Entries by aza

The deadliest volcanic eruptions of the past 25 years

After Guatemala’s Fuego volcano erupted, killing at least 25 people, here is a list of the most deadly volcanic eruptions over the last quarter century. 2014: Japan The sudden eruption of Mount Ontake kills more than 60 people in Japan’s worst volcanic disaster in nearly 90 years. The 3,067 metre (10,121 feet) Ontake is packed […]

Securing our energy future

Worldwide electricity consumption is estimated to grow from around 20,000 terawatt hours (TWh) today to 35,000 TWh in 2030, putting energy security at the forefront of future planning. While in the past, energy security was largely focused on oil supply, and natural gas supplies were not globally integrated, today a global market in natural gas […]

New study examines impacts of fracking on water supplies worldwide

Using hydraulic fracturing to extract oil and natural gas from shale is a common technique used worldwide. Because the technique requires large amounts of water, however, it raises the question of whether it could lead to water shortages or competition with other water uses, especially agriculture. In a new paper in the AGU journal Earth’s […]

‘Water is life’: Ivory Coast city struggles with crippling drought

“All that comes out of the tap right now is cockroaches,” said Honorine Babalou, a 20-year-old textile worker. In Bouake, Ivory Coast’s second city, the regular water supply trickled to a halt three months ago—a shortage that officials blame on a drought inflicted by global warming. Like many other Bouake residents, Babalou balanced on her […]

International Environment Day: Plastic in Africa

This year, plastic pollution is the main theme of International Environment Day, celebrated on June 5. In Africa, 4.4 million tonnes of plastic are found in oceans and seas every year, according to United Nations figures from 2010. “Plastic, and waste management in general, is a very big problem in Africa,” said Mohamed Atani, regional […]

Climate change hits poorest hardest, new research shows

Australia will still be the lucky country when it comes to changes in local climate as a result of climate change if global average surface temperatures reach the 1.5°C or 2°C limit set by the Paris agreement. But in other countries right across the tropics, including close neighbour and major trading partner Indonesia, the heat […]

Global warming grows less nutritious rice

Global warming could bring a serious problem for the two billion people on the planet who depend on one grain for their staple diet: less nutritious rice to sustain them. Scientists have found that rice grown at higher levels of carbon dioxide has an overall lower nutritional value. The grain contains lower levels of protein, and iron […]

Food insecurity risks increase with climate change

Climate change is the instigator behind many international issues currently being discussed, and will only have a hand in even more global problems in the future. One of these problems – according to new research led by the University of Exeter – could be increased risk of food shortages in numerous countries. For the study […]

For Animals, Plastic Is Turning the Ocean Into a Minefield

On a boat off Costa Rica, a biologist uses pliers from a Swiss army knife to try to extract a plastic straw from a sea turtle’s nostril. The turtle writhes in agony, bleeding profusely. For eight painful minutes the YouTube video ticks on; it has logged more than 20 million views, even though it’s so […]