News

The stark reality of air pollution for all of us

What is going on here?  The World Health Organisation’s top environmental health expert, Maria Neira, has warned that delays in addressing the impacts of air pollution will have dire consequences for global health. On the eve of COP28, she gave the following warning: “Whether they like it or not – whether they know it or not – the negotiators at Cop are…

Deadly heatwaves linked to climate change

Car drives through smoke from wildfire in the US

What’s going on here? Countries across the world have been sweltering under deadly heatwaves for most of July. These extreme weather events were once a rare occurrence. But we should now expect them to be hotter and more frequent due to the climate crisis, say scientists working with the World Weather Attribution initiative. What does this mean? It’s hard to attribute specific…

Is 17 Degrees Really That Hot? Record Breaking Global Temperatures Explained

an image of a thermometer over a bright blue sky with a blazing sun. The temperature on the thermometer reads over 40 degrees celsius.

What’s going on here? The first week of July this year saw record breaking global average temperatures. On Monday 3rd July a record high temperature of 17.01 degrees celsius was reached. This record was immediately broken on Tuesday 4th and Wednesday 5th ofJuly with temperatures of 17.18 degrees. What does this mean? These temperatures may not seem very high, but this is…

What’s up with these orcas?

Photograph showing the ocean with people on a yacht and an Orca in the water

What’s going on here? Orca attacks on boats have been on the rise, and are currently at a seasonal peak. The attacks mainly occur in the Strait of Gibraltar: the strip of ocean separating Spain from Africa, but Scotland’s first attack was just reported. What does this mean? The attacks involve multiple orcas circling and ramming boats. Following the incidents, boats are…

Wishcycling: when rubbish ends up at the recycling centre

What’s going on here?  If only all our waste problems were solved by dropping things in the recycling bin and saying, “that’ll do” and then walking away thinking we’ve done something good today. This (very) common behaviour is known as wishcycling. It refers to the act of putting incorrect items into the recycling waste stream in the hope that they will end…

Air quality filters accidentally collecting biodiversity data

A badger in the wild

Whatʼs going on here? Air quality monitoring stations dotted around the planet have been inadvertently collecting airborne environmental DNA (eDNA) without anybody noticing, finds a new report. The remarkable discovery reveals that thousands of filters routinely testing for pollutants are unintentionally breathing in trace eDNA shed by animals, plants, and fungi. What does this mean? In recent years, researchers have discovered eDNA…

Oil Majors Face Investor Backlash at Annual General Meetings

Board room with the words 'do good things' on a wall

What’s Going on Here?  This year, ‘Big Oil’ companies are facing investor backlash as demand increases for them to  align with the goals laid down by the Paris Agreement, and limit global Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions to 1.5 degrees Celsius.   What Does this Mean?  Every year, public companies hold their Annual General Meeting (AGM). This is when a company’s board of directors…