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News about Climate Change and our Planet

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Factsheet: Global Emissions

In 2013, the Netherlands Environmental Agency (NEA) jointly with the European Commission (EC) published a report on global carbon emissions. One of the major highlights of the report was that 2012

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Humans co-evolved with immune-related diseases — and it’s still happening

Some of the same mutations allowing humans to fend off deadly infections also make us more prone to certain inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, such as Crohn’s disease. Researchers describe how ancestral origins impact the likelihood that people of African or Eurasian descent might develop immune-related diseases. The authors also share evidence that the human immune system is still evolving.

Inbreeding and population/demographic shifts could have led to Neanderthal extinction

(PLOS) Small populations, inbreeding, and random demographic fluctuations could have been enough to cause Neanderthal extinction, according to a study published Nov. 27, 2019, in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Krist Vaesen from Eindhoven University of Technology, the Netherlands, and colleagues.

Why Apocalyptic Claims About Climate Change Are Wrong

Environmental journalists and advocates have in recent weeks made a number of apocalyptic predictions about the impact of climate change. Bill McKibben suggested climate-driven fires in Australia had made koalas “functionally extinct.” Extinction Rebellion said: “Billions will die” and “Life…

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DNA data offers scientific look at 500 years of extramarital sex in Western Europe

Researchers have put DNA evidence together with long-term genealogical data to explore questions of biological fatherhood on a broad scale among people living in parts of Western Europe over the last 500 years. The study found evidence of extra-pair paternity events turned up more often in people of lower socioeconomic status who lived in densely populated cities in the 19th century.

Europe’s lax speed limits once appeared irrevocable. Global warming and pollution are changing that. – Washington Post

Rutte was widely considered to be a pro-motorist leader. But in May, the country’s top court ruled that the Netherlands was violating European Union law and needed to drastically curb nitrogen pollution and nitrogen oxide emissions — a source of…

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Plants and fungi together could slow climate change

A new global assessment shows that human impacts have greatly reduced plant-fungus symbioses, which play a key role in sequestering carbon in soils. Restoring these ecosystems could be one strategy to slow climate change.

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Changes in high-altitude winds over the South Pacific produce long-term effects

In the past million years, the high-altitude winds of the southern westerly wind belt, which spans nearly half the globe, didn’t behave as uniformly over the Southern Pacific as previously assumed. Instead, they varied cyclically over periods of ca. 21,000 years. A new study has now confirmed close ties between the climate of the mid and high latitudes and that of the tropics in the South Pacific.