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Dispersal assembly of rain forest tree communities across the Amazon basin [Evolution]

PNAS Early Edition Articles - Fri, 02/17/2017 - 13:33
We investigate patterns of historical assembly of tree communities across Amazonia using a newly developed phylogeny for the species-rich neotropical tree genus Inga. We compare our results with those for three other ecologically important, diverse, and abundant Amazonian tree lineages, Swartzia, Protieae, and Guatteria. Our analyses using phylogenetic diversity metrics...

Fact-checking Al Gore’s controversial, apocalyptic climate conference

Climate Depot - Fri, 02/17/2017 - 12:51
By THOMAS RICHARD Former Vice President #Al Gore is back and our future has never been bleaker. That was the message he delivered at a Climate & Health meeting he hastily organized after a Centers for Disease Control (CDC) #Climate Change conference got postponed. Despite having a 10-year record of failed climate predictions, Gore blamed [...]

Scott Pruitt, longtime adversary of EPA, confirmed to lead the agency under Trump admin.

Climate Depot - Fri, 02/17/2017 - 12:49
Scott Pruitt, who as Oklahoma’s attorney general spent years suing the Environmental Protection Agency over its efforts to regulate various forms of pollution, was confirmed Friday as the agency’s next administrator. Pruitt cleared the Senate by a vote of 52-46, winning support from two Democrats, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Heidi Heitkamp of North [...]

EU, IAEA agree to bolster cooperation

World Nuclear News - Fri, 02/17/2017 - 11:02
The European Union and the International Atomic Energy Agency agreed to strengthen their cooperation in a range of nuclear activities, including nuclear science applications, during a meeting in Brussels this week.

Poroshenko: Ukraine increasing nuclear share to 60%

World Nuclear News - Fri, 02/17/2017 - 10:30
Nuclear energy's share of Ukraine's electricity mix is "rapidly approaching" 60%, President Petro Poroshenko said at a meeting of the country's National Security and Defence Council yesterday, according to a statement on the presidential website. The president did not give a date by which the increase would be achieved.

Robot surveys Fukushima Daiichi containment vessel

World Nuclear News - Fri, 02/17/2017 - 10:26
Tokyo Electric Power Company yesterday sent a robot into the primary containment vessel of the damaged unit 2 at the Fukushima Daiichi plant in Japan. Although the robot was unable to reach the part of the vessel directly under the reactor pressure vessel, the company said the information it gathered will help it determine how to decommission the unit.

Polar Bear Numbers Still On The Rise, Despite ‘Global Warming’

Climate Depot - Fri, 02/17/2017 - 08:51
Via: http://us4.campaign-archive2.com/?u=c920274f2a364603849bbb505&id=cbe762183c&e=f4e33fdd1e Polar bear populations are still growing despite global warming, according to new research. The new population estimates from the 2016 Scientific Working Group are somewhere between 22,633 to 32,257 bears, which is a net increase from the 2015 number of 22,000 to 31,000. The current population numbers are a sharp increase from 2005’s, which stated only 20,000 to [...]

Scott Pruitt’s Game-Changing Call for Debate on Climate Science

Climate Depot - Thu, 02/16/2017 - 16:53
BY TOM HARRIS FEBRUARY 16, 2017 People familiar with global warming science are well aware of the many serious problems with the politically correct yet scientifically improbable idea that carbon dioxide emissions from industrial activities threaten Earth’s climate. These problems were summarized in the 2016 State of the Climate Report, released during the UN Climate Conference [...]

A Climate Scientist Is Smeared for Blowing the Whistle on ‘Corrected’ Data

Climate Depot - Thu, 02/16/2017 - 16:50
by JULIE KELLY February 15, 2017 5:18 PM The scandal is growing, as Congress investigates and NOAA brings in outside experts to review a key study. Less than 72 hours after a federal whistleblower exposed shocking misconduct at a key U.S. climate agency, the CEO of the nation’s top scientific group was already dismissing the [...]

Gore warns ‘global warming’ will make parts of Earth ‘no longer be fit for human habitation’

Climate Depot - Thu, 02/16/2017 - 16:32
Posted: 4:33 p.m. Thursday, February 16, 2017 A climate change meeting in Atlanta on Thursday had all the ingredients of a political spectacle. With Donald Trump, a noted skeptic of climate change science winning the the White House, a nervous federal agency scrapped plans to host the event. Enter, Al Gore. The former Democratic presidential [...]

Andrew Revkin on Dr. Will Happer: A Physicist And Possible Adviser To Trump Describes His Love Of Science, And CO2

Climate Depot - Thu, 02/16/2017 - 15:28
This story originally appeared on ProPublica. Shortly before President Donald J. Trump’s inauguration, his staff confirmed that he had met with two brilliant and pugnacious scientists, each said to be a candidate for the position of science adviser or director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy. On Jan. 13, Trump met at Trump [...]

Vulnerability of primitive human placental trophoblast to Zika virus [Applied Biological Sciences]

PNAS Early Edition Articles - Thu, 02/16/2017 - 14:58
Infection of pregnant women by Asian lineage strains of Zika virus (ZIKV) has been linked to brain abnormalities in their infants, yet it is uncertain when during pregnancy the human conceptus is most vulnerable to the virus. We have examined two models to study susceptibility of human placental trophoblast to...

CD6 as a potential target for treating multiple sclerosis [Immunology and Inflammation]

PNAS Early Edition Articles - Thu, 02/16/2017 - 14:58
CD6 was established as a marker of T cells more than three decades ago, and recent studies have identified CD6 as a risk gene for multiple sclerosis (MS), a disease in which autoreactive T cells are integrally involved. Nevertheless, the precise role of CD6 in regulating T-cell responses is controversial...

Evidence for environmental and ecological selection in a microbe with no geographic limits to gene flow [Evolution]

PNAS Early Edition Articles - Thu, 02/16/2017 - 14:58
The ability for organisms to disperse throughout their environment is thought to strongly influence population structure and thus evolution of diversity within species. A decades-long debate surrounds processes that generate and support high microbial diversity, particularly in the ocean. The debate concerns whether diversification occurs primarily through geographic partitioning (where...

Distance-dependent gradient in NMDAR-driven spine calcium signals along tapering dendrites [Neuroscience]

PNAS Early Edition Articles - Thu, 02/16/2017 - 14:58
Neurons receive a multitude of synaptic inputs along their dendritic arbor, but how this highly heterogeneous population of synaptic compartments is spatially organized remains unclear. By measuring N-methyl-d-aspartic acid receptor (NMDAR)-driven calcium responses in single spines, we provide a spatial map of synaptic calcium signals along dendritic arbors of hippocampal...

Role for dithiolopyrrolones in disrupting bacterial metal homeostasis [Chemistry]

PNAS Early Edition Articles - Thu, 02/16/2017 - 14:58
Natural products harbor unique and complex structures that provide valuable antibiotic scaffolds. With an increase in antibiotic resistance, natural products once again hold promise for new antimicrobial therapies, especially those with unique scaffolds that have been overlooked due to a lack of understanding of how they function. Dithiolopyrrolones (DTPs) are...

A New Age for EPA in Era of Trump

Climate Depot - Thu, 02/16/2017 - 14:51
By DENNIS E. HEDKE In his article, Lehr suggests replacing many of the duties of the modern EPA with a “Committee of the Whole,” which would be composed of the states’ environmental agencies. Lehr suggests a five-year timeline for materially reorganizing the current, destructive version of EPA left behind by the Obama administration. Under Lehr’s [...]

Point: Trump’s Too Smart to Fall for Harmful GOP Establishment Carbon Tax Plan

Climate Depot - Thu, 02/16/2017 - 14:33
Posted to Energy February 15, 2017 by H. Sterling Burnett Editor’s Note: For an alternative viewpoint, please see:Counterpoint: Carbon Dividends — the Gipper Would be Proud Some old-guard Republicans are floating the idea of a national tax on carbon-dioxide emissions. The newly minted Climate Leadership Council (CLC), composed of aged establishment Republicans who’ve seen their [...]

NBC News: How Eating Crickets Could Help Save the Planet By Fighting Global Warming

Climate Depot - Thu, 02/16/2017 - 11:59
by JOSEPH BENNINGTON-CASTRO A patron trys a roasted cricket during a “Pestaurant” event in Washington, D.C. in 2014. Karen Bleier / AFP-Getty Images The world’s population is creeping up on 7.5 billion, but estimates suggest we’ll have a whopping 9 billion mouths to feed by 2050. Unless we all stick to salads, the global production [...]
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