Humans started causing climate change long before the Industrial Revolution and the beginning of the fossil fuel era. A new study shows that the echoes of the earliest human-caused carbon emissions are still present in our atmosphere. In fact, pre-industrial carbon emissions, caused by deforestation as the world's population grew, were responsible for 9 percent of the total warming the globe has seen to date, the researchers say. "The earlier the emissions occur, the less the influence on today's climate. But a part of the emissions stays in the atmosphere over a very long time scale of centuries to millennia," said study researcher Julia Pongratz of the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Germany. So do think before you emit. Please.
The new Blackfriars station, which is being built on a bridge spanning the River Thames, is on its way to becoming the world's largest solar bridge after Solarcentury begun the installation of over 4,400 solar photovoltaic panels. The solar panels will generate an estimated 900,000 kWh of electricity every year, providing 50 per cent of the station’s energy and reducing carbon dioxide emissions by an estimated 511 tonnes per year. In addition to solar panels, other energy saving measures at the new station will include rainwater harvesting systems and sun pipes for natural lighting.
Coral reefs are often called “rainforests of the sea” as they form some of the most diverse ecosystems on Earth. Despite occupying less than 0.1per cent of the world's ocean surface, they provide a home for 25% of all marine species! More than 85 percent of reefs in Asia's Coral Triangle (covering Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, The Solomon Islands and East Timor) are directly threatened by human activities such as coastal development, pollution, and overfishing, says a new report released by the World Resources Institute, in collaboration with environmental groups WWF, The Nature Conservancy and Conservation International. A more recent cause for alarm, according to the report, is rising ocean acidification, a result of excessive levels of carbon dioxide being absorbed by the seas, forming a coral-deteriorating carbonic acid.
In a quantum leap for physics, scientists at the European Centre foe Nuclear Research or CERN Research Centre claim to have discovered a sub-atomic particle consistent with the Higgs boson, believed to be a crucial building block of the universe. The Higgs boson, also known as the "God particle," is a subatomic particle that allows other subatomic particles to have mass (Ref GT issue Vol-124, 1-15 January, 2012). The hypothetical speck has eluded scientists for years, raising doubts about even our most basic model of how the universe works. As CERN chief Rolf Heuer added: "We have reached a milestone in our understanding of nature. The discovery of a particle consistent with the Higgs boson opens the way to more detailed studies, requiring larger statistics, which will pin down the new particle's properties, and is likely to shed light on other mysteries of our universe."