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COP26: Draft deal calls for stronger carbon cutting targets by end of 2022

COP26: Draft deal calls for stronger carbon cutting targets by end of 2022

Science
Getty ImagesCountries are being urged to strengthen their carbon-cutting targets by the end of 2022 in a draft agreement published at the COP26 Glasgow climate summit.The document says vulnerable nations must get more help to cope with the deadly impacts of global warming.It also says countries should submit long-term strategies for reaching net-zero by the end of next year. Critics have said the draft pact does not go far enough but others welcomed its focus on the 1.5C target.The document, which has been published by the UK COP26 presidency, will have to be negotiated and agreed by countries attending the talks. COP26 president Alok Sharma said he expected "near final texts" to be published overnight, adding that the agreement that comes out of the conference would "set the future for ou...
Global computing’s carbon footprint is bigger than previously estimated

Global computing’s carbon footprint is bigger than previously estimated

Science
Sept. 10 (UPI) -- The world is more online than ever before, and as the digital economy continues to expand, so does the Internet's carbon footprint. According to a new study, published Friday in the journal Patterns, information and communications technology, or ICT for short, is responsible for a greater share of greenhouse gas emissions than previously estimated. When researchers at Lancaster University analyzed earlier attempts to calculate ICT's carbon footprint, they determined scientists had failed to account for the entire life-cycle and supply chain of ICT products and infrastructure. This would include, for example, the emissions produced by makers of ICT components, or the emissions linked with the disposal of ICT products. Scientists have previously pegged ICT's s...
Most of Earth’s carbon came from the interstellar medium

Most of Earth’s carbon came from the interstellar medium

Science
April 2 (UPI) -- We really are made of stardust. New research suggests the majority of Earth's carbon came from the interstellar medium, the diffuse supply of gas and dust found between a galaxy's stars. According to a new study, published Friday in the journal Science Advances, carbon from the interstellar medium became incorporated into the solar system's protoplanetary disk just a million years after the sun was born. Advertisement Previously, scientists hypothesized most of Earth's organic molecules were sourced from nebular gas. As gas from the stellar nebula cooled, researchers surmised, carbon and other molecules precipitated out of the cloud and became incorporated into rocky planets. The problem with this theory is that once carbon vaporizes, it's unable to condense back into a s...
Climate change, human activity threatens carbon uptake in recovering Amazon forests

Climate change, human activity threatens carbon uptake in recovering Amazon forests

Science
March 19 (UPI) -- Efforts to restore cleared forests in the Amazon are sometimes undermined by climate change and human activity, according to a new study. The research, published Friday in the journal Nature Communications, showed forest plots that have been frequently or recently disturbed by fire and human activity are slower to regenerate, stunting carbon uptake. Advertisement To curb climate change, many countries have promised to restore areas of forest previously cleared for logging or agriculture. Secondary forest growth can absorb a lot more carbon than old growth forests, but not all secondary forest regeneration is created equal. To better understand the factors that influence carbon uptake in recovering forests, scientists in Brazil and Britain used satellites to track change...
Melting glaciers may speed carbon emissions, fuel climate feedback loop

Melting glaciers may speed carbon emissions, fuel climate feedback loop

Science
March 15 (UPI) -- While some of the consequences of climate change have a balancing effect, working to slow warming patterns, many more seem to fuel feedback loops that accelerate warming. Now, an international team of scientists led by researchers at the University of Leeds has found another. According to their analysis, the loss of alpine glaciers has made mountain rivers friendlier to fungi, accelerating plant decomposition and carbon emissions. Advertisement Researchers described the feedback loop in a new paper, published Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change. With alpine glaciers the smallest they've been in thousands of years, mountain rivers are getting warmer. They've also become less prone to water flow variability and sediment movement, allowing fungi to flourish. When f...