Author: Saul Elbein

Billions would die from starvation in nuclear war: research

More than 5 billion would die from starvation in the event of a full-scale nuclear war between the United States and Russia, a new study has found. That’s the worst-case scenario in a Nature Food study published on Monday that examined the indirect death toll caused as soot from burning cities and forests entered the atmosphere. The Rutgers University…

Equilibrium/Sustainability — Athletes consider cricket’s sustainability

The game of cricket has weathered such a hot spring and summer that athletes are questioning the long-term sustainability of the world’s second-most popular sport. Cricket, trailing only soccer in global fandom, is particularly beloved in some of the places most vulnerable to extreme weather events, such as India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, South Africa and…

Equilibrium/Sustainability — Coastal communities face ‘retreat’ before rising seas

Some communities would have to relocate to higher ground under New Zealand’s first climate adaptation plan, in a warning signal to low-lying coastal communities worldwide. About 70,000 homes along New Zealand’s coasts are at risk from rising seas — with far more at risk from inland flooding along rivers, The Associated Press reported. “I am frustrated that for…

Equilibrium/Sustainability — Community gardens could help curb flooding

New York City’s expansive network of community gardens has long been giving cramped apartment dwellers a place to cultivate crops. But urban vegetable growers are now touting an added benefit of gardening: The ability to control flooding amid extreme weather conditions, according to The New York Times. Many gardens have incorporated trenches lined with vegetation to absorb…

Equilibrium/Sustainability — These lake bacteria like eating plastics

Some forms of aquatic bacteria will happily chow down on plastic pollution, potentially providing a new mechanism for cleaning up lakes, according to a new study. Bacteria extracted from 29 Scandinavian lakes grew faster and more efficiently on the remnants of plastic bags than on leaves and twigs, researchers revealed in a Nature Communications paper on Tuesday. The…

Desert-like behaviors coming to world’s wet regions

Climate change is making historically wet and temperate areas behave more like deserts, a new study has found. By the end of the century, the researchers project that an additional global area about twice the size of the United States will experience soil temperatures and moisture levels equivalent to today’s arid regions.  A better understanding…