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Antarctica loses three trillion tonnes of ice in 25 years

Image copyright ESA Image caption Artwork: European satellites in particular have an unbroken record going back to 1992 Antarctica is shedding ice at an accelerating rate. Satellites monitoring the state of the White Continent indicate some 200 billion tonnes a year are now being lost to the ocean as a result of melting. This is […]

UK rebuffed over Galileo sat-nav procurement

Image copyright OHB Image caption Artist’s impression: There are currently 22 Galileo satellites in orbit The UK space industry, fighting to be part of the European satellite-navigation system, Galileo, has suffered another Brexit setback. Delegations to the European Space Agency have approved the procurement of the next batch of spacecraft, despite British calls to delay. […]

One in five British mammals at risk of extinction

Image copyright PA Image caption The red squirrel has been put on the first “red list” for UK wild mammals The red squirrel, the wildcat, and the grey long-eared bat are all facing severe threats to their survival, according to new research. They are among 12 species that have been put on the first “red […]

Could an emoji save your life?

Image copyright Getty Images Emoji might not be your first line of communication in a disaster… But researchers feel they could make a difference during emergencies like earthquakes, where every second counts. Now, an international group of scientists are lobbying for an earthquake emoji to be added to the Unicode set – the standard group […]

Key ‘step forward’ in cutting cost of removing CO2 from air

Image copyright Carbon Engineering Image caption The pilot plant has been built in British Columbia and is extracting about a tonne of CO2 every day A Canadian company, backed by Bill Gates, says it has reached an important threshold in developing technology that can remove CO2 from the air. Carbon Engineering has published a peer-reviewed […]

Key ‘step forward’ in cutting cost of removing CO2 from air

Image copyright Carbon Engineering Image caption The pilot plant has been built in British Columbia and is extracting about a tonne of CO2 every day A Canadian company, backed by Bill Gates, says it has reached an important threshold in developing technology that can remove CO2 from the air. Carbon Engineering has published a peer-reviewed […]

Curiosity rover sees seasonal Mars methane swing

Image copyright NASA/JPL-CALTECH/MSSS Image caption The Curiosity rover carries an onboard lab to measure the chemistry of the atmosphere It may only be a very small part of Mars’ atmosphere but methane waxes and wanes with the seasons, scientists say. The discovery made by the Curiosity rover is important because it helps narrow the likely […]

Meet the nuns helping save a sacred species from extinction

Conservationists from Chester Zoo have formed an unlikely partnership with an order of nuns – in a project that could save a critically endangered amphibian from extinction. The axolotl – a salamander that is unique to Mexico – has almost been wiped out of its freshwater habitat by pollution and over-fishing. Now, scientists say that […]

Oldest ‘footprints’ found in China

Image copyright AFP Image caption The trackways date to the Ediacaran Period The oldest known “footprints” left by an animal have been uncovered in southern China. The identity of the creature that made the 546-million-year-old tracks is still unknown, but they come from the period when the earliest animals are thought to have evolved. The […]

European Commission hopes for big science funding uplift

Image copyright European Union 2018 Image caption Commissioner Moedas says HorizonEU is the most ambitious programme ever The European Commission has set out how it wants to spend €100bn (£87bn) on science in the next EU budget. The funding programme, dubbed HorizonEU, covers the period 2021-2027. Expenditure would be split across three main areas, with […]