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News Headlines on Biodiversity

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Climate Change
Inhabitat, 2018-02-16
Researchers have determined that countries around the world are failing to fulfill their greenhouse gas reduction commitments under the Paris climate agreement, inevitably subjecting the world to unpredictable extreme weather. In a study published in the journal Science Advances, scientists concluded that extreme weather, such as drought, flooding, or heat waves, will increase across 90 percent of North America, Europe and East Asia if countries maintain their current pace of climate action. “We are not prepared for today’s climate, let alone for another degree of global warming,” study author Noah Diffenbaugh, a Stanford University professor of earth system science, told Time.
Agriculture and Biodiversity
Relief Web, 2018-02-16
Faced with the infestation of millions of hectares of maize, most in the hands of smallholder farmers, and the relentless spread of Fall Armyworm (FAW) across most of Africa, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) launched today a comprehensive guide on the integrated pest management of the FAW on maize.
Communication, Education and Public Awareness
Hindustan Times, 2018-02-16
The exhibition will also feature works of contributing photographers — Aditya Arya, Bharat Goel, Vinod Goel, Sharat Sharma, Vijay Dhasmana, Anil Advani, among others. So much so that I fell in love with the trees, forests and the ridge,” says curator Aditya Arya. “Some of the species are so rare at the Aravalli Biodiversity park that you wouldn’t find them anywhere in Delhi-NCR.
Endangered Species
Phys.org, 2018-02-16
A team of scientists led by WCS (Wildlife Conservation Society) has developed a conservation blueprint to protect one of the most biodiverse regions in Africa: the Albertine Rift, home to mountain and Grauer's gorillas, golden monkeys, chimpanzees, elephants, and 162 vertebrate, and 350 plant species unique to
CNN, 2018-02-16
The number of orangutans on the island of Borneo has more than halved in 16 years, as hunting of the critically endangered species continues and rampant deforestation destroys its habitat, scientists say.
Forest Biodiversity
Brinkwire, 2018-02-16
In order to analyse global patterns of forest fragmentation, a UFZ research group led by Prof. Andreas Huth used remote sensing data quantifying forest cover in the tropics in an extremely high resolution of 30 meters, resulting in more than 130 million forest fragments.
Global Taxonomy Initiative
MacauDaily Times, 2018-02-16
A young local researcher has discovered a rare ant genus Leptanilla in Ilha Verde, which represents the second record for this genus in Southern China. Leong Chi Man, a master student at Taiwan National University, discovered the rare ant early last year and has named it Leptanilla macauensis, representing the locality where the specimens have been collected.
Marine and Coastal Biodiversity
Mongabay (India), 2018-02-16
It’s hard to adequately describe the importance of conch to the Bahamas. Conchs are ingrained in the culture; there are conch festivals, conch homecomings and conch-cracking competitions. On the Bahamian coat of arms, a queen conch takes pride of place, sitting right at the top.
Research and Science
Phys.org, 2018-02-16
A new genealogy of plant evolution, led by researchers at the University of Bristol, shows that the first plants to conquer land were a complex species, challenging long-held assumptions about plant evolution.
Phys.org, 2018-02-16
If you go down to the shore today, you're sure of a big surprise. Many will have witnessed the presence of a starfish or two when visiting the seashore or a public aquarium. Starfish come in an exciting range of colours and sizes, but have you ever given a thought to how this multi-armed wonder manages to exist in our oceans when it's so unlike the other animals we know?
Phys.org, 2018-02-16
It's an age-old debate for coffee lovers. Which is better: Arabica beans with their sweeter, softer taste, or the bold, deep flavor of Robusta beans? A new study by WCS, Princeton University, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison appearing in the journal Scientific Reports has taken the question to unlikely coffee aficionados: birds.
Romania insider, 2018-02-16
Romania’s National Environmental Guard, the expert authority verifying compliance with environmental laws and regulations, applied nearly 2,000 fines last year, worth a total of over RON 39 million (some EUR 8.5 million), according to its annual activity report.


Climate Change
Brinkwire, 2018-02-15
Extreme weather such as severe flooding and droughts will become much more common if the targets in the Paris Agreement on climate change aren’t reached, researchers warn.
Live Mint, 2018-02-15
Before man-made climate change kicked in — and well before “Day Zero” in Cape Town, where taps may run dry in early May — the global water crisis was upon us.
Communication, Education and Public Awareness
BBC News, 2018-02-15
A panoramic photograph of British World War Two military vehicles deep inside a shipwreck sees German photographer Tobias Friedrich named as Underwater Photographer of the Year 2018.
Endangered Species
The Hindu, 2018-02-15
Mexico plans to protect the harbour porpoise - an endemic Mexican species in danger of extinction: Mexico will increase its efforts to save the Gulf of California harbour porpoise - an endemic Mexican species in danger of extinction - with a strategy that includes three courses of action, the Environment and Natural Resources Secretariat (Semarnat) has said.
Financial Resources and Mechanism
Business Green, 2018-02-15
Natural capital has recently come to the fore with recognition that it is "critical for virtually all kinds of production, and [that] most of the SDGs are either directly concerned with or strongly dependent on natural capital". This is according to the recent EU High-Level Expert Group (HLEG) on Sustainable Finance report, 'Financing a Sustainable European Economy'.
Forest Biodiversity
Mongabay (India), 2018-02-15
The equatorial ecosystems of the Albertine Rift are packed with plants and animals found nowhere else on Earth. Formed as tectonic plates in eastern Africa have slowly pulled away from each other for millions of years, the unique habitats in this epicenter of biodiversity have rapidly come under threat in recent decades from conflict, poverty and a booming human population.
Marine and Coastal Biodiversity
Xinhua (China), 2018-02-15
The number of rare shellfish reefs off the coast of Australia has declined by up to 99 percent since British colonization, a new study revealed on Thursday.
BBC News, 2018-02-15
"When you're on top of the water, and you just see the fin, I think it's more scary because it's the unknown. But when you are underwater and you see the shark it is much less scary. When I saw him for the first time, he was bigger than expected and so much more colourful."
Protected Areas / In-Situ Conservation
Brinkwire, 2018-02-15
India’s environment ministry is considering doubling the number of protected areas such as national parks and wildlife sanctuaries from the current 729 over the next few years.
Research and Science
Phys.org, 2018-02-15
When simulating future environmental conditions, researchers confront a problem: Laboratory experiments are easy to control and to reproduce, but are insufficient to mimic the complexity of natural ecosystems. In contrast, experiments under real conditions in nature are much more complicated and difficult to control. Scientist of the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel have combined both approaches to investigate the response of a major plankton species to increasing ocean acidification.
Phys.org, 2018-02-15
A dangerous fungus has been sweeping across North America with devastating consequences. In the past decade, between 5m and 7m bats in the US and Canada have been wiped out as a result of the fungal disease known as white nose syndrome, which alters their behaviour in potentially deadly ways. But the latest research shows there might be hope for researchers trying to battle the disease, following the discovery that UV light appears to destroy the fungus's DNA.
Phys.org, 2018-02-15
Temporary lakes and ponds emit CO₂ even when they are dry, and dry areas emit a larger amount of carbon into the atmosphere. This phenomenon, described now for the first time, could have an impact on the global carbon cycle that controls Earth's climate, according to a study led by Biel Obrador from the University of Barcelona and Núria Catalán from the Catalan Institute for Water Research (ICRA).
Tourism and Biodiversity
allAfrica.com, 2018-02-15
Maun — Deputy permanent secretary in the Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources Conservation and Tourism, Mr Thabang Botsoma says biodiversity and ecosystem are vital to the economy and development of Botswana.


Climate Change
Greennews.ie, 2018-02-14
The use of Negative Emission Technologies (NETs) to remove CO2 from the atmosphere is not sufficient to keep global warming within the Paris Agreement targets, a new report has found.
Haaretz.com, 2018-02-14
Hummus, the beloved Middle Eastern dip, is in danger. Chickpeas are going the way of the cheetah. For rather different reasons, both plant and cat are suffering from genetic bottlenecks that reduce their ability to cope with change. And in a warming world, change is happening.
Los Angeles Times, 2018-02-14
The Games in Salt Lake City were the first that were zero-emission and zero-waste, and when I brought in Jean-Michel Cousteau to carry the Olympic flag on behalf of the environment for the first time, we thought world leaders were beginning to wake up and take the serious actions required to "save our snow" and to save the world as we know it.
The Conversation, 2018-02-14
During the 2017 Atlantic basin hurricane season, six major storms – all of which were Category 3 or higher – produced devastating human, material and financial devastation across the southern United States and the Caribbean.
Phys.org, 2018-02-14
Overwhelming scientific evidence has demonstrated that our planet is getting warmer due to climate change, yet parts of the eastern U.S. are actually getting cooler. According to a Dartmouth-led study in Geophysical Research Letters, the location of this anomaly, known as the "U.S. warming hole," is a moving target.

  • United Nations
  • United Nations Environment Programme