In ancient scottish rings, a cautionary tale on climate, politics and survival

Using old tree rings and archival documents, historians and climate scientists have detailed an extreme cold period in Scotland in the 1690s that caused immense suffering. It decimated agriculture, killed as much as 15 percent of the population and sparked a fatal attempt to establish a Scottish colony in southern Panama. The researchers say the episode—shown in their study … Read more

Higher earning “elite” political lobbyists overstate their own achievements, study shows

“Elite”, high-earning political lobbyists are more likely to overstate their achievements, a new study shows. Political influencers who have a smaller salary and work in specialist areas or for public interest groups are less overconfident – or even underestimate their success, according to the research. This suggests overconfidence can help lobbyists make connections with important … Read more

Extent of human encroachment into world’s protected areas revealed

A study of human activity within thousands of conservation spaces in over 150 countries suggests that – on average across the world – protected areas are not reducing the “anthropogenic pressure” on our most precious natural habitats. Protected areas are vital to preserving diverse life on Earth, as well as mitigating climate change by conserving … Read more

Making conservation ‘contagious’

New research reveals conservation initiatives often spread like disease, a fact which can help scientists and policymakers design programs more likely to be taken up. The study, including University of Queensland researchers, modelled how conservation initiatives are adopted until they reach “scale” – a level where they can have real impact on conserving or improving … Read more

Nuclear war between India and Pakistan would launch a global climate catastrophe

With ongoing tensions between India and Pakistan raising concerns about the possibility of nuclear conflict, even as neither country is likely to initiate without significant provocation, researchers have evaluated both the direct fatalities and global climate anomalies that would result if nuclear war did break out. The researchers evaluated this scenario for the year 2025. … Read more

US political sanctions on Iran curtailing global scientific progress

The political sanctions imposed on Iran by the US are curtailing global scientific progress, suggests an analysis published in the online journal BMJ Global Health. Iranian scientists have been denied opportunities to publish their findings, attend meetings, and access essential supplies and information, to the detriment of international collaboration and nations’ ability to respond to health … Read more