Menopausal Mother Nature

News about Climate Change and our Planet

Photosynthesis

How global warming might affect food security – The Hindu

Between the year 1870 (the first industrial revolution) and today, the global temperature has risen by almost 2 degrees Celsius. This has come about due to more fossil burning (oil, natural gas, coal), which has also increased the carbon dioxide…

During COVID, scientists turn to computers to understand C4 photosynthesis

When COVID closed down their lab, a team of researchers turned to computational approaches to understand what makes some plants better adapted to transform light and carbon dioxide into yield through photosynthesis. Most plants use C3 photosynthesis, which is more common but not as efficient as C4. The researchers uncovered clues as to how C4 crops are able to express key enzymes in specialized cells that increase photosynthetic efficiency.

Phosphate polymer forms a cornerstone of metabolic control

In a changing climate, understanding how organisms respond to stress conditions is increasingly important. New work could enable scientists to engineer the metabolism of organisms to be more resilient and productive in a range of environments. Their research focuses on polyphosphate, an energy-rich polymer of tens to hundreds phosphate groups which is conserved in all kingdoms of life and is integral to many cellular activities, including an organism’s ability to respond to changing environmental conditions.

Rainforest model offers glimpse into future of the Amazon

Tropical Forests may be more resilient to climate change than previously thought, according to ecologists. The results help solve an ongoing debate about the mechanism responsible for declines in tropical forest productivity that go hand in hand with rising global temperatures.

Study shows how climate impacts food webs, poses socioeconomic threat in Eastern Africa

(University of Kentucky) For the first time, a research team has obtained high resolution sedimentary core samples from Lake Tanganyika. The samples show that high frequency variability in climate can lead to major disruptions in how the lake’s food web functions. The changes could put millions of people at risk who rely on the lake for food security. The team says the findings are a critical building block toward research-informed policymaking in the Lake Tanganyika region.

Shattering expectations: Novel seed dispersal gene found in green millet

Researchers generated genome sequences for nearly 600 green millet plants and released a very high-quality reference S. viridis genome sequence and also identified a gene related to seed dispersal in wild populations for the first time.

The key to lowering CO2 emissions is made of metal

Researchers produce malic acid, which contains 4 carbon atoms, through artificial photosynthesis by simply adding metal ions like aluminum and iron. This solves a problem with current artificial photosynthesis technology of only producing molecules with 1 carbon atom and paves the way to exploring the use of CO2 as a raw material.

Redefining drought in the US corn belt

(University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences) As the climate trends warmer and drier, global food security increasingly hinges on crops’ ability to withstand drought. But are scientists and producers focusing on the right metric when measuring crop-relevant drought? Not exactly, according to new research from University of Illinois scientists, who urge the scientific community to redefine the term.