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Tag: cities

To adapt to cities, birds must grow their brains or grow their families

To adapt to cities, birds must grow their brains or grow their families

Science
March 25 (UPI) -- As the planet becomes increasingly urbanized, many species, including birds, are struggling to adapt to human presence. Urbanization can drive some bird species to extinction, but others are capable of thriving in cities. New research -- published this week in the journal Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution -- suggests birds have a choice of two strategies for adapting to urban life. They can either grow bigger brains, or they can produce more offspring. Better understanding how different bird species respond to human development can help policymakers craft more effective conservation and protection plans. "Cities are harsh environments for most species and therefore often support much lower biodiversity than natural environments," lead study author Ferran Sayol, postdoc...
Elevated levels of PFAS found in water in Miami, New York, Philadelphia, other major cities

Elevated levels of PFAS found in water in Miami, New York, Philadelphia, other major cities

Science
Jan. 22 (UPI) -- A new study of tap water samples across the United States has revealed PFAS compounds, human-made chemicals linked with a variety of health problems, to be more prevalent than earlier surveys. The new study, organized by the Environmental Working Group, involved the testing of tap water samples from 44 locations in 31 states. "We found PFAS in all but one sample, which is pretty incredible," Sydney Evans, science analyst with EWG, told UPI. Tests revealed elevated levels of PFAS in dozens of American cities, including Miami, New York, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, are a class of synthetic compounds used in a variety of industrial processes and found in dozens of household items. The newest research suggests these chemica...
Which UK cities have seen the highest house price growth over the past decade?

Which UK cities have seen the highest house price growth over the past decade?

Business
The average price of a home across the UK's 20 biggest cities has gone up by almost £90,000 over the last decade, according to a study.Zoopla claims the figure (£89,987) is a bigger increase than the average house price rise across the whole of the country during the same period, at £62,218 - or around 54%. Image: The study claims the average price of a home in major UK cities has increased by nearly £90,000 In London, average prices have grown by £204,400 - with the typical cost now at £479,000 - compared to £257,200 for a home outside the capital.The property website predicts city house prices to rise by 3% next year as demand returns to the market following the general election result.Richard Donnell, research and insight director
Cities are expanding outward, not upward — an unsustainable pattern

Cities are expanding outward, not upward — an unsustainable pattern

Science
Dec. 20 (UPI) -- Most urban growth, researchers have found, is defined by expansion at margins. Cities aren't getting taller, they're getting wider, fueled by suburban sprawl, not skyscrapers. Scientists at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies identified the predominant growth patterns -- detailed this week in the journal Environmental Research Letters -- among 478 cities with populations of at least 1 million people. Suburban expansion is correlated with greater demands on energy and greater strain on natural resources. "While these trends are probably not sustainable in the long term, it's not too late to shape the future of what these cities look like," Richa Mahtta, Yale researcher and lead author of the new paper, said in a news release. "However, we must act soon, ...

Why some cities and states balk at face recognition tech

Technology
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. -- Police departments around the U.S. are asking citizens to trust them to use facial recognition software as another handy tool in their crime-fighting toolbox. But some lawmakers — and even some technology giants — are hitting the brakes. Are fears of an all-seeing, artificially intelligent security apparatus overblown? Not if you look at China, where advancements in computer vision applied to vast networks of street cameras have enabled authorities to track members of ethnic minority groups for signs of subversive behavior. American police officials and their video surveillance industry partners contend that won’t happen here. They are pushing back against a movement by cities, states and federal legislators to ban or curtail the technology’s use. And the ef