several years after a major storm, according to a U.S. Forest Service study that reinforces longstanding warnings against moving firewood from place to place.

Keep our water safe from polluters

When Scott Pruitt takes the reins of the Environmental Protection Agency, we can expect him to dismantle federal environmental protections. Among the protections that he would like to roll back is the recent rule defining the "waters of the United States" under the Clean Water Act. Repealing this rule would cut the heart out of the Clean Water Act, effectively handing our waters back to big polluters. This should be resisted. 

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Zika virus ‘spillback’ into primates raises risk of future human outbreaks

Scientists usually worry that animal diseases could spill over into humans. But “spillback” of Zika virus into monkeys in South America could be just as dangerous.

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Likens receives Frontiers of Knowledge Award

Working independently, Likens and Scheffer have, says the jury, contributed to understanding and finding solutions for “gradual, abrupt and potentially irreversible ecosystem change” in response to pollution and other ecological threats. Together, the two scientists “have transformed our understanding of how human activities are changing the structure and function of natural ecosystems, and provided tools to inform ecosystem management.”

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Synthetic chemicals: Ignored agents of global change

Despite a steady rise in the manufacture and release of synthetic chemicals, research on the ecological effects of pharmaceuticals, pesticides, and industrial chemicals is severely lacking. This blind spot undermines efforts to address global change and achieve sustainability goals.

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Scientists develop warning system to reduce harm from toxic algal bloom

Researchers have developed a new warning system that can effectively foresee a toxic algal bloom in a body of water and in turn help resource managers to avert its development well in advance.

Use natural biodiversity to fight Lyme disease

Protecting the environment is usually easier to the extent we can link it to human health concerns. The tough federal Clean Air Act, for example, has been driving the Chesapeake Bay cleanup, but the real impetus for the law is the Environmental Protection Agency’s estimate that it’s saving more than 160,000 human lives each year.

algae lake erie

Scientists develop early-warning system for toxic algae blooms

Toxic algae blooms in lakes and reservoirs are highly destructive, resulting in fish kills and toxicity risks to wildlife, livestock – and even humans. But their development is difficult to predict. 

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