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Climate, Environment and Biodiversity to January 2014

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Benefit of bees even bigger than thought. Bees have a much greater economic value than is widely known, according to a scientific probe into strawberry-growing published on Wednesday.

Benefit of bees even bigger than thought

Strawberries pollinated by bees were of far higher commercial value than fruit that was self-pollinated or pollinated by the wind. They were heavier, firmer and redder and had a longer shelf life, researchers in Germany found. Bees are under threat from hive "collapse", a disorder that some have linked to pesticides and pollution. According to a 2011 report by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), pollination by bees and other insects contributed about 153 billion euros ($204 billion), or 9.5 percent, of the total global value of food production. People or Parks: The Human Factor in Protecting Wildlife by Richard Conniff.

07 Nov 2013: Report by richard conniff When the United Nations put out its Protected Planet Report in 2012, it touted the news that national governments have designated more than 177,000 protected areas around the world for the long-term conservation of nature, covering an impressive 12.7 percent of the earth’s land surface.

People or Parks: The Human Factor in Protecting Wildlife by Richard Conniff

Just since 1990, the acreage under protection has increased by 48 percent. But this encouraging news also masks a significant defect. Setting aside the question of how well officially protected areas actually protect anything, poor planning means these areas often completely omit critical habitats and key species. The Nepal study found that tiger habitat improved in areas where local communities had a say in the management. moreover, climate change could make conditions far less accommodating in 50 or 100 years. UK's industrial badlands are surprise ecology hotspots - environment - 12 July 2013. 'Missing heat' discovery prompts new estimate of global warming: Arctic warming fast. An interdisciplinary team of researchers say they have found 'missing heat' in the climate system, casting doubt on suggestions that global warming has slowed or stopped over the past decade.

'Missing heat' discovery prompts new estimate of global warming: Arctic warming fast

Observational data on which climate records are based cover only 84 per cent of the planet -- with Polar regions and parts of Africa largely excluded. 348na1rss. Wildlife Bridges! : Our Collective Good – a Wishadoo! Initiative. Can a Wildlife Bridge Fix America's $8 Billion Roadkill Problem? Trees 'shield vulnerable species from climate change' 1 November 2013Last updated at 23:05 ET By Mark Kinver Environment reporter, BBC News Allowing forest canopies to grow over could help some flora species cope with rising temperatures Forests with dense canopies create a microclimate that protects a variety of cold-adapted plant species from warming air temperatures, a study has shown.

Trees 'shield vulnerable species from climate change'

Plant production could decline as climate change affects soil nutrients. As drylands of the world become even drier, water will not be the only resource in short supply.

Plant production could decline as climate change affects soil nutrients

Levels of nutrients in the soil will likely be affected, and their imbalance could affect the lives of one-fifth of the world's population. That includes people living in Arizona, who may be in for a dustier future. The findings are presented in a study published in Nature that details how soil changes may occur and discusses the implications. Co-author Matthew Bowker, assistant professor of forest soils and ecosystem ecology at Northern Arizona University, was involved with the project since 2009. Bowker explained that most of the 17 nutrients that plants need to grow to their potential are soil resources, such as nitrogen and phosphorus. Can $100,000 Create The Next Climate Hero? Quick, name all the heroes of the climate change movement.

Can $100,000 Create The Next Climate Hero?

If you pay even just a little bit of attention to the topic, you're probably thinking about Al Gore, founder Bill McKibben, and Green for All founder Van Jones. Those are the big ones--the names that certain Americans outside the climate movement can recite. Virtual Zoo Chamber Gives Life To Extinct Sea Creatures [Pics] Created by Future Cities Lab, the Theater of Lost Species is an installation that features extinct sea creatures in digital forms.

Virtual Zoo Chamber Gives Life To Extinct Sea Creatures [Pics]

The installation consists of a spherical object covered with large cones that serve as viewing cones for visitors. Visitors can peer through the cones and watch and interact with digital sea animals. Norway abandons Mongstad carbon capture plans. 20 September 2013Last updated at 14:10 ET Roger Harrabin visited the experimental Mongstat carbon capture technology centre last month The outgoing government in Norway has buried much-vaunted plans to capture carbon dioxide and store it underground amid mounting costs and delays.

Norway abandons Mongstad carbon capture plans

The oil and energy ministry said the development of full-scale carbon dioxide capture at Mongstad oil refinery had been discontinued. It said it remained committed to research into carbon capture. When the Labour Party presented the plan in 2007, it was hailed as Norway's equivalent of a "Moon landing". Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg and his allies lost a general election to conservatives and centrists this month, and are due to step down shortly. Mongstad had already run into difficulties. "At both the national and international level, the development of technologies to capture and store CO2 has taken longer, been more difficult and more costly than expected," Oil and Energy Minister Ola Borten Moe told reporters.