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Environment

  • In search of mushrooms

    In search of mushrooms

    This is the best time of the year to visit the countryside in search of fungi. One should be able to find a good number of species, especially in wooded areas such as Buskett Gardens and Wied il-Luq. Mid-autumn is a good time to find mushrooms...

  • Phase out CO2 emissions by 2070 to slow climate change, urges UN

    Governments are far off track in combating global warming and should phase out net carbon dioxide emissions by 2070, well within the expected lifetime of people born today, a UN study said yesterday. Greenhouse gas emissions have leapt 45 per cent...

  • Bio bus takes to the streets

    Bio bus takes to the streets

    The Bio-Bus, which is powered entirely by human and food waste, took to the British roads, yesterday. The 40-seater shuttle service, between Bath and Bristol Airport, can travel up to 299km on one tank of gas, which is generated through the...

  • Redefining ODZ in ‘the south’

    Redefining ODZ in ‘the south’

    Earlier this year, I had commended the former president of the Malta Developers Association (MDA), Michael Falzon, for explicitly stating that the MDA was against any development in ODZ areas and against further relaxation of the existing...

  • Giving Maltese agriculture the prestige it deserves

    Giving Maltese agriculture the prestige it deserves

    Whenever we think of local agriculture, we somehow think of elderly farmers hand-picking potatoes under the scorching Mediterranean sun. But this is an archaic mentality. The mistaken perception that farmers are uneducated and unskilled should be...

  • Bolt from the blue

    Bolt from the blue

    Rising global temperatures may cause a big jolt in the number of lightning strikes in the US over the rest of the 21st century in the latest example of extreme weather spawned by climate change, scientists say. Researchers forecast that lightning...

  • Climate focus turns to India

    Climate focus turns to India

    After this week’s carbon deal between the US and China, No. 3 emitter India faces growing pressure to devise a clear strategy and step out of China’s shadow during pivotal global climate talks. India has given no sign what kind of commitment it...

  • Primates ‘act to stop infanticide’

    Primates ‘act to stop infanticide’

    Some female primates are promiscuous to prevent males from killing their offspring, scientists have said. Previous research has found that infanticide by male mammals is common in species where the females live in social groups dominated by one or...

  • Crustaceans ‘can retain maleness’

    Crustaceans ‘can retain maleness’

    Male crustaceans can ‘lock down’ their maleness to avoid being completely feminised by seawater contaminated by feminising pollutants, according to scientists. Research by scientists at the University of Portsmouth has shown that crustaceans...

  • US, China unveil ambitious goals

    US, China unveil ambitious goals

    The US and China have unveiled ambitious targets to reduce greenhouse gases, aiming to inject fresh momentum into the global fight against climate change ahead of a make-or-break treaty to be finalised next year. President Barack Obama announced...

  • Dutch put solar panels in bike path

    Dutch put solar panels in bike path

    A project dubbed SolaRoad gets under way in the Netherlands this week, testing road surfaces as a potential canvas to collect solar energy. Fittingly for the cycle-crazy Dutch, the first SolaRoad is a bike path not far from Amsterdam. The path is...

  • Carmakers to triple range of green cars by 2020

    Carmakers to triple range of green cars by 2020

    Hyundai Motor Co. and affiliate Kia Motors Corp. plan to triple their number of fuel-efficient cars by 2020, addressing concerns about the pair’s green track record and competitiveness in fuel economy. Investors have voiced concern about Hyundai’s...

  • Migratory ducks land in Malta

    Migratory ducks land in Malta

    The ferruginous duck is a scarce migratory bird that is seen offshore especially flying through the Comino channel. Small numbers sometimes visit the Għadira and Simar nature reserves. The ferruginous duck is also known as the white-eyed pochard,...

  • Robotic ‘dolphins’ give clues to Antarctic melt

    Robotic ‘dolphins’ give clues to Antarctic melt

    Dolphin-sized robots are giving clues to a thaw of Antarctica’s ice in a sign of how technology is revolutionising data collection in remote polar regions, scientists said. An international study led by the California Institute of Technology used...

  • Quake Watch

    Quake Watch

    A magnitude 4.1 earthquake struck beneath the Aeolian Islands (Lipari Islands), north of Sicily, on October 9. Another earthquake of a similar magnitude struck off the Gulf of Hammamet, about 50 kilometres southeast of Nabeul, Tunisia, on October 13.

  • Listening to the earth

    Listening to the earth

    The University’s Seismic Monitoring and Research Unit (SMRU) has been conducting various geophysical measurements over the past few years to study the upper 50 metres of the ground beneath numerous locations across the Maltese islands. By studying...

  • Marine biodiversity workshop

    Fifteen international marine science researchers were in Malta for a BioDivMex workshop on Mediterranean marine biodiversity. The participants attended lectures on topics such as phytoplankton and primary productivity, marine habitats around the...

  • Ecology, archaeology and roadworks at Burmarrad

    Ecology, archaeology and roadworks at Burmarrad

    Transport Malta roadworks at Burmarrad are a threat to the flood plain for some very valid reasons other than what may be apparent on the surface. Much of the outcry surrounding the new coast road, part of an ongoing upgrade to Malta’s main artery...

  • Rising CO₂ ‘to boost pollen levels’

    Rising CO₂ ‘to boost pollen levels’

    Hay fever sufferers could reach new heights of misery over the next century as pollen levels soar, research suggests. Scientists predict that higher levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere will lead to a significant boost in the amount of...

  • Climate change stopping pollination

    Climate change stopping pollination

    Climate change could be throwing bees out of sync with plants − meaning males are too distracted by females to carry out pollination. Certain flowers have evolved so that their flowers appear just as bees begin to emerge after winter. Warmer...

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