WorldWideScience

Sample records for human-caused environmental change

  1. Behavioural responses to human-induced environmental change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tuomainen, Ulla; Candolin, Ulrika

    2011-08-01

    The initial response of individuals to human-induced environmental change is often behavioural. This can improve the performance of individuals under sudden, large-scale perturbations and maintain viable populations. The response can also give additional time for genetic changes to arise and, hence, facilitate adaptation to new conditions. On the other hand, maladaptive responses, which reduce individual fitness, may occur when individuals encounter conditions that the population has not experienced during its evolutionary history, which can decrease population viability. A growing number of studies find human disturbances to induce behavioural responses, both directly and by altering factors that influence fitness. Common causes of behavioural responses are changes in the transmission of information, the concentration of endocrine disrupters, the availability of resources, the possibility of dispersal, and the abundance of interacting species. Frequent responses are alterations in habitat choice, movements, foraging, social behaviour and reproductive behaviour. Behavioural responses depend on the genetically determined reaction norm of the individuals, which evolves over generations. Populations first respond with individual behavioural plasticity, whereafter changes may arise through innovations and the social transmission of behavioural patterns within and across generations, and, finally, by evolution of the behavioural response over generations. Only a restricted number of species show behavioural adaptations that make them thrive in severely disturbed environments. Hence, rapid human-induced disturbances often decrease the diversity of native species, while facilitating the spread of invasive species with highly plastic behaviours. Consequently, behavioural responses to human-induced environmental change can have profound effects on the distribution, adaptation, speciation and extinction of populations and, hence, on biodiversity. A better understanding of

  2. Human-induced geomorphic change across environmental gradients

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanacker, V.; Molina, A.; Bellin, N.; Christl, M.

    2016-12-01

    Human-induced land cover changes are causing important adverse effects on the ecological services rendered by mountain ecosystems, and the number of case-studies of the impact of humans on soil erosion and sediment yield has mounted rapidly. Anthropogenic disturbance of natural vegetation can profoundly alter the physical, chemical and biological processes within soils. Rapid removal of topsoil during intense farming can result in an imbalance between soil production through chemical weathering and physical soil erosion, with direct implications on nutrient cycling, soil fertility and agricultural production. In this study, we present a conceptual model for assessing human-induced erosion for a wide variety of environmental settings and pose that human-induced geomorphic change cannot be assessed solely based on modern erosion rates as natural or baseline erosion rates can be important in e.g. mountainous terrain. As such, we assess the vulnerability of a given ecosystem to human-induced land cover change by quantifying the change in catchment-wide erosion rates resulting from anthropogenic changes in vegetation cover. Human-induced erosion is here approximated by the ratio of the total specific sediment yield to the natural erosional mass flux, and is dimensionless. The conceptual model is applied to three contrasting environmental settings where data on soil production, physical soil erosion and long-term denudation are available: the tropical Andes, subtropical southern Brazil, and semi-arid Spanish Cordillera. The magnitude of human-induced geomorphic change strongly differs between the three regions. The data suggest that the sensitivity to human-induced erosion is ecosystem dependent, and related to soil erosivity and potential vegetation cover disturbances as a result of human impact. It may therefore be expected that the potential for erosion regulation is larger in well-vegetated ecosystem where strong differences may exist in vegetation cover between

  3. Environmental Change and Human Mobility: Trends, Law and Policy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susan F. Martin

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Enhancing the protection of persons displaced by natural disasters and the impacts of climate change will require sustained attention. This article identifies practical solutions, many of which are currently under consideration by governments and international organizations, to improve the lives of millions of people affected by environmental crises. It begins with a brief overview of why people move, the nature of those movements, and the relationship between human mobility and adaptation to environmental change by highlighting three types of mobility – migration, displacement and planned relocation. Next, the international and regional level will be discussed, with particular focus on legislative and policy frameworks for addressing human mobility in the context of environmental change. The article identifies gaps in existing frameworks as well as recent efforts to address them, particularly through mini-multilateral initiatives aimed at identifying principles and practices that should guide governmental action. The article concludes that efforts to improve responses require a better evidence base than currently exists on issues such as the environmental determinants of migration, displacement and planned relocation; the multi-faceted ways in which environmental factors relate to the many other causes of population movements in the cases of human mobility; and the impact of such movements on the well-being of migrants, communities of origin, and communities of destination.

  4. Land use change in China: implication for human-environmental interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    cui, Xuefeng

    2013-04-01

    China's land use has undergone significant changes in history due to the continuous transformations caused by natural and human factors. This paper will review the history of land use changes in China during the past 300 years to identify the major transition periods and discuss the implications for environmental management. Population changes are found to be the primary driving factor in cropland expansion and deforestation in history for a long period. In 1950s, after the foundation of the Republic of China, all land use types experience a huge transition showing the determination of socio-economic policies in modern time after agricultural intensifications. Several current environmental policy in China will also be discussed to explore the effect of policy on land use changes.

  5. Environmental factors in causing human cancers: emphasis on tumorigenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sankpal, Umesh T; Pius, Hima; Khan, Moeez; Shukoor, Mohammed I; Maliakal, Pius; Lee, Chris M; Abdelrahim, Maen; Connelly, Sarah F; Basha, Riyaz

    2012-10-01

    The environment and dietary factors play an essential role in the etiology of cancer. Environmental component is implicated in ~80 % of all cancers; however, the causes for certain cancers are still unknown. The potential players associated with various cancers include chemicals, heavy metals, diet, radiation, and smoking. Lifestyle habits such as smoking and alcohol consumption, exposure to certain chemicals (e.g., polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, organochlorines), metals and pesticides also pose risk in causing human cancers. Several studies indicated a strong association of lung cancer with the exposure to tobacco products and asbestos. The contribution of excessive sunlight, radiation, occupational exposure (e.g., painting, coal, and certain metals) is also well established in cancer. Smoking, excessive alcohol intake, consumption of an unhealthy diet, and lack of physical activity can act as risk factors for cancer and also impact the prognosis. Even though the environmental disposition is linked to cancer, the level and duration of carcinogen-exposure and associated cellular and biochemical aspects determine the actual risk. Modulations in metabolism and DNA adduct formation are considered central mechanisms in environmental carcinogenesis. This review describes the major environmental contributors in causing cancer with an emphasis on molecular aspects associated with environmental disposition in carcinogenesis.

  6. Obesity and the built environment: changes in environmental cues cause energy imbalances.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, D A

    2008-12-01

    The past 30 years have seen dramatic changes in the food and physical activity environments, both of which contribute to the changes in human behavior that could explain obesity. This paper reviews documented changes in the food environment, changes in the physical activity environment and the mechanisms through which people respond to these environments, often without conscious awareness or control. The most important environmental changes have been increases in food accessibility, food salience and decreases in the cost of food. The increases in food marketing and advertising create food cues that artificially stimulate people to feel hungry. The existence of a metabolic pathway that allows excess energy to be stored as fat suggests that people were designed to overeat. Many internal mechanisms favor neurophysiologic responses to food cues that result in overconsumption. External cues, such as food abundance, food variety and food novelty, cause people to override internal signals of satiety. Other factors, such as conditioning and priming, tie food to other desirable outcomes, and thus increase the frequency that hunger is stimulated by environmental cues. People's natural response to the environmental cues are colored by framing, and judgments are flawed and biased depending on how information is presented. People lack insight into how the food environment affects them, and subsequently are unable to change the factors that are responsible for excessive energy consumption. Understanding the causal pathway for overconsumption will be necessary to interrupt the mechanisms that lead to obesity.

  7. Macroecology of Environmental Change Response

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Peter Søgaard

    . The connection of these findings to global warming warrant further investigation, but has the potential to change our perspective of climate change as a destabilizing factor in wildlife communities at large spatial scales. The potential for cold- and warm-adapted species to coexist during climate warming......Human induced changes in the earth system, such as anthropogenic climate change, cause loss of biodiversity that feed back as food, health and environmental challenges for human society. Climate change is one of the main threats to biodiversity and human society due to its global manifestation...... with climate change being proposed as one of the causes. The chapter investigates the evidence for recent increases in tropical precipitation and primary productivity to cause a recovery in migrant populations. It presents novel evidence for two dichotomies in the effect of such “re-greening”. Over yearly time...

  8. Causes of Climate and Environmental Changes: The Need for Environmental-Friendly Education Policy in Nigeria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nwankwoala, H. N. L.

    2015-01-01

    Man cannot naturally be detached from his environment. From time to time, changes in climate and environmental conditions occur as a result of natural and human factors. Obviously, the natural factors are almost beyond human control. But, the human factors are to a very large extent under human control. Thus, this paper tried to discover natural…

  9. Indirect effects of human-induced environmental change on offspring production mediated by behavioural responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Candolin, Ulrika; Nieminen, Anne; Nyman, Johanna

    2014-01-01

    Human-induced rapid environmental changes often cause behavioural alterations in animals. The consequences that these alterations in turn have for the viability of populations are, however, poorly known. We used a population of threespine sticklebacks Gasterosteus aculeatus in the Baltic Sea to investigate the consequences of behavioural responses to human-induced eutrophication for offspring production. The investigated population has been growing during the last decades, and one cause could be increased offspring production. We combined field-based surveys with laboratory-based experiments, and found that an enhanced growth of macroalgae relaxed agonistic interactions among males. This allowed more males to nest, improved hatching success, and increased the number of reproductive cycles that males completed. Thus, the behavioural responses were adaptive at the individual level and increased offspring production. However, a larger proportion of small males of low competitive ability reproduced in dense vegetation. As male size and dominance are heritable, this could influence the genetic composition of the offspring. Together with a higher number of offspring produced, this could influence natural selection and the rate of adaptation to the changing environment. Thus, behavioural responses to a rapid human-induced environmental change can influence offspring production, with potential consequences for population dynamics and evolutionary processes.

  10. Environmental change and human mobility in the digital age

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boas, Ingrid

    2017-01-01

    This intervention argues for the need of research to examine how information and communication technologies (ICTs) shape human mobility in the context of environmental change. ICTs are becoming increasingly central in the daily lives of migrants and communities at risk of environmental events.

  11. Facing global environmental change. Environmental, human, energy, food, health and water security concepts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brauch, Hans Guenter [Freie Univ. Berlin (Germany). Dept. of Political and Social Sciences; United Nations Univ., Bonn (DE). Inst. for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS); AFES-Press, Mosbach (Germany); Oswald Spring, Ursula [National Univ. of Mexico (UNAM), Cuernavaca, MOR (MX). Centro Regional de Investigaciones Multidiscipinarias (CRIM); United Nations Univ., Bonn (DE). Inst. for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS); Grin, John [Amsterdam Univ. (Netherlands). Amsterdam School for Social Science Research; Mesjasz, Czeslaw [Cracow Univ. of Economics (Poland). Faculty of Management; Kameri-Mbote, Patricia [Nairobi Univ. (Kenya). School of Law; International Environmental Law Research Centre, Nairobi (Kenya); Behera, Navnita Chadha [Jamia Millia Islamia Univ., New Delhi (India). Nelson Mandela Center for Peace and Conflict Resolution; Chourou, Bechir [Tunis-Carthage Univ., Hammam-Chatt (Tunisia); Krummenacher, Heinz (eds.) [swisspeace, Bern (Switzerland). FAST International

    2009-07-01

    This policy-focused, global and multidisciplinary security handbook on Facing Global Environmental Change addresses new security threats of the 21st century posed by climate change, desertification, water stress, population growth and urbanization. These security dangers and concerns lead to migration, crises and conflicts. They are on the agenda of the UN, OECD, OSCE, NATO and EU. In 100 chapters, 132 authors from 49 countries analyze the global debate on environmental, human and gender, energy, food, livelihood, health and water security concepts and policy problems. In 10 parts they discuss the context and the securitization of global environmental change and of extreme natural and societal outcomes. They suggest a new research programme to move from knowledge to action, from reactive to proactive policies and to explore the opportunities of environ-mental cooperation for a new peace policy. (orig.)

  12. Evaluation of environmental burdens caused by changes of food waste management systems in Seoul, Korea

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, Suk-Hui; Choi, Ki-In; Osako, Masahiro; Dong, Jong-In

    2007-01-01

    During the last decade, there have been remarkable changes in food waste management in Korea following a ban on direct landfilling. To evaluate the environmental impacts of food waste management systems, we examined individual treatment systems with the LCA approach - landfill, incineration, composting, and feed manufacturing - and estimated the change from 1997 to 2005. The efficient system was different in each impact category, but it was evaluated that landfill is the main contributor to human toxicity and global warming (based on fossil CO 2 ). In contrast, due to the increase of food waste recycling, acidification, eutrophication, and fresh water aquatic ecotoxicity impact was increased. Especially, the high energy consumption and generated residue in recycling systems caused the large burdens in toxicity categories

  13. Does it matter if people think climate change is human caused?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joel Hartter

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available There is a growing consensus that climate is changing, but beliefs about the causal factors vary widely among the general public. Current research shows that such causal beliefs are strongly influenced by cultural, political, and identity-driven views. We examined the influence that local perceptions have on the acceptance of basic facts about climate change. We also examined the connection to wildfire by local people. Two recent telephone surveys found that 37% (in 2011 and 46% (in 2014 of eastern Oregon (USA respondents accept the scientific consensus that human activities are now changing the climate. Although most do not agree with that consensus, large majorities (85–86% do agree that climate is changing, whether by natural or human causes. Acceptance of anthropogenic climate change generally divides along political party lines, but acceptance of climate change more generally, and concerns about wildfire, transcend political divisions. Support for active forest management to reduce wildfire risks is strong in this region, and restoration treatments could be critical to the resilience of both communities and ecosystems. Although these immediate steps involve adaptations to a changing climate, they can be motivated without necessarily invoking human-caused climate change, a divisive concept among local landowners. Keywords: Climate change, Inland West, Public perception, Telephone survey, Wildfire, Working landscapes

  14. Education for climate changes, environmental health and environmental justice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hens, L.; Stoyanov, S.

    2013-01-01

    Full text: The climates changes-health effects-environmental justice nexus is analyzed. The complex issue of climate changes needs to be approached from an interdisciplinary point of view. The nature of the problem necessitates dealing with scientific uncertainty. The health effects caused by climate changes are described and analyzed from a twofold inequalities point of view: health inequalities between rich and poor within countries, and inequalities between northern and southern countries. It is shown thai although the emission of greenhouse gasses is to a large extent caused by the industrialized countries, the effects, including the health effects, will merely impact the South. On the other hand, the southern countries have the highest potential to respond to and offer sustainable energy solutions to counteract climate changes. These inequalities are at the basis to call for environmental justice, of which climate justice is part. This movement calls for diversification of ecologists and their subject of study, more attention for urban ecology, more comprehensive human ecological analyses of complex environmental issues and more participation of stakeholders in the debate and the solution options. The movement advocates a more inclusive ecology targeted to management, sodo-ecological restoration, and comprehensive policies. The fundamental aspects of complexity, inter-disciplinary approaches, uncertainty, and social and natural inequalities should be core issues in environmental health programs. Training on these issues for muitidisciplinary groups of participants necessitates innovative approaches including self-directed, collaborative, and problem oriented learning in which tacit knowledge is important. It is advocated that quality assessments of environmental health programs should take these elements into account. key words: environmental justice, climate changes, sustainable energy solutions

  15. Future generations, environmental ethics, and global environmental change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tonn, B.E.

    1994-12-31

    The elements of a methodology to be employed by the global community to investigate the consequences of global environmental change upon future generations and global ecosystems are outlined in this paper. The methodology is comprised of two major components: A possible future worlds model; and a formal, citizen-oriented process to judge whether the possible future worlds potentially inheritable by future generations meet obligational standards. A broad array of descriptors of future worlds can be encompassed within this framework, including survival of ecosystems and other species and satisfaction of human concerns. The methodology expresses fundamental psychological motivations and human myths journey, renewal, mother earth, and being-in-nature-and incorporates several viewpoints on obligations to future generations-maintaining options, fairness, humility, and the cause of humanity. The methodology overcomes several severe drawbacks of the economic-based methods most commonly used for global environmental policy analysis.

  16. The emergence of land change science for global environmental change and sustainability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Turner II, B.L.; Lambin, E.F.; Reenberg, Anette

    2007-01-01

      Land change science has emerged as a fundamental component of global environmental change and sustainability research.  This interdisciplinary field seeks to understand the dynamics of land-cover and land-use as a coupled human-environment system in order to address theory, concepts, models......, and applications relevant to environmental and societal problems, including the intersection of the two.  The major components and advances in land change are addressed: observation and monitoring; understanding the coupled system-causes, impacts, and consequences; modeling; and synthesis issues.  The six articles...

  17. Pathways of understanding: The interactions of humanity and global environmental change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jacobson, H.K.; Katzenberger, J.; Lousma, J.; Mooney, H.A.; Moss, R.H.; Kuhn, W.; Luterbacher, U.; Wiegandt, E.

    1992-01-01

    How humans, interacting within social systems, affect and are affected by global change is explored. Recognizing the impact human activities have on the environment and responding to the need to document the interactions among human activities, the Consortium for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN) commissioned a group of 12 scientists to develop a framework illustrating the key human systems that contribute to global change. This framework, called the Social Process Diagram, will help natural and social scientists, educators, resource managers and policy makers envision and analyze how human systems interact among themselves and with the natural system. The Social Process Diagram consists of the following blocks that constitute the Diagram's structural framework: (1) fund of knowledge and experience; (2) preferences and expectations; (3) factors of production and technology; (4) population and social structure; (5) economic systems; (6) political systems and institutions; and (7) global scale environmental processes. To demonstrate potential ways the Diagram can be used, this document includes 3 hypothetical scenarios of global change issues: global warming and sea level rise; the environmental impact of human population migration; and energy and the environment. These scenarios demonstrate the Diagram's usefulness for visualizing specific processes that might be studied to evaluate a particular global change issues. The scenario also shows that interesting and unanticipated questions may emerge as links are explored between categories on the Diagram

  18. Pathways of Understanding: the Interactions of Humanity and Global Environmental Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobson, Harold K.; Katzenberger, John; Lousma, Jack; Mooney, Harold A.; Moss, Richard H.; Kuhn, William; Luterbacher, Urs; Wiegandt, Ellen

    1992-01-01

    How humans, interacting within social systems, affect and are affected by global change is explored. Recognizing the impact human activities have on the environment and responding to the need to document the interactions among human activities, the Consortium for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN) commissioned a group of 12 scientists to develop a framework illustrating the key human systems that contribute to global change. This framework, called the Social Process Diagram, will help natural and social scientists, educators, resource managers and policy makers envision and analyze how human systems interact among themselves and with the natural system. The Social Process Diagram consists of the following blocks that constitute the Diagram's structural framework: (1) fund of knowledge and experience; (2) preferences and expectations; (3) factors of production and technology; (4) population and social structure; (5) economic systems; (6) political systems and institutions; and (7) global scale environmental processes. To demonstrate potential ways the Diagram can be used, this document includes 3 hypothetical scenarios of global change issues: global warming and sea level rise; the environmental impact of human population migration; and energy and the environment. These scenarios demonstrate the Diagram's usefulness for visualizing specific processes that might be studied to evaluate a particular global change issues. The scenario also shows that interesting and unanticipated questions may emerge as links are explored between categories on the Diagram.

  19. The High-mountain Cryosphere: Environmental Changes and Human Risks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Shahgedanova

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Reviewed: The High-mountain Cryosphere: Environmental Changes and Human Risks Edited by Christian Huggel, Mark Carey, John J. Clague, and Andreas Kääb. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2015. xii + 363 pp. Hardcover: US$ 140.00, ISBN 978-1-107-06584-0. E-book: US$ 112.00, ISBN 978-1-316-35515-2.

  20. From nature-dominated to human-dominated environmental changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Messerli, Bruno; Grosjean, Martin; Hofer, Thomas; Núñez, Lautaro; Pfister, Christian

    2000-01-01

    To what extent is it realistic and useful to view human history as a sequence of changes from highly vulnerable societies of hunters and gatherers through periods with less vulnerable, well buffered and highly productive agrarian-urban societies to a world with regions of extreme overpopulation and overuse of life support systems, so that vulnerability to climatic-environmental changes and extreme events is again increasing? This question cannot be fully answered in our present state of knowledge, but at least we can try to illustrate, with three case studies from different continents, time periods and ecosystems, some fundamental changes in the relationship between natural processes and human activities that occur, as we pass from a nature-dominated to a human dominated environment. 1. Early-mid Holocene: Nature dominated environment — human adaptation, mitigation, and migration. In the central Andes, the Holocene climate changed from humid (10,800-8000 BP) to extreme arid (8000-3600 BP) conditions. Over the same period, prehistoric hunting communities adopted a more sedentary pattern of resource use by settling close to the few perennial water bodies, where they began the process of domesticating camelids around 5000 BP and irrigation from about 3100 BP. 2. Historical period: An agrarian society in transition from an "enduring" to an innovative human response. Detailed documentary evidence from Western Europe may be used to reconstruct quite precisely the impacts of climatic variations on agrarian societies. The period considered spans a major transition from an apparently passive response to the vagaries of the environment during the 16th century to an active and innovative attitude from the onset of the agrarian revolution in the late 18th century through to the present day. The associated changes in technology and in agricultural practices helped to create a society better able to survive the impact of climatic extremes. 3. The present day: A human dominated

  1. Evolution and behavioural responses to human-induced rapid environmental change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sih, Andrew; Ferrari, Maud C O; Harris, David J

    2011-03-01

    Almost all organisms live in environments that have been altered, to some degree, by human activities. Because behaviour mediates interactions between an individual and its environment, the ability of organisms to behave appropriately under these new conditions is crucial for determining their immediate success or failure in these modified environments. While hundreds of species are suffering dramatically from these environmental changes, others, such as urbanized and pest species, are doing better than ever. Our goal is to provide insights into explaining such variation. We first summarize the responses of some species to novel situations, including novel risks and resources, habitat loss/fragmentation, pollutants and climate change. Using a sensory ecology approach, we present a mechanistic framework for predicting variation in behavioural responses to environmental change, drawing from models of decision-making processes and an understanding of the selective background against which they evolved. Where immediate behavioural responses are inadequate, learning or evolutionary adaptation may prove useful, although these mechanisms are also constrained by evolutionary history. Although predicting the responses of species to environmental change is difficult, we highlight the need for a better understanding of the role of evolutionary history in shaping individuals' responses to their environment and provide suggestion for future work.

  2. Humans rather than climate the primary cause of Pleistocene megafaunal extinction in Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Kaars, Sander; Miller, Gifford H.; Turney, Chris S. M.; Cook, Ellyn J.; Nürnberg, Dirk; Schönfeld, Joachim; Kershaw, A. Peter; Lehman, Scott J.

    2017-01-01

    Environmental histories that span the last full glacial cycle and are representative of regional change in Australia are scarce, hampering assessment of environmental change preceding and concurrent with human dispersal on the continent ca. 47,000 years ago. Here we present a continuous 150,000-year record offshore south-western Australia and identify the timing of two critical late Pleistocene events: wide-scale ecosystem change and regional megafaunal population collapse. We establish that substantial changes in vegetation and fire regime occurred ∼70,000 years ago under a climate much drier than today. We record high levels of the dung fungus Sporormiella, a proxy for herbivore biomass, from 150,000 to 45,000 years ago, then a marked decline indicating megafaunal population collapse, from 45,000 to 43,100 years ago, placing the extinctions within 4,000 years of human dispersal across Australia. These findings rule out climate change, and implicate humans, as the primary extinction cause. PMID:28106043

  3. Humboldtian science, Creole meteorology, and the discovery of human-caused climate change in South America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cushman, Gregory T

    2011-01-01

    The belief that human land use is capable of causing large-scale climatic change lies at the root of modern conservation thought and policy. The origins and popularization of this belief were deeply politicized. Alexander von Humboldt's treatment of the Lake Valencia basin in Venezuela and the desert coast of Peru as natural laboratories for observing the interaction between geophysical and cultural forces was central to this discovery, as was Humboldt's belief that European colonialism was especially destructive to the land. Humboldt's overt cultivation of disciples was critical to building the prestige of this discovery and popularizing the Humboldtian scientific program, which depended fundamentally on local observers, but willfully marginalized chorographic knowledge systems. In creating new, global forms of environmental understanding, Humboldtian science also generated new forms of ignorance.

  4. Middle Holocene rapid environmental changes and human adaptation in Greece

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lespez, Laurent; Glais, Arthur; Lopez-Saez, José-Antonio; Le Drezen, Yann; Tsirtsoni, Zoï; Davidson, Robert; Biree, Laetitia; Malamidou, Dimitra

    2016-03-01

    Numerous researchers discuss of the collapse of civilizations in response to abrupt climate change in the Mediterranean region. The period between 6500 and 5000 cal yr BP is one of the least studied episodes of rapid climate change at the end of the Late Neolithic. This period is characterized by a dramatic decline in settlement and a cultural break in the Balkans. High-resolution paleoenvironmental proxy data obtained in the Lower Angitis Valley enables an examination of the societal responses to rapid climatic change in Greece. Development of a lasting fluvio-lacustrine environment followed by enhanced fluvial activity is evident from 6000 cal yr BP. Paleoecological data show a succession of dry events at 5800-5700, 5450 and 5000-4900 cal yr BP. These events correspond to incursion of cold air masses to the eastern Mediterranean, confirming the climatic instability of the middle Holocene climate transition. Two periods with farming and pastural activities (6300-5600 and 5100-4700 cal BP) are evident. The intervening period is marked by environmental changes, but the continuous occurrence of anthropogenic taxa suggests the persistence of human activities despite the absence of archaeological evidence. The environmental factors alone were not sufficient to trigger the observed societal changes.

  5. Climate Change, Human Rights, and Social Justice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy, Barry S; Patz, Jonathan A

    2015-01-01

    The environmental and health consequences of climate change, which disproportionately affect low-income countries and poor people in high-income countries, profoundly affect human rights and social justice. Environmental consequences include increased temperature, excess precipitation in some areas and droughts in others, extreme weather events, and increased sea level. These consequences adversely affect agricultural production, access to safe water, and worker productivity, and, by inundating land or making land uninhabitable and uncultivatable, will force many people to become environmental refugees. Adverse health effects caused by climate change include heat-related disorders, vector-borne diseases, foodborne and waterborne diseases, respiratory and allergic disorders, malnutrition, collective violence, and mental health problems. These environmental and health consequences threaten civil and political rights and economic, social, and cultural rights, including rights to life, access to safe food and water, health, security, shelter, and culture. On a national or local level, those people who are most vulnerable to the adverse environmental and health consequences of climate change include poor people, members of minority groups, women, children, older people, people with chronic diseases and disabilities, those residing in areas with a high prevalence of climate-related diseases, and workers exposed to extreme heat or increased weather variability. On a global level, there is much inequity, with low-income countries, which produce the least greenhouse gases (GHGs), being more adversely affected by climate change than high-income countries, which produce substantially higher amounts of GHGs yet are less immediately affected. In addition, low-income countries have far less capability to adapt to climate change than high-income countries. Adaptation and mitigation measures to address climate change needed to protect human society must also be planned to protect

  6. Environmental Degradation: Causes and Consequences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Swati Tyagi

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The subject of environmental economics is at the forefront of the green debate: the environment can no longer be viewed as an entity separate from the economy. Environmental degradation is of many types and have many consequences. To address this challenge a number of studies have been conducted in both developing and developed countries applying different methods to capture health benefits from improved environmental quality. Minimizing exposure to environmental risk factors by enhancing air quality and access to improved sources of drinking and bathing water, sanitation and clean energy is found to be associated with significant health benefits and can contribute significantly to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals of environmental sustainability, health and development. In this paper, I describe the national and global causes and consequences of environmental degradation and social injustice. This paper provides a review of the literature on studies associated with reduced environmental risk and in particular focusing on reduced air pollution, enhanced water quality and climate change mitigation.

  7. Challenges to communicate risks of human-caused earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klose, C. D.

    2014-12-01

    The awareness of natural hazards has been up-trending in recent years. In particular, this is true for earthquakes, which increase in frequency and magnitude in regions that normally do not experience seismic activity. In fact, one of the major concerns for many communities and businesses is that humans today seem to cause earthquakes due to large-scale shale gas production, dewatering and flooding of mines and deep geothermal power production. Accordingly, without opposing any of these technologies it should be a priority of earth scientists who are researching natural hazards to communicate earthquake risks. This presentation discusses the challenges that earth scientists are facing to properly communicate earthquake risks, in light of the fact that human-caused earthquakes are an environmental change affecting only some communities and businesses. Communication channels may range from research papers, books and class room lectures to outreach events and programs, popular media events or even social media networks.

  8. Environmental impact of climate change in pakistan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khan, S.; Raja, I.A.

    2014-01-01

    Climate change results in the increase or decrease in temperature and rainfall. These have significant impact on environment - impinge agricultural crop yields, affect human health, cause changes to forests and other ecosystems, and even impact our energy supply. Climate change is a global phenomenon and its impact can be observed on Pakistan's economy and environment. This paper contains details concerning the climate change and environmental impacts. It takes into account current and projected key vulnerabilities, prospects for adaptation, and the relationships between climate change mitigation and environment. The purpose of the study is to devise national policies and incentive systems combined with national level capacity-building programs to encourage demand-oriented conservation technologies. Recommendations are also made to abate the climate change related issues in country. (author)

  9. Changes in extreme events and the potential impacts on human health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, Jesse E; Brown, Claudia Langford; Conlon, Kathryn; Herring, Stephanie; Kunkel, Kenneth E; Lawrimore, Jay; Luber, George; Schreck, Carl; Smith, Adam; Uejio, Christopher

    2018-04-01

    Extreme weather and climate-related events affect human health by causing death, injury, and illness, as well as having large socioeconomic impacts. Climate change has caused changes in extreme event frequency, intensity, and geographic distribution, and will continue to be a driver for change in the future. Some of these events include heat waves, droughts, wildfires, dust storms, flooding rains, coastal flooding, storm surges, and hurricanes. The pathways connecting extreme events to health outcomes and economic losses can be diverse and complex. The difficulty in predicting these relationships comes from the local societal and environmental factors that affect disease burden. More information is needed about the impacts of climate change on public health and economies to effectively plan for and adapt to climate change. This paper describes some of the ways extreme events are changing and provides examples of the potential impacts on human health and infrastructure. It also identifies key research gaps to be addressed to improve the resilience of public health to extreme events in the future. Extreme weather and climate events affect human health by causing death, injury, and illness, as well as having large socioeconomic impacts. Climate change has caused changes in extreme event frequency, intensity, and geographic distribution, and will continue to be a driver for change in the future. Some of these events include heat waves, droughts, wildfires, flooding rains, coastal flooding, surges, and hurricanes. The pathways connecting extreme events to health outcomes and economic losses can be diverse and complex. The difficulty in predicting these relationships comes from the local societal and environmental factors that affect disease burden.

  10. Change: Threat or opportunity for human progress V. 5. Ecological change: Environment, development and poverty linkages

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kirdar, U [ed.

    1992-01-01

    This volume consists of 18 articles that examine the changing ecological balance of the world and its effect on human prosperity. The problems caused by global warning, climate change and environmental degradation will have serious effects in both the short and the long term. Two of the 18 articles fall within INIS scope: these have been indexed separately. Tabs.

  11. Change: Threat or opportunity for human progress? V. 5. Ecological change: Environment, development and poverty linkages

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kirdar, U.

    1992-01-01

    This volume consists of 18 articles that examine the changing ecological balance of the world and its effect on human prosperity. The problems caused by global warning, climate change and environmental degradation will have serious effects in both the short and the long term. Two of the 18 articles fall within INIS scope: these have been indexed separately. Tabs

  12. Holocene environmental change in the Albertine Rift : sediment-based evidence from Virunga volcanoes

    OpenAIRE

    McGlynn, Gayle

    2012-01-01

    The Albertine Rift is one of the most important conservation areas in tropical Africa, with exceptionally high levels of biodiversity (including rare and endemic montane flora and fauna) and high human population densities. Environmental changes in the Albertine Rift during the Holocene have been influenced both by long-term climate change and by human activity, although establishing clear cause-effect relationships is often problematic - particularly as this area is known to have had a long ...

  13. Attribution Analyses of Impacts of Environmental Changes on Streamflow and Sediment Load in a Mountainous Basin, Vietnam

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jie Wang

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Located in the southeastern China and northern Vietnam, the Red River is an important international trans-boundary river that has experienced rapid deforestation and environmental changes over the past decades. We conducted attribution analysis of impacts of various environmental changes on streamflow and sediment load. The contribution of reclassified environmental changes to total change of the streamflow and sediment load was separated. Land cover change based on climate-induced and human-induced indicators were defined. We found that human-induced land cover change was the main factor affecting changes of the streamflow and sediment load. Changes of the land cover were more pronounced in the dry season than in the wet season whereas sediment load changed more in the wet season than in the dry season. In addition, changes in sediment load were mainly caused by human-induced land cover change and the changes of land cover were more influential on sediment load than on streamflow in the Red River basin.

  14. Causes of environmental change in the Alligator Rivers region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Skidmore, J.

    1990-01-01

    Covering some 28,000 square kilometres of the Northern Territory, the Alligator Rivers Region (ARR) includes the catchments of the East, South and West Alligator Rivers, and many small abandoned uranium mines. To introduce the problems of human impact on the ARR, the toxicologically significant aspects of the local environment were first examined, then the possible effects on it of mining and other human activities. It was found that the most deleterious impact on the region is not caused by mining but by human settlement, introduction of animals (notably the buffalo) and plants, the use of fire and tourism

  15. Bare Rocks and Fallen Angels: Environmental Change, Climate Perceptions and Ritual Practice in the Peruvian Andes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karsten Paerregaard

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available One of the many dimensions of globalization is climate change that in recent years has caused much concern in the developed world. The aim of this article is to explore how people living on the margins of the global world conceive climate change. Drawing on ethnographic field data from the 1980s and today it examines how the ritual practice and the religious belief of a rural community in the Peruvian Andes has changed during the last 27 years and how the villagers perceive this change. It argues that the villagers traditionally conceive the environment as co-habited by humans and non-humans but that recent environmental change in the Andes has caused a shift in this world-view. Today, many villagers have adopted the global vocabulary on climate change and are concerned with their own impact in the environment. However, the villagers reject the idea that it is human activities in other parts of the world that cause environmental problems in their community and claim that these must be addressed locally. It suggests that even though the villagers’ reluctance to subscribe to the global discourse of climate change makes them look like the companions of climate skeptics in the developed world, their reasons are very different.

  16. [Drivers of human-caused fire occurrence and its variation trend under climate change in the Great Xing'an Mountains, Northeast China].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Shun; Wu, Zhi Wei; Liang, Yu; He, Hong Shi

    2017-01-01

    The Great Xing'an Mountains are an important boreal forest region in China with high frequency of fire occurrences. With climate change, this region may have a substantial change in fire frequency. Building the relationship between spatial pattern of human-caused fire occurrence and its influencing factors, and predicting the spatial patterns of human-caused fires under climate change scenarios are important for fire management and carbon balance in boreal forests. We employed a spatial point pattern model to explore the relationship between the spatial pattern of human-caused fire occurrence and its influencing factors based on a database of historical fire records (1967-2006) in the Great Xing'an Mountains. The fire occurrence time was used as dependent variable. Nine abiotic (annual temperature and precipitation, elevation, aspect, and slope), biotic (vegetation type), and human factors (distance to the nearest road, road density, and distance to the nearest settlement) were selected as explanatory variables. We substituted the climate scenario data (RCP 2.6 and RCP 8.5) for the current climate data to predict the future spatial patterns of human-caused fire occurrence in 2050. Our results showed that the point pattern progress (PPP) model was an effective tool to predict the future relationship between fire occurrence and its spatial covariates. The climatic variables might significantly affect human-caused fire occurrence, while vegetation type, elevation and human variables were important predictors of human-caused fire occurrence. The human-caused fire occurrence probability was expected to increase in the south of the area, and the north and the area along the main roads would also become areas with high human-caused fire occurrence. The human-caused fire occurrence would increase by 72.2% under the RCP 2.6 scenario and by 166.7% under the RCP 8.5 scenario in 2050. Under climate change scenarios, the spatial patterns of human-caused fires were mainly

  17. Human behavioral contributions to climate change: psychological and contextual drivers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swim, Janet K; Clayton, Susan; Howard, George S

    2011-01-01

    We are facing rapid changes in the global climate, and these changes are attributable to human behavior. Humans produce this global impact through our use of natural resources, multiplied by the vast increase in population seen in the past 50 to 100 years. Our goal in this article is to examine the underlying psychosocial causes of human impact, primarily through patterns of reproduction and consumption. We identify and distinguish individual, societal, and behavioral predictors of environmental impact. Relevant research in these areas (as well as areas that would be aided by greater attention by psychologists) are reviewed. We conclude by highlighting ethical issues that emerge when considering how to address human behavioral contributions to climate change.

  18. U.S. Geological Survey environmental health science strategy: Providing environmental health science for a changing world

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bright, Patricia R.; Buxton, Herbert T.; Balistrieri, Laurie S.; Barber, Larry B.; Chapelle, Francis H.; Cross, Paul C.; Krabbenhoft, David P.; Plumlee, Geoffrey S.; Sleeman, Jonathan M.; Tillitt, Donald E.; Toccalino, Patricia L.; Winton, James R.

    2013-01-01

    America has an abundance of natural resources. We have bountiful clean water, fertile soil, and unrivaled national parks, wildlife refuges, and public lands. These resources enrich our lives and preserve our health and wellbeing. These resources have been maintained because of our history of respect for their value and an enduring commitment to their vigilant protection. Awareness of the social, economic, and personal value of the health of our environment is increasing. The emergence of environmentally driven diseases caused by exposure to contaminants and pathogens is a growing concern worldwide. New health threats and patterns of established threats are affected by both natural and anthropogenic changes to the environment. Human activities are key drivers of emerging (new and re-emerging) health threats. Societal demands for land and natural resources, quality of life, and economic prosperity lead to environmental change. Natural earth processes, climate trends, and related climatic events will compound the environmental impact of human activities. These environmental drivers will influence exposure to disease agents, including viral, bacterial, prion, and fungal pathogens, parasites, synthetic chemicals and substances, natural earth materials, toxins, and other biogenic compounds.

  19. Changing Environmentally Relevant Behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gudgion, T. J.; Thomas, M. Pugh

    1991-01-01

    Considered is the role of psychology in helping to change those human behaviors which have deleterious environmental effects. The foremost conclusion is that behavioral psychology can offer practical techniques for such change, yet there are indications that enduring behaviors may be better realized through the intrinsic motivation maintained by…

  20. Environmental chemical exposures and human epigenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hou, Lifang; Zhang, Xiao; Wang, Dong; Baccarelli, Andrea

    2012-01-01

    Every year more than 13 million deaths worldwide are due to environmental pollutants, and approximately 24% of diseases are caused by environmental exposures that might be averted through preventive measures. Rapidly growing evidence has linked environmental pollutants with epigenetic variations, including changes in DNA methylation, histone modifications and microRNAs. Environ mental chemicals and epigenetic changes All of these mechanisms are likely to play important roles in disease aetiology, and their modifications due to environmental pollutants might provide further understanding of disease aetiology, as well as biomarkers reflecting exposures to environmental pollutants and/or predicting the risk of future disease. We summarize the findings on epigenetic alterations related to environmental chemical exposures, and propose mechanisms of action by means of which the exposures may cause such epigenetic changes. We discuss opportunities, challenges and future directions for future epidemiology research in environmental epigenomics. Future investigations are needed to solve methodological and practical challenges, including uncertainties about stability over time of epigenomic changes induced by the environment, tissue specificity of epigenetic alterations, validation of laboratory methods, and adaptation of bioinformatic and biostatistical methods to high-throughput epigenomics. In addition, there are numerous reports of epigenetic modifications arising following exposure to environmental toxicants, but most have not been directly linked to disease endpoints. To complete our discussion, we also briefly summarize the diseases that have been linked to environmental chemicals-related epigenetic changes. PMID:22253299

  1. Environmental and chemotherapeutic agents induce breakage at genes involved in leukemia-causing gene rearrangements in human hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Thys, Ryan G., E-mail: rthys@wakehealth.edu [Department of Cancer Biology, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Medical Center Boulevard, Winston-Salem, NC 27157-1016 (United States); Lehman, Christine E., E-mail: clehman@wakehealth.edu [Department of Cancer Biology, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Medical Center Boulevard, Winston-Salem, NC 27157-1016 (United States); Pierce, Levi C.T., E-mail: Levipierce@gmail.com [Human Longevity, Inc., San Diego, California 92121 (United States); Wang, Yuh-Hwa, E-mail: yw4b@virginia.edu [Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, University of Virginia, 1340 Jefferson Park Avenue, Charlottesville, VA 22908-0733 (United States)

    2015-09-15

    Highlights: • Environmental/chemotherapeutic agents cause DNA breakage in MLL and CBFB in HSPCs. • Diethylnitrosamine-induced DNA breakage at MLL and CBFB shown for the first time. • Chemical-induced DNA breakage occurs at topoisomerase II cleavage sites. • Chemical-induced DNA breaks display a pattern similar to those in leukemia patients. • Long-term exposures suggested to generate DNA breakage at leukemia-related genes. - Abstract: Hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) give rise to all of the cells that make up the hematopoietic system in the human body, making their stability and resilience especially important. Damage to these cells can severely impact cell development and has the potential to cause diseases, such as leukemia. Leukemia-causing chromosomal rearrangements have largely been studied in the context of radiation exposure and are formed by a multi-step process, including an initial DNA breakage and fusion of the free DNA ends. However, the mechanism for DNA breakage in patients without previous radiation exposure is unclear. Here, we investigate the role of non-cytotoxic levels of environmental factors, benzene, and diethylnitrosamine (DEN), and chemotherapeutic agents, etoposide, and doxorubicin, in generating DNA breakage at the patient breakpoint hotspots of the MLL and CBFB genes in human HSPCs. These conditions represent exposure to chemicals encountered daily or residual doses from chemotherapeutic drugs. Exposure of HSPCs to non-cytotoxic levels of environmental chemicals or chemotherapeutic agents causes DNA breakage at preferential sites in the human genome, including the leukemia-related genes MLL and CBFB. Though benzene, etoposide, and doxorubicin have previously been linked to leukemia formation, this is the first study to demonstrate a role for DEN in the generation of DNA breakage at leukemia-specific sites. These chemical-induced DNA breakpoints coincide with sites of predicted topoisomerase II cleavage. The

  2. Environmental and chemotherapeutic agents induce breakage at genes involved in leukemia-causing gene rearrangements in human hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thys, Ryan G.; Lehman, Christine E.; Pierce, Levi C.T.; Wang, Yuh-Hwa

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • Environmental/chemotherapeutic agents cause DNA breakage in MLL and CBFB in HSPCs. • Diethylnitrosamine-induced DNA breakage at MLL and CBFB shown for the first time. • Chemical-induced DNA breakage occurs at topoisomerase II cleavage sites. • Chemical-induced DNA breaks display a pattern similar to those in leukemia patients. • Long-term exposures suggested to generate DNA breakage at leukemia-related genes. - Abstract: Hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) give rise to all of the cells that make up the hematopoietic system in the human body, making their stability and resilience especially important. Damage to these cells can severely impact cell development and has the potential to cause diseases, such as leukemia. Leukemia-causing chromosomal rearrangements have largely been studied in the context of radiation exposure and are formed by a multi-step process, including an initial DNA breakage and fusion of the free DNA ends. However, the mechanism for DNA breakage in patients without previous radiation exposure is unclear. Here, we investigate the role of non-cytotoxic levels of environmental factors, benzene, and diethylnitrosamine (DEN), and chemotherapeutic agents, etoposide, and doxorubicin, in generating DNA breakage at the patient breakpoint hotspots of the MLL and CBFB genes in human HSPCs. These conditions represent exposure to chemicals encountered daily or residual doses from chemotherapeutic drugs. Exposure of HSPCs to non-cytotoxic levels of environmental chemicals or chemotherapeutic agents causes DNA breakage at preferential sites in the human genome, including the leukemia-related genes MLL and CBFB. Though benzene, etoposide, and doxorubicin have previously been linked to leukemia formation, this is the first study to demonstrate a role for DEN in the generation of DNA breakage at leukemia-specific sites. These chemical-induced DNA breakpoints coincide with sites of predicted topoisomerase II cleavage. The

  3. “Goodness itself must change” – Anthroponomy in an age of socially-caused, planetary environmental change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bendik-Keymer Jeremy David

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Given the reality of socially-caused, planetary-scaled, environmental change, how – if at all – should our ethical concepts change? It has been a hallmark of environmental literature in recent years to insist that they should or even must. It will be argued that, yes, our ethical concepts should change by exploring the changes needed for the core ethical concept of goodness. Goodness, it will be argued, must change to reflect a change in priority from personal intentions to the right relation between an agent and the collective to which he/she belongs. This relation, which is called herein the civic relation, centers on taking responsibility for the structure which produces unintentional, aggregate effects at the level of planetary ecology. Examples include a fossil fuel-based infrastructure, isolationist nationalism that undercuts international climate agreements to decarbonize energy, and the lack of a political forum to respect the rights of future generations. More generally, goodness according to the civic relation must express an anthroponomic orientation to life – a sustained, life-long attempt to build the practice of the collective self-regulation of humankind as a whole. Of the many consequences of this meta-ethical change in goodness, one is that it addresses the banality of evil today.

  4. A multi-scale assessment of human and environmental constraints on forest land cover change on the Oregon (USA) coast range.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael C. Wimberly; Janet L. Ohmann

    2004-01-01

    Human modification of forest habitats is a major component of global environmental change. Even areas that remain predominantly forested may be changed considerably by human alteration of historical disturbance regimes. To better understand human influences on the abundance and pattern of forest habitats, we studied forest land cover change from 1936 to 1996 in a 25...

  5. Collective behaviour, uncertainty and environmental change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bentley, R Alexander; O'Brien, Michael J

    2015-11-28

    A central aspect of cultural evolutionary theory concerns how human groups respond to environmental change. Although we are painting with a broad brush, it is fair to say that prior to the twenty-first century, adaptation often happened gradually over multiple human generations, through a combination of individual and social learning, cumulative cultural evolution and demographic shifts. The result was a generally resilient and sustainable population. In the twenty-first century, however, considerable change happens within small portions of a human generation, on a vastly larger range of geographical and population scales and involving a greater degree of horizontal learning. As a way of gauging the complexity of societal response to environmental change in a globalized future, we discuss several theoretical tools for understanding how human groups adapt to uncertainty. We use our analysis to estimate the limits of predictability of future societal change, in the belief that knowing when to hedge bets is better than relying on a false sense of predictability. © 2015 The Author(s).

  6. Four thousand years of environmental change and human activity in the Cochabamba Basin, Bolivia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Joseph J.; Gosling, William D.; Coe, Angela L.; Brooks, Stephen J.; Gulliver, Pauline

    The Cochabamba Basin (Bolivia) is on the ancient road network connecting Andean and lowland areas. Little is known about the longevity of this trade route or how people responded to past environmental changes. The eastern end of the Cochabamba valley system constricts at the Vacas Lake District, constraining the road network and providing an ideal location in which to examine past human-environmental interactions. Multi-proxy analysis of sediment from Lake Challacaba has allowed a c. 4000 year environmental history to be reconstructed. Fluctuations in drought tolerant pollen taxa and calcium carbonate indicate two periods of reduced moisture availability ( c. 4000-3370 and c. 2190-1020 cal yr BP) compared to adjacent wetter episodes ( c. 3370-2190 and c. 1020 cal yr BP-present). The moisture fluctuations broadly correlate to El Niño/Southern Oscillation variations reported elsewhere. High charcoal abundance from c. 4000 to 2000 yr ago indicates continuous use of the ancient road network. A decline in charcoal and an increase in dung fungus ( Sporormiella) c. 1340 -1210 cal yr BP, suggests that cultural changes were a major factor in shaping the modern landscape. Despite undisputable impacts of human populations on the Polylepis woodlands today, we see no evidence of woodland clearance in the Challacaba record.

  7. Lines of evidence for environmentally driven human migration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, K. F.; D'Odorico, P.

    2012-12-01

    International human migration is an important mechanism that affects, and is affected by, various human and natural systems. With the number of people living outside their countries of origin currently estimated at 214 million people and projected to potentially reach more than 400 million people by mid-century, the topic of international human movements presents possible advantages and pitfalls for both sending and receiving countries on multiple fronts (e.g. economic, environmental, political and cultural). Understanding how human migration interacts with human and natural systems is therefore essential in realizing a sustainable and balanced future. While the study of international migration has historically been motivated largely by economic and political interests, the issue of environmentally induced migration has become increasingly important in light of a rapidly changing climate in conjunction with increasing population pressure on many important resources. Particularly in terms of theoretical and conceptual discussions, environmentally induced human migration has been receiving increased attention in the literature. To date, few studies - many of which focus on internal (intra-national) or regional migration - have attempted to quantify the interactions of human migration and the environment, with little attention paid to the global scale as a result of varying regional factors and lack of sufficient data. Recently available global bilateral migration datasets have been developed that allow for a more comprehensive understanding of human movements between all countries. With these datasets, we seek to elucidate environmental drivers of human migration over the past half-century using a multi-pronged approach. First, using a recently developed universal radiation model, we examine human movements based solely on global population distribution. Next, by comparison of migration movements with selected economic, environmental and human welfare indicators, we

  8. Collective violence caused by climate change and how it threatens health and human rights.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy, Barry S; Sidel, Victor W

    2014-06-14

    The weight of scientific evidence indicates that climate change is causally associated with collective violence. This evidence arises from individual studies over wide ranges of time and geographic location, and from two extensive meta-analyses. Complex pathways that underlie this association are not fully understood; however, increased ambient temperatures and extremes of rainfall, with their resultant adverse impacts on the environment and risk factors for violence, appear to play key roles. Collective violence due to climate change poses serious threats to health and human rights, including by causing morbidity and mortality directly and also indirectly by damage to the health-supporting infrastructure of society, forcing people to migrate from their homes and communities, damaging the environment, and diverting human and financial resources. This paper also briefly addresses issues for future research on the relationship between climate change and collective violence, the prevention of collective violence due to climate change, and States' obligations to protect human rights, to prevent collective violence, and to promote and support measures to mitigate and adapt to climate change. Copyright © 2014 Levy and Sidel. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/), which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

  9. Climate change, human health, and epidemiological transition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrett, Bruce; Charles, Joel W; Temte, Jonathan L

    2015-01-01

    The health of populations depends on the availability of clean air, water, food, and sanitation, exposure to pathogens, toxins and environmental hazards, and numerous genetic, behavioral and social factors. For many thousands of years, human life expectancy was low, and population growth was slow. The development of technology-based civilizations facilitated what Abdel Omran called "epidemiological transition," with increasing life expectancy and rapid population growth. To a large extent, the spectacular growth of human populations during the past two centuries was made possible by the energy extracted from fossil fuels. We have now learned, however, that greenhouse gases from fossil fuel combustion are warming the planet's surface, causing changes in oceanic and atmospheric systems, and disrupting weather and hydrological patterns. Climate change poses unprecedented threats to human health by impacts on food and water security, heat waves and droughts, violent storms, infectious disease, and rising sea levels. Whether or not humanity can reduce greenhouse gas emissions quickly enough to slow climate change to a rate that will allow societies to successfully adapt is not yet known. This essay reviews the current state of relevant knowledge, and points in a few directions that those interested in human health may wish to consider. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Climate change impacts on human exposures to air pollution ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    This is an abstract for a presentations at the Annual Conference of the International Society on Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology. This presentation will serve as an introduction to the symposium. As we consider the potential health impacts of a warming planet, the relationships between climate change and air pollutants become increasingly important to understand. These relationships are complex and highly variable, causing a variety of environmental impacts at local, regional and global scales. Human exposures and health impacts for air pollutants have the potential to be altered by changes in climate through multiple factors that drive population exposures to these pollutants. Research on this topic will provide both state and local governments with the tools and scientific knowledge base to undertake any necessary adaptation of the air pollution regulations and/or public health management systems in the face of climate change.

  11. A genomic point-of-view on environmental factors influencing the human brain methylome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    LaSalle, Janine M

    2011-07-01

    The etiologic paradigm of complex human disorders such as autism is that genetic and environmental risk factors are independent and additive, but the interactive effects at the epigenetic interface are largely ignored. Genomic technologies have radically changed perspective on the human genome and how the epigenetic interface may impact complex human disorders. Here, I review recent genomic, environmental, and epigenetic findings that suggest a new paradigm of "integrative genomics" in which genetic variation in genomic size may be impacted by dietary and environmental factors that influence the genomic saturation of DNA methylation. Human genomes are highly repetitive, but the interface of large-scale genomic differences with environmental factors that alter the DNA methylome such as dietary folate is under-explored. In addition to obvious direct effects of some environmental toxins on the genome by causing chromosomal breaks, non-mutagenic toxin exposures correlate with DNA hypomethylation that can lead to rearrangements between repeats or increased retrotransposition. Since human neurodevelopment appears to be particularly sensitive to alterations in epigenetic pathways, a further focus will be on how developing neurons may be particularly impacted by even subtle alterations to DNA methylation and proposing new directions towards understanding the quixotic etiology of autism by integrative genomic approaches.

  12. Role of social science in global environmental change: case of urbanisation

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Njiro, E

    2006-02-01

    Full Text Available the role of social scientists in global environmental change by examining urbanisation and other environmental changes as suggested in the science plan of the International Human Dimensions Programme on Global Environmental Change (IHDP 2005)...

  13. Environmental variation and population responses to global change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lawson, Callum R.; Vindenes, Yngvild; Bailey, Liam; van de Pol, Martijn

    2015-01-01

    Species' responses to environmental changes such as global warming are affected not only by trends in mean conditions, but also by natural and human-induced environmental fluctuations. Methods are needed to predict how such environmental variation affects ecological and evolutionary processes, in

  14. CLIMATE CHANGES: CAUSES AND IMPACT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camelia Slave

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Present brings several environmental problems for people. Many of these are closely related, but by far the most important problem is the climate change. In the course of Earth evolution, climate has changed many times, sometimes dramatically. Warmer eras always replaced and were in turn replaced by glacial ones. However, the climate of the past almost ten thousand years has been very stable. During this period human civilization has also developed. In the past nearly 100 years - since the beginning of industrialization - the global average temperature has increased by approx. 0.6 ° C (after IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, faster than at any time in the last 1000 years.

  15. Medieval Iceland, Greenland, and the New Human Condition: A case study in integrated environmental humanities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartman, Steven; Ogilvie, A. E. J.; Ingimundarson, Jón Haukur; Dugmore, A. J.; Hambrecht, George; McGovern, T. H.

    2017-09-01

    This paper contributes to recent studies exploring the longue durée of human impacts on island landscapes, the impacts of climate and other environmental changes on human communities, and the interaction of human societies and their environments at different spatial and temporal scales. In particular, the paper addresses Iceland during the medieval period (with a secondary, comparative focus on Norse Greenland) and discusses episodes where environmental and climatic changes have appeared to cross key thresholds for agricultural productivity. The paper draws upon international, interdisciplinary research in the North Atlantic region led by the North Atlantic Biocultural Organization (NABO) and the Nordic Network for Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies (NIES) in the Circumpolar Networks program of the Integrated History and Future of People on Earth (IHOPE). By interlinking analyses of historically grounded literature with archaeological studies and environmental science, valuable new perspectives can emerge on how these past societies may have understood and coped with such impacts. As climate and other environmental changes do not operate in isolation, vulnerabilities created by socioeconomic factors also beg consideration. The paper illustrates the benefits of an integrated environmental-studies approach that draws on data, methodologies and analytical tools of environmental humanities, social sciences, and geosciences to better understand long-term human ecodynamics and changing human-landscape-environment interactions through time. One key goal is to apply previously unused data and concerted expertise to illuminate human responses to past changes; a secondary aim is to consider how lessons derived from these cases may be applicable to environmental threats and socioecological risks in the future, especially as understood in light of the New Human Condition, the concept transposed from Hannah Arendt's influential framing of the human condition that is

  16. Environmental change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Majgaard Krarup, Jonna

    of a changing environment is also addressing social and human issues and concerns, and architectural norms and tools. One of the main themes and questions concerns how we relate the built environment and open urban spaces to water. Water plays an important role in Danish culture, tradition. To many Danes......In low-lying regions like Denmark a rising sea level combined with change in rain and wind patterns now cause problems in several coastal cities where open urban spaces, infrastructure, and houses are flooded. The initiatives taken to prevent damages are mainly technical. But the impact...

  17. Human-polar bear interactions in a changing Arctic: Existing and emerging concerns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atwood, Todd C.; Simac, Kristin; Breck, Stewart; York, Geoff; Wilder, James

    2017-01-01

    The behavior and sociality of polar bears (Ursus maritimus) have been shaped by evolved preferences for sea ice habitat and preying on marine mammals. However, human behavior is causing changes to the Arctic marine ecosystem through the influence of greenhouse gas emissions that drive long-term change in ecosystem processes and via the presence of in situ stressors associated with increasing human activities. These changes are making it more difficult for polar bears to reliably use their traditional habitats and maintain fitness. Here, we provide an overview of how human activities in the Arctic are likely to change a polar bear’s behavior and to influence their resilience to environmental change. Developing a more thorough understanding of polar bear behavior and their capacity for flexibility in response to anthropogenic disturbances and subsequent mitigations may lead to successful near-term management interventions.

  18. Determining environmental causes of biological effects: the need for a mechanistic physiological dimension in conservation biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seebacher, Frank; Franklin, Craig E

    2012-06-19

    The emerging field of Conservation Physiology links environmental change and ecological success by the application of physiological theory, approaches and tools to elucidate and address conservation problems. Human activity has changed the natural environment to a point where the viability of many ecosystems is now under threat. There are already many descriptions of how changes in biological patterns are correlated with environmental changes. The next important step is to determine the causative relationship between environmental variability and biological systems. Physiology provides the mechanistic link between environmental change and ecological patterns. Physiological research, therefore, should be integrated into conservation to predict the biological consequences of human activity, and to identify those species or populations that are most vulnerable.

  19. Climate change: evidence of human causes and arguments for emissions reduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baum, Seth D; Haqq-Misra, Jacob D; Karmosky, Chris

    2012-06-01

    In a recent editorial, Raymond Spier expresses skepticism over claims that climate change is driven by human actions and that humanity should act to avoid climate change. This paper responds to this skepticism as part of a broader review of the science and ethics of climate change. While much remains uncertain about the climate, research indicates that observed temperature increases are human-driven. Although opinions vary regarding what should be done, prominent arguments against action are based on dubious factual and ethical positions. Thus, the skepticisms in the recent editorial are unwarranted. This does not diminish the general merits of skeptical intellectual inquiry.

  20. Statistical aspects and risks of human-caused earthquakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klose, C. D.

    2013-12-01

    The seismological community invests ample human capital and financial resources to research and predict risks associated with earthquakes. Industries such as the insurance and re-insurance sector are equally interested in using probabilistic risk models developed by the scientific community to transfer risks. These models are used to predict expected losses due to naturally occurring earthquakes. But what about the risks associated with human-caused earthquakes? Such risk models are largely absent from both industry and academic discourse. In countries around the world, informed citizens are becoming increasingly aware and concerned that this economic bias is not sustainable for long-term economic growth, environmental and human security. Ultimately, citizens look to their government officials to hold industry accountable. In the Netherlands, for example, the hydrocarbon industry is held accountable for causing earthquakes near Groningen. In Switzerland, geothermal power plants were shut down or suspended because they caused earthquakes in canton Basel and St. Gallen. The public and the private non-extractive industry needs access to information about earthquake risks in connection with sub/urban geoengineeing activities, including natural gas production through fracking, geothermal energy production, carbon sequestration, mining and water irrigation. This presentation illuminates statistical aspects of human-caused earthquakes with respect to different geologic environments. Statistical findings are based on the first catalog of human-caused earthquakes (in Klose 2013). Findings are discussed which include the odds to die during a medium-size earthquake that is set off by geomechanical pollution. Any kind of geoengineering activity causes this type of pollution and increases the likelihood of triggering nearby faults to rupture.

  1. The public's belief in climate change and its human cause are increasing over time.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milfont, Taciano L; Wilson, Marc S; Sibley, Chris G

    2017-01-01

    Polls examining public opinion on the subject of climate change are now commonplace, and one-off public opinion polls provide a snapshot of citizen's opinions that can inform policy and communication strategies. However, cross-sectional polls do not track opinions over time, thus making it impossible to ascertain whether key climate change beliefs held by the same group of individuals are changing or not. Here we examine the extent to which individual's level of agreement with two key beliefs ("climate change is real" and "climate change is caused by humans") remain stable or increase/decrease over a six-year period in New Zealand using latent growth curve modelling (n = 10,436). Data were drawn from the New Zealand Attitudes and Values Study, a probabilistic national panel study, and indicated that levels of agreement to both beliefs have steadily increased over the 2009-2015 period. Given that climate change beliefs and concerns are key predictors of climate change action, our findings suggest that a combination of targeted endeavors, as well as serendipitous events, may successfully convey the emergency of the issue.

  2. Human activities and climate and environment changes: an inevitable relation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sanchez, Aretha

    2009-01-01

    The human interference in the environment and the consequent climate change is today a consensus. The climate change can be local, regional and global. The global climate change is mainly caused by the greenhouse gases, and consequently the climate change intervenes in the environment. The interference cycle emerges in several forms and results in several consequences. However, the Global Warming has certainly the most import global impact. The main cause of the increase in the temperature (Greenhouse Effect) is the intensive use of the fossil fuels. Thus, to minimize the climatic changes actions are necessary to reduce, to substitute and to use with more efficient the fossil fuels. Looking at the past, the old agriculturists may have released greenhouse gases since thousand years ago, thus, modifying slowly but in significant form the earth climate much before the Industrial Age. If this theory is confirmed, its consequences would be decisive for the man history in the planet. For example, in parts of the North America and Europe the current temperatures could be even four Celsius degrees smaller. This change in temperature is enough to hinder agricultural used of these regions and consequently to diminish the human development. The main focus of this work is to perform a retrospective in some of civilizations who collapse due to environmental problems and make a historical description of the human activities (agriculture and livestock) since the primordium of the man up to the Industrial Age, aiming at the man interference on the natural dynamics of the global climate and the environment. This work will show through data comparisons and inferences that the gases emissions from these activities had a significant magnitude comparatively by the emissions after the Industrial Age. It is also demonstrated that the climate and environment interference was inevitable because the human evolution was caused by these activities. Another important point of this work is to

  3. Post-material values and environmental policy change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Watts, N. (International Inst. for Environmental and Society, Berlin, Germany); Wandesforde-Smith, G.

    Environmental policy may be particularly suited as a vehicle to articulate post-material values in advanced industrial societies, and recognition of this is likely to prove enormously helpful in future comparative and cross-national research into the origins of environmentalism and the causes of environmental policy change. The paper notes the salient characteristics of post-materialism and the overlap of these with the leading indicators of environmentalism. Possible structural causes for this overlap are noted and opposed to the prevailing socialization explanation for the adoption of post-material and environmental values. To help understand the impact of environmentalism on policy, an idealized development of the movement is sketched. This leads to the description of a set of general factors likely to be related to the way environmentalism finds political expressions in various countries. In the final section, the focus is on what we might want to know about the policy process in order to be able to gauge environmentalist influence on policy outputs. 20 references.

  4. Human-caused Indo-Pacific warm pool expansion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weller, Evan; Min, Seung-Ki; Cai, Wenju; Zwiers, Francis W; Kim, Yeon-Hee; Lee, Donghyun

    2016-07-01

    The Indo-Pacific warm pool (IPWP) has warmed and grown substantially during the past century. The IPWP is Earth's largest region of warm sea surface temperatures (SSTs), has the highest rainfall, and is fundamental to global atmospheric circulation and hydrological cycle. The region has also experienced the world's highest rates of sea-level rise in recent decades, indicating large increases in ocean heat content and leading to substantial impacts on small island states in the region. Previous studies have considered mechanisms for the basin-scale ocean warming, but not the causes of the observed IPWP expansion, where expansion in the Indian Ocean has far exceeded that in the Pacific Ocean. We identify human and natural contributions to the observed IPWP changes since the 1950s by comparing observations with climate model simulations using an optimal fingerprinting technique. Greenhouse gas forcing is found to be the dominant cause of the observed increases in IPWP intensity and size, whereas natural fluctuations associated with the Pacific Decadal Oscillation have played a smaller yet significant role. Further, we show that the shape and impact of human-induced IPWP growth could be asymmetric between the Indian and Pacific basins, the causes of which remain uncertain. Human-induced changes in the IPWP have important implications for understanding and projecting related changes in monsoonal rainfall, and frequency or intensity of tropical storms, which have profound socioeconomic consequences.

  5. Linking environmental nutrient enrichment and disease emergence in humans and wildlife

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Pieter T. J.; Townsend, Alan R.; Cleveland, Cory C.; Glibert, Patricia M.; Howarth, Robert W.; McKenzie, Valerie J.; Rejmankova, Eliska; Ward, Mary H.

    2009-01-01

    Worldwide increases in the numbers of human and wildlife diseases present ecologists with the challenge of understanding how large-scale environmental changes affect host-parasite interactions. One of the most profound changes to Earth’s ecosystems is the alteration of global nutrient cycles, including those of phosphorus (P) and especially nitrogen (N). Alongside the obvious direct benefits of nutrient application for food production, growing evidence suggests that anthropogenic inputs of N and P can indirectly affect the abundance of infectious and noninfectious pathogens, sometimes leading to epidemic conditions. However, the mechanisms underpinning observed correlations, and how such patterns vary with disease type, have long remained conjectural. Here, we discuss recent experimental advances in this area to critically evaluate the relationship between environmental nutrient enrichment and disease. Given the inter-related nature of human and wildlife disease emergence, we include a broad range of human and wildlife examples from terrestrial, marine and freshwater ecosystems. We examine the consequences of nutrient pollution on directly transmitted, vector-borne, complex life cycle, and noninfectious pathogens, including West Nile virus, malaria, harmful algal blooms, coral reef diseases and amphibian malformations. Our synthetic examination suggests that the effects of environmental nutrient enrichment on disease are complex and multifaceted, varying with the type of pathogen, host species and condition, attributes of the ecosystem and the degree of enrichment; some pathogens increase in abundance whereas others decline or disappear. Nevertheless, available evidence indicates that ecological changes associated with nutrient enrichment often exacerbate infection and disease caused by generalist parasites with direct or simple life cycles. Observed mechanisms include changes in host/vector density, host distribution, infection resistance, pathogen virulence or

  6. Regional, holocene records of the human dimension of global change: sea-level and land-use change in prehistoric Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sluyter, Andrew

    1997-02-01

    Regional, Holocene records hold particular relevance for understanding the reciprocal nature of global environmental change and one of its major human dimensions: "sustainable agriculture", i.e., food production strategies which entail fewer causes of and are less susceptible to environmental change. In an epoch of accelerating anthropogenic transformation, those records reveal the protracted regional causes and consequences of change (often agricultural) in the global system as well as informing models of prehistoric, intensive agriculture which, because of long tenures and high productivities, suggest strategies for sustainable agricultural in the present. This study employs physiographic analysis and the palynological, geochemical record from cores of basin fill to understand the reciprocal relation between environmental and land-use change in the Gulf of Mexico tropical lowland, focusing on a coastal basin sensitive to sea-level change and containing vestiges of prehistoric settlement and wetland agriculture. Fossil pollen reveals that the debut of maize cultivation in the Laguna Catarina watershed dates to ca. 4100 BC, predating the earliest evidence for that cultivar anywhere else in the lowlands of Middle America. Such an early date for a cultivar so central to Neotropical agroecology and environmental change, suggests the urgency of further research in the study region. Moreover, the longest period of continuous agriculture in the basin lasted nearly three millennia (ca. 2400 BC-AD 550) despite eustatic sea-level rise. Geochemical fluxes reveal the reciprocity between land-use and environmental change: slope destabilization, basin aggradation, and eutrophication. The consequent theoretical implications pertain to both applied and basic research. Redeploying ancient agroecologies in dynamic environments necessitates reconstructing the changing operational contexts of putative high productivity and sustainability. Adjusting land use in the face of global

  7. Reducing environmental damages caused by transportation: towards an heterodox approach

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Marletto, Gerardo

    2006-01-01

    According to orthodox economics, monetary incentives are the best way to reduce environmental damages caused by transportation. This approach is consistent with the consideration of environmental damages as a market failure and with the use of pigouvian taxes to re-establish market equilibrium. Using heterodox economics both the theoretical and the policy approach will change radically. Indeed, market is just one of the structural components of the existing transport system; others being: institutions, technologies, values. Then, a shift in policy approaches is needed: from the orthodox efficient allocation of existing resources, to the heterodox promotion of new development patterns, needed to alter the given structural situation. Consistently with this paradigmatic shift, environmental damages caused by transportation can be reduced only by making the transition to a new transport system viable. Moreover, an heterodox approach to the reduction of environmental damages caused by transportation gives rise to a sound revision of policy tools; among these must be considered: selective industrial policies to foster the ecological reconversion of transport supply (instead of a non-discriminatory support to ecological innovations); participatory decision procedures to evaluate and select transport policies (instead of neutral technical tools - such as Cba or Eia); information campaigns based on ethical considerations (instead of economic incentives to transport demand); attribution of the status of commons to environmental resources, in order to protect them from the free riding of transport activities (instead of the attribution to them of private property rights). This essay is composed of four parts. In the first one, some data on environmental damages caused by transportation in Italy are shown. In the second one, orthodox and heterodox paradigms of public interventions in the economy are compared, with a specific attention to environmental applications. In the

  8. Global environmental change: understanding the human dimensions

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Stern, Paul C; Young, Oran R; Druckman, Daniel

    ... on the Human Dimensions of Global Change Commission on the Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education National Research Council NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS Washington, D.C. 1992 Copyrightthe cannot be not from book, paper however, version for formatting, original authoritative the typesetting-specific the as from created publication files ...

  9. Global Environmental Change : Understanding the Human Dimensions

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Stern, Paul C; Druckman, Daniel; Young, Oran R; National Research Council; National Academy of Sciences; Stern, Paul C; Druckman, Daniel

    ... on the Human Dimensions of Global Change Commission on the Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education National Research Council NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS Washington, D.C. 1992 Copyrightthe cannot be not from book, paper however, version for formatting, original authoritative the typesetting-specific the as from created publication files ...

  10. climate change: causes, effects and mitigation measures-a review

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    BARTH EKWUEME

    Both natural and human causes of climate change including the earth's orbital changes, solar variations .... analysis supported by climate models have revealed that cloud ... clouds could actually exert a small cooling effect as temperature ...

  11. Global environmental change and sustainable development in Europe

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jaeger, J.; Liberatore, A.; Grundlach, K. [eds.

    1995-12-31

    The document contains all but two papers presented at the Workshop as well as a summary of the contributions and discussions, a list of socio-economic research priorities identified at the meeting and a policy brief based on the themes woven together at the Workshop. The workshop was organised within the framework of the European Network for Research in Global Change (ENRICH). Papers include: global environmental change and sustainable development in Europe and in the Mediterranean basin, water management and global environmental change policies, human impacts on the nitrogen cycle, the merchandising of biodiversity, environmental performance indicators, urban sustainability indicators and strategies for sustainability.

  12. Zoonosis emergence linked to agricultural intensification and environmental change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Bryony A; Grace, Delia; Kock, Richard; Alonso, Silvia; Rushton, Jonathan; Said, Mohammed Y; McKeever, Declan; Mutua, Florence; Young, Jarrah; McDermott, John; Pfeiffer, Dirk Udo

    2013-05-21

    A systematic review was conducted by a multidisciplinary team to analyze qualitatively best available scientific evidence on the effect of agricultural intensification and environmental changes on the risk of zoonoses for which there are epidemiological interactions between wildlife and livestock. The study found several examples in which agricultural intensification and/or environmental change were associated with an increased risk of zoonotic disease emergence, driven by the impact of an expanding human population and changing human behavior on the environment. We conclude that the rate of future zoonotic disease emergence or reemergence will be closely linked to the evolution of the agriculture-environment nexus. However, available research inadequately addresses the complexity and interrelatedness of environmental, biological, economic, and social dimensions of zoonotic pathogen emergence, which significantly limits our ability to predict, prevent, and respond to zoonotic disease emergence.

  13. CSIR Contribution to Defining Adaptive Capacity in the Context of Environmental Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-01-31

    trends) and the corresponding human behavioural responses (eg. food access and migration patterns) will provide an input to metric creation...Task 2.2: Determine if significant changes in environmental variability data correspond to changes in human behaviour using both visual (GIS) and...14-1-0113 to the CSIR. The grant is based on the premise that human security and environmental security is inextricably linked and that a better

  14. Using Satellite Remote Sensing and Household Survey Data to Assess Human Health and Nutrition Response to Environmental Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Molly E.; Grace, Kathryn; Shively, Gerald; Johnson, Kiersten B.; Carroll, Mark

    2014-01-01

    Climate change and degradation of ecosystem services functioning may threaten the ability of current agricultural systems to keep up with demand for adequate and inexpensive food and for clean water, waste disposal and other broader ecosystem services. Human health is likely to be affected by changes occurring across multiple geographic and time scales. Impacts range from increasing transmissibility and the range of vector-borne diseases, such as malaria and yellow fever, to undermining nutrition through deleterious impacts on food production and concomitant increases in food prices. This paper uses case studies to describe methods that make use of satellite remote sensing and Demographic and Health Survey data to better understand individual-level human health and nutrition outcomes. By bringing these diverse datasets together, the connection between environmental change and human health outcomes can be described through new research and analysis.

  15. Climate change: Causes, effects and mitigation measures- A review ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Global Journal of Pure and Applied Sciences ... far more than at any time in the last 650,000 years resulting in climate change or global warming. Both natural and human causes of climate change including the earth's orbital changes, ... food production, loss of biodiversity, food insecurity, decreased animal health et cetera.

  16. Humans rather than climate the primary cause of Pleistocene megafaunal extinction in Australia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Der Kaars, Sander; Miller, Gifford H.; Turney, Chris S.M.; Cook, Ellyn J.; Nürnberg, Dirk; Schönfeld, Joachim; Kershaw, A. Peter; Lehman, Scott J.

    2017-01-01

    Environmental histories that span the last full glacial cycle and are representative of regional change in Australia are scarce, hampering assessment of environmental change preceding and concurrent with human dispersal on the continent ca. 47,000 years ago. Here we present a continuous 150,000-year

  17. Climate change and environmental concentrations of POPs: A review

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nadal, Martí; Marquès, Montse; Mari, Montse; Domingo, José L.

    2015-01-01

    In recent years, the climate change impact on the concentrations of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) has become a topic of notable concern. Changes in environmental conditions such as the increase of the average temperature, or the UV-B radiation, are likely to influence the fate and behavior of POPs, ultimately affecting human exposure. The state of the art of the impact of climate change on environmental concentrations of POPs, as well as on human health risks, is here reviewed. Research gaps are also identified, while future studies are suggested. Climate change and POPs are a hot issue, for which wide attention should be paid not only by scientists, but also and mainly by policy makers. Most studies reported in the scientific literature are focused on legacy POPs, mainly polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and pesticides. However, the number of investigations aimed at estimating the impact of climate change on the environmental levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) is scarce, despite of the fact that exposure to PAHs and photodegradation byproducts may result in adverse health effects. Furthermore, no data on emerging POPs are currently available in the scientific literature. In consequence, an intensification of studies to identify and mitigate the indirect effects of the climate change on POP fate is needed to minimize the human health impact. Furthermore, being this a global problem, interactions between climate change and POPs must be addressed from an international perspective.

  18. Climate change and environmental concentrations of POPs: A review

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nadal, Martí, E-mail: marti.nadal@urv.cat [Laboratory of Toxicology and Environmental Health, School of Medicine, IISPV, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Sant Llorenç 21, 43201 Reus, Catalonia (Spain); Marquès, Montse; Mari, Montse [Laboratory of Toxicology and Environmental Health, School of Medicine, IISPV, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Sant Llorenç 21, 43201 Reus, Catalonia (Spain); Environmental Engineering Laboratory, Departament d’Enginyeria Quimica, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Avinguda Països Catalans 26, 43007 Tarragona, Catalonia (Spain); Domingo, José L. [Laboratory of Toxicology and Environmental Health, School of Medicine, IISPV, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Sant Llorenç 21, 43201 Reus, Catalonia (Spain)

    2015-11-15

    In recent years, the climate change impact on the concentrations of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) has become a topic of notable concern. Changes in environmental conditions such as the increase of the average temperature, or the UV-B radiation, are likely to influence the fate and behavior of POPs, ultimately affecting human exposure. The state of the art of the impact of climate change on environmental concentrations of POPs, as well as on human health risks, is here reviewed. Research gaps are also identified, while future studies are suggested. Climate change and POPs are a hot issue, for which wide attention should be paid not only by scientists, but also and mainly by policy makers. Most studies reported in the scientific literature are focused on legacy POPs, mainly polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and pesticides. However, the number of investigations aimed at estimating the impact of climate change on the environmental levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) is scarce, despite of the fact that exposure to PAHs and photodegradation byproducts may result in adverse health effects. Furthermore, no data on emerging POPs are currently available in the scientific literature. In consequence, an intensification of studies to identify and mitigate the indirect effects of the climate change on POP fate is needed to minimize the human health impact. Furthermore, being this a global problem, interactions between climate change and POPs must be addressed from an international perspective.

  19. Visualizing the Anthropocene: Human Land Use History and Environmental Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richard D. Periman

    2006-01-01

    The term “Anthropocene” defines the current, human-dominated, geological epoch of human-caused environmental influences. Some researchers believe that the beginning of this epoch coincides with the inception of the Industrial Revolution (Crutzen and Stoermer 2000). Research is revealing that humans have affected environments on global and local scales for millennia....

  20. Synchronous environmental and cultural change in the prehistory of the northeastern United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munoz, Samuel E; Gajewski, Konrad; Peros, Matthew C

    2010-12-21

    Climatic changes during the late Quaternary have resulted in substantial, often abrupt, rearrangements of terrestrial ecosystems, but the relationship between these environmental changes and prehistoric human culture and population size remains unclear. Using a database of archaeological radiocarbon dates alongside a network of paleoecological records (sedimentary pollen and charcoal) and paleoclimatic reconstructions, we show that periods of cultural and demographic change in the northeastern United States occurred at the same times as the major environmental-climatic transitions of that region. At 11.6, 8.2, 5.4, and 3.0 kyr BP (10(3) calendar years before present), changes in forest composition altered the distribution, availability, and predictability of food resources which triggered technological adjustments manifested in the archaeological record. Human population level has varied in response to these external changes in ecosystems, but the adoption of maize agriculture during the late Holocene also resulted in a substantial population increase. This study demonstrates the long-term interconnectedness of prehistoric human cultures and the ecosystems they inhabited, and provides a consolidated environmental-cultural framework from which more interdisciplinary research and discussion can develop. Moreover, it emphasizes the complex nature of human responses to environmental change in a temperate region.

  1. Human impacts and changes in the coastal waters of south China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Linlin; Li, Qiang; Bi, Hongsheng; Mao, Xian-Zhong

    2016-08-15

    Human impact on the environment remains at the center of the debate on global environmental change. Using the Hong Kong-Shenzhen corridor in south China as an example, we present evidence that rapid urbanization and economic development in coastal areas were the dominant factors causing rapid changes in coastal waters. From 1990 to 2012, coastal seawater temperature increased ~0.060°C per year, sea level rose 4.4mm per year and pH decreased from 8.2 to 7.7, much faster than global averages. In the same period, there were exponential increases in the local population, gross domestic product and land fill area. Empirical analyses suggest that the large increase in the population affected local temperature, and economic development had a major impact on local pH. Results also show that pH and temperature were significantly correlated with local sea level rise, but pH had more predictive power, suggesting it could be considered a predictor for changes in local sea level. We conclude that human activities could significantly exacerbate local environmental changes which should be considered in predictive models and future development plans in coastal areas. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. The role of environmental change in the expansion of early modern humans in the Levant - what can we learn from mollusc shells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Prendergast, Amy; Bosch, Marjolein D.; Mannino, Marcello

    and Manot Cave in Israel. These highly resolved environmental records, coupled with well dated archaeological sequences provide a framework for assessing the complex interplay between early modern humans and their local environments. We found evidence for fluctuating temperature, rainfall and seasonality...... regimes, indicating that modern human populations were somewhat resilient to the resource uncertainty that would have accompanied these changing temperature and seasonality regimes. These paired cultural-environmental records have enabled an examination of hominin-environment interactions during critical...

  3. Environmental impact of the landslides caused by the 12 May 2008, Wenchuan, China earthquake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Highland, Lynn; Sun, Ping; Edited by Margottini, Claudio; Canuti, Paolo; Sassa, Kyoji

    2013-01-01

    The magnitude 7.9 (Mw) Wenchuan, China, earthquake of May 12, 2008 caused at least 88,000 deaths of which one third are estimated to be due to the more than 56,000 earthquake-induced landslides. The affected area is mountainous, featuring densely-vegetated, steep slopes through which narrowly confined rivers and streams flow. Numerous types of landslides occurred in the area, including rock avalanches, rock falls, translational and rotational slides, lateral spreads and debris flows. Some landslides mobilized hundreds of million cubic meters of material, often resulting in the damming of rivers and streams, impacting river ecosystems and morphology. Through an extensive search of both Chinese- and English-language publications we provide a summary of pertinent research on environmental effects, emphasizing key findings. Environmental effects caused by landslides include the alteration of agriculture, changes to natural ecosystems, changes in river morphology due to landslide dams and other effects such as sedimentation and flooding. Damage by landslides to the giant panda reserve infrastructure and habitat, was severe, threatening the survival of one of the world’s rarest species. The Panda reserves are of national significance to China, and to the vital tourism economy of the region. One of the major impacts to both the natural and built environment is the complete relocation of some human populations and infrastructure to new areas, resulting in the abandonment of towns and other areas that were damaged by the earthquake and landslides. The landslide effects have affected the biodiversity of the affected area, and it has been hypothesized that strict forest preservation measures taken in the years preceding the earthquake resulted in a reduction of the environmental damage to the area.

  4. Environmental and waste management issues, causes, characteristics, and cures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Duffy, L.P.

    1992-01-01

    The department of Energy (DOE) views as one of its most challenging problems the minimization, management, and cleanup of waste materials generated from Departmental operations. The challenges for the DOE have striking similarities to the environmental restoration and waste management challenges associated with energy production and the mining and mineral processing industries. Their challenges relate to uranium mining and the resulting mill tailings; decontamination and decommissioning of facilities; processing of nuclear materials and production of weapons components. Add to this the challenge of environmental restoration solutions for waste disposal practices of the past. The fundamental goal of the DOE is to ensure that risks to human health and safety and to the environment posed by the department's past, present, and future operations are either eliminated to reduced to prescribed levels by the year 2019. To achieve this goal they must be able to assess environmental and health impacts resulting from the low concentrations of contaminants. This paper presents an overview of the causes, characteristics, and cures for these environmental restoration and waste management issues

  5. Climate change and human health: a One Health approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patz, Jonathan A; Hahn, Micah B

    2013-01-01

    Climate change adds complexity and uncertainty to human health issues such as emerging infectious diseases, food security, and national sustainability planning that intensify the importance of interdisciplinary and collaborative research. Collaboration between veterinary, medical, and public health professionals to understand the ecological interactions and reactions to flux in a system can facilitate clearer understanding of climate change impacts on environmental, animal, and human health. Here we present a brief introduction to climate science and projections for the next century and a review of current knowledge on the impacts of climate-driven environmental change on human health. We then turn to the links between ecological and evolutionary responses to climate change and health. The literature on climate impacts on biological systems is rich in both content and historical data, but the connections between these changes and human health is less understood. We discuss five mechanisms by which climate changes impacts on biological systems will be felt by the human population: Modifications in Vector, Reservoir, and Pathogen Lifecycles; Diseases of Domestic and Wild Animals and Plants; Disruption of Synchrony Between Interacting Species; Trophic Cascades; and Alteration or Destruction of Habitat. Each species responds to environmental changes differently, and in order to predict the movement of disease through ecosystems, we have to rely on expertise from the fields of veterinary, medical, and public health, and these health professionals must take into account the dynamic nature of ecosystems in a changing climate.

  6. Climate Change Impacts on Environmental and Human Exposure to Mercury in the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sundseth, Kyrre; Pacyna, Jozef M.; Banel, Anna; Pacyna, Elisabeth G.; Rautio, Arja

    2015-01-01

    This paper reviews information from the literature and the EU ArcRisk project to assess whether climate change results in an increase or decrease in exposure to mercury (Hg) in the Arctic, and if this in turn will impact the risks related to its harmful effects. It presents the state-of-the art of knowledge on atmospheric mercury emissions from anthropogenic sources worldwide, the long-range transport to the Arctic, and it discusses the likely environmental fate and exposure effects on population groups in the Arctic under climate change conditions. The paper also includes information about the likely synergy effects (co-benefits) current and new climate change polices and mitigation options might have on mercury emissions reductions in the future. The review concludes that reductions of mercury emission from anthropogenic sources worldwide would need to be introduced as soon as possible in order to assure lowering the adverse impact of climate change on human health. Scientific information currently available, however, is not in the position to clearly answer whether climate change will increase or decrease the risk of exposure to mercury in the Arctic. New research should therefore be undertaken to model the relationships between climate change and mercury exposure. PMID:25837201

  7. Climate change impacts on environmental and human exposure to mercury in the arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sundseth, Kyrre; Pacyna, Jozef M; Banel, Anna; Pacyna, Elisabeth G; Rautio, Arja

    2015-03-31

    This paper reviews information from the literature and the EU ArcRisk project to assess whether climate change results in an increase or decrease in exposure to mercury (Hg) in the Arctic, and if this in turn will impact the risks related to its harmful effects. It presents the state-of-the art of knowledge on atmospheric mercury emissions from anthropogenic sources worldwide, the long-range transport to the Arctic, and it discusses the likely environmental fate and exposure effects on population groups in the Arctic under climate change conditions. The paper also includes information about the likely synergy effects (co-benefits) current and new climate change polices and mitigation options might have on mercury emissions reductions in the future. The review concludes that reductions of mercury emission from anthropogenic sources worldwide would need to be introduced as soon as possible in order to assure lowering the adverse impact of climate change on human health. Scientific information currently available, however, is not in the position to clearly answer whether climate change will increase or decrease the risk of exposure to mercury in the Arctic. New research should therefore be undertaken to model the relationships between climate change and mercury exposure.

  8. Evaluation of environmental damage due to atmospheric pollution caused by power economy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Burneikis, J.; Shtreimikiene, D.

    1996-01-01

    Methods to evaluate the environmental damage due to atmospheric pollution caused by power economy are presented. The products of burning fossil fuel (CO 2 , SO 2 , NO x and ashes) make the bulk of the pollutants that are being discharged into the atmosphere. To evaluate the damage caused by these pollutants an empirical method is suggested. The direct and analytical methods are used as a basis in collecting data for the empirical evaluation. All the three methods are described and empirical formulas suggested for calculating environmental damage due to burning fossil fuel in thermal power stations. The authors prove the necessity to change the present system of environmental taxes in Lithuania, which are purely symbolic. (author). 8 refs., 9 tabs

  9. Towards a pluralist epistemological approach in studies on communication and change: humanism, science and environmentalism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joan Pedro Carañana

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available This article proposes a pluralistic epistemological approach to the investigation of the relationships between communication and social change. To this end, it draws on the proposal of epistemological merger posed by Johan Galtung for Peace Studies and takes into account the specifics of the communication phenomenon. According to Galtung, the combination of Cartesianism, the verum-factum (Vico and Taoism would counter the risks of epistemological monism and overcome its limitations. In this sense, the article proposes to extend each of these epistemologies in a more general and encompassing level (science, humanities, holistic-dialectical environmentalism and describes its historical trajectory to identify the possibilities of complementarity and its value for the study of communication and change.

  10. Carbon trading, climate change, environmental sustainability and saving planet Earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yim, W. W.

    2009-12-01

    Carbon trading namely the reduction of future carbon dioxide levels has been widely touted as a solution needed to counter the problem of climate change. However, there are enormous risks involved as the measure tackles only one of the causes of climate change and may prove to be ineffective. This presentation highlights ten points relevant to the discussion on carbon trading, climate change, environmental sustainability and saving planet Earth for increasing public awareness. They include: (1) Climate has changed throughout Earth’s history. (2) The present level of about 388 parts per million level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has already exceeded the maximum level of the past 800,000 years. This value is obtained from air bubbles trapped within the ice in Antarctica but the consequence of further increases remains uncertain. (3) Earth scientists do not have an overwhelming consensus on whether carbon trading alone is an effective measure in mitigating climate change. (4) The present state of the Earth’s demise is largely the result of human actions including population growth and the mismanagement of the Earth. (5) The latest evidence on sea-level changes in the South China Sea a far-field region unaffected by glacial isostatic readjustment is not in support of a ‘rapid’ rate of future sea-level rise through global warming. (6) Volcanic eruptions have an important role in driving the Earth’s climate. Examples of temperature lowering as well as abnormally wet and dry years can both be found in the instrumental record. (7) Humans have drastically modified the ‘natural’ water cycle. This is however not a well recognized cause of climate change compared to the emission of greenhouse gases through fossil fuel consumption. (8) The bulk (~75%) of the rise in mean annual temperature of about 1oC observed at the Hong Kong Observatory Station since record began in 1884 is best explained by the thermal heat island effect. (9) No evidence has been found

  11. Environmental change challenges decision-making during post-market environmental monitoring of transgenic crops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanvido, Olivier; Romeis, Jörg; Bigler, Franz

    2011-12-01

    The ability to decide what kind of environmental changes observed during post-market environmental monitoring of genetically modified (GM) crops represent environmental harm is an essential part of most legal frameworks regulating the commercial release of GM crops into the environment. Among others, such decisions are necessary to initiate remedial measures or to sustain claims of redress linked to environmental liability. Given that consensus on criteria to evaluate 'environmental harm' has not yet been found, there are a number of challenges for risk managers when interpreting GM crop monitoring data for environmental decision-making. In the present paper, we argue that the challenges in decision-making have four main causes. The first three causes relate to scientific data collection and analysis, which have methodological limits. The forth cause concerns scientific data evaluation, which is controversial among the different stakeholders involved in the debate on potential impacts of GM crops on the environment. This results in controversy how the effects of GM crops should be valued and what constitutes environmental harm. This controversy may influence decision-making about triggering corrective actions by regulators. We analyse all four challenges and propose potential strategies for addressing them. We conclude that environmental monitoring has its limits in reducing uncertainties remaining from the environmental risk assessment prior to market approval. We argue that remaining uncertainties related to adverse environmental effects of GM crops would probably be assessed in a more efficient and rigorous way during pre-market risk assessment. Risk managers should acknowledge the limits of environmental monitoring programmes as a tool for decision-making.

  12. Autonomous Control, Climate and Environmental Changes Effects ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Autonomous Control, Climate and Environmental Changes Effects on Trypanosomiasis in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Review. ... African trypanosomiasis is a parasitic disease that causes serious economic losses in livestock due to anemia, loss of condition and emaciation. The disease when neglected is lethal and untreated ...

  13. Indigenous environmental values as human values

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monica Gratani

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The claim that in natural resource management (NRM a change from anthropocentric values and ethics to eco-centric ones is necessary to achieve sustainability leads to the search for eco-centric models of relationship with the environment. Indigenous cultures can provide such models; hence, there is the need for multicultural societies to further include their values in NRM. In this article, we investigate the environmental values placed on a freshwater environment of the Wet Tropics by a community of indigenous Australians. We discuss their environmental values as human values, and so as beliefs that guide communities’ understanding of how the natural world should be viewed and treated by humans. This perspective represents a step forward in our understanding of indigenous environmental values, and a way to overcome the paradigm of indigenous values as valued biophysical attributes of the environment or processes happening in landscapes. Our results show that the participant community holds biospheric values. Restoring these values in the NRM of the Wet Tropics could contribute to sustainability and environmental justice in the area.

  14. Climate change and environmental concentrations of POPs: A review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nadal, Martí; Marquès, Montse; Mari, Montse; Domingo, José L

    2015-11-01

    In recent years, the climate change impact on the concentrations of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) has become a topic of notable concern. Changes in environmental conditions such as the increase of the average temperature, or the UV-B radiation, are likely to influence the fate and behavior of POPs, ultimately affecting human exposure. The state of the art of the impact of climate change on environmental concentrations of POPs, as well as on human health risks, is here reviewed. Research gaps are also identified, while future studies are suggested. Climate change and POPs are a hot issue, for which wide attention should be paid not only by scientists, but also and mainly by policy makers. Most studies reported in the scientific literature are focused on legacy POPs, mainly polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and pesticides. However, the number of investigations aimed at estimating the impact of climate change on the environmental levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) is scarce, despite of the fact that exposure to PAHs and photodegradation byproducts may result in adverse health effects. Furthermore, no data on emerging POPs are currently available in the scientific literature. In consequence, an intensification of studies to identify and mitigate the indirect effects of the climate change on POP fate is needed to minimize the human health impact. Furthermore, being this a global problem, interactions between climate change and POPs must be addressed from an international perspective. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Human AP Endonuclease 1: A Potential Marker for the Prediction of Environmental Carcinogenesis Risk

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jae Sung Park

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Human apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease 1 (APE1 functions mainly in DNA repair as an enzyme removing AP sites and in redox signaling as a coactivator of various transcription factors. Based on these multifunctions of APE1 within cells, numerous studies have reported that the alteration of APE1 could be a crucial factor in development of human diseases such as cancer and neurodegeneration. In fact, the study on the combination of an individual’s genetic make-up with environmental factors (gene-environment interaction is of great importance to understand the development of diseases, especially lethal diseases including cancer. Recent reports have suggested that the human carcinogenic risk following exposure to environmental toxicants is affected by APE1 alterations in terms of gene-environment interactions. In this review, we initially outline the critical APE1 functions in the various intracellular mechanisms including DNA repair and redox regulation and its roles in human diseases. Several findings demonstrate that the change in expression and activity as well as genetic variability of APE1 caused by environmental chemical (e.g., heavy metals and cigarette smoke and physical carcinogens (ultraviolet and ionizing radiation is likely associated with various cancers. These enable us to ultimately suggest APE1 as a vital marker for the prediction of environmental carcinogenesis risk.

  16. Next Steps Toward Understanding Human Habitation of Space: Environmental Impacts and Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Globus, Ruth

    2016-01-01

    Entry into low earth orbit and beyond causes profound shifts in environmental conditions that have the potential to influence human productivity, long term health, and even survival. We now have evidence that microgravity, radiation and/or confinement in space can lead to demonstrably detrimental changes in the cardiovascular (e.g. vessel function, orthostatic intolerance), musculoskeletal (muscle atrophy, bone loss) and nervous (eye, neurovestibular) systems of astronauts. Because of both the limited number of astronauts who have flown (especially females) and the high degree of individual variability in the human population, important unanswered questions about responses to the space environment remain: What are the sex differences with respect to specific physiological systems? Are the responses age-dependent and/or reversible after return to Earth? Do observed detrimental changes that resemble accelerated aging progress continuously over time or plateau? What are the mechanisms of the biological responses? Answering these important questions certainly demands a multi-pronged approach, and the study of multicellular model organisms (such as rodents and flies) already has provided opportunities for exploring those questions in some detail. Recent long duration spaceflight experiments with rodents show that mice in space provide a mammalian model that uniquely combines the influence of reduced gravitational loading with increased physical activity. In addition, multiple investigators have shown that ground-based models that simulate aspects of spaceflight (including rodent hind limb unloading to mimic weightlessness and exposure to ionizing radiation), cause various transient and persistent detrimental consequences in multiple physiological systems. In general, we have found that adverse skeletal effects of simulated weightlessness and space radiation when combined, can be quantitatively, if not qualitatively, different from the influence of each environmental

  17. A new kind of sharing: Why we can't ignore global environmental change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hall, J.D.; Hanson, A.J.

    1992-01-01

    Aspects of three broad topics are discussed to illustrate the interdependence of Canada and environmental problems in the developing countries: global atmospheric change, forests, and the rights of people (especially indigenous peoples) affected by changes in their natural environment. These concerns are placed, whenever possible, in the wider context of development in general. In an introduction, some of the manifestations of environmental change in the developing world are discussed along with the underlying causes. The science of global warming and ozone depletion is outlined and some impacts that these phenomena may have on the developing world and on Canada are examined. Although the North has been rseponsible for most past emissions of gases implicated in global climate change, industrial growth, deforestation, and other factors are likely to tip the balance toward the South over the next 1-2 decades. The topics of the politics, economics, and policy dimensions of climate change are then introduced. Forests are discussed since they illustrate the relationship of Canada to deforestation; trade in tropical timber and other commodities grown on cleared-forest lands is examined in the context of Canada's own forest industry. Canada's wider involvement in tropical forest issues and conservation concerns are also noted. The human face of environmental degradation is examined for the case studies of El Salvador and Ethiopia, and the increasing involvement of indigenous peoples in environmental management is recognized. 409 refs., 6 figs., 12 tabs

  18. Exploring environmental causes of altered ras effects: fragmentation plus integration?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Porta, Miquel; Ayude, Daniel; Alguacil, Juan; Jariod, Manuel

    2003-02-01

    Mutations in ras genes are the most common abnormality of oncogenes in human cancer and a major example of activation by point mutation. Experimental and epidemiological studies support the notion that Ki-ras activation and expression may be chemically related. We discuss the potential role of several environmental compounds in the induction or promotion of ras mutations in humans, with a focus on exocrine pancreatic cancer, the human tumor with the highest prevalence at diagnosis of Ki-ras mutations. Organochlorine compounds, organic solvents, and coffee compounds may play an indirect role in causing Ki-ras mutations, rather than as direct inducers of the mutations. Although for some organochlorine compounds the induction of point mutations in ras oncogenes cannot be excluded, it seems more likely that the effects of these compounds are mediated through nongenomic or indirectly genotoxic mechanisms of action. Organic solvents also may act via enzymatic induction of ras mutagens or by providing a proliferation advantage to ras-mutated cell clones. In exocrine pancreatic cancer, caffeine, other coffee compounds, or other factors with which coffee drinking is associated could modulate Ki-ras activation by interfering with DNA repair, cell-cycle checkpoints, and apoptosis. Asbestos, cigarette smoking, and some dietary factors also may be involved in the initiation or the promotion of Ki-ras mutations in lung and colon cancers. Further development of the mechanistic scenarios proposed here could contribute to a meaningful integration of biological, clinical, and environmental knowledge on the causes of altered ras effects. Copyright 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  19. Toward a mechanistic understanding of human-induced rapid environmental change: A case study linking energy development, avian nest predation, and predators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hethcoat, Matthew G.; Chalfoun, Anna D.

    2015-01-01

    Demographic consequences of human-induced rapid environmental change (HIREC) have been widely documented for many populations. The mechanisms underlying such patterns, however, are rarely investigated and yet are critical to understand for effective conservation and management.

  20. Bioclim Deliverable D1: environmental change analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2001-01-01

    be transported to the surface environment and lead to the exposure of Man. Several climate scenarios will be explored in the project and selected climate sequences of particular interest for performance assessments will be studied in detail to establish the context for the development of biosphere assessment models. The aim is not to derive mechanistic models of the whole climate sequence for up to a million years but to use output from the climate change models in order to understand the biosphere system responses that are likely to be important in the context of human and environmental safety. Through this work, the basis for undertaking and assessing the radiological safety of deep repositories and confidence in the assessment results will be improved. The objectives of this first BIOCLIM report are to identify the mechanisms and process that cause long-term climate change and the environmental consequences of such changes (Section 2). This information is presented in summary form as an extensive literature already exists on these subjects. Some of these references are also provided in the appendix. The lessons that have been learned by the waste management agencies and the regulator through application of methodologies used to date to represent climate change in biosphere assessments are summarised in Section 3; further details of current national methodologies and approaches are provided in Appendix A. Section 4 summarises the new approaches that will be used in BIOCLIM to develop and improve long-term climate change models and the consequent impacts on the biosphere systems that have to be represented in biosphere assessment models

  1. Male infertility and its causes in human.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyamoto, Toshinobu; Tsujimura, Akira; Miyagawa, Yasushi; Koh, Eitetsu; Namiki, Mikio; Sengoku, Kazuo

    2012-01-01

    Infertility is one of the most serious social problems facing advanced nations. In general, approximate half of all cases of infertility are caused by factors related to the male partner. To date, various treatments have been developed for male infertility and are steadily producing results. However, there is no effective treatment for patients with nonobstructive azoospermia, in which there is an absence of mature sperm in the testes. Although evidence suggests that many patients with male infertility have a genetic predisposition to the condition, the cause has not been elucidated in the vast majority of cases. This paper discusses the environmental factors considered likely to be involved in male infertility and the genes that have been clearly shown to be involved in male infertility in humans, including our recent findings.

  2. Male Infertility and Its Causes in Human

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Toshinobu Miyamoto

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Infertility is one of the most serious social problems facing advanced nations. In general, approximate half of all cases of infertility are caused by factors related to the male partner. To date, various treatments have been developed for male infertility and are steadily producing results. However, there is no effective treatment for patients with nonobstructive azoospermia, in which there is an absence of mature sperm in the testes. Although evidence suggests that many patients with male infertility have a genetic predisposition to the condition, the cause has not been elucidated in the vast majority of cases. This paper discusses the environmental factors considered likely to be involved in male infertility and the genes that have been clearly shown to be involved in male infertility in humans, including our recent findings.

  3. Mapping Common Ground: Ecocriticism, Environmental History, and the Environmental Humanities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bergthaller, Hannes

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The emergence of the environmental humanities presents a unique opportunity for scholarship to tackle the human dimensions of the environmental crisis. It might finally allow such work to attain the critical mass it needs to break out of customary disciplinary confines and reach a wider public, at a time when natural scientists have begun to acknowledge that an understanding of the environmental crisis must include insights from the humanities and social sciences. In order to realize this potential, scholars in the environmental humanities need to map the common ground on which close interdisciplinary cooperation will be possible. This essay takes up this task with regard to two fields that have embraced the environmental humanities with particular fervour, namely ecocriticism and environmental history. After outlining an ideal of slow scholarship which cultivates thinking across different spatiotemporal scales and seeks to sustain meaningful public debate, the essay argues that both ecocriticism and environmental history are concerned with practices of environing: each studies the material and symbolic transformations by which “the environment” is configured as a space for human action. Three areas of research are singled out as offering promising models for cooperation between ecocriticism and environmental history: eco-historicism, environmental justice, and new materialism. Bringing the fruits of such efforts to a wider audience will require environmental humanities scholars to experiment with new ways of organizing and disseminating knowledge.

  4. Environmental drivers of human migration in drylands - A spatial picture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Neumann, K.; Sietz, D.; Hilderink, H.; Janssen, P.; Kok, M.; Dijk, van H.

    2015-01-01

    It is widely accepted that environmental change can influence human migration. In particular, the environment plays a role in migration processes in drylands, in which environmental change—including increasing variability of rainfall, increasing frequency of droughts, chronic water shortage, and

  5. How the cerebral serotonin homeostasis predicts environmental changes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kalbitzer, Jan; Kalbitzer, Urs; Knudsen, Gitte Moos

    2013-01-01

    Molecular imaging studies with positron emission tomography have revealed that the availability of serotonin transporter (5-HTT) in the human brain fluctuates over the course of the year. This effect is most pronounced in carriers of the short allele of the 5-HTT promoter region (5-HTTLPR), which...... has in several previous studies been linked to an increased risk to develop mood disorders. We argue that long-lasting fluctuations in the cerebral serotonin transmission, which is regulated via the 5-HTT, are responsible for mediating responses to environmental changes based on an assessment...... of cerebral serotonin transmission to seasonal and other forms of environmental change imparts greater behavioral flexibility, at the expense of increased vulnerability to stress. This model may explain the somewhat higher prevalence of the s-allele in some human populations dwelling at geographic latitudes...

  6. Is climate change an unforeseen, irresistible and external factor - A force majeure in marine environmental law?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saul, Roxanne; Barnes, Richard; Elliott, Michael

    2016-12-15

    Several environmental laws include provisions on natural causes or force majeure, which except States from their commitments if it can be proven that the failure to meet the commitment is due to factors outside their control. The European Union Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) has a pivotal role in managing EU marine waters. This paper analyses natural causes and force majeure provisions of the MFSD and other marine legislation, and addresses their interaction with climate change and its consequences, especially the effect on the obligation of ensuring seas are in Good Environmental Status. Climate change is an exogenic unmanaged pressure in that it emanates from outside the area being managed but in which the management authority has to respond to the consequences of climate change, such as sea level rise and temperature elevation, rather than its causes. It is suggested that a defence by a Member State of force majeure may be accepted if an event was proven to be due to an externality of control, irresistible and unforeseeable. The analysis contends that countering such a legal defence would centre on the fact that climate change is a well-accepted phenomenon, is foreseen with an accepted level of confidence and probability and is due to human actions. However, as yet, this has not been legally tested. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. USGS Environmental health science strategy: providing environmental health science for a changing world: public review release

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bright, Patricia R.; Buxton, Herbert T.; Balistrieri, Laurie S.; Barber, Larry B.; Chapelle, Francis H.; Cross, Paul C.; Krabbenhoft, David P.; Plumlee, Geoffrey S.; Sleeman, Jonathan M.; Tillitt, Donald E.; Toccalino, Patricia L.; Winton, James R.

    2012-01-01

    America has an abundance of natural resources. We have bountiful clean water, fertile soil, and unrivaled national parks, wildlife refuges, and public lands. These resources enrich our lives and preserve our health and wellbeing. These resources have been maintained because of our history of respect for their value and an enduring commitment to their vigilant protection. Awareness of the social, economic, and personal value of the health of our environment is increasing. The emergence of environmentally driven diseases caused by environmental exposure to contaminants and pathogens is a growing concern worldwide. New health threats and patterns of established threats are affected by both natural and anthropogenic changes to the environment. Human activities are key drivers of emerging (new and re-emerging) health threats. Societal demands for land and natural resources, a better quality of life, improved economic prosperity, and the environmental impacts associated with these demands will continue to increase. Natural earth processes, climate trends, and related climatic events will add to the environmental impact of human activities. These environmental drivers will influence exposure to disease agents, including viral, bacterial, prion, and fungal pathogens, parasites, natural earth materials, toxins and other biogenic compounds, and synthetic chemicals and substances. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) defines environmental health science broadly as the interdisciplinary study of relations among the quality of the physical environment, the health of the living environment, and human health. The interactions among these three spheres are driven by human activities, ecological processes, and natural earth processes; the interactions affect exposure to contaminants and pathogens and the severity of environmentally driven diseases in animals and people. This definition provides USGS with a framework for synthesizing natural science information from across the Bureau

  8. Climatic Change and Human Evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garratt, John R.

    1995-01-01

    Traces the history of the Earth over four billion years, and shows how climate has had an important role to play in the evolution of humans. Posits that the world's rapidly growing human population and its increasing use of energy is the cause of present-day changes in the concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. (Author/JRH)

  9. Global Environmental Change: What Can Health Care Providers and the Environmental Health Community Do About It Now?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwartz, Brian S.; Parker, Cindy; Glass, Thomas A.; Hu, Howard

    2006-01-01

    The debate about whether global environmental change is real is now over; in its wake is the realization that it is happening more rapidly than predicted. These changes constitute a profound challenge to human health, both as a direct threat and as a promoter of other risks. We call on health care providers to inform themselves about these issues and to become agents of change in their communities. It is our responsibility as clinicians to educate patients and their communities on the connections between regressive policies, unsustainable behaviors, global environmental changes, and threats to health and security. We call on professional organizations to assist in educating their members about these issues, in helping clinicians practice behavior change with their patients, and in adding their voices to this issue in our statehouses and Congress. We call for the development of carbon- and other environmental-labeling of consumer products so individuals can make informed choices; we also call for the rapid implementation of policies that provide tangible economic incentives for choosing environmentally sustainable products and services. We urge the environmental health community to take up the challenge of developing a global environmental health index that will incorporate human health into available “planetary health” metrics and that can be used as a policy tool to evaluate the impact of interventions and document spatial and temporal shifts in the healthfulness of local areas. Finally, we urge our political, business, public health, and academic leaders to heed these environmental warnings and quickly develop regulatory and policy solutions so that the health of populations and the integrity of their environments will be ensured for future generations. PMID:17185267

  10. Global environmental change: what can health care providers and the environmental health community do about it now?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwartz, Brian S; Parker, Cindy; Glass, Thomas A; Hu, Howard

    2006-12-01

    The debate about whether global environmental change is real is now over; in its wake is the realization that it is happening more rapidly than predicted. These changes constitute a profound challenge to human health, both as a direct threat and as a promoter of other risks. We call on health care providers to inform themselves about these issues and to become agents of change in their communities. It is our responsibility as clinicians to educate patients and their communities on the connections between regressive policies, unsustainable behaviors, global environmental changes, and threats to health and security. We call on professional organizations to assist in educating their members about these issues, in helping clinicians practice behavior change with their patients, and in adding their voices to this issue in our statehouses and Congress. We call for the development of carbon and other environmental-labeling of consumer products so individuals can make informed choices; we also call for the rapid implementation of policies that provide tangible economic incentives for choosing environmentally sustainable products and services. We urge the environmental health community to take up the challenge of developing a global environmental health index that will incorporate human health into available "planetary health" metrics and that can be used as a policy tool to evaluate the impact of interventions and document spatial and temporal shifts in the healthfulness of local areas. Finally, we urge our political, business, public health, and academic leaders to heed these environmental warnings and quickly develop regulatory and policy solutions so that the health of populations and the integrity of their environments will be ensured for future generations.

  11. Coupled Socio-Environmental Changes Triggered Indigenous Aymara Depopulation of the Semiarid Andes of Tarapacá-Chile during the Late 19th-20th Centuries.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mauricio Lima

    Full Text Available Socio-economic and environmental changes are well known causes of demographic collapse of agrarian cultures. The collapse of human societies is a complex phenomenon where historical and cultural dimensions play a key role, and they may interact with the environmental context. However, the importance of the interaction between socio-economic and climatic factors in explaining possible breakdowns in Native American societies has been poorly explored. The aim of this study is to test the role of socio-economic causes and rainfall variability in the collapse suffered by the Aymara people of the semiarid Andean region of Tarapacá during the period 1820-1970. Our motivation is to demonstrate that simple population dynamic models can be helpful in understanding the causes and relative importance of population changes in Andean agro-pastoral societies in responses to socio-environmental variability. Simple logistic models that combine the effects of external socio-economic causes and past rainfall variability (inferred from Gross Domestic Product [GDP] and tree-rings, respectively were quite accurate in predicting the sustained population decline of the Aymara people. Our results suggest that the depopulation in the semiarid Tarapacá province was caused by the interaction among external socio-economic pressures given by the economic growth of the lowlands and demands for labor coupled with a persistent decline in rainfall. This study constitutes an example of how applied ecological knowledge, in particular the application of the logistic equation and theories pertaining to nonlinear population dynamics and exogenous perturbations, can be used to better understand major demographic changes in human societies.

  12. Coupled Socio-Environmental Changes Triggered Indigenous Aymara Depopulation of the Semiarid Andes of Tarapacá-Chile during the Late 19th-20th Centuries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lima, Mauricio; Christie, Duncan A; Santoro, M Calogero; Latorre, Claudio

    2016-01-01

    Socio-economic and environmental changes are well known causes of demographic collapse of agrarian cultures. The collapse of human societies is a complex phenomenon where historical and cultural dimensions play a key role, and they may interact with the environmental context. However, the importance of the interaction between socio-economic and climatic factors in explaining possible breakdowns in Native American societies has been poorly explored. The aim of this study is to test the role of socio-economic causes and rainfall variability in the collapse suffered by the Aymara people of the semiarid Andean region of Tarapacá during the period 1820-1970. Our motivation is to demonstrate that simple population dynamic models can be helpful in understanding the causes and relative importance of population changes in Andean agro-pastoral societies in responses to socio-environmental variability. Simple logistic models that combine the effects of external socio-economic causes and past rainfall variability (inferred from Gross Domestic Product [GDP] and tree-rings, respectively) were quite accurate in predicting the sustained population decline of the Aymara people. Our results suggest that the depopulation in the semiarid Tarapacá province was caused by the interaction among external socio-economic pressures given by the economic growth of the lowlands and demands for labor coupled with a persistent decline in rainfall. This study constitutes an example of how applied ecological knowledge, in particular the application of the logistic equation and theories pertaining to nonlinear population dynamics and exogenous perturbations, can be used to better understand major demographic changes in human societies.

  13. General review on climate change problems: causes, potential effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Martellet, J.

    1991-01-01

    Greenhouse gases and greenhouse effect principles are reviewed and climate changes due to the human activities are discussed: identification of gases, human or natural causes, composition evolution in the atmosphere and relative roles of greenhouse gases. The various tools and calculations methods for evaluating the climate change due to greenhouse effect are presented. Several problems are stated: evolution of the climate structure in 2030, variations of the climatic extremes and the extreme phenomena, augmentation or diminution of the storms on a warmed planet, long term evolution of the climate. Some consequences of a climate change are reviewed: sea level raising, climate change effects on ecosystems. Precision and validity of these predictions are discussed; recommendations for diminishing the uncertainties are proposed

  14. Human-induced environmental degradation during Anthropocene in Turkey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Efe, Recep; Curebal, Isa; Soykan, Abdullah; Sönmez, Suleyman

    2015-04-01

    affected by humans (Sanderson et al., 2002; Braje&Erlandson, 2014). The area left in its natural state corresponds to only 15%. Due to population increase, agricultural areas shrinked, forests were destroyed, and pastures declined in size. More chemical fertilizers and agricultural pesticides were used in order to obtain more products. A greater number of machines were employed in agriculture, which led to a rise in the number of products. The human pressure on the environment in Anatolia dates back to thousands of years. Nomadic peoples on these lands have settled in the last 200 years due to settlement policies (Cürebal et al., 2015). This process saw the establishment of villages in higher and inclined areas as a result of the effects of the nomadic culture of Turkomans and other people in Anatolia. Forests in the inclined areas around these villages were destroyed and turned into agricultural areas. Machines, fertilizers, and pesticides were utilized in agricultural activities in order to produce more crops. This transformation led to an increased erosion effect, deterioration of soil, agricultural and environmental pollution (Chin et al., 2013; Hoang et al., 2014; Matteo et al., 2014). The change caused by industrialization gained ground in the 1950s in Turkey. In particular, migration from rural areas to cities gaining pace after the World War II brought about an increased human pressure in and around big cities. Areas around the cities became centers of attraction for many people. Plains around settlement areas were opened to settlement, and most industrial facilities were established there. As a consequence, first class agricultural areas were lost. Settlements and industrial areas generated large amounts of solid and liquid waste. Uncontrolled discharge of liquid waste and intensely stored solid waste caused the physical and chemical pollution of rivers, lakes, and seas to increase in Turkey and other parts of the world (Andersson et al., 2006; Steffen et al

  15. Ceramic production during changing environmental/climatic conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oestreich, Daniela B.; Glasmacher, Ulrich A.

    2015-04-01

    Ceramics, with regard to their status as largely everlasting everyday object as well as on the basis of their chronological sensitivity, reflect despite their simplicity the technological level of a culture and therefore also, directly or indirectly, the adaptability of a culture with respect to environmental and/or climatic changes. For that reason the question arises, if it is possible to identify changes in production techniques and raw material sources for ceramic production, as a response to environmental change, e.g. climate change. This paper will present results of a research about Paracas Culture (800 - 200 BC), southern Peru. Through several investigations (e.g. Schittek et al., 2014; Eitel and Mächtle, 2009) it is well known that during Paracas period changes in climate and environmental conditions take place. As a consequence, settlement patterns shifted several times through the various stages of Paracas time. Ceramics from three different sites (Jauranga, Cutamalla, Collanco) and temporal phases of the Paracas period are detailed archaeometric, geochemical and mineralogical characterized, e.g. Raman spectroscopy, XRD, and ICP-MS analyses. The aim of this research is to resolve potential differences in the chemical composition of the Paracas ceramics in space and time and to compare the data with the data sets of pre-Columbian environmental conditions. Thus influences of changing environmental conditions on human societies and their cultural conditions will be discussed. References Eitel, B. and Mächtle, B. 2009. Man and Environment in the eastern Atacama Desert (Southern Peru): Holocene climate changes and their impact on pre-Columbian cultures. In: Reindel, M. & Wagner, G. A. (eds.) New Technologies for Archaeology. Berlin Heidelberg: Springer-Verlag. Schittek, K., Mächtle, B., Schäbitz, F., Forbriger, M., Wennrich, V., Reindel, M., and Eitel, B.. Holocene environmental changes in the highlands of the southern Peruvian Andes (14° S) and their

  16. Human response to environmental change in the perspective of future, global climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butzer, Karl W.

    1983-05-01

    Human response to severe environmental stress is conceived and implemented by individuals, but must be approved by the group. These decisions are made with respect to perceived circumstances. Societies are enmeshed within adaptive systems that provide a matrix of opportunities and constraints for a wide range of potential behavioral variability. Such systems repeatedly readjust to short-term crises, e.g., droughts, but persistent and severe environmental stress may require substantial revision of adaptive strategies. The Sahel drought of 1968-1973 is an example of a brief but severe crisis, recurring along the Saharan margins perhaps once every 30 years. Closer inspection shows links between intensified intertribal warfare and ecological stress in the lower Omo Valley. The decline of the Egyptian New Kingdom during the 12th century B.C., in response to economic stagnation, sociopolitical instability, dynastic weakness, foreign pressures, and poor Nile floods over 50-70 years, represents a more complex and fundamental modification, with systemic simplification lasting 450 years. Such insights can be applied to future, global climatic change due to increasing atmospheric CO 2. Simulation and paleoclimatic experience suggest a drier climate for the North American and Soviet breadbaskets, to threaten world food supplies at a time of maximum demographic pressures and declining resources. Public perception and remedial planning should receive the attention of Quaternary scientists, in order to preempt an involuntary, global, systemic simplification.

  17. Large-scale geographical variation confirms that climate change causes birds to lay earlier

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Both, C; Artemyev, AV; Blaauw, B; Cowie, RJ; Dekhuijzen, AJ; Eeva, T; Enemar, A; Gustafsson, L; Ivankina, EV; Jarvinen, A; Metcalfe, NB; Nyholm, NEI; Potti, J; Ravussin, PA; Sanz, JJ; Silverin, B; Slater, FM; Sokolov, LV; Torok, J; Winkel, W; Wright, J; Zang, H; Visser, ME

    2004-01-01

    Advances in the phenology of organisms are often attributed to climate change, but alternatively, may reflect a publication bias towards advances and may be caused by environmental factors unrelated to climate change. Both factors are investigated using the breeding dates of 25 long-term studied

  18. Climate Change and Human Occupation in Denmark and Syria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schrøder, Niels; Jensen, Gitte; Limborg, Magnus

    2007-01-01

    the main changes in human activities in the areas. It also confirms that the climatic histories of the sites are closely correlated - with strong ties to global causes of climate change. The NAO (North Atlantic Oscillation) caused contrasting rainfall conditions in Denmark and Levant. Over a period of one......Classical sites for studies of human occupation and climatic changes in Denmark and Syria - have been re-examined. A detailed geological/geophysical mapping of selected sites and geochemical /palynological analysis of cores/profiles confirms that climate change has been the decisive factor behind....... The changes in human occupation in Syria and in Denmark both seems to correlate with the proxies of climate change esp. the change from Atlantic to Subboreal around 4000BC, the change from Subboreal to Subatlantic around 500 BC are marked in as well the climate record and archaeological records (monsoon...

  19. Environmental changes and human work in the region of the Upper Paraná River floodplain: processes and interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    EA. Tomanik

    Full Text Available The environment and society constitute a complex of elements and interactions. Thus, an understanding of the processes in which the environment and psychosocial elements are involved may not be gained from knowledge of just one isolated variable. Based on such premises, the present paper, which summarizes the results of a series of studies, adopts work relationships as its main focus, but in addition, it has two complementary objectives. One is to present some analyses on the interaction between human actions and the environmental changes that have been taking place in the region of the Upper Paraná River floodplain and in its boundaries. A secondary aim is to show how those two factors have been changing people's working and living conditions and the identity configuration of some of the human groups that live at that site.

  20. Environmental changes and vulnerability in the Gharbi Island (Kerkennah, Tunisia)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Etienne, L.; Bouaziz, R.; Dahech, S.; Daoud, A.; Beltrando, G.

    2012-04-01

    Most reliable models of climatic observation and forecast show that the south of the Mediterranean perimeter is threatened by important variations of environmental conditions. The Gharbi Island that belongs to the Kerkennah archipelago is located 20 km away from the Sfax coast and is likely to undergo the consequences of these regional-scale evolutions. In addition, the socio-economic changes that started in the 80's may have an impact on land use. Indeed, marine conditions changed and overfishing causes the decrease of fish quantity and the leaving of the fisher in favor of agriculture. To enlighten changes of various natures and understand the mechanisms of their origin or development, we performed a comparison of land use on 4 dates over the last 50 years, using photointerpretation on two high resolution images (1963: aerial photography and 2010: Spot image; 2,5m resolution) and remote sensing on two Landsat 5 TM images (1984 and 2011). To support and complete our large scale observations, we also added photographic data gathered during two field campaigns. The first change we observed is a urban extension (stakes) predominantly imputed to the construction of holiday resort for Tunisian citizen, and for a minority to international tourism. We also found that the number of agricultural parcels (stakes) has been multiplied during the past decades in response of changes on agricultural practices, and that an irrigated zone has been created in response to the increase of hydric stress and of farmers. Finally, we describe an enlargement of sebkhas (low, salty and liable to flooding areas (hazard)) that might likely be caused by climatic and environmental evolution like sea level rise and subsidence. We conclude one the one hand that vulnerability and also risks of salinization and loss of farmland around the sebkhas and in the irrigated zone have increase and on the other hand that human infrastructures that are very close or in the sebkhas are vulnerable to sea

  1. Climate change and environmental impacts on maternal and newborn health with focus on Arctic populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Torkjel M. Sandanger

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available In 2007, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC presented a report on global warming and the impact of human activities on global warming. Later the Lancet commission identified six ways human health could be affected. Among these were not environmental factors which are also believed to be important for human health. In this paper we therefore focus on environmental factors, climate change and the predicted effects on maternal and newborn health. Arctic issues are discussed specifically considering their exposure and sensitivity to long range transported contaminants.Considering that the different parts of pregnancy are particularly sensitive time periods for the effects of environmental exposure, this review focuses on the impacts on maternal and newborn health. Environmental stressors known to affects human health and how these will change with the predicted climate change are addressed. Air pollution and food security are crucial issues for the pregnant population in a changing climate, especially indoor climate and food security in Arctic areas.The total number of environmental factors is today responsible for a large number of the global deaths, especially in young children. Climate change will most likely lead to an increase in this number. Exposure to the different environmental stressors especially air pollution will in most parts of the world increase with climate change, even though some areas might face lower exposure. Populations at risk today are believed to be most heavily affected. As for the persistent organic pollutants a warming climate leads to a remobilisation and a possible increase in food chain exposure in the Arctic and thus increased risk for Arctic populations. This is especially the case for mercury. The perspective for the next generations will be closely connected to the expected temperature changes; changes in housing conditions; changes in exposure patterns; predicted increased exposure to Mercury

  2. Environmental health risk assessment and management for global climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carter, P.

    2014-12-01

    This environmental health risk assessment and management approach for atmospheric greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution is based almost entirely on IPCC AR5 (2014) content, but the IPCC does not make recommendations. Large climate model uncertainties may be large environmental health risks. In accordance with environmental health risk management, we use the standard (IPCC-endorsed) formula of risk as the product of magnitude times probability, with an extremely high standard of precaution. Atmospheric GHG pollution, causing global warming, climate change and ocean acidification, is increasing as fast as ever. Time is of the essence to inform and make recommendations to governments and the public. While the 2ºC target is the only formally agreed-upon policy limit, for the most vulnerable nations, a 1.5ºC limit is being considered by the UNFCCC Secretariat. The Climate Action Network International (2014), representing civil society, recommends that the 1.5ºC limit be kept open and that emissions decline from 2015. James Hansen et al (2013) have argued that 1ºC is the danger limit. Taking into account committed global warming, its millennial duration, multiple large sources of amplifying climate feedbacks and multiple adverse impacts of global warming and climate change on crops, and population health impacts, all the IPCC AR5 scenarios carry extreme environmental health risks to large human populations and to the future of humanity as a whole. Our risk consideration finds that 2ºC carries high risks of many catastrophic impacts, that 1.5ºC carries high risks of many disastrous impacts, and that 1ºC is the danger limit. IPCC AR4 (2007) showed that emissions must be reversed by 2015 for a 2ºC warming limit. For the IPCC AR5 only the best-case scenario RCP2.6, is projected to stay under 2ºC by 2100 but the upper range is just above 2ºC. It calls for emissions to decline by 2020. We recommend that for catastrophic environmental health risk aversion, emissions decline

  3. Climate patriots? Concern over climate change and other environmental issues in Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tranter, Bruce; Lester, Libby

    2017-08-01

    Echoing the anti-pollution and resource conservation campaigns in the United States in the early-to-mid-twentieth century, some scholars advocate mobilising support for environmental issues by harnessing the notion of environmental patriotism. Taking action to reduce the impact of global warming has also been cast as a patriotic cause. Drawing upon quantitative data from a recent national survey, we examine the link between patriotism and environmental attitudes in Australia, focussing upon climate change. We find that patriotism has a largely neutral association with concern over environmental issues, with the exception of climate change and, to a lesser extent, wildlife preservation. Expressing concern over climate change appears to be unpatriotic for some Australians. Even after controlling for political party identification and other important correlates of environmental issue concerns, patriots are less likely than others to prioritise climate change as their most urgent environmental issue and less likely to believe that climate change is actually occurring.

  4. Environmental health indicators of climate change for the United States: findings from the State Environmental Health Indicator Collaborative.

    Science.gov (United States)

    English, Paul B; Sinclair, Amber H; Ross, Zev; Anderson, Henry; Boothe, Vicki; Davis, Christine; Ebi, Kristie; Kagey, Betsy; Malecki, Kristen; Shultz, Rebecca; Simms, Erin

    2009-11-01

    To develop public health adaptation strategies and to project the impacts of climate change on human health, indicators of vulnerability and preparedness along with accurate surveillance data on climate-sensitive health outcomes are needed. We researched and developed environmental health indicators for inputs into human health vulnerability assessments for climate change and to propose public health preventative actions. We conducted a review of the scientific literature to identify outcomes and actions that were related to climate change. Data sources included governmental and nongovernmental agencies and the published literature. Sources were identified and assessed for completeness, usability, and accuracy. Priority was then given to identifying longitudinal data sets that were applicable at the state and community level. We present a list of surveillance indicators for practitioners and policy makers that include climate-sensitive health outcomes and environmental and vulnerability indicators, as well as mitigation, adaptation, and policy indicators of climate change. A review of environmental health indicators for climate change shows that data exist for many of these measures, but more evaluation of their sensitivity and usefulness is needed. Further attention is necessary to increase data quality and availability and to develop new surveillance databases, especially for climate-sensitive morbidity.

  5. Social vulnerability and environmental change along urban-rural interfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    John Schelhas; Sarah Hitchner; Cassandra Johnson

    2012-01-01

    As the world becomes increasingly urbanized and interconnected, the distinction between urban and rural areas is diminishing. Creation of new urban–rural interface areas causes immediate changes in local natural and social environments, and theseareas are also susceptible to both short-term and long-term environmental changes. Different groups of people...

  6. Integrating Access to Arctic Environmental Change and Human Health Research for the International Polar Year and Beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrett, C. L.

    2006-12-01

    Each day, people in the communities of the Arctic face challenges to their health and well-being from changing climatic and environmental conditions and increasing levels of pollution to emerging infectious diseases. For this reason, it is critical that Arctic researchers and residents have access to timely, accurate, and relevant information addressing their unique concerns. To meet this need, the National Library of Medicine (NLM) and the University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA) have developed the Arctic Health website, www.arctichealth.org. The website provides an easy-to-use one-stop shop for information on the diverse health-related aspects of the Arctic region. It is organized around relevant topics, including climate change and environmental health, traditional healing and telehealth/telemedicine. The Arctic Health website provides links to the most reliable resources available from local, state, and international agencies, universities, and professional organizations. Two major goals of the site are to create a comprehensive, accessible repository for various media and a listing of research projects, past and present that relate to climate change and human health in the Arctic. To increase the site's relevance, the project has established and continues to create collaborations with researchers, communities, and other organizations to supply publications not available elsewhere, including gray literature, streaming video of traditional healers, and oral histories. These collaborations will also help ensure a database with a comprehensive list of research projects being done in the Arctic, from the international to the local level. Finding ways to negotiate the legal, cultural and national concerns of data sharing are a continuing job for the management team. All of this helps to create a system that will eventually track and ensure that data and reports from the research database translate to the publications database. As part of these efforts, the site is

  7. Human-specific HERV-K insertion causes genomic variations in the human genome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wonseok Shin

    Full Text Available Human endogenous retroviruses (HERV sequences account for about 8% of the human genome. Through comparative genomics and literature mining, we identified a total of 29 human-specific HERV-K insertions. We characterized them focusing on their structure and flanking sequence. The results showed that four of the human-specific HERV-K insertions deleted human genomic sequences via non-classical insertion mechanisms. Interestingly, two of the human-specific HERV-K insertion loci contained two HERV-K internals and three LTR elements, a pattern which could be explained by LTR-LTR ectopic recombination or template switching. In addition, we conducted a polymorphic test and observed that twelve out of the 29 elements are polymorphic in the human population. In conclusion, human-specific HERV-K elements have inserted into human genome since the divergence of human and chimpanzee, causing human genomic changes. Thus, we believe that human-specific HERV-K activity has contributed to the genomic divergence between humans and chimpanzees, as well as within the human population.

  8. Environmental change in south-east Asia. People, politics and sustainable development

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Parnwell, M.J.G.; Bryant, R.L.

    1996-01-01

    The interaction of politics and ecology in the quest for sustainable development in South East Asia is explored in this book by contributors who provide a broad range of perspectives. In the first of the four main sections, the political context of ecological change is examined. The topics discussed are: Indonesia and Thailand in a globalising pulp and paper industry; environmental organisations and different political contexts in Malaysia, Indonesia and Vietnam; Japan and South East Asia's environment. Some of the processes and forms of human-induced environmental change are illustrated in the second section. These include: the search for sustainable livelihoods in Indonesian transmigration settlements; the 210 MW hydro-power project on the Theun river in Laos which illustrates the tensions between environmental costs and potential economic benefits; forest management in Laos. Discussion of the various methods which strengthen understanding of human-induced environmental change in the region is integrated with further illustrations of its process and context in the third section where the following are considered: environmental change in Malaysian Borneo; the value of remote sensing and geographical information systems in mapping the environment; the weakness of Vietnam's tropical forestry action plan. In the final section, an examination of some of the options for change which are necessary if sustainable development is to become a reality includes: the sustainability of ecotourism in Indonesia; the potential stewardship role of the Bajau people in Indonesia's proposed marine parks; environmental degradation, non-timber forest products and Iban communities in Sarawak; conservation and development in Brunei's rainforests; Philippine community-based forest management. (27 figures; 23 tables; 752 references) (UK)

  9. Hydrostatic Pressure Does Not Cause Detectable Changes in Survival of Human Retinal Ganglion Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osborne, Andrew; Aldarwesh, Amal; Rhodes, Jeremy D.; Broadway, David C.; Everitt, Claire; Sanderson, Julie

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Elevated intraocular pressure (IOP) is a major risk factor for glaucoma. One consequence of raised IOP is that ocular tissues are subjected to increased hydrostatic pressure (HP). The effect of raised HP on stress pathway signaling and retinal ganglion cell (RGC) survival in the human retina was investigated. Methods A chamber was designed to expose cells to increased HP (constant and fluctuating). Accurate pressure control (10-100mmHg) was achieved using mass flow controllers. Human organotypic retinal cultures (HORCs) from donor eyes (pressure for 24 or 48h caused no loss of structural integrity, LDH release, decrease in RGC marker expression (THY-1) or loss of RGCs compared with controls. In addition, there was no increase in TUNEL-positive NeuN-labelled cells at either time-point indicating no increase in apoptosis of RGCs. OGD increased apoptosis, reduced RGC marker expression and RGC number and caused elevated LDH release at 24h. p38 and JNK phosphorylation remained unchanged in HORCs exposed to fluctuating pressure (10-100mmHg; 1 cycle/min) for 15, 30, 60 and 90min durations, whereas OGD (3h) increased activation of p38 and JNK, remaining elevated for 90min post-OGD. Conclusions Directly applied HP had no detectable impact on RGC survival and stress-signalling in HORCs. Simulated ischemia, however, activated stress pathways and caused RGC death. These results show that direct HP does not cause degeneration of RGCs in the ex vivo human retina. PMID:25635827

  10. Human Behavior and Environmental Sustainability: promoting a pro-environmental behavior by harnessing the social, psychological and physical influences of the built environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abusafieh, Shaden; Razem, Maiss

    2017-11-01

    Recently, technological advancements in the sustainable design field have allowed us to reduce the ecological impact of the built environment, to reduce consumption of non-renewable resources, to create healthy environments and in some cases may even rehabilitate the ecosystem. Nevertheless, several studies have been carried out showing that sustainable technology does not automatically lead to environmentally friendly behaviors in its users. Various environmental problems threaten environmental sustainability and many of these problems are rooted in human behavior. Unfortunately, there is a lack in studies which take into consideration the human behavior influences within a sustainable built environment. We believe that the built environment should be used to support human goals and requirements, but at the same time we should consider it as a context in which human values and behaviors are cultivated. This research aimed to help in promoting environmental sustainability by using architectural design in changing relevant human behavior toward an environmentally friendly behavior. In order to achieve this, the research adopted Environment-centered Approach to gain more acute perspective into the relationship between the physical environment and human behavior, focusing on social, psychological and physical influences of the built environment. It appears that environmental psychology's merits have high potential in changing behavior within the built environment. The research provides a systematic approach for selecting, assessing, evaluating the behaviors to be changed and the factors that determine them. Furthermore, this approach helps in choosing the best interventions that could be applied in built environment to encourage such a sustainable behavior. This study tried to construct an agenda for further researches to find particular architectural design elements and strategies that we can harness to develop a pro-environment human behavior.

  11. Human and animal salmonellosis in Scotland associated with environmental contamination, 1973-79.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reilly, W J; Forbes, G I; Paterson, G M; Sharp, J C

    1981-06-27

    Twenty-six incidents of salmonellosis occurring in Scotland between 1973 and 1979 and attributed to environmental pollution are reviewed. The apparent sources of pollution were sewage effluent (10 incidents), septic tank effluent (eight), sewage sludge (three), seagulls (three) and abattoir effluents (two). Cattle were the species predominantly affected. Human infection was primary in three incidents and was secondary to bovine infection in another four. Thirteen salmonella serotypes were recovered from infected humans or animals and 17 during related environmental investigations. The factors causing pollutions and possible control measures are discussed.

  12. Human and animal salmonellosis in Scotland associated with environmental contamination, 1973-79

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reilly, W J; Forbes, G I; Paterson, G M; Sharp, J C

    1981-06-27

    Twenty-six incidents of salmonellosis occurring in Scotland between 1973 and 1979 and attributed to environmental pollution are reviewed. The apparent sources of pollution were sewage effluent (10 incidents), septic tank effluent (eight), sewage sludge (three), seagulls (three) and abattoir effluents (two). Cattle were the species predominantly affected. Human infection was primary in three incidents and was secondary to bovine infection in another four. Thirteen salmonella serotypes were recovered from infected humans or animals and 17 during related environmental investigations. The factors causing pollutions and possible control measures are discussed.

  13. Holocene environmental change and archaeology, Yangtze River Valley, China: Review and prospects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Wu

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Holocene environmental change and environmental archaeology are important components of an international project studying the human-earth interaction system. This paper reviews the progress of Holocene environmental change and environmental archaeology research in the Yangtze River Valley over the last three decades, that includes the evolution of large freshwater lakes, Holocene transgression and sea-level changes, Holocene climate change and East Asian monsoon variation, relationship between the rise and fall of primitive civilizations and environmental changes, cultural interruptions and palaeoflood events, as well as relationship between the origin of agriculture and climate change. These research components are underpinned by the dating of lacustrine sediments, stalagmites and peat to establish a chronology of regional environmental and cultural evolution. Interdisciplinary and other environment proxy indicators need to be used in comparative studies of archaeological site formation and natural sedimentary environment in the upper, middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River Valley. Modern technology such as remote sensing, molecular bioarchaeology, and virtual reality, should be integrated with currently used dating, geochemical, sedimentological, and palaeobotanical methods of analysis in environmental archaeology macro- and micro-studies, so as to provide a greater comprehensive insight into Holocene environmental and cultural interaction and change in the Yangtze River Valley area.

  14. Psychology and Environmental Sustainability: A Call for Integration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koger, Susan M.; Scott, Britain A.

    2007-01-01

    Environmental scientists warn that the health of the planet is rapidly deteriorating, and the primary cause of the crisis is human behavior. Psychology can contribute greatly to understanding and changing behaviors that negatively impact global ecosystems; however, environmental issues are not generally included in psychology curricula, and…

  15. Linking degradation status with ecosystem vulnerability to environmental change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angeler, David G.; Baho, Didier L.; Allen, Craig R.; Johnson, Richard K.

    2015-01-01

    Environmental change can cause regime shifts in ecosystems, potentially threatening ecosystem services. It is unclear if the degradation status of ecosystems correlates with their vulnerability to environmental change, and thus the risk of future regime shifts. We assessed resilience in acidified (degraded) and circumneutral (undegraded) lakes with long-term data (1988–2012), using time series modeling. We identified temporal frequencies in invertebrate assemblages, which identifies groups of species whose population dynamics vary at particular temporal scales. We also assessed species with stochastic dynamics, those whose population dynamics vary irregularly and unpredictably over time. We determined the distribution of functional feeding groups of invertebrates within and across the temporal scales identified, and in those species with stochastic dynamics, and assessed attributes hypothesized to contribute to resilience. Three patterns of temporal dynamics, consistent across study lakes, were identified in the invertebrates. The first pattern was one of monotonic change associated with changing abiotic lake conditions. The second and third patterns appeared unrelated to the environmental changes we monitored. Acidified and the circumneutral lakes shared similar levels and patterns of functional richness, evenness, diversity, and redundancy for species within and across the observed temporal scales and for stochastic species groups. These similar resilience characteristics suggest that both lake types did not differ in vulnerability to the environmental changes observed here. Although both lake types appeared equally vulnerable in this study, our approach demonstrates how assessing systemic vulnerability by quantifying ecological resilience can help address uncertainty in predicting ecosystem responses to environmental change across ecosystems.

  16. Environmental Pollution, Causes and Consequences

    OpenAIRE

    Pham van Huong; , Huynh Thanh Dat; Nguyen Quoc Hung

    2017-01-01

    Pollution induces harmful effects on environment and health security. Main deep causes will be analyzed including natural disasters like volcanoes eruption, climate change as well as and men-caused disasters which are nuclear explosions and dioxin sprays.

  17. Using Population Data to Address the Human Dimensions of Environmental Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    D.M. Mageean; J.G. Bartlett

    1999-01-01

    In recent years researchers and policy makers have identified population-environment interactions as crucial to issues of ecology, economic development, and human welfare. It seems clear that human populations and demands on the environment are driving ecological change in such areas as global warming, ozone depletion, deforestation, biodiversity loss, land degradation...

  18. Environmental and occupational causes of cancer: new evidence 2005-2007.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clapp, Richard W; Jacobs, Molly M; Loechler, Edward L

    2008-01-01

    oils. In addition to NHL and prostate cancer, early findings from the National Institutes of Health Agricultural Health Study suggest that several additional cancers may be linked to a variety of pesticides. Our report also briefly describes the toxicological evidence related to the carcinogenic effect of specific chemicals and mechanisms that are difficult to study in humans, namely exposures to bis-phenol A and epigenetic, trans-generational effects. To underscore the multi-factorial, multi-stage nature of cancer, we also present a technical description of cancer causation summarizing current knowledge in molecular biology. We argue for a new cancer prevention paradigm, one based on an understanding that cancer is ultimately caused by multiple interacting factors rather than a paradigm based on dubious attributable fractions. This new cancer prevention paradigm demands that we limit exposure to avoidable environmental and occupational carcinogens, in combination with additional important risk factors like diet and lifestyle. The research literature related to environmental and occupational causes of cancer is constantly growing, and future updates will be carried out in light of new biological understanding of the mechanisms and new methods for studying exposures in human populations. The current state of knowledge is sufficient to compel us to act on what we know. We repeat the call of ecologist Sandra Steingraber: "From the right to know and the duty to inquire flows the obligation to act."

  19. Isotope techniques in the study of environmental change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1998-01-01

    The International Atomic Energy Agency, among its efforts to promote the wider use of isotope techniques in hydrology and related environmental disciplines, organized an International Symposium on Applications of Isotope Techniques in Studying Past and Current Environmental Changes in the Hydrosphere and the Atmosphere, held in 1993 in Vienna. The broad scientific interest and abundant participation in the symposium, as well as the rapid progress seen in this field since then, encouraged the IAEA to organize a second symposium of this kind. It was held from 14 to 18 April 1997 in Vienna and brought together 177 scientists representing 46 Member States, UNESCO, FAO, WMO, the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) and the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP). The symposium was structured in five sessions of oral presentations, a poster session and a round table discussion that focused on trends and future requirements in isotope hydrology and on applications in climate and environmental research. The major themes covered by the presentations included the use of isotopic tracers in studies of atmospheric and hydrospheric changes and of the human impact on water and the environment. Special emphasis was placed on isotopic archives of climatic and environmental change. Some contributions addressed new technical approaches

  20. Adaptive changes in human memory: a literature review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Agnieszka Laura Sabiniewicz

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The paper contains a review of the literature concerning memory abilities and human senses performance under different environmental circumstances. A number of studies indicated that environment has a significant impact on human senses functioning. It can affect it in a mechanical way, by a chronic exposure to potentially harmful substances or processes in different work environments. Also, some cognitive abilities that have evolved to perform evolutionary essential functions lost their importance because of the change of environment impact. Moreover, training can be a source of improvement of both human senses and cognitive abilities, as well. That might suggest that, while using, under different environmental circumstances different cognitive abilities develop. We take into a particular consideration human memory and its role, show current studies in this field and suggest new research directions.

  1. Environmental change disrupts communication and sexual selection in a stickleback population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Candolin, Ulrika; Tukiainen, Iina; Bertell, Elina

    2016-04-01

    Environmental change that disrupts communication during mate choice and alters sexual selection could influence population dynamics. Yet little is known about such long-term effects. We investigated experimentally the consequences that disrupted visual communication during mate choice has for the quantity and viability of offspring produced in a threespine stickleback population (Gasterosteus aculeatus). We further related the results to long-term monitoring of population dynamics in the field to determine if changes are apparent under natural conditions. The results show that impaired visual communication because of algal blooms reduces reliability of male visual signals as indicators of offspring survival during their first weeks of life. This relaxes sexual selection but has no effect on the number of offspring hatching, as most males have a high hatching success in turbid water. Despite eutrophication and high turbidity levels that interfere with communication during mate choice, the population has grown during recent decades. Large numbers of offspring hatching, combined with high variation in juvenile fitness, has probably shifted selection to later life history stages and maintained a viable population. Together with reduced cost of sexual selection and ongoing ecosystem changes caused by human activities, this could have promoted population growth. These results point to the complexity of ecosystems and the necessity to consider all influencing factors when attempting to understand impacts of human activities on populations.

  2. The high cancer incidence in young people in Italy: do genetic signatures reveal their environmental causes?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruggero Ridolfi

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The increased incidence of cancer in children and adolescents registered in Italy in the last few decades is one of the highest amongst Western countries. The causes are difficult to identify, but recent daily news and some epidemiological surveys, such as the ‘Sentieri’ study, suggest that environmental pollution has an important role. In the past 20 years, epigenetic studies have described how the changes induced by the cell microenvironment on the non-coding parts of the genome can heavily influence gene function, contributing to the carcinogenesis process. Connecting links amongst the external environment, cellular microenvironment and functional epigenetic and genetic mutations promote carcinogenesis. Today, the whole genome sequencing techniques for human cancers can help to formulate a map of mutational signatures in individual tumours, and a list of mutational fingerprints showing exposure to specific environmental mutagens is being developed. Determining the ethical, legal and economic consequences of known cancer causative agents in young people will be a crucial step for a serious reconsideration of primary prevention.

  3. How does climate change cause extinction?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cahill, Abigail E; Aiello-Lammens, Matthew E; Fisher-Reid, M Caitlin; Hua, Xia; Karanewsky, Caitlin J; Ryu, Hae Yeong; Sbeglia, Gena C; Spagnolo, Fabrizio; Waldron, John B; Warsi, Omar; Wiens, John J

    2013-01-07

    Anthropogenic climate change is predicted to be a major cause of species extinctions in the next 100 years. But what will actually cause these extinctions? For example, will it be limited physiological tolerance to high temperatures, changing biotic interactions or other factors? Here, we systematically review the proximate causes of climate-change related extinctions and their empirical support. We find 136 case studies of climatic impacts that are potentially relevant to this topic. However, only seven identified proximate causes of demonstrated local extinctions due to anthropogenic climate change. Among these seven studies, the proximate causes vary widely. Surprisingly, none show a straightforward relationship between local extinction and limited tolerances to high temperature. Instead, many studies implicate species interactions as an important proximate cause, especially decreases in food availability. We find very similar patterns in studies showing decreases in abundance associated with climate change, and in those studies showing impacts of climatic oscillations. Collectively, these results highlight our disturbingly limited knowledge of this crucial issue but also support the idea that changing species interactions are an important cause of documented population declines and extinctions related to climate change. Finally, we briefly outline general research strategies for identifying these proximate causes in future studies.

  4. Evidence for widespread changes in promoter methylation profile in human placenta in response to increasing gestational age and environmental/stochastic factors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Craig Jeffrey M

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The human placenta facilitates the exchange of nutrients, gas and waste between the fetal and maternal circulations. It also protects the fetus from the maternal immune response. Due to its role at the feto-maternal interface, the placenta is subject to many environmental exposures that can potentially alter its epigenetic profile. Previous studies have reported gene expression differences in placenta over gestation, as well as inter-individual variation in expression of some genes. However, the factors contributing to this variation in gene expression remain poorly understood. Results In this study, we performed a genome-wide DNA methylation analysis of gene promoters in placenta tissue from three pregnancy trimesters. We identified large-scale differences in DNA methylation levels between first, second and third trimesters, with an overall progressive increase in average methylation from first to third trimester. The most differentially methylated genes included many immune regulators, reflecting the change in placental immuno-modulation as pregnancy progresses. We also detected increased inter-individual variation in the third trimester relative to first and second, supporting an accumulation of environmentally induced (or stochastic changes in DNA methylation pattern. These highly variable genes were enriched for those involved in amino acid and other metabolic pathways, potentially reflecting the adaptation of the human placenta to different environments. Conclusions The identification of cellular pathways subject to drift in response to environmental influences provide a basis for future studies examining the role of specific environmental factors on DNA methylation pattern and placenta-associated adverse pregnancy outcomes.

  5. Reconstructing recent environmental change in the Carpathian Basin; advocating an interdisciplinary approach for 2020 environmental science

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon HUTCHINSON

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available An interdisciplinary approach to environmental science is particularly important in the field of palaeoenvironmental research. Indeed, while the majority of such studies employ a range of proxies in their investigation, the more innovative studies tend to truly cross discipline boundaries. The investigation of depositional environments (e.g., lake sediments and mires as archives of environmental history has a long tradition in the Carpathian region. However, glacial lakes across the region have also been described as under-investigated despite their potential for palaeolimnological study (Buczko et al. 2009. Studies have also largely focused on relatively early (Late Glacial and Early Holocene environmental change.  Nevertheless, there is an increasing interest in the reconstruction of more human-driven impacts on the environment and events in the very recent past on a century to decade timescale e.g., post Industrial Revolution and following political change from the mid 1940s and in the late 1980s. Furthermore, efforts have are also being made to inform the debate about future climate and environmental changes linking palaeoenvironmental records to predictive computer modelling.

  6. Regional environmental change and human activity over the past hundred years recorded in the sedimentary record of Lake Qinghai, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sha, ZhanJiang; Wang, Qiugui; Wang, Jinlong; Du, Jinzhou; Hu, Jufang; Ma, Yujun; Kong, Fancui; Wang, Zhuan

    2017-04-01

    Environmental change and human activity can be recorded in sediment cores in aquatic systems such as lakes. Information from such records may be useful for environmental governance in the future. Six sediment cores were collected from Lake Qinghai, China and its sublakes during 2012 and 2013. Measurements of sediment grain-size fractions indicate that sedimentation in the north and southwest of Lake Qinghai is dominated by river input, whereas that in Lake Gahai and Lake Erhai is dominated by dunes. The sedimentation rates in Lake Qinghai were calculated to be 0.101-0.159 cm/y, similar to the rates in other lakes on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. Using these data and sedimentation rates from the literature, we compiled the spatial distribution of sedimentation rates. Higher values were obtained in the three main areas of Lake Qinghai: two in river estuaries and one close to sand dunes. Lower values were measured in the center and south of the lake. Measurements of total organic carbon (TOC), total nitrogen (TN), phosphorus concentrations, and TOC/TN ratios in three cores (QH01, QH02, and Z04) revealed four horizons corresponding to times of increased human activity. These anthropogenic events were (1) the development of large areas of cropland in the Lake Qinghai watershed in 1960, (2) the beginning of nationwide fertilizer use and increases in cropland area in the lake watershed after 1970, (3) the implementation of the national program "Grain to Green," and (4) the rapid increase in the tourism industry from 2000. Profiles of Rb, Sr concentrations, the Rb/Sr ratio, and grain-size fraction in core Z04 indicate that the climate has become drier over the past 100 years. Therefore, we suggest that lake sediments such as those in Lake Qinghai are useful media for high-resolution studies of regional environmental change and human activity.

  7. New data confirm humanly made climatic changes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Groenaas, Sigbjoern

    2000-01-01

    The article describes studies of climatic changes during the last millennium. Factors as volcanic eruptions, solar activities, greenhouse gases and human activities are considered. The conclusion is that the global warming in the last 150 years is most certainly, mainly caused by increased greenhouse effect due to humanly produced emissions of climatic gases

  8. Simple messages help set the record straight about scientific agreement on human-caused climate change: the results of two experiments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Teresa A Myers

    Full Text Available Human-caused climate change is happening; nearly all climate scientists are convinced of this basic fact according to surveys of experts and reviews of the peer-reviewed literature. Yet, among the American public, there is widespread misunderstanding of this scientific consensus. In this paper, we report results from two experiments, conducted with national samples of American adults, that tested messages designed to convey the high level of agreement in the climate science community about human-caused climate change. The first experiment tested hypotheses about providing numeric versus non-numeric assertions concerning the level of scientific agreement. We found that numeric statements resulted in higher estimates of the scientific agreement. The second experiment tested the effect of eliciting respondents' estimates of scientific agreement prior to presenting them with a statement about the level of scientific agreement. Participants who estimated the level of agreement prior to being shown the corrective statement gave higher estimates of the scientific consensus than respondents who were not asked to estimate in advance, indicating that incorporating an "estimation and reveal" technique into public communication about scientific consensus may be effective. The interaction of messages with political ideology was also tested, and demonstrated that messages were approximately equally effective among liberals and conservatives. Implications for theory and practice are discussed.

  9. Coping with global environmental change, disasters and security: threats, challenges, vulnerabilities and risks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brauch, H.G.; Oswald Spring, Ú.; Mesjasz, C.; Grin, J.; Kameri-Mbote, P.; Chourou, B.; Dunay, P.; Birkmann, J.

    2011-01-01

    This policy-focused Global Environmental and Human Security Handbook for the Anthropo-cene (GEHSHA) addresses new security threats, challenges, vulnerabilities and risks posed by global environmental change and disasters. In 6 forewords, 5 preface essays 95 peer reviewed chapcountries analyse in 10

  10. A High-Resolution Reconstruction of Late Holocene Environmental Change from Laguna Ek'Naab, Northern Holmul Region, Peten, Guatemala

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, L.; Wahl, D.; Estrada-Belli, F.

    2015-12-01

    Widespread demographic shifts in the southern Maya lowlands at the end of the Classic period have been attributed to environmental change caused by human activity and/or climate variability. Fire was essential to landscape modification and was a primary agent of environmental change associated with prehispanic land use. While several studies have provided insight into the dynamic relationship between natural and anthropogenic drivers of change, defining the specific interplay between natural environmental change, human modification of the environment, and cultural response to changes remains a persistent challenge. Here we present the results of a multi-proxy study that reconstructs fire history, agricultural land use, and environmental change during and after Pre-Columbian Maya settlement. Results are interpreted in the context of settlement history as inferred from archaeological mapping around the study site. Our findings suggest landscape disturbance, as indicated by erosion, local burning, and nearby maize agriculture, was at its peak during the Early Classic period. This disturbance was likely due to large-scale settlement at the nearby site of Witzna'. All proxies indicate a slow decline in disturbance into the Late Classic period, beginning around 1300 cal yr BP. Cival and Chanchich, two proximal site centers to the south of Laguna Ek'Naab, supported their largest populations during the Late Preclassic and Late Classic, with little or no settlement during the Early Classic. The data from Laguna Ek'Naab suggests that Witzna' may have been an important center during the Early Classic. Whether the decreasing environmental degradation after 1240 cal yr BP is do to a decline in local population or changing land use strategies is not discernable based on the data thus far. However, the near complete absence of burning and continued decrease in erosion from 1240-1090 cal yr BP suggests little anthropogenic activity in the area. Burning resumes in the watershed

  11. Contribution of human and climate change impacts to changes in streamflow of Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Xuezhi; Gan, Thian Yew

    2015-12-04

    Climate change exerts great influence on streamflow by changing precipitation, temperature, snowpack and potential evapotranspiration (PET), while human activities in a watershed can directly alter the runoff production and indirectly through affecting climatic variables. However, to separate contribution of anthropogenic and natural drivers to observed changes in streamflow is non-trivial. Here we estimated the direct influence of human activities and climate change effect to changes of the mean annual streamflow (MAS) of 96 Canadian watersheds based on the elasticity of streamflow in relation to precipitation, PET and human impacts such as land use and cover change. Elasticities of streamflow for each watershed are analytically derived using the Budyko Framework. We found that climate change generally caused an increase in MAS, while human impacts generally a decrease in MAS and such impact tends to become more severe with time, even though there are exceptions. Higher proportions of human contribution, compared to that of climate change contribution, resulted in generally decreased streamflow of Canada observed in recent decades. Furthermore, if without contributions from retreating glaciers to streamflow, human impact would have resulted in a more severe decrease in Canadian streamflow.

  12. Climate change and human health

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sanderson, G.

    1991-01-01

    Changes in the earth's climate, stemming from the greenhouse effect, are highly likely to damage human health. As well as the disruptions to food and fresh water supplies, there is the prospect of major diseases flourishing in warmer conditions, in addition the decrease in the ozone layer is causing an increased incidence of skin cancer

  13. Environmental changes and violent conflict

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bernauer, Thomas; Böhmelt, Tobias; Koubi, Vally

    2012-01-01

    This letter reviews the scientific literature on whether and how environmental changes affect the risk of violent conflict. The available evidence from qualitative case studies indicates that environmental stress can contribute to violent conflict in some specific cases. Results from quantitative large-N studies, however, strongly suggest that we should be careful in drawing general conclusions. Those large-N studies that we regard as the most sophisticated ones obtain results that are not robust to alternative model specifications and, thus, have been debated. This suggests that environmental changes may, under specific circumstances, increase the risk of violent conflict, but not necessarily in a systematic way and unconditionally. Hence there is, to date, no scientific consensus on the impact of environmental changes on violent conflict. This letter also highlights the most important challenges for further research on the subject. One of the key issues is that the effects of environmental changes on violent conflict are likely to be contingent on a set of economic and political conditions that determine adaptation capacity. In the authors' view, the most important indirect effects are likely to lead from environmental changes via economic performance and migration to violent conflict. (letter)

  14. Changes in channel morphology over human time scales [Chapter 32

    Science.gov (United States)

    John M. Buffington

    2012-01-01

    Rivers are exposed to changing environmental conditions over multiple spatial and temporal scales, with the imposed environmental conditions and response potential of the river modulated to varying degrees by human activity and our exploitation of natural resources. Watershed features that control river morphology include topography (valley slope and channel...

  15. Human Behavioral Contributions to Climate Change: Psychological and Contextual Drivers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swim, Janet K.; Clayton, Susan; Howard, George S.

    2011-01-01

    We are facing rapid changes in the global climate, and these changes are attributable to human behavior. Humans produce this global impact through our use of natural resources, multiplied by the vast increase in population seen in the past 50 to 100 years. Our goal in this article is to examine the underlying psychosocial causes of human impact,…

  16. Human malformations induced by environmental noxae

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hecker, W.C.; Angerpointner, T.A.

    1980-01-01

    The paper reviews congenital malformations in humans and presents possible causes. 60% of all malformations are a result of environmental and other factors; i.e. not hereditary or caused by a disease of the mother. The teratogenic effects of ionizing radiation, drugs, alcohol, polyvinyl chloride and trichlorophenol are discussed as well as the effect of the mother's working in certain fields, e.g. clinical laboratories or printing offices; in the latter case the teratogenic noxae are still unknown. Efficient research requires centralized storage of all data on children born with malformations and on the mother's health situation during pregnancy, and the legislator is asked to do so while observing the law on data protection. Foundation of a German Institute of Teratology is recommended. In order to intensify research, it is suggested to set up groups or departments for research on malformations in some major paediatric hospitals. (MG) [de

  17. Human health risk assessment (HHRA) for environmental development and transfer of antibiotic resistance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ashbolt, Nicholas J.; Amézquita, Alejandro; Backhaus, Thomas

    2013-01-01

    to enable human health risk assessments (HHRA) that focus on the role of the environment in the failure of antibiotic treatment caused by antibiotic-resistant pathogens. Methods: The authors participated in a workshop held 4-8 March 2012 in Québec, Canada, to define the scope and objectives...... of an environmental assessment of antibiotic-resistance risks to human health. We focused on key elements of environmental-resistance-development "hot spots," exposure assessment (unrelated to food), and dose response to characterize risks that may improve antibiotic-resistance management options. Discussion: Various...... novel aspects to traditional risk assessments were identified to enable an assessment of environmental antibiotic resistance. These include a) accounting for an added selective pressure on the environmental resistome that, over time, allows for development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria (ARB); b...

  18. Human Environmental Disease Network

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Taboureau, Olivier; Audouze, Karine

    2017-01-01

    During the past decades, many epidemiological, toxicological and biological studies have been performed to assess the role of environmental chemicals as potential toxicants for diverse human disorders. However, the relationships between diseases based on chemical exposure have been rarely studied...... by computational biology. We developed a human environmental disease network (EDN) to explore and suggest novel disease-disease and chemical-disease relationships. The presented scored EDN model is built upon the integration on systems biology and chemical toxicology using chemical contaminants information...... and their disease relationships from the reported TDDB database. The resulting human EDN takes into consideration the level of evidence of the toxicant-disease relationships allowing including some degrees of significance in the disease-disease associations. Such network can be used to identify uncharacterized...

  19. Environmental Policy and Technological Change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jaffe, Adam B.; Newell, Richard G.; Stavins, Robert N.

    2002-01-01

    The relationship between technological change and environmental policy has received increasing attention from scholars and policy makers alike over the past ten years. This is partly because the environmental impacts of social activity are significantly affected by technological change, and partly because environmental policy interventions themselves create new constraints and incentives that affect the process of technological developments. Our central purpose in this article is to provide environmental economists with a useful guide to research on technological change and the analytical tools that can be used to explore further the interaction between technology and the environment. In Part 1 of the article, we provide an overview of analytical frameworks for investigating the economics of technological change, highlighting key issues for the researcher. In Part 2, we turn our attention to theoretical analysis of the effects of environmental policy on technological change, and in Part 3, we focus on issues related to the empirical analysis of technology innovation and diffusion. Finally, we conclude in Part 4 with some additional suggestions for research

  20. Soil and geomorphological parameters to characterize natural environmental and human induced changes within the Guadarrama Range (Central Spain)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmid, Thomas; Inclán-Cuartas, Rosa M.; Santolaria-Canales, Edmundo; Saa, Antonio; Rodríguez-Rastrero, Manuel; Tanarro-Garcia, Luis M.; Luque, Esperanza; Pelayo, Marta; Ubeda, Jose; Tarquis, Ana; Diaz-Puente, Javier; De Marcos, Javier; Rodriguez-Alonso, Javier; Hernandez, Carlos; Palacios, David; Gallardo-Díaz, Juan; Fidel González-Rouco, J.

    2016-04-01

    Mediterranean mountain ecosystems are often complex and remarkably diverse and are seen as important sources of biological diversity. They play a key role in the water and sediment cycle for lowland regions as well as preventing and mitigating natural hazards especially those related to drought such as fire risk. However, these ecosystems are fragile and vulnerable to changes due to their particular and extreme climatic and biogeographic conditions. Some of the main pressures on mountain biodiversity are caused by changes in land use practices, infrastructure and urban development, unsustainable tourism, overexploitation of natural resources, fragmentation of habitats, particularly when located close to large population centers, as well as by pressures related toclimate change. The objective of this work is to select soil and geomorphological parameters in order to characterize natural environmental and human induced changes within the newly created National Park of the Sierra de Guadarrama in Central Spain, where the presence of the Madrid metropolitan area is the main factor of impact. This is carried out within the framework of the Guadarrama Monitoring Network (GuMNet) of the Campus de ExcelenciaInternacionalMoncloa, where long-term monitoring of the atmosphere, soil and bedrock are priority. This network has a total of ten stations located to the NW of Madrid and in this case, three stations have been selected to represent different ecosystems that include: 1) an alluvial plain in a lowland pasture area (La Herreria at 920 m a.s.l.), 2) mid mountain pine-forested and pasture area (Raso del Pino at 1801 m a.s.l.) and 3) high mountain grassland and rock area (Dos Hermanas at 2225 m a.s.l.). At each station a site geomorphological description, soil profile description and sampling was carried out. In the high mountain area information was obtained for monitoring frost heave activity and downslope soil movement. Basic soil laboratory analyses have been carried out

  1. High-resolution records detect human-caused changes to the boreal forest wildfire regime in interior Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaglioti, Benjamin V.; Mann, Daniel H.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Wooller, Matthew J.; Finney, Bruce P.

    2016-01-01

    Stand-replacing wildfires are a keystone disturbance in the boreal forest, and they are becoming more common as the climate warms. Paleo-fire archives from the wildland–urban interface can quantify the prehistoric fire regime and assess how both human land-use and climate change impact ecosystem dynamics. Here, we use a combination of a sedimentary charcoal record preserved in varved lake sediments (annually layered) and fire scars in living trees to document changes in local fire return intervals (FRIs) and regional fire activity over the last 500 years. Ace Lake is within the boreal forest, located near the town of Fairbanks in interior Alaska, which was settled by gold miners in AD 1902. In the 400 years before settlement, fires occurred near the lake on average every 58 years. After settlement, fires became much more frequent (average every 18  years), and background charcoal flux rates rose to four times their preindustrial levels, indicating a region-wide increase in burning. Despite this surge in burning, the preindustrial boreal forest ecosystem and permafrost in the watershed have remained intact. Although fire suppression has reduced charcoal influx since the 1950s, an aging fuel load experiencing increasingly warm summers may pose management problems for this and other boreal sites that have similar land-use and fire histories. The large human-caused fire events that we identify can be used to test how increasingly common megafires may alter ecosystem dynamics in the future.

  2. Probe into Environmental Kuznets Characteristics and Causes of Wastewater,Waste Gas, and Solid Wastes in Wuhan City

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    刘耀彬; 李仁东

    2004-01-01

    Environmental Kuznets characteristics and causes of waste water, waste gas, and solid wastes in Wuhan city was researched; By comparing the variation of "three wastes", i.e. waste water, waste gas, and solid wastes, the model between standardized per capita GDP and values of "three wastes" discharge was established and the causes were analyzed based on the theory of environmental economics. The results show that 1) the total amount is fluctuantly increasing, but the discharges of the three kinds are temporarily different, 2) the curve conforms to the three-power function, in which the curve descends from 1985 to 1994, and the curve preliminary shows the environmental Kuznets characteristics from 1995 to 2001, 3) the simulated calculation illustrates that the turning point of this environmental Kuznets curve would be over 25007.25 Yuan per caprta, and 4) the economic development, changing of industry structure, energy resource structure, and environmental policies are the main factors leading to the Environmental Kuznets Curve in Wuhan city.

  3. Sea-level rise caused by climate change and its implications for society

    Science.gov (United States)

    MIMURA, Nobuo

    2013-01-01

    Sea-level rise is a major effect of climate change. It has drawn international attention, because higher sea levels in the future would cause serious impacts in various parts of the world. There are questions associated with sea-level rise which science needs to answer. To what extent did climate change contribute to sea-level rise in the past? How much will global mean sea level increase in the future? How serious are the impacts of the anticipated sea-level rise likely to be, and can human society respond to them? This paper aims to answer these questions through a comprehensive review of the relevant literature. First, the present status of observed sea-level rise, analyses of its causes, and future projections are summarized. Then the impacts are examined along with other consequences of climate change, from both global and Japanese perspectives. Finally, responses to adverse impacts will be discussed in order to clarify the implications of the sea-level rise issue for human society. PMID:23883609

  4. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy-linked mutation in troponin T causes myofibrillar disarray and pro-arrhythmic action potential changes in human iPSC cardiomyocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lili; Kim, Kyungsoo; Parikh, Shan; Cadar, Adrian Gabriel; Bersell, Kevin R; He, Huan; Pinto, Jose R; Kryshtal, Dmytro O; Knollmann, Bjorn C

    2018-01-01

    Mutations in cardiac troponin T (TnT) are linked to increased risk of ventricular arrhythmia and sudden death despite causing little to no cardiac hypertrophy. Studies in mice suggest that the hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM)-associated TnT-I79N mutation increases myofilament Ca sensitivity and is arrhythmogenic, but whether findings from mice translate to human cardiomyocyte electrophysiology is not known. To study the effects of the TnT-I79N mutation in human cardiomyocytes. Using CRISPR/Cas9, the TnT-I79N mutation was introduced into human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs). We then used the matrigel mattress method to generate single rod-shaped cardiomyocytes (CMs) and studied contractility, Ca handling and electrophysiology. Compared to isogenic control hiPSC-CMs, TnT-I79N hiPSC-CMs exhibited sarcomere disorganization, increased systolic function and impaired relaxation. The Ca-dependence of contractility was leftward shifted in mutation containing cardiomyocytes, demonstrating increased myofilament Ca sensitivity. In voltage-clamped hiPSC-CMs, TnT-I79N reduced intracellular Ca transients by enhancing cytosolic Ca buffering. These changes in Ca handling resulted in beat-to-beat instability and triangulation of the cardiac action potential, which are predictors of arrhythmia risk. The myofilament Ca sensitizer EMD57033 produced similar action potential triangulation in control hiPSC-CMs. The TnT-I79N hiPSC-CM model not only reproduces key cellular features of TnT-linked HCM such as myofilament disarray, hypercontractility and diastolic dysfunction, but also suggests that this TnT mutation causes pro-arrhythmic changes of the human ventricular action potential. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Environmental impacts of climate change adaptation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Enríquez-de-Salamanca, Álvaro, E-mail: aenriquez@draba.org [Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia (UNED)/Draba Ingeniería y Consultoría Medioambiental, Cañada Nueva, 13, 28200 San Lorenzo de El Escorial (Spain); Díaz-Sierra, Rubén, E-mail: sierra@dfmf.uned.es [Departamento de Física Matemática y de Fluidos, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia (UNED), Paseo Senda del Rey, 9, 28040 Madrid (Spain); Martín-Aranda, Rosa M., E-mail: rmartin@ccia.uned.es [Departamento de Química Inorgánica y Química Técnica, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia (UNED), Paseo Senda del Rey, 9, 28040 Madrid (Spain); Santos, Maria J., E-mail: M.J.FerreiraDosSantos@uu.nl [Department of Innovation, Environmental and Energy Sciences, Utrecht University, Heidelberglaan 2, 3572 TC Utrecht (Netherlands)

    2017-05-15

    Climate change adaptation reduces adverse effects of climate change but may also have undesirable environmental impacts. However, these impacts are yet poorly defined and analysed in the existing literature. To complement this knowledge-gap, we reviewed the literature to unveil the relationship between climate change adaptation and environmental impact assessment, and the degree to which environmental impacts are included in climate change adaptation theory and practice. Our literature review showed that technical, social and economic perspectives on climate change adaptation receive much more attention than the environmental perspective. The scarce interest on the environmental impacts of adaptation may be attributed to (1) an excessive sectoral approach, with dominance of non-environmental perspectives, (2) greater interest in mitigation and direct climate change impacts rather than in adaptation impacts, (3) a tendency to consider adaptation as inherently good, and (4) subjective/preconceived notions on which measures are good or bad, without a comprehensive assessment. Environmental Assessment (EA) has a long established history as an effective tool to include environment into decision-making, although it does not yet guarantee a proper assessment of adaptation, because it is still possible to postpone or even circumvent the processes of assessing the impacts of climate adaptation. Our results suggest that there is a need to address adaptation proactively by including it in EA, to update current policy frameworks, and to demand robust and reliable evaluation of alternatives. Only through the full EA of adaptation measures can we improve our understanding of the primary and secondary impacts of adaptation to global environmental change. - Highlights: • Climate change adaptation may have undesirable environmental impacts. • The impacts of adaptation are yet poorly analysed in the literature. • There is an excessive sectoral approach to adaptation, mainly

  6. Environmental impacts of climate change adaptation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Enríquez-de-Salamanca, Álvaro; Díaz-Sierra, Rubén; Martín-Aranda, Rosa M.; Santos, Maria J.

    2017-01-01

    Climate change adaptation reduces adverse effects of climate change but may also have undesirable environmental impacts. However, these impacts are yet poorly defined and analysed in the existing literature. To complement this knowledge-gap, we reviewed the literature to unveil the relationship between climate change adaptation and environmental impact assessment, and the degree to which environmental impacts are included in climate change adaptation theory and practice. Our literature review showed that technical, social and economic perspectives on climate change adaptation receive much more attention than the environmental perspective. The scarce interest on the environmental impacts of adaptation may be attributed to (1) an excessive sectoral approach, with dominance of non-environmental perspectives, (2) greater interest in mitigation and direct climate change impacts rather than in adaptation impacts, (3) a tendency to consider adaptation as inherently good, and (4) subjective/preconceived notions on which measures are good or bad, without a comprehensive assessment. Environmental Assessment (EA) has a long established history as an effective tool to include environment into decision-making, although it does not yet guarantee a proper assessment of adaptation, because it is still possible to postpone or even circumvent the processes of assessing the impacts of climate adaptation. Our results suggest that there is a need to address adaptation proactively by including it in EA, to update current policy frameworks, and to demand robust and reliable evaluation of alternatives. Only through the full EA of adaptation measures can we improve our understanding of the primary and secondary impacts of adaptation to global environmental change. - Highlights: • Climate change adaptation may have undesirable environmental impacts. • The impacts of adaptation are yet poorly analysed in the literature. • There is an excessive sectoral approach to adaptation, mainly

  7. Environmental management systems and organizational change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Tine Herreborg

    2000-01-01

    and environmental management systems. The structure of the organizations has changed, the relationships with external partners have strengthened and the implementation of quality and environmental management systems has trimmed the organizations to manage and develop these areas. The organization analysis is based......The establishment of an environmental management system and its continuous improvements is a process towards a reduction of the companies' and the products' environmental impact. The organizations' ability to change is crucial in order to establish a dynamic environmental management system...... and to achieve continuous environmental improvements. The study of changes gives an insight into how organizations function, as well as their forces and barriers. This article focuses on the organizational changes that two companies have undergone from 1992 up until today in connection with their quality...

  8. Reducing threats in conversations about environmental behavior change: The positive impact of Motivational Interviewing

    OpenAIRE

    Klonek, F.E.; Güntner, A.V.; Lehmann-Willenbrock, N.K.; Kauffeld, S.

    2015-01-01

    Human behavior contributes to a waste of environmental resources and our society is looking for ways to reduce this problem. However, humans may perceive feedback about their environmental behavior as threatening. According to self-determination theory (SDT), threats decrease intrinsic motivation for behavior change. According to self-affirmation theory (SAT), threats can harm individuals’ self-integrity. Therefore, individuals should show self-defensive biases, e.g., in terms of presenting c...

  9. Adaptation approaches for conserving ecosystems services and biodiversity in dynamic landscapes caused by climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oswald J. Schmitz; Anne M. Trainor

    2014-01-01

    Climate change stands to cause animal species to shift their geographic ranges. This will cause ecosystems to become reorganized across landscapes as species migrate into and out of specific locations with attendant impacts on values and services that ecosystems provide to humans. Conservation in an era of climate change needs to ensure that landscapes are resilient by...

  10. Human Decisions: Nitrogen Footprints and Environmental Effects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leach, A. M.; Bleeker, A.; Galloway, J. N.; Erisman, J.

    2012-12-01

    Human consumption choices are responsible for growing losses of reactive nitrogen (Nr) to the environment. Once in the environment, Nr can cause a cascade of negative impacts such as smog, acid rain, coastal eutrophication, climate change, and biodiversity loss. Although all humans must consume nitrogen as protein, the food production process releases substantial Nr to the environment. This dilemma presents a challenge: how do we feed a growing population while reducing Nr? Although top-down strategies to reduce Nr losses (e.g., emissions controls) are necessary, the bottom-up strategies focusing on personal consumption patterns will be imperative to solve the nitrogen challenge. Understanding the effects of different personal choices on Nr losses and the environment is an important first step for this strategy. This paper will utilize information and results from the N-Calculator, a per capita nitrogen footprint model (www.N-Print.org), to analyze the impact of different food consumption patterns on a personal food nitrogen footprint and the environment. Scenarios will analyze the impact of the following dietary patterns on the average United States (28 kg Nr/cap/yr) food nitrogen footprint: 1) Consuming only the recommended protein as defined by the WHO and the USDA; 2) Reducing food waste by 50%; 3) Consuming a vegetarian diet; 4) Consuming a vegan diet; 5) Consuming a demitarian diet (replacing half of animal protein consumption with vegetable protein); 6) Substituting chicken (a more efficient animal protein) with beef (a less efficient animal protein); 7) Consuming sustainably-produced food; and 8) Using advanced wastewater treatment. Preliminary results suggest that widespread advanced wastewater treatment with nutrient removal technology and halving food waste would each reduce the US personal food nitrogen footprint by 13%. In addition, reducing protein consumption to the recommended levels would reduce the footprint by about 42%. Combining these measures

  11. Hydrostatic pressure does not cause detectable changes in survival of human retinal ganglion cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Osborne

    Full Text Available Elevated intraocular pressure (IOP is a major risk factor for glaucoma. One consequence of raised IOP is that ocular tissues are subjected to increased hydrostatic pressure (HP. The effect of raised HP on stress pathway signaling and retinal ganglion cell (RGC survival in the human retina was investigated.A chamber was designed to expose cells to increased HP (constant and fluctuating. Accurate pressure control (10-100 mmHg was achieved using mass flow controllers. Human organotypic retinal cultures (HORCs from donor eyes (<24 h post mortem were cultured in serum-free DMEM/HamF12. Increased HP was compared to simulated ischemia (oxygen glucose deprivation, OGD. Cell death and apoptosis were measured by LDH and TUNEL assays, RGC marker expression by qRT-PCR (THY-1 and RGC number by immunohistochemistry (NeuN. Activated p38 and JNK were detected by Western blot.Exposure of HORCs to constant (60 mmHg or fluctuating (10-100 mmHg; 1 cycle/min pressure for 24 or 48 h caused no loss of structural integrity, LDH release, decrease in RGC marker expression (THY-1 or loss of RGCs compared with controls. In addition, there was no increase in TUNEL-positive NeuN-labelled cells at either time-point indicating no increase in apoptosis of RGCs. OGD increased apoptosis, reduced RGC marker expression and RGC number and caused elevated LDH release at 24 h. p38 and JNK phosphorylation remained unchanged in HORCs exposed to fluctuating pressure (10-100 mmHg; 1 cycle/min for 15, 30, 60 and 90 min durations, whereas OGD (3 h increased activation of p38 and JNK, remaining elevated for 90 min post-OGD.Directly applied HP had no detectable impact on RGC survival and stress-signalling in HORCs. Simulated ischemia, however, activated stress pathways and caused RGC death. These results show that direct HP does not cause degeneration of RGCs in the ex vivo human retina.

  12. Organotin compounds cause structure-dependent induction of progesterone in human choriocarcinoma Jar cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hiromori, Youhei; Yui, Hiroki; Nishikawa, Jun-ichi; Nagase, Hisamitsu; Nakanishi, Tsuyoshi

    2016-01-01

    Organotin compounds, such as tributyltin (TBT) and triphenyltin (TPT), are typical environmental contaminants and suspected endocrine-disrupting chemicals because they cause masculinization in female mollusks. In addition, previous studies have suggested that the endocrine disruption by organotin compounds leads to activation of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR)γ and retinoid X receptor (RXR). However, whether organotin compounds cause crucial toxicities in human development and reproduction is unclear. We here investigated the structure-dependent effect of 12 tin compounds on mRNA transcription of 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type I (3β-HSD I) and progesterone production in human choriocarcinoma Jar cells. TBT, TPT, dibutyltin, monophenyltin, tripropyltin, and tricyclohexyltin enhanced progesterone production in a dose-dependent fashion. Although tetraalkyltin compounds such as tetrabutyltin increased progesterone production, the concentrations necessary for activation were 30-100 times greater than those for trialkyltins. All tested active organotins increased 3β-HSD I mRNA transcription. We further investigated the correlation between the agonistic activity of organotin compounds on PPARγ and their ability to promote progesterone production. Except for DBTCl2, the active organotins significantly induced the transactivation function of PPARγ. In addition, PPARγ knockdown significantly suppressed the induction of mRNA transcription of 3β-HSD I by all active organotins except DBTCl2. These results suggest that some organotin compounds promote progesterone biosynthesis in vitro by inducing 3β-HSD I mRNA transcription via the PPARγ signaling pathway. The placenta represents a potential target organ for these compounds, whose endocrine-disrupting effects might cause local changes in progesterone concentration in pregnant women. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Metabolic profiling detects early effects of environmental and lifestyle exposure to cadmium in a human population

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ellis James K

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The 'exposome' represents the accumulation of all environmental exposures across a lifetime. Top-down strategies are required to assess something this comprehensive, and could transform our understanding of how environmental factors affect human health. Metabolic profiling (metabonomics/metabolomics defines an individual's metabolic phenotype, which is influenced by genotype, diet, lifestyle, health and xenobiotic exposure, and could also reveal intermediate biomarkers for disease risk that reflect adaptive response to exposure. We investigated changes in metabolism in volunteers living near a point source of environmental pollution: a closed zinc smelter with associated elevated levels of environmental cadmium. Methods High-resolution 1H NMR spectroscopy (metabonomics was used to acquire urinary metabolic profiles from 178 human volunteers. The spectral data were subjected to multivariate and univariate analysis to identify metabolites that were correlated with lifestyle or biological factors. Urinary levels of 8-oxo-deoxyguanosine were also measured, using mass spectrometry, as a marker of systemic oxidative stress. Results Six urinary metabolites, either associated with mitochondrial metabolism (citrate, 3-hydroxyisovalerate, 4-deoxy-erythronic acid or one-carbon metabolism (dimethylglycine, creatinine, creatine, were associated with cadmium exposure. In particular, citrate levels retained a significant correlation to urinary cadmium and smoking status after controlling for age and sex. Oxidative stress (as determined by urinary 8-oxo-deoxyguanosine levels was elevated in individuals with high cadmium exposure, supporting the hypothesis that heavy metal accumulation was causing mitochondrial dysfunction. Conclusions This study shows evidence that an NMR-based metabolic profiling study in an uncontrolled human population is capable of identifying intermediate biomarkers of response to toxicants at true environmental

  14. A Review of Frameworks for Developing Environmental Health Indicators for Climate Change and Health

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hambling, Tammy; Weinstein, Philip; Slaney, David

    2011-01-01

    The role climate change may play in altering human health, particularly in the emergence and spread of diseases, is an evolving area of research. It is important to understand this relationship because it will compound the already significant burden of diseases on national economies and public health. Authorities need to be able to assess, anticipate, and monitor human health vulnerability to climate change, in order to plan for, or implement action to avoid these eventualities. Environmental health indicators (EHIs) provide a tool to assess, monitor, and quantify human health vulnerability, to aid in the design and targeting of interventions, and measure the effectiveness of climate change adaptation and mitigation activities. Our aim was to identify the most suitable framework for developing EHIs to measure and monitor the impacts of climate change on human health and inform the development of interventions. Using published literature we reviewed the attributes of 11 frameworks. We identified the Driving force-Pressure-State-Exposure-Effect-Action (DPSEEA) framework as the most suitable one for developing EHIs for climate change and health. We propose the use of EHIs as a valuable tool to assess, quantify, and monitor human health vulnerability, design and target interventions, and measure the effectiveness of climate change adaptation and mitigation activities. In this paper, we lay the groundwork for the future development of EHIs as a multidisciplinary approach to link existing environmental and epidemiological data and networks. Analysis of such data will contribute to an enhanced understanding of the relationship between climate change and human health. PMID:21845162

  15. Environmental transport and human exposure: A multimedia approach in health-risk policy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McKone, T.E.

    1992-05-01

    In his treatise Air, Water, and Places, the ancient-Greek physician Hippocrates demonstrated that the appearance of disease in human populations is influenced by the quality of air, water, and food; the topography of the land; and general living habits. This approach is still relevant and, indeed, the conerstone of modem efforts to relate public health to environmental factors. What has changed is the precision with which we can measure and model these long-held relationships. Environmental scientists recognize that plants, animals, and humans encounter environmental contaminants via complex transfers through air, water, and food and use multimedia models to evaluate these transfers. In this report, I explore the use of multimedia models both to examine pollution trends and as a basis for characterizing human health risks and ecological risks. The strengths and weaknesses of the approach are discussed.

  16. Symposium on Human Health and Global Climate Change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1996-03-01

    Cholera epidemics are typically associated with seacoasts and rivers, for instance, where the cholera organism, Vibrio cholerae , survives by...everywhere. These blooms represent "environmental reservoirs" for microbes, such as Vibrio cholerae , the cause of cholera in humans. Similarly, insect and...nowadays. We find them in New Mexico , in Minnesota, in Virginia, and in New York. Around the world there is a resurgence of cholera , malaria, and yellow

  17. Human Rights and the Environmental Protection: The Naïveté in Environmental Culture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Made Adhitya Anggriawan Wisadha

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available There are growing trends in the human rights to substantially extend the values to protect the environment or moreover to welcome the ideas of the rights to environment, not to mention the rights of environment. The purpose is to inclusively embrace the environmental problems wherein the humanity challenges posited on, but this agenda may leave a room of doubt how far the human rights body can address the environmental destruction as it needs the interplay of culture and environmental ethics to promoting such concepts. Therefore, this paper aims to identify the justification of how human rights in the environmental protection in the contemporary discourse are bringing to light, as many current cases attempt to linkage the environmental approach to the human rights instrument, such as the rights to life, healthy environment, and intergenerational equity. To analyse further, the theoretical framework in this paper will be explicated by environmental culture paradigm which illustrates the egalitarian concept between human and environment to elicit the clear thoughts of how human rights is naïve to protect the environment. This article will firstly depict the human rights and the environmental protection discourse and then, explore the naïveté narratives of environmental culture about the ecological crisis roots that are fundamentally anthropogenic, as to reflect the ground realities how this nexus will play out. Finally, this paper found the moral justification per se relies on the effort of elaborating the human prudence in their relationship with nature, albeit bringing the naïveté.

  18. Climatic Change. Human Influence?

    OpenAIRE

    Gonçalves, Dionísio; Leite, Solange; Ribeiro, A.C.; Figueiredo, Tomás de

    2016-01-01

    We begin by presenting the functioning of the Climate System and the variety of climates that occurs on the surface of the globe. We analyze climate change based on the sun's orbital parameters and other causes, focusing on the current interglacial period and the influence it had on the development of human societies. The following text looks on developing of the climate of the last 1000 years, with considerations about the warm medieval climate, the little ice age, the recovery...

  19. Organizational root causes for human factor accidents

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dougherty, D.T.

    1997-01-01

    Accident prevention techniques and technologies have evolved significantly throughout this century from the earliest establishment of standards and procedures to the safety engineering improvements the fruits of which we enjoy today. Most of the recent prevention efforts focused on humans and defining human factor causes of accidents. This paper builds upon the remarkable successes of the past by looking beyond the human's action in accident causation to the organizational factors that put the human in the position to cause the accident. This organizational approach crosses all functions and all career fields

  20. Environmental pollution and DNA methylation: carcinogenesis, clinical significance, and practical applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Yi

    2015-09-01

    Environmental pollution is one of the main causes of human cancer. Exposures to environmental carcinogens result in genetic and epigenetic alterations which induce cell transformation. Epigenetic changes caused by environmental pollution play important roles in the development and progression of environmental pollution-related cancers. Studies on DNA methylation are among the earliest and most conducted epigenetic research linked to cancer. In this review, the roles of DNA methylation in carcinogenesis and their significance in clinical medicine were summarized, and the effects of environmental pollutants, particularly air pollutants, on DNA methylation were introduced. Furthermore, prospective applications of DNA methylation to environmental pollution detection and cancer prevention were discussed.

  1. Sea-level rise caused by climate change and its implications for society.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mimura, Nobuo

    2013-01-01

    Sea-level rise is a major effect of climate change. It has drawn international attention, because higher sea levels in the future would cause serious impacts in various parts of the world. There are questions associated with sea-level rise which science needs to answer. To what extent did climate change contribute to sea-level rise in the past? How much will global mean sea level increase in the future? How serious are the impacts of the anticipated sea-level rise likely to be, and can human society respond to them? This paper aims to answer these questions through a comprehensive review of the relevant literature. First, the present status of observed sea-level rise, analyses of its causes, and future projections are summarized. Then the impacts are examined along with other consequences of climate change, from both global and Japanese perspectives. Finally, responses to adverse impacts will be discussed in order to clarify the implications of the sea-level rise issue for human society.(Communicated by Kiyoshi HORIKAWA, M.J.A.).

  2. Human Impacts and Climate Change Influence Nestedness and Modularity in Food-Web and Mutualistic Networks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kazuhiro Takemoto

    Full Text Available Theoretical studies have indicated that nestedness and modularity-non-random structural patterns of ecological networks-influence the stability of ecosystems against perturbations; as such, climate change and human activity, as well as other sources of environmental perturbations, affect the nestedness and modularity of ecological networks. However, the effects of climate change and human activities on ecological networks are poorly understood. Here, we used a spatial analysis approach to examine the effects of climate change and human activities on the structural patterns of food webs and mutualistic networks, and found that ecological network structure is globally affected by climate change and human impacts, in addition to current climate. In pollination networks, for instance, nestedness increased and modularity decreased in response to increased human impacts. Modularity in seed-dispersal networks decreased with temperature change (i.e., warming, whereas food web nestedness increased and modularity declined in response to global warming. Although our findings are preliminary owing to data-analysis limitations, they enhance our understanding of the effects of environmental change on ecological communities.

  3. Human Impacts and Climate Change Influence Nestedness and Modularity in Food-Web and Mutualistic Networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takemoto, Kazuhiro; Kajihara, Kosuke

    2016-01-01

    Theoretical studies have indicated that nestedness and modularity-non-random structural patterns of ecological networks-influence the stability of ecosystems against perturbations; as such, climate change and human activity, as well as other sources of environmental perturbations, affect the nestedness and modularity of ecological networks. However, the effects of climate change and human activities on ecological networks are poorly understood. Here, we used a spatial analysis approach to examine the effects of climate change and human activities on the structural patterns of food webs and mutualistic networks, and found that ecological network structure is globally affected by climate change and human impacts, in addition to current climate. In pollination networks, for instance, nestedness increased and modularity decreased in response to increased human impacts. Modularity in seed-dispersal networks decreased with temperature change (i.e., warming), whereas food web nestedness increased and modularity declined in response to global warming. Although our findings are preliminary owing to data-analysis limitations, they enhance our understanding of the effects of environmental change on ecological communities.

  4. Environmental effects of ozone depletion and its interactions with climate change: Progress report, 2016

    Science.gov (United States)

    When considering the effects of climate change, it has become clear that processes resulting in changes in stratospheric ozone are more complex than previously believed. As a result of this, human health and environmental issues will be longer-lasting and more regionally variable...

  5. 3D quantitative analysis of early decomposition changes of the human face.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caplova, Zuzana; Gibelli, Daniele Maria; Poppa, Pasquale; Cummaudo, Marco; Obertova, Zuzana; Sforza, Chiarella; Cattaneo, Cristina

    2018-03-01

    Decomposition of the human body and human face is influenced, among other things, by environmental conditions. The early decomposition changes that modify the appearance of the face may hamper the recognition and identification of the deceased. Quantitative assessment of those changes may provide important information for forensic identification. This report presents a pilot 3D quantitative approach of tracking early decomposition changes of a single cadaver in controlled environmental conditions by summarizing the change with weekly morphological descriptions. The root mean square (RMS) value was used to evaluate the changes of the face after death. The results showed a high correlation (r = 0.863) between the measured RMS and the time since death. RMS values of each scan are presented, as well as the average weekly RMS values. The quantification of decomposition changes could improve the accuracy of antemortem facial approximation and potentially could allow the direct comparisons of antemortem and postmortem 3D scans.

  6. Climate Change and Schools: Environmental Hazards and Resiliency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheffield, Perry E; Uijttewaal, Simone A M; Stewart, James; Galvez, Maida P

    2017-11-16

    The changing climate is creating additional challenges in maintaining a healthy school environment in the United States (U.S.) where over 50 million people, mostly children, spend approximately a third of their waking hours. Chronic low prioritization of funds and resources to support environmental health in schools and lack of clear regulatory oversight in the U.S. undergird the new risks from climate change. We illustrate the extent of risk and the variation in vulnerability by geographic region, in the context of sparse systematically collected and comparable data particularly about school infrastructure. Additionally, we frame different resilience building initiatives, focusing on interventions that target root causes, or social determinants of health. Disaster response and recovery are also framed as resilience building efforts. Examples from U.S. Federal Region 2 (New Jersey, New York, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands) and nationally are used to illustrate these concepts. We conclude that better surveillance, more research, and increased federal and state oversight of environmental factors in schools (specific to climate risks) is necessary, as exposures result in short- and long term negative health effects and climate change risks will increase over time.

  7. Coping with global environmental change, disasters and security. Threats, challenges, vulnerabilities and risks

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brauch, Hans Guenter [Freie Univ. Berlin (Germany). Dept. of Political and Social Sciences; UNU-EHS, Bonn (DE). College of Associated Scientists and Advisors (CASA); Oswald Spring, Ursula [National Univ. of Mexico, Cuernavaca (MX). Regional Multidisciplinary Research Centre (CRIM); Mesjasz, Czeslaw [Cracow Univ. of Exonomics (Poland). Faculty of Management; Grin, John [Amsterdam Univ. (Netherlands). Dept. of Political Science; Dutch Knowledge network for Systems Innovations and Transitions (KSI), Amsterdam (Netherlands); Kameri-Mbote, Patricia [Strathmore Univ., Nairobi (Kenya). Dept. of Law; International Environmental Law Research Centre, Nairobi (Kenya); Chourou, Bechir [Univ. of Tunis-Carthage, Hammam-Chatt (Tunisia); Dunay, Pal [Geneva Centre for Security Policy (Switzerland). International Training Course in Security Policy; Birkmann, Joern (eds.) [United Nations Univ. (UNU), Bonn (DE). Inst. for Environment and Human Security (EHS)

    2011-07-01

    This policy-focused Global Environmental and Human Security Handbook for the Anthropo-cene (GEHSHA) addresses new security threats, challenges, vulnerabilities and risks posed by global environmental change and disasters. In 6 forewords, 5 preface essays 95 peer reviewed chapcountries analyse in 10 parts concepts of military and political hard security and economic, social, environmental soft security with a regional focus on the Near East, North and Sub-Sahara Africa and Asia and on hazards in urban centres. The major focus is on coping with global environmental change: climate change, desertification, water, food and health and with hazards and strategies on social vulnerability and resilience building and scientific, international, regional and national political strategies, policies and measures including early warning of conflicts and hazards. The book proposes a political geo-ecology and discusses a 'Fourth Green Revolution' for the Anthropocene era of earth history. (orig.)

  8. Risk perceptions, general environmental beliefs, and willingness to address climate change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    O'Connor, R.E.; Bord, R.J.; Fisher, A.

    1999-01-01

    The research reported here examines the relationship between risk perceptions and willingness to address climate change. The data are a national sample of 1,225 mail surveys that include measures of risk perceptions and knowledge tied to climate change, support for voluntary and government actions to address the problem, general environmental beliefs, and demographic variables. Risk perceptions matter in predicting behavior intentions. Risk perceptions are not a surrogate for general environmental beliefs, but have their own power to account for behavioral intentions. There are four secondary conclusions. First, behavioral intentions regarding climate change are complex and intriguing. People are neither nonbelievers who will take no initiatives themselves and oppose all government efforts, nor are they believers who promise both to make personal efforts and to vote for every government proposal that promises to address climate change. Second, there are separate demographic sources for voluntary actions compared with voting intentions. Third, recognizing the causes of global warming is a powerful predictor of behavioral intentions independent from believing that climate change will happen and have bad consequences. Finally, the success of the risk perception variables to account for behavioral intentions should encourage greater attention to risk perceptions as independent variables. Risk perceptions and knowledge, however, share the stage with general environmental beliefs and demographic characteristics. Although related, risk perceptions, knowledge, and general environmental beliefs are somewhat independent predictors of behavioral intentions

  9. Glacier Retreat in the Southern Peruvian Andes: Climate Change, Environmental Impacts, Human Perception and Social Response

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orlove, B.

    2007-12-01

    This paper presents results from recent environmental and anthropological research near glacierized areas in the department of Cusco, Peru, home to the well-known Quelccaya Ice Cap and to the peak of Ausangate (6384 m). Glaciers in the region are in negative mass balance, losing volume and area, with upslope movement of the glacier fronts. Somewhat paradoxically, flows in many streams close to the glaciers are reduced, particularly in the dry season, due to a shift in the seasonal distribution of melting, to increased evaporation and to increased percolation into newly-exposed sands and gravels. Associated with this reduction in flow is a desiccation of some anthropogenic and natural wetlands, reducing the availability of dry season forage to wild (vicuna) and domesticated (alpaca, llama) ruminants. Interviews and ethnographic observations with local populations of Quechua-speaking herders at elevations of 4500-5200 meters provide detailed comments on these changes. They have an extensive vocabulary of terms for glacial features associated with retreat. They link this treat with environmental factors (higher temperatures, greater winds that deposit dust on lower portions of glaciers) and with religious factors (divine punishment for human wrong-doing, failure of humans to respect mountain spirits). They describe a variety of economic and extra-economic impacts of this retreat on different spatial, social and temporal scales. Though they face other issues as well (threats of pollution from new mining projects, inadequacy of government services), glacier retreat is their principal concern. Many herders express extreme distress over this unprecedented threat to their livelihoods and communities, though a few propose responses - out-migration, the formation of an association of neighboring communities, development of irrigation works - that could serve as adaptations.

  10. Transformational change: creating a safe operating space for humanity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clive A. McAlpine

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Many ecologists and environmental scientists witnessing the scale of current environmental change are becoming increasingly alarmed about how humanity is pushing the boundaries of the Earth's systems beyond sustainable levels. The world urgently needs global society to redirect itself toward a more sustainable future: one that moves intergenerational equity and environmental sustainability to the top of the political agenda, and to the core of personal and societal belief systems. Scientific and technological innovations are not enough: the global community, individuals, civil society, corporations, and governments, need to adjust their values and beliefs to one in which sustainability becomes the new global paradigm society. We argue that the solution requires transformational change, driven by a realignment of societal values, where individuals act ethically as an integral part of an interconnected society and biosphere. Transition management provides a framework for achieving transformational change, by giving special attention to reflective learning, interaction, integration, and experimentation at the level of society, thereby identifying the system conditions and type of changes necessary for enabling sustainable transformation.

  11. Climate Change Education in Formal Settings, K-14: A Workshop Summary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beatty, Alexandra

    2012-01-01

    Climate change is occurring, is very likely caused by human activities, and poses significant risks for a broad range of human and natural systems. Each additional ton of greenhouse gases emitted commits us to further change and greater risks. In the judgment of the Committee on America's Climate Choices, the environmental, economic, and…

  12. The policy relevance of global environmental change research

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yarnal, Brent

    1996-01-01

    Many scientists are striving to identify and promote the policy implications of their global change research. Much basic research on global environmental change cannot advance policy directly, but new projects can determine the relevance of their research to decision makers and build policy-relevant products into the work. Similarly, many ongoing projects can alter or add to the present science design to make the research policy relevant. Thus, this paper shows scientists working on global change how to make their research policy relevant. It demonstrates how research on physical global change relates to human dimensions studies and integrated assessments. It also presents an example of how policy relevance can be fit retroactively into a global change project (in this case, SRBEX-the Susquehanna River Basin Experiment) and how that addition can enhance the project's status and science. The paper concludes that policy relevance is desirable from social and scientific perspectives

  13. Analysis of human induced changes in a karst landscape - the filling of dolines in the Kras plateau, Slovenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kovačič, Gregor; Ravbar, Nataša

    2013-03-01

    A comprehensive analysis of the increased pressure on karst landscapes due to expansive economic and urban development is presented with the aim of evaluating changes in land use and their deleterious effects on karst relief forms. The study focuses on two areas surrounding the relatively quickly growing settlements of Hrpelje-Kozina and Divača on the Kras plateau (Slovenia) that have been subjected to intensive urban and business development and traffic since the motorway was brought to their vicinity fifteen years ago. National legislation loopholes and technological improvement were the cause of the commonly unsupervised human encroachment which caused the widespread degradation of the landscape. By comparing different topographical and ortophotographical materials from the past four decades and by detailed field inspection of land use and environmental changes, as well as the morphometrical characterization of dolines, the following results have been found: due to the population growth in the past four decades (39% and 50%, respectively), an increase of settlement area by 18 and 11 percentage points took place. Consequently, between 25 and 27% of dolines have disappeared or have been extensively modified (filled up and leveled). According to the local spatial plans, an additional 18% to 28% dolines are endangered. Broad human induced changes in the karst landscape have resulted in a noticeable increase in landscape deterioration, which is consistent with similar phenomena observed in other regions. Due to the extreme susceptibility of the karst to human activities that may lead to the degradation of its exceptional esthetic and environmental value, the alteration of karst processes such as corrosion, endangering of unique habitats and the quality of non-renewable natural resources, it is necessary to promptly define measures for its protection at the national level. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Environmental change in Bushbuckridge

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Erasmus, BFN

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available to environmental change, but projecting current trends in the changes that we observe, combined with increased unpredictability of rainfall, threatens to decouple the age-old interdependencies in the this cultural landscape, and present inhabitants with conditions...

  15. Impact of environmental radiation on human health

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shekhawat, Jyotsna

    2012-01-01

    A clean environment is essential for human health because the interaction between the environment and human health shows the complexity. Air pollution, less water quality, noise etc directly affects the health. Climate change, depletion of ozone layer, loss of biodiversity and degradation of land can also affect human health. Most of the modern technologies produce radiations in the environment having both beneficial and harmful effects through radioactive material. Natural radioactive sources include Cosmic radiation comes from the sun and outer space is absorbed by the atmosphere, a small amount reaches the earth's surface to which we are exposed. The exposure to this type of radiation is higher for people living above sea level. Radon is produced through the decay of uranium and thorium that are found naturally in the earth's crust. Primordial and terrestrial radiation are present in rocks and soils and occur when naturally radioactive isotopes of uranium, thorium and potassium decay within the earth's crust. Artificial (or man-made) radioactive sources include Fallout radiation, which results from past atmospheric nuclear bomb tests (1950s and 1960s many test explosions). Each environmental change, whether occurring as a natural phenomenon or through human intervention, changes the ecological balance and context within which disease hosts or vectors and parasites breed, develop, transmit disease. Today, radiation is a common used in medicine to diagnose illnesses, research to treat diseases and industry to generate electricity in nuclear power reactors. Radiation is energy that moves through space or matter at a very high speed. This energy can be in the form of particles, such as alpha or beta particles, which are emitted from radioisotopes. Radioactive Material is material that contains an unstable atomic nucleus releases radiation in the process of changing to a stable form. There are two types of health effects from radiation - threshold and non threshold

  16. Latest Cretaceous climatic and environmental change in the South Atlantic region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woelders, L.; Vellekoop, J.; Kroon, D.; Smit, J.; Casadío, S.; Prámparo, M. B.; Dinarès-Turell, J.; Peterse, F.; Sluijs, A.; Lenaerts, J. T. M.; Speijer, R. P.

    2017-05-01

    Latest Maastrichtian climate change caused by Deccan volcanism has been invoked as a cause of mass extinction at the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary ( 66.0 Ma). Yet late Maastrichtian climate and ecological changes are poorly documented, in particular on the Southern Hemisphere. Here we present upper Maastrichtian-lower Danian climate and biotic records from the Bajada del Jagüel (BJ) shelf site (Neuquén Basin, Argentina), employing the TEX86 paleothermometer, marine palynology (dinoflagellate cysts), and micropaleontology (foraminifera). These records are correlated to the astronomically tuned Ocean Drilling Program Site 1262 (Walvis Ridge). Collectively, we use these records to assess climatic and ecological effects of Deccan volcanism in the Southern Atlantic region. Both the TEX86-based sea surface temperature (SST) record at BJ and the bulk carbonate δ18O-based SST record of Site 1262 show a latest Maastrichtian warming of 2.5-4°C, at 450 to 150 kyr before the K-Pg boundary, coinciding with the a large Deccan outpouring phase. Benthic foraminiferal and dinocyst assemblage changes indicate that this warming resulted in enhanced runoff and stratification of the water column, likely resulting from more humid climate conditions in the Neuquén Basin. These climate conditions could have been caused by an expanding and strengthening thermal low over the South American continent. Biotic changes in response to late Maastrichtian environmental changes are rather limited, when compared to the major turnovers observed at many K-Pg boundary sites worldwide. This suggests that environmental perturbations during the latest Maastrichtian warming event were less severe than those following the K-Pg boundary impact.

  17. Investigating changes in land use cover and associated environmental parameters in Taihu Lake in recent decades using remote sensing and geochemistry.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Changchun Huang

    Full Text Available Humans have had a significant impact on the terrestrial pedosphere through activities such as agriculture and urbanization. The effects of human activities on land use and the related environmental changes were investigated through point and areal studies surrounding Meiliang Bay, which is an open area of extreme eutrophication in Taihu Lake, China. This study used remote sensing and environmental-tracer profiles [total nitrogen (TN, total phosphorus (TP, total organic carbon (TOC, grain size, and geochemical parameters] to determine the causes of changes in land use and the associated environmental parameters. The results of LUCCs (Land use/cover changes indicate that over the past three decades, total farmland decreased by 862.49 km2, with an annual decrement rate of 28.75 km2/year, and total urbanized land increased by 859.71 km2, with an annual growth rate of 28.66 km2/year. The geochemical results indicate that the trophic state of Taihu Lake was persistently intensifying and that the TN, TP, and TOC concentrations increased twofold, threefold, and twofold, respectively, from 1949 to 2010. The sources of TN, TP, and TOC were highly similar after 1975. However, before 1974, TN and TP originated from different sources than TOC. The grassland and woodland around the lake retain nutrients and sand from the land of study area. The increase in urbanized land and tertiary industries significantly increased the sediment concentrations of TN, TP, and TOC after 1980.

  18. Influence of Humans on Evolution and Mobilization of Environmental Antibiotic Resistome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaze, William H.; Krone, Stephen M.; Larsson, D.G. Joakim; Li, Xian-Zhi; Robinson, Joseph A.; Simonet, Pascal; Smalla, Kornelia; Timinouni, Mohammed; Topp, Ed; Wellington, Elizabeth M.; Zhu, Yong-Guan

    2013-01-01

    The clinical failure of antimicrobial drugs that were previously effective in controlling infectious disease is a tragedy of increasing magnitude that gravely affects human health. This resistance by pathogens is often the endpoint of an evolutionary process that began billions of years ago in non–disease-causing microorganisms. This environmental resistome, its mobilization, and the conditions that facilitate its entry into human pathogens are at the heart of the current public health crisis in antibiotic resistance. Understanding the origins, evolution, and mechanisms of transfer of resistance elements is vital to our ability to adequately address this public health issue. PMID:23764294

  19. Impacts of human-induced environmental change in wetlands on aquatic animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sievers, Michael; Hale, Robin; Parris, Kirsten M; Swearer, Stephen E

    2018-02-01

    Many wetlands harbour highly diverse biological communities and provide extensive ecosystem services; however, these important ecological features are being altered, degraded and destroyed around the world. Despite a wealth of research on how animals respond to anthropogenic changes to natural wetlands and how they use created wetlands, we lack a broad synthesis of these data. While some altered wetlands may provide vital habitat, others could pose a considerable risk to wildlife. This risk will be heightened if such wetlands are ecological traps - preferred habitats that confer lower fitness than another available habitat. Wetlands functioning as ecological traps could decrease both local and regional population persistence, and ultimately lead to extinctions. Most studies have examined how animals respond to changes in environmental conditions by measuring responses at the community and population levels, but studying ecological traps requires information on fitness and habitat preferences. Our current lack of knowledge of individual-level responses may therefore limit our capacity to manage wetland ecosystems effectively since ecological traps require different management practices to mitigate potential consequences. We conducted a global meta-analysis to characterise how animals respond to four key drivers of wetland alteration: agriculture, mining, restoration and urbanisation. Our overarching goal was to evaluate the ecological impacts of human alterations to wetland ecosystems, as well as identify current knowledge gaps that limit both the current understanding of these responses and effective wetland management. We extracted 1799 taxon-specific response ratios from 271 studies across 29 countries. Community- (e.g. richness) and population-level (e.g. density) measures within altered wetlands were largely comparable to those within reference wetlands. By contrast, individual fitness measures (e.g. survival) were often lower, highlighting the potential

  20. [Climate change - physical and mental consequences].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bunz, Maxie; Mücke, Hans-Guido

    2017-06-01

    Climate change has already had a large influence on the human environmental system and directly or indirectly affects physical and mental health. Triggered by extreme meteorological conditions, for example, storms, floods, earth slides and heat periods, the direct consequences range from illnesses to serious accidents with injuries, or in extreme cases fatalities. Indirectly, a changed environment due to climate change affects, amongst other things, the cardiovascular system and respiratory tract, and can also cause allergies and infectious diseases. In addition, increasing confrontation with environmental impacts may cause negative psychological effects such as posttraumatic stress disorders and anxiety, but also aggression, distress and depressive symptoms. The extent and severity of the health consequences depend on individual pre-disposition, resilience, behaviour and adaptation.

  1. Do environmental and climate change issues threaten sustainable development?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mesarovic, M.

    2002-01-01

    The atmospheric environment is presently under threat from anthropogenic emissions of pollutants and greenhouse gases to the extent that irreversible changes to the climate, the ozone layer and the quality of the air could occur. While the required changes in practice and regulations may hit economies if the induced costs are to be internalised, the impact of ignoring these requirements might even threaten the concept of sustainable development. The prospects of environmental pollution, depletion of ozone layer and climate change due to human activities have sparked a variety of controversies on many fronts. These topics are discussed with respect to the imposed threats to the sustainable development, and with particular attention paid to delays in urgent emission reductions. (author)

  2. Areal changes of lentic water bodies within an agricultural basin of the Argentinean pampas. Disentangling land management from climatic causes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Booman, Gisel Carolina; Calandroni, Mirta; Laterra, Pedro; Cabria, Fabián; Iribarne, Oscar; Vázquez, Pablo

    2012-12-01

    Wetland loss is a frequent concern for the environmental management of rural landscapes, but poor disentanglement between climatic and land management causes frequently constrains both proper diagnoses and planning. The aim of this study is to address areal changes induced by non-climatic factors on lentic water bodies (LWB) within an agricultural basin of the Argentinean Pampas, and the human activities that might be involved. The LWB of the Mar Chiquita basin (Buenos Aires province, Argentina) were mapped using Landsat images from 1998-2008 and then corrected for precipitation variability by considering the regional hydrological status on each date. LWB areal changes were statistically and spatially analyzed in relation to land use changes, channelization of streams, and drainage of small SWB in the catchment areas. We found that 12 % of the total LWB in the basin had changed (P climatic causes. During the evaluated decade, 30 % of the LWB that changed size had decreased while 70 % showed steady increases in area. The number of altered LWB within watersheds lineally increased or decreased according to the proportion of grasslands replaced by sown pastures, or the proportion of sown pastures replaced by crop fields, respectively. Drainage and channelization do not appear to be related to the alteration of LWB; however some of these hydrologic modifications may predate 1998, and thus earlier effects cannot be discarded. This study shows that large-scale changes in land cover (e.g., grasslands reduction) can cause a noticeable loss of hydrologic regulation at the catchment scale within a decade.

  3. Is climate change human induced? | Misra | African Journal of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    African Journal of Environmental Science and Technology. Journal Home · ABOUT THIS JOURNAL · Advanced Search · Current Issue · Archives · Journal Home > Vol 9, No 2 (2015) >. Log in or Register to get access to full text downloads. Username, Password, Remember me, or Register. Is climate change human ...

  4. Technical energy savings versus changes in human behaviour

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nørgaard, Jørgen

    1996-01-01

    Energy savings seems to be the most environmentally benign element in an energy policy. The paper is a reflection on the work on saving energy both by improving technology and by adapting human daily behaviour. A simple model is suggested for the energy chain which converts the primary energy all...... the way into human satisfaction via energy services. Results of various analyses and field experiments show saving potentials for electricity of 50 - 80 per cents. Barriers for implementing these technical saving options are discussed. Also the necessity and potentials for changing behavioural or life...

  5. Improved data for integrated modeling of global environmental change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lotze-Campen, Hermann

    2011-12-01

    The assessment of global environmental changes, their impact on human societies, and possible management options requires large-scale, integrated modeling efforts. These models have to link biophysical with socio-economic processes, and they have to take spatial heterogeneity of environmental conditions into account. Land use change and freshwater use are two key research areas where spatial aggregation and the use of regional average numbers may lead to biased results. Useful insights can only be obtained if processes like economic globalization can be consistently linked to local environmental conditions and resource constraints (Lambin and Meyfroidt 2011). Spatially explicit modeling of environmental changes at the global scale has a long tradition in the natural sciences (Woodward et al 1995, Alcamo et al 1996, Leemans et al 1996). Socio-economic models with comparable spatial detail, e.g. on grid-based land use change, are much less common (Heistermann et al 2006), but are increasingly being developed (Popp et al 2011, Schneider et al 2011). Spatially explicit models require spatially explicit input data, which often constrains their development and application at the global scale. The amount and quality of available data on environmental conditions is growing fast—primarily due to improved earth observation methods. Moreover, systematic efforts for collecting and linking these data across sectors are on the way (www.earthobservations.org). This has, among others, also helped to provide consistent databases on different land cover and land use types (Erb et al 2007). However, spatially explicit data on specific anthropogenic driving forces of global environmental change are still scarce—also because these cannot be collected with satellites or other devices. The basic data on socio-economic driving forces, i.e. population density and wealth (measured as gross domestic product per capita), have been prepared for spatially explicit analyses (CIESIN, IFPRI

  6. Implications of rapid environmental change for polar bear behavior and sociality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atwood, Todd C.

    2017-01-01

    Historically, the Arctic sea ice has functioned as a structural barrier that has limited the nature and extent of interactions between humans and polar bears (Ursus maritimus). However, declining sea ice extent, brought about by global climate change, is increasing the potential for human-polar bear interactions. Loss of sea ice habitat is driving changes to both human and polar bear behavior—it is facilitating increases in human activities (e.g., offshore oil and gas exploration and extraction, trans-Arctic shipping, recreation), while also causing the displacement of bears from preferred foraging habitat (i.e., sea ice over biologically productive shallow) to land in some portions of their range. The end result of these changes is that polar bears are spending greater amounts of time in close proximity to people. Coexistence between humans and polar bears will require imposing mechanisms to manage further development, as well as mitigation strategies that reduce the burden to local communities.

  7. The big challenges in modeling human and environmental well-being.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tuljapurkar, Shripad

    2016-01-01

    This article is a selective review of quantitative research, historical and prospective, that is needed to inform sustainable development policy. I start with a simple framework to highlight how demography and productivity shape human well-being. I use that to discuss three sets of issues and corresponding challenges to modeling: first, population prehistory and early human development and their implications for the future; second, the multiple distinct dimensions of human and environmental well-being and the meaning of sustainability; and, third, inequality as a phenomenon triggered by development and models to examine changing inequality and its consequences. I conclude with a few words about other important factors: political, institutional, and cultural.

  8. Environmental tasks of anthropogenic actions and climatic changes in pozo del Molle, Cordoba Argentina

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mansilla, L.; Karlsson, A.; Ayala, R.

    2007-01-01

    This work was made in Pozo del Molle town, Rio Segundo, Cordoba. Argentina. The human impact added to climate changes, mainly the increase of precipitations, affects negatively in the environmental problems. In the area, in the last years, the problems that lead to the degradation of the environment were accentuated. The disposition of the final waste disposal has been determined through the following studies: analysis of the geological conditions of the area, consideration of the climatic situation, and the elevation and contamination the phreatic. Also an analysis about the rate of the habitant/day solid residual generation, the distance between the site where is located the urban solid residues and the town, the predominant winds and the vulnerability of the phreatic, which represents the greatest problem of the area, was made. It has been established the alternatives to carry out an appropriate environmental administration. Key words: human impact, climatic changes, environmental problems, phreatic, Pozo del Molle (Argentina). (author)

  9. Response of wind erosion dynamics to climate change and human activity in Inner Mongolia, China during 1990 to 2015.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Haiyan; Fan, Jiangwen; Cao, Wei; Harris, Warwick; Li, Yuzhe; Chi, Wenfeng; Wang, Suizi

    2018-10-15

    Soil erosion caused by wind is a serious environmental problem that results in land degradation and threatens sustainable development. Accurately evaluating wind erosion dynamics is important for reducing the hazard of wind erosion. Separating the climatic and anthropogenic causes of wind erosion can improve the understanding of its driving mechanisms. Based on meteorological, remote sensing and field observation data, we applied the Revised Wind Erosion Equation (RWEQ) to simulate wind erosion in Inner Mongolia, China from 1990 to 2015. We used the variable control method by input of the average climate conditions to calculate human-induced wind erosion. The difference between natural wind erosion and human-induced wind erosion was determined to assess the effect of climate change on wind erosion. The results showed that the wind erosion modulus had a remarkable decline with a slope of 52.23 t/km 2 /a from 1990 to 2015. During 26 years, the average wind erosion for Inner Mongolia amounted to 63.32 billion tons. Wind erosion showed an overall significant decline of 49.23% and the partial severer erosion hazard significantly increased by 7.11%. Of the significant regional decline, 40.72% was caused by climate changes, and 8.51% was attributed to ecological restoration programs. For the significant regional increases of wind erosion, 4.29% was attributed to climate changes and 2.82% to human activities, mainly overgrazing and land use/cover changes. During the study, the driving forces in Inner Mongolia of wind erosion dynamics differed spatially. Timely monitoring based on multi-source data and highlighting the importance of positive human activities by increasing vegetation coverage for deserts, reducing grazing pressure on grasslands, establishing forests as windbreaks and optimizing crop planting rotations of farmlands can all act to reduce and control wind erosion. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Impacts of climate change and environmental factors on reproduction and development in wildlife

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milligan, Stuart R.; Holt, William V.; Lloyd, Rhiannon

    2009-01-01

    The robustness of the growth of the human population in the face of environmental impacts is in contrast to the sensitivity of wildlife. There is a danger that the success of reproduction of humans provides a false sense of security for the public, media and politicians with respect to wildlife survival, the maintenance of viable ecosystems and the capacity for recovery of damaged ecosystems and endangered species. In reality, the success of humans to populate the planet has been dependent on the combination of the ability to reproduce successfully and to minimize loss of offspring through controlling and manipulating their own micro-environment. In contrast, reproduction in wildlife is threatened by environmental changes operating at many different physiological levels. PMID:19833643

  11. Environmental impact caused by incorrect discard of tires

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vitória Emanuella da Silva Alves

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Tires are wastes that need special treatment, because when buried whole, its shape facilitates the accumulation of gases from the decomposition of other waste and in case of emerge surface provides shelter for diseases. Thus, this research aimed to provide information about the environmental impacts caused by the improper disposal of unserviceable tires and about some techniques for reusing and recycling them. We opted for the literature search using databases SCIELO, GOOGLE SCHOLAR, CAPES journals, resolutions of the MMA, the ANIP and regulations of IBAMA instructions. The consultation material comprises a period from 1992 to 2015 with the following descriptors: industrial waste; laws of tires; environmental impacts caused by improper disposal of tires and technological alternatives usable by tires and scrap therefore improper disposal of scrap tires can cause negative impacts such as floods, by reducing the flow capacity of water bodies and drains. In contrast, after use, the tire can undergo reform and be reused, but the wear out is completely characterized as waste tire and the correct disposal are the possible ways of recycling. Thus it is very important compliance of laws that deal with the proper disposal of tires.

  12. Assessment of Environmental Flows under Human Intervention and Climate Change Conditions in a Mediterranean Watershed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yilmaz, M. T.; Alp, E.; Aras, M.; Özaltın, A. M.; Sarıcan, Y.; Afsar, M.; Bulut, B.; Ersoy, E. N.; Karasu, İ. G.; Onen, A.

    2017-12-01

    Allocation of the river flow for ecosystems is very critical for sustainable management of ecosystems containing aquatic habitats in need of more water than other environments. Availability and allocation of water over such locations becomes more stressed as a result of the influence of human interventions (e.g., increased water use for irrigation) and the expected change in climate. This study investigates the current and future (until 2100) low-flow requirements over 10 subcatchments in a Mediterranean Watershed, in Turkey, using Tennant and hydrological low-flow methods. The future river flows are estimated using HBV model forced by climate projections obtained by HADGEM2, MPI-ESM-MR, and CNRM-CM5.1 models coupled with RegCM4.3 under RCP 4.5 and RCP 8.5 emission scenarios. Critical flows (i.e., Q10, Q25, Q50) are calculated using the best fit to commonly used distributions for the river flow data, while the decision between the selection of Q10, Q25, Q50 critical levels are made depending on the level of human interference made over the catchment. Total three low-flow requirement estimations are obtained over each subcatchment using the Tennant (two estimates for the low and high flow seasons for environmentally good conditions) and the hydrological low-flow methods. The highest estimate among these three methods is selected as the low-flow requirement of the subcatchment. The river flows over these 10 subcatchments range between 197hm3 and 1534hm3 while the drainage areas changing between 936 and 4505 km2. The final low-flow estimation (i.e., the highest among the three estimate) for the current conditions range between 94 hm3 and 715 hm3. The low-flow projection values between 2075 and 2099 are on average 39% lower than the 2016 values, while the steepest decline is expected between 2050 and 2074. The low flow and high flow season Tennant estimates dropped 22-25% while the hydrological method low-flow estimates dropped 32% from 2016 to 2075-2099 average, where

  13. NASA Space Flight Human-System Standard Human Factors, Habitability, and Environmental Health

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holubec, Keith; Connolly, Janis

    2010-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the history, and development of NASA-STD-3001, NASA Space Flight Human-System Standard Human Factors, Habitability, and Environmental Health, and the related Human Integration Design Handbook. Currently being developed from NASA-STD-3000, this project standard currently in review will be available in two volumes, (i.e., Volume 1 -- VCrew Health and Volume 2 -- Human Factors, Habitability, and Environmental Health) and the handbook will be both available as a pdf file and as a interactive website.

  14. Human Rights Practice: A Means to Environmental Ends?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kate Donald

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Can human rights practice in its current dominant forms tackle the challenge of climate change and global environmental degradation? This article argues that although there is now increased recognition of the links between human rights and the environment, and while human rights tools and principles can contribute in some concrete ways in moving forward the environmental agenda, their potential for doing is so far largely unrealised. The article analyses three different approaches used by advocates and activists in this field, before discussing potential alternatives and examples of radical or hybrid approaches, with a view to articulating a strategy for activism and praxis that can capture the real and lived inter-connectedness of human rights enjoyment and environmental factors more meaningfully. ¿Puede la práctica de los derechos humanos en sus formas dominantes actuales hacer frente al desafío del cambio climático y la degradación global del medio ambiente? Este artículo sostiene que, aunque ahora hay un mayor reconocimiento de los vínculos entre los derechos humanos y el medio ambiente, y mientras que las herramientas y principios de los derechos humanos pueden contribuir en avanzar de manera concreta la agenda ambiental, su potencial se encuentra frustrado en gran parte hasta el momento. El artículo analiza tres enfoques diferentes utilizados por los defensores y activistas en este campo, antes de discutir alternativas y ejemplos de enfoques radicales o híbridos, con el fin de articular una estrategia para el activismo y la praxis que pueda capturar de manera más significativa la interconexión real y vivida del disfrute de los derechos humanos y de los factores medioambientales.

  15. Environmental agency in read-alouds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, Alandeom W.; Rogers, Patterson; Quigley, Cassie F.; Samburskiy, Denis; Barss, Kimberly; Rivera, Seema

    2015-06-01

    Despite growing interest in helping students become agents of environmental change who can, through informed decision-making and action-taking, transform environmentally detrimental forms of human activity, science educators have reduced agency to rationality by overlooking sociocultural influences such as norms and values. We tackle this issue by examining how elementary teachers and students negotiate and attribute responsibility, credit, or blame for environmental events during three environmental read-alouds. Our verbal analysis and visual representation of meta-agentive discourse revealed varied patterns of agential attribution. First, humans were simultaneously attributed negative agentive roles (agents of endangerment and imbalance) and positive agentive roles (agents of prevention, mitigation, and balance). Second, while wolves at Yellowstone were constructed as intentional (human-like) agents when they crossed over into the human world to kill livestock in nearby farms, polar bears in the Arctic were denied any form of agential responsibility when they approached people's homes. Third, anthropogenic causation of global warming was constructed as distal and indirect chains of cause and effect (i.e., sophisticated sequences of ripple effects), whereas its mitigation and prevention assumed the form of simple and unidirectional causative links (direct and proximal causality). Fourth, the notion of balance of nature was repeatedly used as a justification for environmental conservation but its cause and dynamic nature remained unclear. And, fifth, while one teacher promoted environmental agency by encouraging students to experience positive emotions such as love of nature, freedom, and oneness with nature, the other teachers encouraged students to experience negative emotions such as self-blame and guilt. This study's main significance is that it highlights the need for environmental educators who set out to promote environmental agency to expand the focus of

  16. Integrated approaches for determination of environmental and human risks of persistent toxic substances

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Blaha, L.; Cupr, P.; Dusek, L.; Hilscherova, K.; Holoubek, I.; Klanova, J.

    2008-01-01

    Substances that are persistent and bioaccumulative often posses toxic characteristics and cause adverse human health or environmental effects. Basic objective of the long-term research project INCHEMBIOL undertaken by the Centre RECETOX are the complex studies of interactions among chemical compounds present in environmental compartments and their biological effects and studies of the fate of mainly persistent chemical compounds in the environment, their effects on the environment and living organisms including human. Destiny in this concept consists of a summary of transport (from their input in the environment, transport within the environmental compartment, where they are discharged, transport among compartments and long-range transport in the environment) and transformation processes (abiotic and biotic transformations). It also includes study of distribution equilibriums, properties conditioning their environmental behaviour, study of the transformation processes and their products. This complex approach is a part of long-term research activities of the centre RECETOX. In the contribution methods used and results obtained in exploration of the causality among chemical (presence of chemical compounds in the environment) and biological (mechanisms of effects on the living organisms) are described.

  17. Potential Environmental and Ecological Effects of Global Climate Change on Venomous Terrestrial Species in the Wilderness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Needleman, Robert K; Neylan, Isabelle P; Erickson, Timothy

    2018-06-01

    Climate change has been scientifically documented, and its effects on wildlife have been prognosticated. We sought to predict the overall impact of climate change on venomous terrestrial species. We hypothesize that given the close relationship between terrestrial venomous species and climate, a changing global environment may result in increased species migration, geographical redistribution, and longer seasons for envenomation, which would have repercussions on human health. A retrospective analysis of environmental, ecological, and medical literature was performed with a focus on climate change, toxinology, and future modeling specific to venomous terrestrial creatures. Species included venomous reptiles, snakes, arthropods, spiders, and Hymenoptera (ants and bees). Animals that are vectors of hemorrhagic infectious disease (eg, mosquitos, ticks) were excluded. Our review of the literature indicates that changes to climatic norms will have a potentially dramatic effect on terrestrial venomous creatures. Empirical evidence demonstrates that geographic distributions of many species have already shifted due to changing climatic conditions. Given that most terrestrial venomous species are ectotherms closely tied to ambient temperature, and that climate change is shifting temperature zones away from the equator, further significant distribution and population changes should be anticipated. For those species able to migrate to match the changing temperatures, new geographical locations may open. For those species with limited distribution capabilities, the rate of climate change may accelerate faster than species can adapt, causing population declines. Specifically, poisonous snakes and spiders will likely maintain their population numbers but will shift their geographic distribution to traditionally temperate zones more often inhabited by humans. Fire ants and Africanized honey bees are expected to have an expanded range distribution due to predicted warming trends

  18. Human and natural influences on the changing thermal structure of the atmosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santer, Benjamin D; Painter, Jeffrey F; Bonfils, Céline; Mears, Carl A; Solomon, Susan; Wigley, Tom M L; Gleckler, Peter J; Schmidt, Gavin A; Doutriaux, Charles; Gillett, Nathan P; Taylor, Karl E; Thorne, Peter W; Wentz, Frank J

    2013-10-22

    Since the late 1970s, satellite-based instruments have monitored global changes in atmospheric temperature. These measurements reveal multidecadal tropospheric warming and stratospheric cooling, punctuated by short-term volcanic signals of reverse sign. Similar long- and short-term temperature signals occur in model simulations driven by human-caused changes in atmospheric composition and natural variations in volcanic aerosols. Most previous comparisons of modeled and observed atmospheric temperature changes have used results from individual models and individual observational records. In contrast, we rely on a large multimodel archive and multiple observational datasets. We show that a human-caused latitude/altitude pattern of atmospheric temperature change can be identified with high statistical confidence in satellite data. Results are robust to current uncertainties in models and observations. Virtually all previous research in this area has attempted to discriminate an anthropogenic signal from internal variability. Here, we present evidence that a human-caused signal can also be identified relative to the larger "total" natural variability arising from sources internal to the climate system, solar irradiance changes, and volcanic forcing. Consistent signal identification occurs because both internal and total natural variability (as simulated by state-of-the-art models) cannot produce sustained global-scale tropospheric warming and stratospheric cooling. Our results provide clear evidence for a discernible human influence on the thermal structure of the atmosphere.

  19. Environmental health implications of global climate change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Watson, Robert T.; Patz, Jonathan; Gubler, Duane J.; Parson, Edward A.; Vincent, James H.

    2005-07-01

    This paper reviews the background that has led to the now almost-universally held opinion in the scientific community that global climate change is occurring and is inescapably linked with anthropogenic activity. The potential implications to human health are considerable and very diverse. These include, for example, the increased direct impacts of heat and of rises in sea level, exacerbated air and water-borne harmful agents, and - associated with all the preceding - the emergence of environmental refugees. Vector-borne diseases, in particular those associated with blood-sucking arthropods such as mosquitoes, may be significantly impacted, including redistribution of some of those diseases to areas not previously affected. Responses to possible impending environmental and public health crises must involve political and socio-economic considerations, adding even greater complexity to what is already a difficult challenge. In some areas, adjustments to national and international public health practices and policies may be effective, at least in the short and medium terms. But in others, more drastic measures will be required. Environmental monitoring, in its widest sense, will play a significant role in the future management of the problem. (Author)

  20. The causality analysis of climate change and large-scale human crisis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, David D; Lee, Harry F; Wang, Cong; Li, Baosheng; Pei, Qing; Zhang, Jane; An, Yulun

    2011-10-18

    Recent studies have shown strong temporal correlations between past climate changes and societal crises. However, the specific causal mechanisms underlying this relation have not been addressed. We explored quantitative responses of 14 fine-grained agro-ecological, socioeconomic, and demographic variables to climate fluctuations from A.D. 1500-1800 in Europe. Results show that cooling from A.D. 1560-1660 caused successive agro-ecological, socioeconomic, and demographic catastrophes, leading to the General Crisis of the Seventeenth Century. We identified a set of causal linkages between climate change and human crisis. Using temperature data and climate-driven economic variables, we simulated the alternation of defined "golden" and "dark" ages in Europe and the Northern Hemisphere during the past millennium. Our findings indicate that climate change was the ultimate cause, and climate-driven economic downturn was the direct cause, of large-scale human crises in preindustrial Europe and the Northern Hemisphere.

  1. Vegetation changes and human settlement of Easter Island during the last millennia: a multiproxy study of the Lake Raraku sediments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cañellas-Boltà, Núria; Rull, Valentí; Sáez, Alberto; Margalef, Olga; Bao, Roberto; Pla-Rabes, Sergi; Blaauw, Maarten; Valero-Garcés, Blas; Giralt, Santiago

    2013-07-01

    Earlier palynological studies of lake sediments from Easter Island suggest that the island underwent a recent and abrupt replacement of palm-dominated forests by grasslands, interpreted as a deforestation by indigenous people. However, the available evidence is inconclusive due to the existence of extended hiatuses and ambiguous chronological frameworks in most of the sedimentary sequences studied. This has given rise to an ongoing debate about the timing and causes of the assumed ecological degradation and cultural breakdown. Our multiproxy study of a core recovered from Lake Raraku highlights the vegetation dynamics and environmental shifts in the catchment and its surroundings during the late Holocene. The sequence contains shorter hiatuses than in previously recovered cores and provides a more continuous history of environmental changes. The results show a long, gradual and stepped landscape shift from palm-dominated forests to grasslands. This change started c. 450 BC and lasted about two thousand years. The presence of Verbena litoralis, a common weed, which is associated with human activities in the pollen record, the significant correlation between shifts in charcoal influx, and the dominant pollen types suggest human disturbance of the vegetation. Therefore, human settlement on the island occurred c. 450 BC, some 1500 years earlier than is assumed. Climate variability also exerted a major influence on environmental changes. Two sedimentary gaps in the record are interpreted as periods of droughts that could have prevented peat growth and favoured its erosion during the Medieval Climate Anomaly and the Little Ice Age, respectively. At c. AD 1200, the water table rose and the former Raraku mire turned into a shallow lake, suggesting higher precipitation/evaporation rates coeval with a cooler and wetter Pan-Pacific AD 1300 event. Pollen and diatom records show large vegetation changes due to human activities c. AD 1200. Other recent vegetation changes also

  2. Integrating Environmental and Human Health Databases in the Great Lakes Basin: Themes, Challenges and Future Directions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kate L. Bassil

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Many government, academic and research institutions collect environmental data that are relevant to understanding the relationship between environmental exposures and human health. Integrating these data with health outcome data presents new challenges that are important to consider to improve our effective use of environmental health information. Our objective was to identify the common themes related to the integration of environmental and health data, and suggest ways to address the challenges and make progress toward more effective use of data already collected, to further our understanding of environmental health associations in the Great Lakes region. Environmental and human health databases were identified and reviewed using literature searches and a series of one-on-one and group expert consultations. Databases identified were predominantly environmental stressors databases, with fewer found for health outcomes and human exposure. Nine themes or factors that impact integration were identified: data availability, accessibility, harmonization, stakeholder collaboration, policy and strategic alignment, resource adequacy, environmental health indicators, and data exchange networks. The use and cost effectiveness of data currently collected could be improved by strategic changes to data collection and access systems to provide better opportunities to identify and study environmental exposures that may impact human health.

  3. Environmental change enhances cognitive abilities in fish.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Kotrschal

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Flexible or innovative behavior is advantageous, especially when animals are exposed to frequent and unpredictable environmental perturbations. Improved cognitive abilities can help animals to respond quickly and adequately to environmental dynamics, and therefore changing environments may select for higher cognitive abilities. Increased cognitive abilities can be attained, for instance, if environmental change during ontogeny triggers plastic adaptive responses improving the learning capacity of exposed individuals. We tested the learning abilities of fishes in response to experimental variation of environmental quality during ontogeny. Individuals of the cichlid fish Simochromis pleurospilus that experienced a change in food ration early in life outperformed fish kept on constant rations in a learning task later in life--irrespective of the direction of the implemented change and the mean rations received. This difference in learning abilities between individuals remained constant between juvenile and adult stages of the same fish tested 1 y apart. Neither environmental enrichment nor training through repeated neural stimulation can explain our findings, as the sensory environment was kept constant and resource availability was changed only once. Instead, our results indicate a pathway by which a single change in resource availability early in life permanently enhances the learning abilities of animals. Early perturbations of environmental quality may signal the developing individual that it lives in a changing world, requiring increased cognitive abilities to construct adequate behavioral responses.

  4. Does apricot seeds consumption cause changes in human urine?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva Tušimová

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Natural substances, such as amygdalin, used in alternative medicine gained high popularity. Common people as well as patients with different diseases have almost unlimited access to various natural supplements. To protect human health, it is very important to study effect of these substances. Amygdalin is a cyanogenic glucoside derived from seeds of rosaceous plants, for example seeds of bitter almonds (Prunus dulcis, or apricot, cherry, apple, peach, plum, etc. It is a natural product that owns antitumor activity, it has also been used for the treatment of asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, leprosy and diabetes and produces a kind of antitussive and antiasthmatic effects. The present in vivo study was designed to reveal whether amygdalin in apricot seeds has got an effect on human urine composition, pH value and urine associated health status after six weeks of oral administration. The study group finally consisted of 34 healthy adult volunteers (21 females and 13 males. All participants were asked to consume 60 mg.kg-1 body weight of bitter apricot seeds daily (approximately 3.0 mg.kg-1 of amygdalin during 6 weeks. During the experiment, three urine collections were carried out (first collection - at the beginning of the experiment; second collection - after 21 days; third collection - after 42 days. Quantification of urine calcium (Ca, magnesium (Mg, phosphorus (P, sodium (Na, potassium (K, chlorides (Cl-, urea and pH value after apricot seeds supplementation was performed. Statistical analysis of variance showed, that consumption of bitter apricot seeds during 42 days had a significant (p <0.01 effect on amount of calcium excreted in urine, though this decrease shifted its level from elevated mean value in control collection into normal physiological range. Significant changes were observed in urea (p <0.05 and phosphorus (p <0.01 levels in urine after apricot seed ingestion, but gender was also considered to be a source of their variation.

  5. Climate change and epidemiology of human parasitoses in Saudi Arabia: A review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wael Mohamed Lotfy

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Climate change is an emerging global problem. It has hazardous effects that vary across different geographic regions and populations. It is anticipated to have significant effects in Saudi Arabia. The present work reviews the future of human parasitoses in Saudi Arabia in response to the expected climate change. The key projections are increased precipitations, flash floods, unstable temperatures, sea-level rise and shoreline retreat. Such environmental changes could strongly influence the epidemiology of fly-borne, mosquito-borne, snail-borne and water-borne human parasitoses in the country.

  6. Anthropogenic Climate Change in Undergraduate Marine and Environmental Science Programs in the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vlietstra, Lucy S.; Mrakovcich, Karina L.; Futch, Victoria C.; Stutzman, Brooke S.

    2016-01-01

    To develop a context for program-level design decisions pertaining to anthropogenic climate change, the authors studied the prevalence of courses focused on human-induced climate change in undergraduate marine science and environmental science degree programs in the United States. Of the 86 institutions and 125 programs the authors examined, 37%…

  7. Contemplating Catastrophe: conveying the causes, effects, risks of and responses to global change

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCaffrey, M.; Berbeco, M.; Lahsen, M.

    2013-12-01

    Humans are changing nature and undermining the life supporting systems of the planet to an unprecedented extent, eroding more soil than all natural processes combined, fixing more nitrogen than all the bacteria on the planet, and substantially altering the land cover and chemistry of the atmosphere and waters. Yet, especially in the United States but also elsewhere, environmental awareness and policy action has been lackluster and hesitant due to a range of factors, including manufactured doubt and denial, psychological, cultural and economic investments in maintenance of status quo, and - when concern does exist - lack of knowledge about how to foster effective change. This paper will examine how recent research findings on human impacts on the planet are being conveyed to non-technical audiences and discuss challenges and opportunities to provide the public with the relevant knowledge and knowhow to address the risks of, and responses to global change. It will argue that a second-wave scientific literacy consisting in deeper understanding of the scientific process must be nurtured as part of a process to capacitate populations, especially youths, to navigate conflicting evidence and claims that surround many environmental threats. Such literacy must be fostered through 'learning conversations,' community and capacity-building, and integrated education, communication and outreach infusing science and solutions to foster a more effective approach to confronting potential catastrophe. 25 February 2013 at 16:30 Pacific Time

  8. Understanding Global Change: A New Conceptual Framework To Guide Teaching About Planetary Systems And Both The Causes And Effects Of Changes In Those Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levine, J.; Bean, J. R.

    2016-12-01

    Goals of the Next Generation Science Standards include understanding climate change and learning about ways to moderate the causes and mitigate the consequences of planetary-scale anthropogenic activities that interact synergistically to affect ecosystems and societies. The sheer number and scale of both causes and effects of global change can be daunting for teachers, and the lack of a clear conceptual framework for presenting this material usually leads educators (and textbooks) to present these phenomenon as a disjointed "laundry list." But an alternative approach is in the works. The Understanding Global Change web resource, currently under development at the UC Berkeley Museum of Paleontology, will provide educators with a conceptual framework, graphic models, lessons, and assessment templates for teaching NGSS-aligned, interdisciplinary, global change curricula. The core of this resource is an original informational graphic that presents and relates Earth's global systems, human and non-human factors that produce changes in those systems, and the effects of those changes that scientists can measure.

  9. Analysing the environmental harms caused by coal mining and its protection measures in permafrost regions of Qinghai–Tibet Plateau

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei Cao

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The coal mining has brought a series of ecological problems and environmental problems in permafrost regions. Taking Muli coal-mining area as an example, this article attempts to analyse the environmental harms caused by coal mining and its protection measures in permafrost regions of Qinghai–Tibet Plateau. This article analyses the influence of open mining on the surrounding permafrost around the open pit by using the numerical simulation. The results show that (1 based on the interrelation between coal mining and permafrost environment, these main environmental harm include the permafrost change and the natural environment change in cold regions; (2 once the surface temperature rises due to open mining, the permafrost will disappear with the increase of exploitation life. If considering the solar radiation, the climate conditions and the geological condition around the pit edge, the maximum thaw depth will be more than 2 m; (3 the protection measures are proposed to avoid the disadvantage impact on the permafrost environment caused by coal mining. It will provide a scientific basis for the resource development and environment protection in cold regions.

  10. Environmental problems caused by bituminous schist and possible solutions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Elmas, N.; Aykul, H.; Erarslan, K.; Ediz, I.G.

    1998-01-01

    Schist, as a disposal of mine, has harmful effects on environment. however, several manners can be utilized to prevent the environmental destruction as well as an economical benefit is gained. In this study, environmental problems caused by bituminous schist and other disposals have been investigated on a specific lignite coal mine where schist is disposed as waste material. Pollution and damage on land and in water sources around the coal district and the villages have been observed, recorded and several solutions to environmental problems have been proposed. Discussed proposals will not only solve the environmental pollution problem but also provide waste management facility. Industrial structure of the district enables such a disposal to be used as an economical raw material. Besides, general effects of the coal mine and the power plant nearby have been discussed from environmental point of view, too. 7 refs

  11. Analysis the Human and Environmental Consequences of Power Pplants Using Combined Delphi and AHP Method

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jozi, S. A.; Saffarian, Sh.; Shafiee, M.; Akbari, A.

    2016-01-01

    Power plants, due to the nature of their processes and activities and also by producing the effluents, emitting the air pollutants and hazardous wastes, have the potential to cause negative human and environmental consequences. Given the importance of the issue, for determining the most important consequences of Abadan Gas Power Plant and also their impact on the human and natural environment, as a case study, a questionnaire was developed with Delphi method. This questionnaire was distributed within the environmentalists and experts of power plant. The human and environmental consequences of Power Plant were analyzed by Multiple Criteria Decision-Making methods including AHP and eigenvector technique. For this purpose, with applying of AHP method, the hierarchical structure of the human and environmental consequences of Abadan Gas Power Plant was constructed and then the decision making matrix was formed. The pair wise matrices were formed separately for criteria pair wise comparisons with respect to severity and occurrence probability of indoor and outdoor environment of power plant .With entering the data in EXPERT CHOICE software, criteria weights were computed with applying the eigenvector method. Then the final weights of consequences in terms of severity and occurrence probability of risk were computed. The results from the compution of Abadan Gas Power Plant consequences indicate that in human consequences, shallow wounds with a .105 weight and in environmental consequences, air pollution by weighing 0.66 are the most important consequences of power plant. Finally, the most important executable strategies and actions for mitigation of negative human and environmental consequences were presented.

  12. Environmental chemicals and autoimmune disease: cause and effect

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hess, Evelyn V.

    2002-01-01

    Many important clues have been provided by the relationship of certain medications to lupus and other autoimmune syndromes. These are temporary conditions that resolve when the medication is removed. There are now over 70 such medications which have been reported related to these autoimmune conditions. Interest continues to grow in the potential for environmental substances to cause these syndromes. Among those under suspicion are hydrazines, tartrazines, hair dyes, trichloroethylene, industrial emissions and hazardous wastes. Other possible associations include silica, mercury, cadmium, gold and L canavanine. Two recognised outbreaks include 'toxic oil syndrome' related to contaminated rape seed oil in Spain in 1981 and exposure to a contaminated environmental substance associated with an autoimmune attack on muscle tissue in 1989. Recently, there have been proposals made for the definition and identification of environmentally associated immune disorders. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has also provided recent publications for other environmentally related problems. All these aspects will be presented and reviewed in detail

  13. Integrated Decision Support for Global Environmental Change Adaptation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, S.; Cantrell, S.; Higgins, G. J.; Marshall, J.; VanWijngaarden, F.

    2011-12-01

    Environmental changes are happening now that has caused concern in many parts of the world; particularly vulnerable are the countries and communities with limited resources and with natural environments that are more susceptible to climate change impacts. Global leaders are concerned about the observed phenomena and events such as Amazon deforestation, shifting monsoon patterns affecting agriculture in the mountain slopes of Peru, floods in Pakistan, water shortages in Middle East, droughts impacting water supplies and wildlife migration in Africa, and sea level rise impacts on low lying coastal communities in Bangladesh. These environmental changes are likely to get exacerbated as the temperatures rise, the weather and climate patterns change, and sea level rise continues. Large populations and billions of dollars of infrastructure could be affected. At Northrop Grumman, we have developed an integrated decision support framework for providing necessary information to stakeholders and planners to adapt to the impacts of climate variability and change at the regional and local levels. This integrated approach takes into account assimilation and exploitation of large and disparate weather and climate data sets, regional downscaling (dynamic and statistical), uncertainty quantification and reduction, and a synthesis of scientific data with demographic and economic data to generate actionable information for the stakeholders and decision makers. Utilizing a flexible service oriented architecture and state-of-the-art visualization techniques, this information can be delivered via tailored GIS portals to meet diverse set of user needs and expectations. This integrated approach can be applied to regional and local risk assessments, predictions and decadal projections, and proactive adaptation planning for vulnerable communities. In this paper we will describe this comprehensive decision support approach with selected applications and case studies to illustrate how this

  14. Bridging the divide between human and environmental nanotoxicology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malysheva, Anzhela; Lombi, Enzo; Voelcker, Nicolas H.

    2015-10-01

    The need to assess the human and environmental risks of nanoscale materials has prompted the development of new metrological tools for their detection, quantification and characterization. Some of these methods have tremendous potential for use in various scenarios of nanotoxicology. However, in some cases, the limited dialogue between environmental scientists and human toxicologists has hampered the full exploitation of these resources. Here we review recent progress in the development of methods for nanomaterial analysis and discuss the use of these methods in environmental and human toxicology. We highlight the opportunities for collaboration between these two research areas.

  15. Determinants of environmental action with regard to climatic change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jaeger, C.; Duerrenberger, G.; Kastenholz, H.; Truffer, B.

    1993-01-01

    The study of human dimensions of global climatic change is still in the initial stage of development. Several attempts have been undertaken to define sensible research strategies in the field but until now relatively little empirical work has been undertaken and there is a lack of sound theoretical arguments. The present paper presents a theory-based empirical study of determinants influencing the probability that somebody takes climate-relevant environmental action. Important methodological differences between current models of climate dynamics and models of human reality are discussed in order to build three models of climate-related environmental action. A model focussed on the information transfer from science to the public at large is compared with a model focussed on sociodemographic characteristics and with a model focussed on socio-cultural variables like interpersonal rules and social networks. The hypothesis that the latter model is strongly superior to the former ones is tested and confirmed. Some implications for interdisciplinary cooperation and for policy making are discussed. 51 refs., 2 figs., 7 tabs

  16. Human land-use and soil change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wills, Skye A.; Williams, Candiss O.; Duniway, Michael C.; Veenstra, Jessica; Seybold, Cathy; Pressley, DeAnn

    2017-01-01

    Soil change refers to the alteration of soil and soil properties over time in one location, as opposed to soil variability across space. Although soils change with pedogensis, this chapter focuses on human caused soil change. Soil change can occur with human use and management over long or short time periods and small or large scales. While change can be negative or positive; often soil change is observed when short-term or narrow goals overshadow the other soil’s ecosystem services. Many soils have been changed in their chemical, physical or biological properties through agricultural activities, including cultivation, tillage, weeding, terracing, subsoiling, deep plowing, manure and fertilizer addition, liming, draining, and irrigation. Assessing soil change depends upon the ecosystem services and soil functions being evaluated. The interaction of soil properties with the type and intensity of management and disturbance determines the changes that will be observed. Tillage of cropland disrupts aggregates and decreases soil organic carbon content which can lead to decreased infiltration, increased erosion, and reduced biological function. Improved agricultural management systems can increase soil functions including crop productivity and sustainability. Forest management is most intensive during harvesting and seedling establishment. Most active management in forests causes disturbance of the soil surface which may include loss of forest floor organic materials, increases in bulk density, and increased risk of erosion. In grazing lands, pasture management often includes periods of biological, chemical and physical disturbance in addition to the grazing management imposed on rangelands. Grazing animals have both direct and indirect impacts on soil change. Hoof action can lead to the disturbance of biological crusts and other surface features impairing the soil’s physical, biological and hydrological function. There are clear feedbacks between vegetative systems

  17. Can Environmental Education Actions Change Public Attitudes? An Example Using the Pond Habitat and Associated Biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sousa, Eunice; Quintino, Victor; Palhas, Jael; Rodrigues, Ana Maria; Teixeira, José

    2016-01-01

    Ponds provide vital ecological services. They are biodiversity hotspots and important breading sites for rare and endangered species, including amphibians and dragonflies. Nevertheless, their number is decreasing due to habitat degradation caused by human activities. The "Ponds with Life" environmental education project was developed to raise public awareness and engagement in the study of ponds by promoting the direct contact between the public and nature, researchers and pedagogical hands-on exploration activities. A pre-post- project survey was set-up to assess the effects of the project on the environmental consciousness, knowledge and attitude changes towards ponds and the associated biodiversity of school students aged 15 to 18. The survey questions were based on Likert scales and their pre-post project comparisons used an innovative multivariate hypothesis testing approach. The results showed that the project improved the students' knowledge and attitudes towards ponds and associated biodiversity, especially the amphibians. Ponds can be found or constructed in urban areas and despite small sized, they proved to be interesting model habitats and living laboratories to foster environmental education, by encompassing a high number of species and a fast ecological succession.

  18. Geological records of marine environmental changes in the southern Okinawa Trough

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2003-01-01

    Indexes of sediment grain size, sedimentation rates, geochemical composition, heavy minerals, benthic foraminiferal fauna, indicator species of the Kuroshio Current, paleo-SST and carbonate dissolution of core E017 conformably suggest a great marine environmental change occurring at about 10.1-9.2 cal. kaBP in the southern Okinawa Trough, which may correspond to the strengthening of the Kuroshio Warm Current and re-entering the Okinawa Trough through the sea area off northeast Taiwan. The invasion of Kuroshio current has experienced a process of gradual strengthening and then weakening, and its intensity became more fluctuation during the last 5000 years. Compared to the transition of sediment grain size, geochemical composition and heavy minerals, the foraminiferal faunas show a 900-year lag, which may indicate that the invasion of Kuroshio Current and the consequent sea surface and deep-water environmental changes is a gradual process, and fauna has an obvious lag compared to environment altering. The carbonate dissolution of the Okinawa Trough has had an apparent strengthening since 9.2 cal. kaBP, and reached a maximum in the late 3000 years, which may be caused by the deep-water environmental changes due to the invasion of Kuroshio Current.

  19. Data and models for exploring sustainability of human well-being in global environmental change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Deffuant, G.; Alvarez, I.; Barreteau, O.; Vries, de B.; Edmonds, B.; Gilbert, N.; Gotts, N.; Jabot, F.; Janssen, S.J.C.; Hilden, M.; Kolditz, O.; Murray-Rust, D.; Rouge, C.; Smits, P.

    2012-01-01

    This position paper proposes a vision for the research activity about sustainability in global environmental change (GEC) taking place in the FuturICT flagship project. This activity will be organised in an "Exploratory", gathering a core network of European scientists from ICT, social simulation,

  20. The treatment of climate-driven environmental change and associated uncertainty in post-closure assessments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wilmot, R.D.

    1993-01-01

    The post-closure performance of radioactive waste repositories is influenced by a range of processes such as groundwater flow and fracture movement which are in turn affected by conditions in the surface environment. For deep repositories the period for which an assessment must be performed is in the order of 10 6 years. The geological record of the last 10 6 years shows that surface environmental conditions have varied considerably over such time-scales. A model of surface environmental change, known as TIME4, has been developed on behalf of the UK Department of the Environment for use with the probabilistic risk assessment code VANDAL. This paper describes the extent of surface environmental change, discusses possible driving mechanisms for such changes and summarises the processes which have been incorporated within the TIME4 model. The underlying cause of change in surface environment sub-systems is inferred to be climate change but considerable uncertainty remains over the mechanisms of such change. Methods for treating these uncertainties are described. (author)

  1. Climate change in the four corners and adjacent regions: Implications for environmental restoration and land-use planning

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Waugh, W.J. [ed.

    1995-09-01

    This document contains the workshop proceedings on Climate Change in the Four Corners and Adjacent Regions: Implications for Environmental Restoration and Land-Use Planning which took place September 12-14, 1994 in Grand Junction, Colorado. The workshop addressed three ways we can use paleoenvironmental data to gain a better understanding of climate change and its effects. (1) To serve as a retrospective baseline for interpreting past and projecting future climate-induced environmental change, (2) To differentiate the influences of climate and humans on past environmental change, and (3) To improve ecosystem management and restoration practices in the future. The papers presented at this workshop contained information on the following subjects: Paleoclimatic data from the Pleistocene and Holocene epochs, climate change and past cultures, and ecological resources and environmental restoration. Selected papers are indexed separately for inclusion in the Energy Science and Technology Database.

  2. Environmental pollution caused by coal mining and utilization in China; Umweltbelastungen durch Kohlefoerderung und -nutzung in China

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bai, Fuchen [Guangdong Ocean Univ., Zhanjiang (China). Dept. of Scientific Research Management

    2013-07-15

    After the BP Statistical Review of World Energy of 2010 45.6% of coal production and 46.9% of coal consumption in the world in 2009 are accounted for China. The large-scale coal production and use cause major environmental impacts. A large environmental impact is through the emission of some unavoidable reaction products (for example waste gas, waste heat) that affect and damage the ecosystem. A steady influence can lead to long-term climate changes and medium term damage to the ecosystem. Other environmental impacts occur during mining of coal by the change in the water balance and the transformation of the landscape (surface mining, spoil tips). The environmental problems caused by coal mining and utilization can not be ignored in China. [German] Nach der BP-Statistik der Weltenergie 2010 sind 45,6% der Kohleproduktion und 46,9% des Kohleverbrauchs in der Welt im Jahr 2009 auf China entfallen. Die grossangelegte Kohlefoerderung und -verwendung fuehren zu grossen Umweltbelastungen. Eine grosse Umweltbeeinflussung erfolgt durch die Emission von zum Teil unvermeidbaren Umsetzungsprodukten (zum Beispiel Abgas, Abwaerme), die das Oekosystem beeinflussen und schaedigen. Eine stetige Beeinflussung kann langfristig zu den Klimaveraenderungen und mittelfristig zur Schaedigung des Oekosystems fuehren. Weitere Umweltbelastungen erfolgen beim Abbau der Kohle durch die Veraenderung des Wasserhaushalts und durch die Umgestaltung der Landschaft (Tagebau, Abbauhalden). Die Umweltprobleme, die durch die Kohlefoerderung und -nutzung verursacht werden, koennen in China nicht ignoriert werden.

  3. Proteome Analysis of Borrelia burgdorferi Response to Environmental Change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Angel, Thomas E.; Luft, Benjamin J.; Yang, Xiaohua; Nicora, Carrie D.; Camp, David G.; Jacobs, Jon M.; Smith, Richard D.

    2010-11-02

    We examined global changes in protein expression in the B31 strain of Borrelia burgdorferi, in response to two environmental cues (pH and temperature) chosen for their reported similarity to those encountered at different stages of the organism’s life cycle. Multidimensional nano-liquid chromatographic separations coupled with tandem mass spectrometry were used to examine the array of proteins (i.e., the proteome) of B. burgdorferi for different pH and temperature culture conditions. Changes in pH and temperature elicited in vitro adaptations of this spirochete known to cause Lyme disease and led to alterations in protein expression that are associated with increased microbial pathogenesis. We identified 1031 proteins that represent 59% of the annotated genome of B. burgdorferi and elucidated a core proteome of 414 proteins that were present in all environmental conditions investigated. Observed changes in protein abundances indicated varied replicon usage, as well as proteome functional distributions between the in vitro cell culture conditions. Surprisingly, the pH and temperature conditions that mimicked B. burgdorferi residing in the gut of a fed tick showed a marked reduction in protein diversity. Additionally, the results provide us with leading candidates for exploring how B. burgdorferi adapts to and is able to survive in a wide variety of environmental conditions and lay a foundation for planned in situ studies of B. burgdorferi isolated from the tick midgut and infected animals.

  4. Report of a seminar on natural environmental change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1989-01-01

    This document reports the presentations given at a seminar on Natural Environmental Change: Processes Affecting the Deep Disposal of Radioactive Waste in Britain and the ensuing discussion. Following introductory summaries of the Department of the Environment research programme into radioactive waste management and Nirex-funded research into long-term environmental change, four topical presentations were given, namely, ''Climatic Change'', ''Surface Processes'', and ''Stress and Seismicity''. These presentations and the consequent discussion have served to clarify many key aspects of long-term environmental change and have provided direction to the ongoing studies of the effects of environmental change on the performance of deep radioactive waste disposal facilities. (author)

  5. Environmental and economic risks assessment under climate changes for three land uses scenarios analysis across Teshio watershed, northernmost of Japan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Min; Shibata, Hideaki; Chen, Li

    2017-12-01

    Land use and climate changes affect on the economy and environment with different patterns and magnitudes in the watershed. This study used risk analysis model stochastic efficiency with respect to a function (SERF) to evaluate economic and environmental risks caused by four climate change scenarios (baseline, small-, mid- and large changes) and three land uses (paddy dominated, paddy-farmland mixture and farmland dominated for agriculture) in Teshio watershed in northern Hokkaido, Japan. Under the baseline climate conditions, the lower ranking of economic income of crop yield and higher ranking of pollutant load from agricultural land were both predicted in paddy dominated for agriculture, suggesting that the paddy dominated system caused higher risks of economic and environmental variables compared to other two land uses. Increase of temperature and precipitation increased crop yields under all three climate changes which resulted in increase of the ranking of economic income, indicating that those climate changes could reduce economic risk. The increased temperature and precipitation also accelerated mineralization of organic nutrient and nutrient leaching to river course of Teshio which resulted in increase of the ranking of pollutant load, suggesting that those climate changes could lead to more environmental risk. The rankings of economic income in mid- and large changes of climate were lower than that in small change of climate under paddy-farmland mixture and farmland dominated systems due to decrease of crop yield, suggesting that climate change led to more economic risk. In summary, the results suggested that increase in temperature and precipitation caused higher risks of both economic and environmental perspectives, and the impacts was higher than those of land use changes in the studied watershed. Those findings would help producers and watershed managers to measure the tradeoffs between environmental protection and agricultural economic development

  6. Can Perceptions of Environmental and Climate Change in Island Communities Assist in Adaptation Planning Locally?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aswani, Shankar; Vaccaro, Ismael; Abernethy, Kirsten; Albert, Simon; de Pablo, Javier Fernández-López

    2015-12-01

    Local perceptions of environmental and climate change, as well as associated adaptations made by local populations, are fundamental for designing comprehensive and inclusive mitigation and adaptation plans both locally and nationally. In this paper, we analyze people's perceptions of environmental and climate-related transformations in communities across the Western Solomon Islands through ethnographic and geospatial methods. Specifically, we documented people's observed changes over the past decades across various environmental domains, and for each change, we asked respondents to identify the causes, timing, and people's adaptive responses. We also incorporated this information into a geographical information system database to produce broad-scale base maps of local perceptions of environmental change. Results suggest that people detected changes that tended to be acute (e.g., water clarity, logging intensity, and agricultural diseases). We inferred from these results that most local observations of and adaptations to change were related to parts of environment/ecosystem that are most directly or indirectly related to harvesting strategies. On the other hand, people were less aware of slower insidious/chronic changes identified by scientific studies. For the Solomon Islands and similar contexts in the insular tropics, a broader anticipatory adaptation planning strategy to climate change should include a mix of local scientific studies and local observations of ongoing ecological changes.

  7. Changes in environmental law

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mayer-Tasch, P.C.

    1978-01-01

    In this study the changing process of environmental law is depicted which is marked by the ecological crisis and the increasing pressure of the ecological movement. Main emphasis is laid on the analysis of the reform of the ecological licensing and voidance procedures which is in the centre of the discussion about (environmental) law policy as well as on the jurisprudential enforcement of the basic environmental right on life and physical integrity. The volume ends with a study on 'Nuclear Energy, Law and Judiciary Power' - a subject which is of immediate interest and special significance with its far-reaching political consequences for ecology, energy, and economics. (orig.) [de

  8. Population dynamics, delta vulnerability and environmental change: comparison of the Mekong, Ganges–Brahmaputra and Amazon delta regions

    OpenAIRE

    Szabo, S.; Brondizio, E.; Renaud, F.G.; Hetrick, S.; Nicholls, R.; Matthews, Z.; Tessler, Z; Tejedor, A; Sebesvari, Z; Foufoula-Georgiou, E; da Costa, S; Dearing, J.A.

    2016-01-01

    Tropical delta regions are at risk of multiple threats including relative sea level rise and human alterations, making them more and more vulnerable to extreme floods, storms, surges, salinity intrusion, and other hazards which could also increase in magnitude and frequency with a changing climate. Given the environmental vulnerability of tropical deltas, understanding the interlinkages between population dynamics and environmental change in these regions is crucial for ensuring efficient pol...

  9. [Research progress on remote sensing of ecological and environmental changes in the Three Gorges Reservoir area, China].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teng, Ming-jun; Zeng, Li-xiong; Xiao, Wen-fa; Zhou, Zhi-xiang; Huang, Zhi-lin; Wang, Peng-cheng; Dian, Yuan-yong

    2014-12-01

    The Three Gorges Reservoir area (TGR area) , one of the most sensitive ecological zones in China, has dramatically changes in ecosystem configurations and services driven by the Three Gorges Engineering Project and its related human activities. Thus, understanding the dynamics of ecosystem configurations, ecological processes and ecosystem services is an attractive and critical issue to promote regional ecological security of the TGR area. The remote sensing of environment is a promising approach to the target and is thus increasingly applied to and ecosystem dynamics of the TGR area on mid- and macro-scales. However, current researches often showed controversial results in ecological and environmental changes in the TGR area due to the differences in remote sensing data, scale, and land-use/cover classification. Due to the complexity of ecological configurations and human activities, challenges still exist in the remote-sensing based research of ecological and environmental changes in the TGR area. The purpose of this review was to summarize the research advances in remote sensing of ecological and environmental changes in the TGR area. The status, challenges and trends of ecological and environmental remote-sensing in the TGR area were further discussed and concluded in the aspect of land-use/land-cover, vegetation dynamics, soil and water security, ecosystem services, ecosystem health and its management. The further researches on the remote sensing of ecological and environmental changes were proposed to improve the ecosystem management of the TGR area.

  10. Impacts of Climate Change on Human Health in the United ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Climate change threatens human health and well-being in the United States. To address this growing threat, the Interagency Group on Climate Change and Human Health (CCHHG), a working group of the U.S. Global Change Research Program’s (USGCRP), has developed this assessment as part of the ongoing efforts of the USGCRP’s National Climate Assessment (NCA) and as called for under the President’s Climate Action Plan. The authors of this assessment have compiled and assessed current research on human health impacts of climate change and summarized the current “state of the science” for a number of key impact areas. This assessment provides a comprehensive update to the most recent detailed technical assessment for the health impacts of climate change, 2008 Synthesis and Assessment Product 4.6 (SAP 4.6) Analyses of the Effects of Global Change on Human Health and Welfare and Human Systems (CCSP 2008). It also updates and builds upon the health chapter of the third NCA (Melillo et al. 2014). The lead and coordinating Federal agencies for the USGCRP Climate and Health Assessment are the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), National Institute of Health (NIH), and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Available at https://health2016.globalchange.gov/ The interagency U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) has developed this assessment as part of the ongoing efforts of their National C

  11. Climate Change - Global Risks, Challenges & Decisions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Richardson, Katherine; Steffen, Will; Schellnhuber, Hans J.

    Past societies have reacted when they understood that their own activities were causing deleterious environmental change by controlling or modifying the offending activities. The scientific evidence has now become overwhelming that human activities, especially the combustion of fossil fuels......, are influencing the climate in ways that threaten the well-being and continued development of human society. If humanity is to learn from history and to limit these threats, the time has come for stronger control of the human activities that are changing the fundamental conditions for life on Earth. To decide...... on effective control measures, an understanding of how human activities are changing the climate, and of the implications of unchecked climate change, needs to be widespread among world and national leaders, as well as in the public. The purpose of this report is to provide, for a broad range of audiences...

  12. The judged seriousness of an environmental loss is a matter of what caused it

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas C. Brown; George L. Peterson; R. Marc Brodersen; Valerie Ford; Paul A. Bell

    2005-01-01

    Environmental losses, each described along with its cause, were judged for seriousness. Four types of cause were studied: illegal behavior, carelessness, economic and population growth, and natural events. Identical environmental losses (e.g., of a herd of elk or a large stand of trees) were considered most serious when caused by illegal behavior or carelessness, and...

  13. Health Impacts of Environmental Mycobacteria†

    OpenAIRE

    Primm, Todd P.; Lucero, Christie A.; Falkinham, Joseph O.

    2004-01-01

    Environmental mycobacteria are emerging pathogens causing opportunistic infections in humans and animals. The health impacts of human-mycobacterial interactions are complex and likely much broader than currently recognized. Environmental mycobacteria preferentially survive chlorination in municipal water, using it as a vector to infect humans. Widespread chlorination of water has likely selected more resistant environmental mycobacteria species and potentially explains the shift from M. scrof...

  14. Proceedings of the study of environmental change using isotope techniques

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2002-10-01

    Global warming is acknowledged as a major crisis facing society today, principally due to anticipated impacts on the environment, and availability and distribution of water resources. Scientific understanding of recent human-induced climate change, as well as evaluation of potential mitigation strategies, is progressively being developed through studies of atmospheric greenhouse gases and modern water energy carbon cycling processes. These efforts have been advanced through study of past global climate changes to understand mechanisms that play a role in determining natural climate fluctuations observed in ice cores, lake and sea sediments, corals, paleo-groundwater, cave deposits, tree rings, and other archives. Predictive models incorporating natural and human-induced climate change processes contribute to a better appreciation for the sensitivity of climate to specific anthropogenic perturbations. Increasingly, isotopes are being integrated in climate change studies. For example, isotope methodologies offer substantial improvements in the ability to label the origin and fate of greenhouse gases, and for studying the water and carbon cycle response to past climate changes, a high priority area for action identified by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Isotopes are also widely used as diagnostic variables for validation of models aimed at providing a prognosis of future environmental conditions. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has long supported research and development of isotope applications for climate studies. The joint IAEA/WMO Global Network for Isotopes in Precipitation managed by the IAEA has for the last four decades provided the basic isotope data necessary for integrating stable oxygen and hydrogen isotopes in climate models. The IAEA has also sponsored co-ordinated research projects on Isotope Variations of Carbon Dioxide and other Trace Gases in the Atmosphere and Isotope-Aided Studies of Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide

  15. Proceedings of the study of environmental change using isotope techniques

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2002-01-01

    Global warming is acknowledged as a major crisis facing society today, principally due to anticipated impacts on the environment, and availability and distribution of water resources. Scientific understanding of recent human-induced climate change, as well as evaluation of potential mitigation strategies, is progressively being developed through studies of atmospheric greenhouse gases and modern water energy carbon cycling processes. These efforts have been advanced through study of past global climate changes to understand mechanisms that play a role in determining natural climate fluctuations observed in ice cores, lake and sea sediments, corals, paleo-groundwater, cave deposits, tree rings, and other archives. Predictive models incorporating natural and human-induced climate change processes contribute to a better appreciation for the sensitivity of climate to specific anthropogenic perturbations. Increasingly, isotopes are being integrated in climate change studies. For example, isotope methodologies offer substantial improvements in the ability to label the origin and fate of greenhouse gases, and for studying the water and carbon cycle response to past climate changes, a high priority area for action identified by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Isotopes are also widely used as diagnostic variables for validation of models aimed at providing a prognosis of future environmental conditions. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has long supported research and development of isotope applications for climate studies. The joint IAEA/WMO Global Network for Isotopes in Precipitation managed by the IAEA has for the last four decades provided the basic isotope data necessary for integrating stable oxygen and hydrogen isotopes in climate models. The IAEA has also sponsored co-ordinated research projects on Isotope Variations of Carbon Dioxide and other Trace Gases in the Atmosphere and Isotope-Aided Studies of Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide

  16. An Update on the Scholarly Networks on Resilience, Vulnerability, and Adaptation within the Human Dimensions of Global Environmental Change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco A. Janssen

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available In Janssen et al. (2006, we presented a bibliometric analysis of the resilience, vulnerability, and adaptation knowledge domains within the research activities on human dimensions of global environmental change. We have updated the analysis because 2 years have gone by since the original analysis, and 1113 more publications can now be added to the database. We analyzed how the resulting 3399 publications between 1967 and 2007 are related in terms of co-authorship and citations. The rapid increase in the number of publications in the three knowledge domains continued over the last 2 years, and we still see an overlap between the knowledge domains. We were also able to identify the "hot" publications of the last 2 years.

  17. Human exposure assessment to environmental chemicals using biomonitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calafat, Antonia M; Ye, Xiaoyun; Silva, Manori J; Kuklenyik, Zsuzsanna; Needham, Larry L

    2006-02-01

    In modern societies, humans may be exposed to a wide spectrum of environmental chemicals. Although the health significance of this exposure for many chemicals is unknown, studies to investigate the prevalence of exposure are warranted because of the chemicals' potential harmful health effects, as often indicated in animal studies. Three tools have been used to assess exposure: exposure history/questionnaire information, environmental monitoring, and biomonitoring (i.e. measuring concentrations of the chemicals, their metabolites, or their adducts in human specimens). We present an overview on the use of biomonitoring in exposure assessment using phthalates, bisphenol A and other environmental phenols, and perfluorinated chemicals as examples. We discuss some factors relevant for interpreting and understanding biomonitoring data, including selection of both biomarkers of exposure and human matrices, and toxicokinetic information. The use of biomonitoring in human risk assessment is not discussed.

  18. Strengthening education in human values - The Link between Recycling and Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kastanidou, Sofia

    2014-05-01

    This work is an environmental education program of 50 hours- off curriculum, currently run by High school of Nikaia - Larissas. I as coordinator teacher, another two teachers and 24 students participate in this program. Intended learning outcomes: students will be able to define the importance of climate change, to evaluate the effect of human activities on climate, and to recognize the role of recycling in preventing global climate change. It is an environmental program with social goals. That means students have to understand the link between human and environment and learn how to combine environmental protection with human help. As a consequence collaboration has already begun between High school of Nikaia and the Paraplegic & Physically Disabled Association of Pella-Greece. This is a nonprofit association that collects plastic caps; with the contribution of a recycling company the Paraplegic Association converts plastic caps in wheelchairs and gives them to needy families. So, recycling caps becomes a meaningful form of environmental and social activism. Students are educated about the meaning of recycling and encouraged to collect all types of plastic caps; they are also educated in the meaning of helping people. Further, this environmental education program consists of two parts, a theoretical and a practical one: a) Theoretical part: education is an essential element of the global response to climate change, so students have to research on climate change; they visit the Center for Environmental Education in Florina and experience the aquatic ecosystem of Prespa lakes; specialists of the Centre inform students about the effects of climate change on wetlands; students have further to research how recycling can help fight global climate change as well as examine how recycling a key component of modern waste reduction is, as the third component of the "Reduce, Reuse, Recycle" waste hierarchy; they discover the interdependence of society, economy and the natural

  19. Environmental effects of ozone depletion and its interactions with climate change: progress report, 2015

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Environmental Effects Assessment Panel (EEAP) is one of three Panels that regularly informs the Parties (countries) to the Montreal Protocol on the effects of ozone depletion and the consequences of climate change interactions with respect to human health, animals, plants, bi...

  20. A decade of democracy: environmental management in a changing world

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. J. Aucamp

    2005-09-01

    Full Text Available The world’s focus on the environment started in 1972 with the Conference of the United Nations on the Human Environment in Stockholm. This led to the formation of the United Nations’ Environmental Programme (UNEP. The new interest in the role of the humans in the environment only picked up momentum after the publication of the report, Our Common Future by the World Commission on Development and the Environment, led by Harlem Gro Brundtland and the follow-up Conference in Rio de Janeiro in 1992 (The Earth Summit. The main products from this conference were the Earth Charter and the Agenda 21 principles and action plans. Not long after this event South Africa had a change in government in 1994. The new Constitution that was accepted in 1996 is one of the few constitutions that contain pertinent clauses pertaining to the protection of the environment. Environmental legislation such as the new National Environmental Management Act, a National Water Act, a Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, an Air Quality Management Bill has been adapted since 1994. A huge number of non-governmental organisations (NGOs attended the Rio Conference. Some, like Greenpeace (and locally Earthlife Africa, developed pressure groups that pressurised governments to give more attention to the protection of the environment and to improve environmental management. During this period results of scientific research that had a large impact on humankind’s perception of the environment, were published. The discovery of the hole in the ozone layer and of the increase in global warming led to great public interest. This led to conventions and protocols that have been ratified by most countries in the world, for example 189 out of a possible 191 countries ratified the Montreal Protocol for the Protection of the Ozone Layer by June 2004. The private sector responded and today it is the norm to report about the “Triple Bottom-line” (economic, social and

  1. The Control of Behavior: Human and Environmental

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burhoe, Ralph Wendell

    1972-01-01

    Theological perspective on human and environmental behavior, with a view toward man's ultimate concerns or longest range values and the ultimate controls of behavior. Maintains that all human behavior and destiny is ultimately in the hand of a transcendent power which prevails over any human errors.'' (LK)

  2. Behavioural responses to human-induced change: Why fishing should not be ignored.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diaz Pauli, Beatriz; Sih, Andrew

    2017-03-01

    Change in behaviour is usually the first response to human-induced environmental change and key for determining whether a species adapts to environmental change or becomes maladapted. Thus, understanding the behavioural response to human-induced changes is crucial in the interplay between ecology, evolution, conservation and management. Yet the behavioural response to fishing activities has been largely ignored. We review studies contrasting how fish behaviour affects catch by passive (e.g., long lines, angling) versus active gears (e.g., trawls, seines). We show that fishing not only targets certain behaviours, but it leads to a multitrait response including behavioural, physiological and life-history traits with population, community and ecosystem consequences. Fisheries-driven change (plastic or evolutionary) of fish behaviour and its correlated traits could impact fish populations well beyond their survival per se , affecting predation risk, foraging behaviour, dispersal, parental care, etc., and hence numerous ecological issues including population dynamics and trophic cascades . In particular, we discuss implications of behavioural responses to fishing for fisheries management and population resilience. More research on these topics, however, is needed to draw general conclusions, and we suggest fruitful directions for future studies.

  3. Competition, predation and species responses to environmental change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jiang, Lin; Kulczychi, A. [Rutgers Univ., Cook College, Dept. of Ecology, Evolution and Natural Resources, New Brunswick, NJ (United States)

    2004-08-01

    Despite much effort over the past decade on the ecological consequences of global warming, ecologists still have little understanding of the importance of interspecific interactions in species responses to environmental change. Models predict that predation should mitigate species responses to environmental change, and that interspecific competition should aggravate species responses to environmental change. To test this prediction, we studied how predation and competition affected the responses of two ciliates, Colpidiumstriatum and Parameciumtetraurelia, to temperature change in laboratory microcosms. We found that neither predation nor competition altered the responses of Colpidiumstratum to temperature change, and that competition but not predation altered the responses of Paramecium tetraurelia to temperature change. Asymmetric interactions and temperature-dependent interactions may have contributed to the disparity between model predictions and experimental results. Our results suggest that models ignoring inherent complexities in ecological communities may be inadequate in forecasting species responses to environmental change. (au)

  4. Guidance for modeling causes and effects in environmental problem solving

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armour, Carl L.; Williamson, Samuel C.

    1988-01-01

    Environmental problems are difficult to solve because their causes and effects are not easily understood. When attempts are made to analyze causes and effects, the principal challenge is organization of information into a framework that is logical, technically defensible, and easy to understand and communicate. When decisionmakers attempt to solve complex problems before an adequate cause and effect analysis is performed there are serious risks. These risks include: greater reliance on subjective reasoning, lessened chance for scoping an effective problem solving approach, impaired recognition of the need for supplemental information to attain understanding, increased chance for making unsound decisions, and lessened chance for gaining approval and financial support for a program/ Cause and effect relationships can be modeled. This type of modeling has been applied to various environmental problems, including cumulative impact assessment (Dames and Moore 1981; Meehan and Weber 1985; Williamson et al. 1987; Raley et al. 1988) and evaluation of effects of quarrying (Sheate 1986). This guidance for field users was written because of the current interest in documenting cause-effect logic as a part of ecological problem solving. Principal literature sources relating to the modeling approach are: Riggs and Inouye (1975a, b), Erickson (1981), and United States Office of Personnel Management (1986).

  5. Climate change effects on human health in a gender perspective: some trends in Arctic research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Natalia, Kukarenko

    2011-01-01

    Climate change and environmental pollution have become pressing concerns for the peoples in the Arctic region. Some researchers link climate change, transformations of living conditions and human health. A number of studies have also provided data on differentiating effects of climate change on women's and men's well-being and health. To show how the issues of climate and environment change, human health and gender are addressed in current research in the Arctic. The main purpose of this article is not to give a full review but to draw attention to the gaps in knowledge and challenges in the Arctic research trends on climate change, human health and gender. A broad literature search was undertaken using a variety of sources from natural, medical, social science and humanities. The focus was on the keywords. Despite the evidence provided by many researchers on differentiating effects of climate change on well-being and health of women and men, gender perspective remains of marginal interest in climate change, environmental and health studies. At the same time, social sciences and humanities, and gender studies in particular, show little interest towards climate change impacts on human health in the Arctic. As a result, we still observe the division of labour between disciplines, the disciplinary-bound pictures of human development in the Arctic and terminology confusion. Efforts to bring in a gender perspective in the Arctic research will be successful only when different disciplines would work together. Multidisciplinary research is a way to challenge academic/disciplinary homogeneity and their boundaries, to take advantage of the diversity of approaches and methods in production of new integrated knowledge. Cooperation and dialogue across disciplines will help to develop adequate indicators for monitoring human health and elaborating efficient policies and strategies to the benefit of both women and men in the Arctic. Global Health Action 2011. © 2011 Kukarenko

  6. How Is Environmental Proactivity Accomplished? Drivers and Barriers in Firms’ Pro-Environmental Change Process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jesús Valero-Gil

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The contaminating effects of economic activity and the scarcity of natural resources has led firms to a situation in which corporate strategy has been compromised by environmental issues. The objective of this paper is to analyse some of the factors determining the pro-environmental change process by considering the drivers encouraging firms to progress in environmental protection and the barriers that curb this progress. Using a structural equation model implemented on a sample of 303 firms, our results confirm a direct and positive effect of stakeholder pressure and of the expectations of obtaining competitive advantages from the pro-environmental change process. The results also confirmed the indirect effect of stakeholder pressure on pro-environmental change through managers’ expectations of obtaining competitive advantages, which play a mediating role in the firm’s response. Although managers interpret the barriers we have studied as obstacles to adopting environmental protection measures, they do not prevent any firm from reaching advanced levels of pro-environmental change.

  7. EFFECTS OF HUMAN IMPACTS AND CLIMATE VARIATION ON FORESTS: THE RIETI BASIN SINCE MEDIEVAL TIME

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Mensing

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available A number of recent paleoenvironmental studies have argued that abrupt changes in climate have been the primary cause for societal collapse. Many social scientists, including anthropologists and environmental historians, reject environmental explanations as deterministic and overly simplistic. They argue that socio-political decisions contribute to environmental change and that efforts to study societal vulnerability within a human-environment system must include analysis of complex social structures. There is a gap in our understanding of how past societies responded to climate change because there are very few interdisciplinary studies that integrate both physical and behavioral sciences in paleoenvironmental reconstructions. While there is a general sense that modern societies are more insulated than pre-industrial societies from the effects of climate change, this may not prove to be true. A more complete understanding of how both natural and human-caused changes have affected the environment in the past can potentially guide decisions aimed at promoting future sustainability. Here we present a project funded by the United States National Science Foundation that will explicitly integrate paleoenvironmental reconstruction with socioeconomic history in a local context to identify linkages between social and environmental change associated with climate variability.

  8. The essential toxin: The changing perception of selenium in environmental sciences

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lenz, M.; Lens, P.N.L.

    2009-01-01

    During the last decades, the perception of selenium has undergone substantial changes. While its toxic effects were recognized causing hair and hoof loss in animals during the 1930s, its essential role in microbial, animal and human metabolism has been recognized later, i.e. with the discovery of

  9. Avoiding a crisis of motivation for ocean management under global environmental change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mumby, Peter J; Sanchirico, James N; Broad, Kenneth; Beck, Michael W; Tyedmers, Peter; Morikawa, Megan; Okey, Thomas A; Crowder, Larry B; Fulton, Elizabeth A; Kelso, Denny; Kleypas, Joanie A; Munch, Stephan B; Glynn, Polita; Matthews, Kathryn; Lubchenco, Jane

    2017-11-01

    Climate change and ocean acidification are altering marine ecosystems and, from a human perspective, creating both winners and losers. Human responses to these changes are complex, but may result in reduced government investments in regulation, resource management, monitoring and enforcement. Moreover, a lack of peoples' experience of climate change may drive some towards attributing the symptoms of climate change to more familiar causes such as management failure. Taken together, we anticipate that management could become weaker and less effective as climate change continues. Using diverse case studies, including the decline of coral reefs, coastal defences from flooding, shifting fish stocks and the emergence of new shipping opportunities in the Arctic, we argue that human interests are better served by increased investments in resource management. But greater government investment in management does not simply mean more of "business-as-usual." Management needs to become more flexible, better at anticipating and responding to surprise, and able to facilitate change where it is desirable. A range of technological, economic, communication and governance solutions exists to help transform management. While not all have been tested, judicious application of the most appropriate solutions should help humanity adapt to novel circumstances and seek opportunity where possible. © 2017 The Authors. Global Change Biology Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Climate change trends and environmental impacts in the Makonde Communal Lands, Zimbabwe

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ishumael Sango

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available During the last century, climate has increasingly become variable and changeable, with significant deviations from the observed normal averages, which often leads to disruptive consequences to ecosystems and livelihoods. Climate change induced environmental challenges are viewed to be particularly severe to economically challenged tropical societies including the Zimbabwean rural communities. We sought to determine local level climate change trends and associated biophysical implications in the Makonde Communal Lands of Zimbabwe. Our findings suggest that there has been significant climate change in the Makonde Communal Lands since 1962. The climate change observed has induced the deterioration of ecosystem productivity, diversity and services, to the detriment of human livelihoods. We provide insights into how to better understand local level dynamics between climate change and local ecosystem goods and services as the basis of livelihood in marginalised rural communities. Among the key reasons for concern about impacts of anthropogenic activities on climate is the fact that changing climate has direct impacts on the biophysical world, which in turn is a vital asset for human livelihoods, economies and general well-being.

  11. Monitoring adaptive genetic responses to environmental change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, M.M.; Olivieri, I.; Waller, D.M.

    2012-01-01

    Widespread environmental changes including climate change, selective harvesting and landscape alterations now greatly affect selection regimes for most organisms. How animals and plants can adapt to these altered environments via contemporary evolution is thus of strong interest. We discuss how...... for selection and establishing clear links between genetic and environmental change. We then review a few exemplary studies that explore adaptive responses to climate change in Drosophila, selective responses to hunting and fishing, and contemporary evolution in Daphnia using resurrected resting eggs. We...

  12. Contributions of climate change and human activities to runoff change in seven typical catchments across China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhai, Ran; Tao, Fulu

    2017-12-15

    Climate change and human activities are two major factors affecting water resource change. It is important to understand the roles of the major factors in affecting runoff change in different basins for watershed management. Here, we investigated the trends in climate and runoff in seven typical catchments in seven basins across China from 1961 to 2014. Then we attributed the runoff change to climate change and human activities in each catchment and in three time periods (1980s, 1990s and 2000s), using the VIC model and long-term runoff observation data. During 1961-2014, temperature increased significantly, while the trends in precipitation were insignificant in most of the catchments and inconsistent among the catchments. The runoff in most of the catchments showed a decreasing trend except the Yingluoxia catchment in the northwestern China. The contributions of climate change and human activities to runoff change varied in different catchments and time periods. In the 1980s, climate change contributed more to runoff change than human activities, which was 84%, 59%, -66%, -50%, 59%, 94%, and -59% in the Nianzishan, Yingluoxia, Xiahui, Yangjiaping, Sanjiangkou, Xixian, and Changle catchment, respectively. After that, human activities had played a more essential role in runoff change. In the 1990s and 2000s, human activities contributed more to runoff change than in the 1980s. The contribution by human activities accounted for 84%, -68%, and 67% in the Yingluoxia, Xiahui, and Sanjiangkou catchment, respectively, in the 1990s; and -96%, -67%, -94%, and -142% in the Nianzishan, Yangjiaping, Xixian, and Changle catchment, respectively, in the 2000s. It is also noted that after 2000 human activities caused decrease in runoff in all catchments except the Yingluoxia. Our findings highlight that the effects of human activities, such as increase in water withdrawal, land use/cover change, operation of dams and reservoirs, should be well managed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier

  13. Methods for environmental change; an exploratory study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kok, Gerjo; Gottlieb, Nell H; Panne, Robert; Smerecnik, Chris

    2012-11-28

    While the interest of health promotion researchers in change methods directed at the target population has a long tradition, interest in change methods directed at the environment is still developing. In this survey, the focus is on methods for environmental change; especially about how these are composed of methods for individual change ('Bundling') and how within one environmental level, organizations, methods differ when directed at the management ('At') or applied by the management ('From'). The first part of this online survey dealt with examining the 'bundling' of individual level methods to methods at the environmental level. The question asked was to what extent the use of an environmental level method would involve the use of certain individual level methods. In the second part of the survey the question was whether there are differences between applying methods directed 'at' an organization (for instance, by a health promoter) versus 'from' within an organization itself. All of the 20 respondents are experts in the field of health promotion. Methods at the individual level are frequently bundled together as part of a method at a higher ecological level. A number of individual level methods are popular as part of most of the environmental level methods, while others are not chosen very often. Interventions directed at environmental agents often have a strong focus on the motivational part of behavior change.There are different approaches targeting a level or being targeted from a level. The health promoter will use combinations of motivation and facilitation. The manager will use individual level change methods focusing on self-efficacy and skills. Respondents think that any method may be used under the right circumstances, although few endorsed coercive methods. Taxonomies of theoretical change methods for environmental change should include combinations of individual level methods that may be bundled and separate suggestions for methods targeting a level

  14. Methods for environmental change; an exploratory study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kok Gerjo

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background While the interest of health promotion researchers in change methods directed at the target population has a long tradition, interest in change methods directed at the environment is still developing. In this survey, the focus is on methods for environmental change; especially about how these are composed of methods for individual change (‘Bundling’ and how within one environmental level, organizations, methods differ when directed at the management (‘At’ or applied by the management (‘From’. Methods The first part of this online survey dealt with examining the ‘bundling’ of individual level methods to methods at the environmental level. The question asked was to what extent the use of an environmental level method would involve the use of certain individual level methods. In the second part of the survey the question was whether there are differences between applying methods directed ‘at’ an organization (for instance, by a health promoter versus ‘from’ within an organization itself. All of the 20 respondents are experts in the field of health promotion. Results Methods at the individual level are frequently bundled together as part of a method at a higher ecological level. A number of individual level methods are popular as part of most of the environmental level methods, while others are not chosen very often. Interventions directed at environmental agents often have a strong focus on the motivational part of behavior change. There are different approaches targeting a level or being targeted from a level. The health promoter will use combinations of motivation and facilitation. The manager will use individual level change methods focusing on self-efficacy and skills. Respondents think that any method may be used under the right circumstances, although few endorsed coercive methods. Conclusions Taxonomies of theoretical change methods for environmental change should include combinations of individual

  15. Urban and suburban malaria in Rondônia (Brazilian Western Amazon II: perennial transmissions with high anopheline densities are associated with human environmental changes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luiz Herman Soares Gil

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Longitudinal entomological surveys were performed in Vila Candelária and adjacent rural locality of Bate Estaca concomitantly with a clinical epidemiologic malaria survey. Vila Candelária is a riverside periurban neighborhood of Porto Velho, capital of the state of Rondônia in the Brazilian Amazon. High anopheline densities were found accompanying the peak of rainfall, as reported in rural areas of the region. Moreover, several minor peaks of anophelines were recorded between the end of the dry season and the beginning of the next rainy season. These secondary peaks were related to permanent anopheline breeding sites resulting from human activities. Malaria transmission is, therefore, observed all over the year. In Vila Candelária, the risk of malaria infection both indoors and outdoors was calculated as being 2 and 10/infecting bites per year per inhabitant respectively. Urban malaria in riverside areas was associated with two factors: (1 high prevalence of asymptomatic carriers in a stable human population and (2 high anopheline densities related to human environmental changes. This association is probably found in other Amazonian urban and suburban communities. The implementation of control measures should include environmental sanitation and better characterization of the role of asymptomatic carriers in malaria transmission.

  16. Human-induced climate change: the impact of land-use change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gries, Thomas; Redlin, Margarete; Ugarte, Juliette Espinosa

    2018-02-01

    For hundreds of years, human activity has modified the planet's surface through land-use practices. Policies and decisions on how land is managed and land-use changes due to replacement of forests by agricultural cropping and grazing lands affect greenhouse gas emissions. Agricultural management and agroforestry and the resulting changes to the land surface alter the global carbon cycle as well as the Earth's surface albedo, both of which in turn change the Earth's radiation balance. This makes land-use change the second anthropogenic source of climate change after fossil fuel burning. However, the scientific research community has so far not been able to identify the direction and magnitude of the global impact of land-use change. This paper examines the effects of net carbon flux from land-use change on temperature by applying Granger causality and error correction models. The results reveal a significant positive long-run equilibrium relationship between land-use change and the temperature series as well as an opposing short-term effect such that land-use change tends to lead to global warming; however, a rise in temperature causes a decline in land-use change.

  17. Rapid Environmental Change Drives Increased Land Use by an Arctic Marine Predator.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Todd C Atwood

    Full Text Available In the Arctic Ocean's southern Beaufort Sea (SB, the length of the sea ice melt season (i.e., period between the onset of sea ice break-up in summer and freeze-up in fall has increased substantially since the late 1990s. Historically, polar bears (Ursus maritimus of the SB have mostly remained on the sea ice year-round (except for those that came ashore to den, but recent changes in the extent and phenology of sea ice habitat have coincided with evidence that use of terrestrial habitat is increasing. We characterized the spatial behavior of polar bears spending summer and fall on land along Alaska's north coast to better understand the nexus between rapid environmental change and increased use of terrestrial habitat. We found that the percentage of radiocollared adult females from the SB subpopulation coming ashore has tripled over 15 years. Moreover, we detected trends of earlier arrival on shore, increased length of stay, and later departure back to sea ice, all of which were related to declines in the availability of sea ice habitat over the continental shelf and changes to sea ice phenology. Since the late 1990s, the mean duration of the open-water season in the SB increased by 36 days, and the mean length of stay on shore increased by 31 days. While on shore, the distribution of polar bears was influenced by the availability of scavenge subsidies in the form of subsistence-harvested bowhead whale (Balaena mysticetus remains aggregated at sites along the coast. The declining spatio-temporal availability of sea ice habitat and increased availability of human-provisioned resources are likely to result in increased use of land. Increased residency on land is cause for concern given that, while there, bears may be exposed to a greater array of risk factors including those associated with increased human activities.

  18. The "multiple hormone deficiency" theory of aging: is human senescence caused mainly by multiple hormone deficiencies?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertoghe, T

    2005-12-01

    In the human body, the productions, levels and cell receptors of most hormones progressively decline with age, gradually putting the body into various states of endocrine deficiency. The circadian cycles of these hormones also change, sometimes profoundly, with time. In aging individuals, the well-balanced endocrine system can fall into a chaotic condition with losses, phase-advancements, phase delays, unpredictable irregularities of nycthemeral hormone cycles, in particular in very old or sick individuals. The desynchronization makes hormone activities peak at the wrong times and become inefficient, and in certain cases health threatening. The occurrence of multiple hormone deficits and spilling through desynchronization may constitute the major causes of human senescence, and they are treatable causes. Several arguments can be put forward to support the view that senescence is mainly a multiple hormone deficiency syndrome: First, many if not most of the signs, symptoms and diseases (including cardiovascular diseases, cancer, obesity, diabetes, osteoporosis, dementia) of senescence are similar to physical consequences of hormone deficiencies and may be caused by hormone deficiencies. Second, most of the presumed causes of senescence such as excessive free radical formation, glycation, cross-linking of proteins, imbalanced apoptosis system, accumulation of waste products, failure of repair systems, deficient immune system, may be caused or favored by hormone deficiencies. Even genetic causes such as limits to cell proliferation (such as the Hayflick limit of cell division), poor gene polymorphisms, premature telomere shortening and activation of possible genetic "dead programs" may have links with hormone deficiencies, being either the consequence, the cause, or the major favoring factor of hormone deficiencies. Third, well-dosed and -balanced hormone supplements may slow down or stop the progression of signs, symptoms, or diseases of senescence and may often

  19. Gamma irradiation does not induce detectable changes in DNA methylation directly following exposure of human cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christoph Lahtz

    Full Text Available Environmental chemicals and radiation have often been implicated in producing alterations of the epigenome thus potentially contributing to cancer and other diseases. Ionizing radiation, released during accidents at nuclear power plants or after atomic bomb explosions, is a potentially serious health threat for the exposed human population. This type of high-energy radiation causes DNA damage including single- and double-strand breaks and induces chromosomal rearrangements and mutations, but it is not known if ionizing radiation directly induces changes in the epigenome of irradiated cells. We treated normal human fibroblasts and normal human bronchial epithelial cells with different doses of γ-radiation emitted from a cesium 137 ((137Cs radiation source. After a seven-day recovery period, we analyzed global DNA methylation patterns in the irradiated and control cells using the methylated-CpG island recovery assay (MIRA in combination with high-resolution microarrays. Bioinformatics analysis revealed only a small number of potential methylation changes with low fold-difference ratios in the irradiated cells. These minor methylation differences seen on the microarrays could not be verified by COBRA (combined bisulfite restriction analysis or bisulfite sequencing of selected target loci. Our study shows that acute γ-radiation treatment of two types of human cells had no appreciable direct effect on DNA cytosine methylation patterns in exposed cells.

  20. Human Health Risk Assessment (HHRA) for Environmental Development and Transfer of Antibiotic Resistance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amézquita, Alejandro; Backhaus, Thomas; Borriello, Peter; Brandt, Kristian K.; Collignon, Peter; Coors, Anja; Finley, Rita; Gaze, William H.; Heberer, Thomas; Lawrence, John R.; Larsson, D.G. Joakim; McEwen, Scott A.; Ryan, James J.; Schönfeld, Jens; Silley, Peter; Snape, Jason R.; Van den Eede, Christel; Topp, Edward

    2013-01-01

    Background: Only recently has the environment been clearly implicated in the risk of antibiotic resistance to clinical outcome, but to date there have been few documented approaches to formally assess these risks. Objective: We examined possible approaches and sought to identify research needs to enable human health risk assessments (HHRA) that focus on the role of the environment in the failure of antibiotic treatment caused by antibiotic-resistant pathogens. Methods: The authors participated in a workshop held 4–8 March 2012 in Québec, Canada, to define the scope and objectives of an environmental assessment of antibiotic-resistance risks to human health. We focused on key elements of environmental-resistance-development “hot spots,” exposure assessment (unrelated to food), and dose response to characterize risks that may improve antibiotic-resistance management options. Discussion: Various novel aspects to traditional risk assessments were identified to enable an assessment of environmental antibiotic resistance. These include a) accounting for an added selective pressure on the environmental resistome that, over time, allows for development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria (ARB); b) identifying and describing rates of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) in the relevant environmental “hot spot” compartments; and c) modifying traditional dose–response approaches to address doses of ARB for various health outcomes and pathways. Conclusions: We propose that environmental aspects of antibiotic-resistance development be included in the processes of any HHRA addressing ARB. Because of limited available data, a multicriteria decision analysis approach would be a useful way to undertake an HHRA of environmental antibiotic resistance that informs risk managers. Citation: Ashbolt NJ, Amézquita A, Backhaus T, Borriello P, Brandt KK, Collignon P, Coors A, Finley R, Gaze WH, Heberer T, Lawrence JR, Larsson DG, McEwen SA, Ryan JJ, Schönfeld J, Silley P, Snape JR

  1. Making the climate part of the human world: Why addressing beliefs and biases is necessary part of effective climate change education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donner, S. D.

    2009-12-01

    Efforts to raise public awareness and understanding of the social, cultural and economic consequences of climate change often encounter skepticism. The primary causes of this skepticism, whether in the form of a mild rejection of proposed policy responses or an outright rejection of the basic scientific findings, is often cited to be the poor framing of issues by the scientific community, the quality of science education or public science literacy, disinformation campaigns by representatives of the coal and gas industry, individual resistance to behavioral change, and the hyperactive nature of the modern information culture. However, the root cause may be that the weather and climate, and by association climate change, is viewed as independent of the sphere of human influence in ancient and modern societies. In this presentation, I will outline how long-standing human beliefs in the separation between the earth and the sky and the modern framing of climate change as an “environmental” issue are limiting efforts to education the public about the causes, effects and possible response to climate change. First, sociological research in the Pacific Islands (Fiji, Kiribati, Tuvalu) finds strong evidence that beliefs in divine control of the weather and climate limit public acceptance of human-induced climate change. Second, media analysis and polling data from North America supports the role of belief and provides further evidence that climate change is viewed as a threat to an “other” labeled “the environment”, rather than a threat to people or society. The consequences of these mental models of the climate can be an outright reject of scientific theory related to climate change, a milder distrust of climate change predictions, a lack of urgency about mitigation, and an underestimate of the effort required to adapt to climate change. In order to be effective, public education about climate change needs to directly address the two, critical beliefs held by

  2. Environmental impact assessment caused by global warming. Chikyu ondanka no eikyoryo hyoka to sono taisaku

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oshima, K [Geological Survey of Japan, Tokyo (Japan)

    1991-09-01

    This paper describes the considerations on the influence of the global warming on the environment, and the discussions on the measures against the climatic changes. With respect to the environmental effects by the global warming, the considerations were given based on the studies on the effects of mainly the Quaternary climatic changes on the surface sea water temperatures, sea level and animal flocks. If the magnitude of the climatic changes anticipated to occur during the 21st century is lower than that have taken place in the past 10,000 years during which the agricultural production has developed to a full-scale, there would be no fear of drastically changing the ecology on earth. If the estimation of future climatic and environmental changes becomes possible, then four basic positions could be selected for establishing the contermeasure plans. That is, the first is the measures to correspond to birth-rebirth transmigration; the second is the measures to carbon dioxide disposition upon concluding that the cause for the global warming is the atmospheric increase of carbon dioxide concentration, measures for conservation and international cooperation; the third is to deal with the warming environments; and the fourth is the means to reconstruct the earth. While a number of countermeasures may be prepared, Which of them should be selected will be decided by the amount of effects. 15 refs., 6 figs., 1 tab.

  3. Urbanization, Economic Development and Environmental Change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shushu Li

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper applies the pressure-state-response (PSR model to establish environmental quality indices for 30 administrative regions in China from 2003 to 2011 and employs panel data analysis to study the relationships among the urbanization rate, economic development and environmental change. The results reveal a remarkable inverted-U-shaped relationship between the urbanization rate and changes in regional environmental quality; the “turning point” generally appears near an urbanization rate of 60%. In addition, the degree and mode of economic development have significant, but anisotropic effects on the regional environment. Generally, at a higher degree of economic development, the environment will tend to improve, but an extensive economic growth program that simply aims to increase GDP has a clear negative impact on the environment. Overall, the results of this paper not only further confirm the “environmental Kuznets curve hypothesis”, but also expand it in a manner. The analysis in this paper implies that the inverted-U-shaped evolving relationship between environmental quality and economic growth (urbanization is universally applicable.

  4. Depictions of global environmental change in science fiction : an overview of educational applications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kadonaga, L. [Victoria Univ., BC (Canada). Dept. of Geography

    2000-06-01

    This paper examined how the use of science fiction books and movies can be used as a tool to educate the public. Narratives encourage interest in global environmental changes and can help demystify how science works. Although most science fiction depictions of global environmental change are outdated and oversimplified, the genre can encourage discussion of ecological and social impacts. Writers of science fiction consider both natural systems and human societies, anticipating the work of impacts researchers. It was argued that while both science fiction writers and global change researchers require knowledge and creativity to construct realistic extrapolations, a well-written science fiction book is likely to reach a larger audience. Science fiction books emphasize that climate projections are intended as warnings. If properly handled, they can improve public awareness of issues such as global warming and climatic change. It was suggested that collaboration between researchers and science fiction writers could produce some interesting work. 48 refs.

  5. Environmental changes induced by human activities in the Northern Curonian Lagoon (Eastern Baltic: diatoms and stable isotope data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giedrė Vaikutienė

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available A sediment core collected from the northwestern part of the Curonian Lagoon, which was deposited approximately during 1800-2002, was analysed for several proxy records. Changes in diatom assemblages and carbon, nitrogen and oxygen stable isotopes (δ13C, δ15N and δ18O revealed two periods, which are characterized by differences in the sedimentation rate, sediment type and trophic state of the northern part of the Curonian Lagoon. Low δ15N values in organics and prevailing fresh-brackish benthic diatoms indicate low enrichment in the shallow, freshwater lagoon during the period 1800-1955. The eutrophic conditions in this shallow lagoon are reflected by a high abundance of planktonic diatoms common in nutrient-rich basins and increased d15N values in organics of the sediments since 1955. Starting approximately in the 1960s, decreased freshwater run-off and increased brackish-water inflow into the lagoon were observed. These changes were likely caused by the construction of the hydropower station (and a reservoir near the Nemunas River and the artificial deepening of the Klaipėda Strait during 1960-1962 and later, also by the rising sea level in the SE Baltic. The changed river run-off and the artificially deepened strait significantly influenced the fresh-brackish water circulation and environmental conditions in the northern part of the Curonian Lagoon in the last decades.

  6. Impact of Environmental Changes and Global Warming on Temperature in Pakistan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ishtiaq Hassan

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Environmental changes and global warming have direct impact on human life. Estimation of these changes in various parameters of hydrologic cycle is necessary for future planning and development of a country. In this paper the impact of environmental changes and global warming on temperatures of Pakistan has been studied. The temperature changes in Pakistan have been extracted from simulations made using EdGCM model developed at Columbia University. Simulation study to the end of 21st century is executed using the model for GHG (Greenhouse Gases scenario with doubled_CO2 and scenario of Modern_Predicted SST (Sea Surface Temperature. The model analysis has been carried out for seasonal and annual changes for an average of last 5 years period from 2096-2100. Maps are generated to depict global temperature variations. The study divides Pakistan into five (05 main areas for twenty six (26 stations. A part-plan of globe focusing Pakistan is generated showing the five divisions for twenty six (26 data stations of Pakistan. This part plan is made compatible with grid-box resolution of EdGCM. Eagle-Point Engineering software has been used to generate isohyets of interval (0.5oC for downscaling GCM (Global Climate Model grid data to data stations. The station values of different seasons and annual changes are then compared with the values of base period data to determine changes in temperature. It is observed that impact of global environmental changes on temperature are higher (i.e. there is an increase in annual temperature for double_CO2 experiment at places near the Arabian Sea than areas located away from this sea. It is also observed that the temperature increase will be more in winter than that in other seasons for Pakistan.

  7. A global assessment of market accessibility and market influence for global environmental change studies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Verburg, Peter H [Institute for Environmental Studies, Amsterdam Global Change Institute, VU University Amsterdam, De Boelelaan 1087, 1081 HV Amsterdam (Netherlands); Ellis, Erle C [Department of Geography and Environmental Systems, University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Baltimore, MD 21250 (United States); Letourneau, Aurelien, E-mail: Peter.Verburg@ivm.vu.nl [UMR 5175 Centre d' Ecologie Fonctionnelle and Evolutive, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, 1919 Route de Mende, 34293 Montpellier cedex 5 (France)

    2011-07-15

    Markets influence the global patterns of urbanization, deforestation, agriculture and other land use systems. Yet market influence is rarely incorporated into spatially explicit global studies of environmental change, largely because consistent global data are lacking below the national level. Here we present the first high spatial resolution gridded data depicting market influence globally. The data jointly represent variations in both market strength and accessibility based on three market influence indices derived from an index of accessibility to market locations and national level gross domestic product (purchasing power parity). These indices show strong correspondence with human population density while also revealing several distinct and useful relationships with other global environmental patterns. As market influence grows, the need for high resolution global data on market influence and its dynamics will become increasingly important to understanding and forecasting global environmental change.

  8. A global assessment of market accessibility and market influence for global environmental change studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verburg, Peter H.; Ellis, Erle C.; Letourneau, Aurelien

    2011-07-01

    Markets influence the global patterns of urbanization, deforestation, agriculture and other land use systems. Yet market influence is rarely incorporated into spatially explicit global studies of environmental change, largely because consistent global data are lacking below the national level. Here we present the first high spatial resolution gridded data depicting market influence globally. The data jointly represent variations in both market strength and accessibility based on three market influence indices derived from an index of accessibility to market locations and national level gross domestic product (purchasing power parity). These indices show strong correspondence with human population density while also revealing several distinct and useful relationships with other global environmental patterns. As market influence grows, the need for high resolution global data on market influence and its dynamics will become increasingly important to understanding and forecasting global environmental change.

  9. A global assessment of market accessibility and market influence for global environmental change studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Verburg, Peter H; Ellis, Erle C; Letourneau, Aurelien

    2011-01-01

    Markets influence the global patterns of urbanization, deforestation, agriculture and other land use systems. Yet market influence is rarely incorporated into spatially explicit global studies of environmental change, largely because consistent global data are lacking below the national level. Here we present the first high spatial resolution gridded data depicting market influence globally. The data jointly represent variations in both market strength and accessibility based on three market influence indices derived from an index of accessibility to market locations and national level gross domestic product (purchasing power parity). These indices show strong correspondence with human population density while also revealing several distinct and useful relationships with other global environmental patterns. As market influence grows, the need for high resolution global data on market influence and its dynamics will become increasingly important to understanding and forecasting global environmental change.

  10. Changing Social and Environmental Reporting Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kaspersen, Mia; Riise Johansen, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Based on a case study of a large multinational group, this paper addresses the way in which social and environmental reporting (SER) systems were changed and the consequences and controversies associated with this change. Drawing on Power's work on the processes by which things are made auditable...... via underlying systems, we focus on how and why a specific programme with auditability as its ultimate aim changed the basis on which the external social and environmental report was prepared. Our analysis demonstrates that the perceived alignment with the financial report preparation and the explicit...... pursuit of auditability legitimized SER and paved the way for data systems to be changed. The programme borrowed authority from financial accounting technologies not only to make a system change but also to push SER internally, as we suggest that an intraorganizational group used the programme to ensure...

  11. Do invasive alien plants benefit more from global environmental change than native plants?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yanjie; Oduor, Ayub M O; Zhang, Zhen; Manea, Anthony; Tooth, Ifeanna M; Leishman, Michelle R; Xu, Xingliang; van Kleunen, Mark

    2017-08-01

    Invasive alien plant species threaten native biodiversity, disrupt ecosystem functions and can cause large economic damage. Plant invasions have been predicted to further increase under ongoing global environmental change. Numerous case studies have compared the performance of invasive and native plant species in response to global environmental change components (i.e. changes in mean levels of precipitation, temperature, atmospheric CO 2 concentration or nitrogen deposition). Individually, these studies usually involve low numbers of species and therefore the results cannot be generalized. Therefore, we performed a phylogenetically controlled meta-analysis to assess whether there is a general pattern of differences in invasive and native plant performance under each component of global environmental change. We compiled a database of studies that reported performance measures for 74 invasive alien plant species and 117 native plant species in response to one of the above-mentioned global environmental change components. We found that elevated temperature and CO 2 enrichment increased the performance of invasive alien plants more strongly than was the case for native plants. Invasive alien plants tended to also have a slightly stronger positive response to increased N deposition and increased precipitation than native plants, but these differences were not significant (N deposition: P = 0.051; increased precipitation: P = 0.679). Invasive alien plants tended to have a slightly stronger negative response to decreased precipitation than native plants, although this difference was also not significant (P = 0.060). So while drought could potentially reduce plant invasion, increases in the four other components of global environmental change considered, particularly global warming and atmospheric CO 2 enrichment, may further increase the spread of invasive plants in the future. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  12. Schopenhauer’s Mitleid, Environmental Outrage and Human Rights

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tom Kerns

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Suffering which results from environmental exposures often evokes a sense of moral outrage. In this paper, two complementary sources of grounding for that outrage are explored: Arthur Schopenhauer's close analysis of compassion, grounded in the metaphysical identity of all being, provides explanatory grounding for moral outrage as well as for the long-recognized importance of personal narratives in human rights work. Secondly, the broadly endorsed human rights tradition provides an additional confirmatory, more public, level of validation for moral outrage. Human rights norms confirm what the experience of compassion first intuited. Three practical implications for environmental activism follow: 1 the importance of personal narratives detailing the direct impacts that environmental assaults have caused; 2 the practical value of formal, detailed human rights impact assessments specified to a given situation; and 3 the value of community-led public inquiries, such as the 2006 People's Inquiry in New Zealand (Goven et al. 2007 and the 2011 Permanent People's Tribunal (2011 in India. El sufrimiento que resulta de la exposición ambiental a menudo evoca un sentimiento de indignación moral. En este trabajo se analizan dos fuentes complementarias de nociones para la indignación: un análisis detallado de Arthur Schopenhauer sobre la compasión, basada en la identidad metafísica de todo ser, que ofrece nociones explicativas para la indignación moral, así como para la reconocida importancia de las narrativas personales en el trabajo de los derechos humanos. En segundo lugar, la ampliamente respaldada tradición de los derechos humanos proporciona una confirmación adicional y más pública del nivel de validación de indignación moral. Las normas de derechos humanos confirman lo que la experiencia de la compasión intuyó primero. A continuación, se incluyen tres implicaciones prácticas para el activismo medioambiental: 1 la importancia de las

  13. The Vulnerability of Earth Systems to Human-Induced Global Change and Strategies for Mitigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watson, R. T.

    2002-12-01

    Since the IGY, there has been growing evidence that climate is changing in response to human activities. The overwhelming majority of scientific experts, whilst recognizing that scientific uncertainties exist, nonetheless believe that human-induced climate change is inevitable. Indeed, during the last few years, many parts of the world have suffered major heat waves, floods, droughts, fires and extreme weather events leading to significant economic losses and loss of life. While individual events cannot be directly linked to human-induced climate change, the frequency and magnitude of these types of events are predicted to increase in a warmer world. The question is not whether climate will change, but rather how much (magnitude), how fast (the rate of change) and where (regional patterns). It is also clear that climate change and other human-induced modifications to the environment will, in many parts of the world, adversely affect socio-economic sectors, including water resources, agriculture, forestry, fisheries and human settlements, ecological systems (particularly forests and coral reefs), and human health (particularly diseases spread by insects), with developing countries being the most vulnerable. Environmental degradation of all types (i.e., climate change, loss of biodiversity, land degradation, air and water quality) all undermine the challenge of poverty alleviation and sustainable economic growth. One of the major challenges facing humankind is to provide an equitable standard of living for this and future generations: adequate food, water and energy, safe shelter and a healthy environment (e.g., clean air and water). Unfortunately, human-induced climate change, as well as other global environmental issues such as land degradation, loss of biological diversity and stratospheric ozone depletion, threatens our ability to meet these basic human needs. The good news is, however, that the majority of experts believe that significant reductions in net

  14. Environmental law in change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mayer-Tasch, P.C.

    1978-01-01

    This study describes the process of change of environmental protection law taking place during an ecological crisis and unter the increasing pressure of the ecological movement. Special analyses refer to the reform of the licensing procedures and prodecures of dispute under environmental protection law today being in the focus of juridical discussion. Furthermore they refer to the juridical implementation of the fundamental right of life in an unspoiled and healthy environment. The volume ends with a study on ''Nuclear energy, law and justice'', - a subject being topical and important for its broad political consequences on environment, energy and economy. (orig.) [de

  15. Technology & environment : some possible damaging effects of technological change in advanced and opulent societies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Coccia, M.

    2014-01-01

    An interesting problem is the analysis of effects of the predominant impact of technological change on the health of societies. This study considers technological change as the human activity that generates a huge impact on societies and causes environmental disorders affecting the health of

  16. Simulating ecological changes caused by marine energy devices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuchert, Pia; Elsaesser, Bjoern; Pritchard, Daniel; Kregting, Louise

    2015-04-01

    Marine renewable energy from wave and tidal technology has the potential to contribute significantly globally to energy security for future generations. However common to both tidal and wave energy extraction systems is concern regarding the potential environmental consequences of the deployment of the technology as environmental and ecological effects are so far poorly understood. Ecological surveys and studies to investigate the environmental impacts are time consuming and costly and are generally reactive; a more efficient approach is to develop 2 and 3D linked hydrodynamic-ecological modelling which has the potential to be proactive and to allow forecasting of the effects of array installation. The objective of the study was to explore tools which can help model and evaluate possible far- and near field changes in the environment and ecosystem caused by the introduction of arrays of marine energy devices. Using the commercial software, MIKE by DHI, we can predict and model possible changes in the ecosystem. MIKE21 and ECOLab modelling software provide the opportunity to couple high level hydrodynamic models with process based ecological models and/or agent based models (ABM). The flow solutions of the model were determined in an idealised tidal basin with the dimensions similar to that of Strangford Lough, Northern Ireland, a body of water renowned for the location of the first grid-connected tidal turbine, SeaGen. In the first instance a simple process oriented ecological NPZD model was developed which are used to model marine and freshwater systems describing four state variables, Nutrient, Phytoplankton, Zooplankton and Detritus. The ecological model was run and evaluated under two hydrodynamic scenarios of the idealised basin. This included no tidal turbines (control) and an array of 55 turbines, an extreme scenario. Whilst an array of turbines has an effect on the hydrodynamics of the Lough, it is unlikely to see an extreme effect on the NPZD model

  17. Culture, Urbanism and Changing Human Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schell, L M

    2014-04-03

    Anthropologists have long known that human activity driven by culture changes the environment. This is apparent in the archaeological record and through the study of the modern environment. Perhaps the largest change since the paleolithic era is the organization of human populations in cities. New environments can reshape human biology through evolution as shown by the evolution of the hominid lineage. Evolution is not the only process capable of reshaping our biology. Some changes in our human biology are adaptive and evolutionary while others are pathological. What changes in human biology may be wrought by the modern urban environment? One significant new change in the environment is the introduction of pollutants largely through urbanization. Pollutants can affect human biology in myriad ways. Evidence shows that human growth, reproduction, and cognitive functioning can be altered by some pollutants, and altered in different ways depending on the pollutant. Thus, pollutants have significance for human biologists and anthropologists generally. Further, they illustrate the bio-cultural interaction characterizing human change. Humans adapt by changing the environment, a cultural process, and then change biologically to adjust to that new environment. This ongoing, interactive process is a fundamental characteristic of human change over the millennia.

  18. The potential of synthetic biology for improving environmental quality and human health in developing countries

    OpenAIRE

    Fernández-Niño, Miguel; Islam, Zia-ul

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Environmental quality is a major factor in global health that mainly affects the poorest populations. Vector- borne diseases, climate change, pollution and unintentional poisonings are recognized as the primary causes of environmental diseases burden in developing countries. The development and implementation of new technologies to reduce the impact of these risk factors on health in developing countries is a priority in the current research. In this regard, synthetic biology, a near...

  19. Human ecology. Foundations of preventive environmental policy. Humanoekologie. Grundlagen praeventiver Umweltpolitik

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Glaeser, B [ed.

    1989-01-01

    Can human ecology contribute towards originating a preventive environmental policy. Following a discussion of the demands of preventive environmental policy between theory and practice, the book presents the scientific approach 'human ecology' from a social-scientific angle. Then the question of the foundation in environmentally-related ethics is dealt with. The application and realizability of human-ecological considerations are tested with reference to different sectors of politics, and positive and negative indications of the chances of realization of a preventive environmental policy are discussed. (orig.).

  20. INEL Geothermal Environmental Program. Final environmental report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Thurow, T.L.; Cahn, L.S.

    1982-09-01

    An overview of environmental monitoring programs and research during development of a moderate temperature geothermal resource in the Raft River Valley is presented. One of the major objectives was to develop programs for environmental assessment and protection that could serve as an example for similar types of development. The monitoring studies were designed to establish baseline conditions (predevelopment) of the physical, biological, and human environment. Potential changes were assessed and adverse environmental impacts minimized. No major environmental impacts resulted from development of the Raft River Geothermal Research Facility. The results of the physical, biological, and human environment monitoring programs are summarized.

  1. Immune activity, body condition and human-associated environmental impacts in a wild marine mammal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patrick M Brock

    Full Text Available Within individuals, immunity may compete with other life history traits for resources, such as energy and protein, and the damage caused by immunopathology can sometimes outweigh the protective benefits that immune responses confer. However, our understanding of the costs of immunity in the wild and how they relate to the myriad energetic demands on free-ranging organisms is limited. The endangered Galapagos sea lion (Zalophus wollebaeki is threatened simultaneously by disease from domestic animals and rapid changes in food availability driven by unpredictable environmental variation. We made use of this unique ecology to investigate the relationship between changes in immune activity and changes in body condition. We found that during the first three months of life, changes in antibody concentration were negatively correlated with changes in mass per unit length, skinfold thickness and serum albumin concentration, but only in a sea lion colony exposed to anthropogenic environmental impacts. It has previously been shown that changes in antibody concentration during early Galapagos sea lion development were higher in a colony exposed to anthropogenic environmental impacts than in a control colony. This study allows for the possibility that these relatively large changes in antibody concentration are associated with negative impacts on fitness through an effect on body condition. Our findings suggest that energy availability and the degree of plasticity in immune investment may influence disease risk in natural populations synergistically, through a trade-off between investment in immunity and resistance to starvation. The relative benefits of such investments may change quickly and unpredictably, which allows for the possibility that individuals fine-tune their investment strategies in response to changes in environmental conditions. In addition, our results suggest that anthropogenic environmental impacts may impose subtle energetic costs on

  2. Human Q fever incidence is associated to spatiotemporal environmental conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Leuken, J. P G; Swart, A. N.; Brandsma, J.; Terink, W.; Van de Kassteele, J.; Droogers, P.; Sauter, F.; Havelaar, A. H.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/072306122; Van der Hoek, W.

    2016-01-01

    Airborne pathogenic transmission from sources to humans is characterised by atmospheric dispersion and influence of environmental conditions on deposition and reaerosolisation. We applied a One Health approach using human, veterinary and environmental data regarding the 2009 epidemic in The

  3. Impact of anthropogenic and natural environmental changes on Echinococcus transmission in Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, the People's Republic of China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Yu Rong; Clements, Archie C A; Gray, Darren J; Atkinson, Jo-An M; Williams, Gail M; Barnes, Tamsin S; McManus, Donald P

    2012-07-24

    Echinococcus transmission is known to be affected by various environmental factors, which may be modified by human influence or natural events including global warming. Considerable population growth in the last fifty years in Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region (NHAR), the People's Republic of China (PRC), has led to dramatic increases in deforestation and modified agricultural practices. In turn, this has resulted in many changes in the habitats for the definitive and intermediate hosts of both Echinococcus granulosus and E. multilocularis, which have increased the risks for transmission of both parasites, affecting echinococcosis prevalence and human disease. Ecological environmental changes due to anthropogenic activities and natural events drive Echinococcus transmission and NHAR provides a notable example illustrating how human activity can impact on a parasitic infection of major public health significance. It is very important to continually monitor these environmental (including climatic) factors that drive the distribution of Echinococcus spp. and their impact on transmission to humans because such information is necessary to formulate reliable future public health policy for echinococcosis control programs and to prevent disease spread.

  4. Exposome in IBD: recent insights in environmental factors that influence the onset and course of IBD.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogler, Gerhard; Vavricka, Stephan

    2015-02-01

    It is generally agreed that environmental factors trigger the onset and cause flares of inflammatory bowel disease. Although we have learned much about genetic susceptibility factors of inflammatory bowel disease in recent years, our knowledge on these environmental factors is limited. The sum of all environmental factors a human is exposed to during lifetime has been termed the exposome. The challenge of investigating the exposome is discussed in this overview. The environmental exposure of a subject causes changes in the intestinal microbiota and subsequently changes the epigenetic imprinting of the mucosa and the associated immune system. Some relevant environmental factors have been investigated in recent years in inflammatory bowel disease and other (auto)inflammatory disease. These factors can be categorized in air pollution, diet, drugs, stress, infections, water pollution, food additives, and lifestyle. Examples from those categories and their potential pathophysiological mechanism are discussed.

  5. Climate-driven environmental changes around 8,200 years ago favoured increases in cetacean strandings and Mediterranean hunter-gatherers exploited them.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mannino, Marcello A; Talamo, Sahra; Tagliacozzo, Antonio; Fiore, Ivana; Nehlich, Olaf; Piperno, Marcello; Tusa, Sebastiano; Collina, Carmine; Di Salvo, Rosaria; Schimmenti, Vittoria; Richards, Michael P

    2015-11-17

    Cetacean mass strandings occur regularly worldwide, yet the compounded effects of natural and anthropogenic factors often complicate our understanding of these phenomena. Evidence of past stranding episodes may, thus, be essential to establish the potential influence of climate change. Investigations on bones from the site of Grotta dell'Uzzo in North West Sicily (Italy) show that the rapid climate change around 8,200 years ago coincided with increased strandings in the Mediterranean Sea. Stable isotope analyses on collagen from a large sample of remains recovered at this cave indicate that Mesolithic hunter-gatherers relied little on marine resources. A human and a red fox dating to the 8.2-kyr-BP climatic event, however, acquired at least one third of their protein from cetaceans. Numerous carcasses should have been available annually, for at least a decade, to obtain these proportions of meat. Our findings imply that climate-driven environmental changes, caused by global warming, may represent a serious threat to cetaceans in the near future.

  6. Ethnobiology 5: Interdisciplinarity in an Era of Rapid Environmental Change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steve Wolverton

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Ethnobiology 5 stems from Eugene Hunn’s four phases of the history of ethnobiology and focuses on the relevance of ethnobiological research in the context of environmental and cultural change.  It refers to a contemporary phase of the field’s historical development.  In this paper, I argue that ethnobiology is preadapted to be a scholarly umbrella for a number of disciplines that concern human-environment interactions, suggesting that one goal of Ethnobiology 5 is to bridge traditional academic boundaries in order to broaden the community of ethnobiologists. Another goal of Ethnobiology 5 is to capitalize on and communicate the relevance of ethnobiological scholarship for solving problems related to contemporary environmental and cultural crises.  Indeed, ethnobiology is not a subfield of any traditional discipline and by the nature of its name bridges humanities, social science, and science.  Ethnobiology has always been interdisciplinary in terms of its subject matter, yet its community of scholars is relatively small compared to mission-driven disciplines, such as conservation biology.  Venues for publication and presentation of ethnobiological research, as well as how ethnobiologists portray their research, are critical to growing ethnobiology.

  7. Asian river fishes in the Anthropocene: threats and conservation challenges in an era of rapid environmental change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dudgeon, D

    2011-12-01

    This review compares and contrasts the environmental changes that have influenced, or will influence, fishes and fisheries in the Yangtze and Mekong Rivers. These two rivers have been chosen because they differ markedly in the type and intensity of prevailing threats. The Mekong is relatively pristine, whereas the Three Gorges Dam on the Yangtze is the world's largest dam representing the apotheosis of environmental alteration of Asian rivers thus far. Moreover, it is situated at the foot of a planned cascade of at least 12 new dams on the upper Yangtze. Anthropogenic effects of dams and pollution of Yangtze fishes will be exacerbated by plans to divert water northwards along three transfer routes, in part to supplement the flow of the Yellow River. Adaptation to climate change will undoubtedly stimulate more dam construction and flow regulation, potentially causing perfect storm conditions for fishes in the Yangtze. China has already built dams along the upper course of the Mekong, and there are plans for as many as 11 mainstream dams in People's Democratic Republic (Laos) and Cambodia in the lower Mekong Basin. If built, they could have profound consequences for biodiversity, fisheries and human livelihoods, and such concerns have stalled dam construction. Potential effects of dams proposed for other rivers (such as Nujiang-Salween) are also cause for concern. Conservation or restoration measures to sustain some semblance of the rich fish biodiversity of Asian rivers can be identified, but their implementation may prove problematic in a context of increasing Anthropocene alteration of these ecosystems. © 2011 The Author. Journal of Fish Biology © 2011 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  8. Exploring Environmental Identity and Behavioral Change in an Environmental Science Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blatt, Erica N.

    2013-01-01

    This ethnographic study at a public high school in the Northeastern United States investigates the process of change in students' environmental identity and proenvironmental behaviors during an Environmental Science course. The study explores how sociocultural factors, such as students' background, social interactions, and classroom structures,…

  9. Greenhouse gases and their impact on climate change: case of Pakistan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ghauri, B.; Lodhi, A.

    1997-01-01

    Changes in climate caused by human activities will have far-reaching environmental impacts. Of particular concern are the possibilities of major changes in regional water quantity and quality. An increase in average monthly temperature of 4 deg. C decreases spring runoff over 50% while increasing winter runoff nearly 35%; summer Soil moisture decreases over 30%. Changes in precipitation, whether positive or negative may have been greater consequences for the timing and magnitude of runoff and may contribute significantly to the possibility and consequences of flooding and drought. Global Climatic Changes caused by increasing atmospheric concentration of CO/sub 2/ from fuel combustion and other trace gases are likely to appear within the next few decades. One of the most important of such environmental changes will be alternations in regional hydrologic characteristics such as surface runoff and soil moisture. (author)

  10. Environmental geology and hydrology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakić, Zoran; Mileusnić, Marta; Pavlić, Krešimir; Kovač, Zoran

    2017-10-01

    Environmental geology is scientific discipline dealing with the interactions between humans and the geologic environment. Many natural hazards, which have great impact on humans and their environment, are caused by geological settings. On the other hand, human activities have great impact on the physical environment, especially in the last decades due to dramatic human population growth. Natural disasters often hit densely populated areas causing tremendous death toll and material damage. Demand for resources enhanced remarkably, as well as waste production. Exploitation of mineral resources deteriorate huge areas of land, produce enormous mine waste and pollute soil, water and air. Environmental geology is a broad discipline and only selected themes will be presented in the following subchapters: (1) floods as natural hazard, (2) water as geological resource and (3) the mining and mineral processing as types of human activities dealing with geological materials that affect the environment and human health.

  11. Challenges in predicting climate and environmental effects on vector-borne disease episystems in a changing world.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tabachnick, W J

    2010-03-15

    Vector-borne pathogens cause enormous suffering to humans and animals. Many are expanding their range into new areas. Dengue, West Nile and Chikungunya have recently caused substantial human epidemics. Arthropod-borne animal diseases like Bluetongue, Rift Valley fever and African horse sickness pose substantial threats to livestock economies around the world. Climate change can impact the vector-borne disease epidemiology. Changes in climate will influence arthropod vectors, their life cycles and life histories, resulting in changes in both vector and pathogen distribution and changes in the ability of arthropods to transmit pathogens. Climate can affect the way pathogens interact with both the arthropod vector and the human or animal host. Predicting and mitigating the effects of future changes in the environment like climate change on the complex arthropod-pathogen-host epidemiological cycle requires understanding of a variety of complex mechanisms from the molecular to the population level. Although there has been substantial progress on many fronts the challenges to effectively understand and mitigate the impact of potential changes in the environment on vector-borne pathogens are formidable and at an early stage of development. The challenges will be explored using several arthropod-borne pathogen systems as illustration, and potential avenues to meet the challenges will be presented.

  12. Probabilistic integrated risk assessment of human exposure risk to environmental bisphenol A pollution sources.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fu, Keng-Yen; Cheng, Yi-Hsien; Chio, Chia-Pin; Liao, Chung-Min

    2016-10-01

    Environmental bisphenol A (BPA) exposure has been linked to a variety of adverse health effects such as developmental and reproductive issues. However, establishing a clear association between BPA and the likelihood of human health is complex yet fundamentally uncertain. The purpose of this study was to assess the potential exposure risks from environmental BPA among Chinese population based on five human health outcomes, namely immune response, uterotrophic assay, cardiovascular disease (CVD), diabetes, and behavior change. We addressed these health concerns by using a stochastic integrated risk assessment approach. The BPA dose-dependent likelihood of effects was reconstructed by a series of Hill models based on animal models or epidemiological data. We developed a physiologically based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) model that allows estimation of urinary BPA concentration from external exposures. Here we showed that the daily average exposure concentrations of BPA and urinary BPA estimates were consistent with the published data. We found that BPA exposures were less likely to pose significant risks for infants (0-1 year) and adults (male and female >20 years) with human long-term BPA susceptibility in relation to multiple exposure pathways, and for informing the public of the negligible magnitude of environmental BPA pollution impacts on human health.

  13. Holocene vegetational and coastal environmental changes from the Lago Crispim record in northeastern Pará State, eastern Amazonia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Behling, H; Lima da Costa, M

    2001-04-01

    Vegetational and coastal environmental changes have been interpreted from a 600cm long and 764014C yr B.P. old sediment core from Lago Crispim located in the northeastern Pará State in northern Brazil. The radiocarbon dated sediment core was studied by multi-element geochemistry, pollen and charcoal analysis.Holocene Atlantic sea-level rise caused an elevation of local water table, which allowed the formation of organic deposits in a probably former inter-dune valley. Dense, diverse and tall Amazon rain forest, and some restinga (coastal vegetation) covered the study area at the beginning of the record at 764014C yr B.P. Mangrove vegetation developed along rivers close to the core site at that time. Subsequent decrease in less mangrove vegetation near the study site indicates a sea-level regression, beginning since around 700014C yr B.P. Lower sea-levels probably favoured the formation of a local Mauritia/Mauritiella palm swamp at 662014C yr B.P. Oscillations of higher and lower sea-level stands probably changed the size of the local palm swamp area several times between 6620 and 363014C yr B.P. Sea-level transgression at around 363014C yr B.P., caused marked coastal environmental changes: the development of mangroves near the site, the replacement of the local palm swamp by a Cyperaceae swamp, the substitution of the surrounding former Amazon rain forest and some restinga vegetation mainly by salt marshes. High amount carbonised particles suggest a strong human impact by burning on the coastal ecosystems during this late Holocene period.Highest concentrations of NaCl and also Ca, Mg and K in the upper sediment core indicate that the Atlantic was close during the late Holocene period. The core site, which is today 500m from the coastline and only 1-2m above modern sea-level, was apparently never reached by marine excursions during the Holocene.Less representation of mangrove since ca. 184014C yr B.P., may be related due to a slightly lower sea-level or to human

  14. Microevolution of European temperate oaks in response to environmental changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kremer, Antoine

    2016-01-01

    This review reconstructs microevolutionary processes that allowed long-lived species as temperate oaks (Quercus petraea and Q. robur) to cope with climate change since the last glacial maximum, by assembling insights from complementary synchronic and allochronic approaches. Paleobotanical and genetic investigations show that oaks migrated at larger velocities than expected, thanks to long-distance rare events and most likely human interferences. Hybridization was a key mechanism accelerating migration and enhancing species succession. Common garden experiments and genome wide association studies demonstrated that diversifying selection across large environmental gradients contributed to rapid local adaptation. Finally the review explores how lessons taken from past evolutionary scenarios may help to predict future responses of oaks to ongoing climate change. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier SAS.

  15. Assessing reproductive toxicity of two environmental toxicants with a novel in vitro human spermatogenic model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charles A. Easley, IV

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Environmental influences and insults by reproductive toxicant exposure can lead to impaired spermatogenesis or infertility. Understanding how toxicants disrupt spermatogenesis is critical for determining how environmental factors contribute to impaired fertility. While current animal models are available, understanding of the reproductive toxic effects on human fertility requires a more robust model system. We recently demonstrated that human pluripotent stem cells can differentiate into spermatogonial stem cells/spermatogonia, primary and secondary spermatocytes, and haploid spermatids; a model that mimics many aspects of human spermatogenesis. Here, using this model system, we examine the effects of 2-bromopropane (2-BP and 1,2,dibromo-3-chloropropane (DBCP on in vitro human spermatogenesis. 2-BP and DBCP are non-endocrine disrupting toxicants that are known to impact male fertility. We show that acute treatment with either 2-BP or DBCP induces a reduction in germ cell viability through apoptosis. 2-BP and DBCP affect viability of different cell populations as 2-BP primarily reduces spermatocyte viability, whereas DBCP exerts a much greater effect on spermatogonia. Acute treatment with 2-BP or DBCP also reduces the percentage of haploid spermatids. Both 2-BP and DBCP induce reactive oxygen species (ROS formation leading to an oxidized cellular environment. Taken together, these results suggest that acute exposure with 2-BP or DBCP causes human germ cell death in vitro by inducing ROS formation. This system represents a unique platform for assessing human reproductive toxicity potential of various environmental toxicants in a rapid, efficient, and unbiased format.

  16. Preventing marine accidents caused by technology-induced human error

    OpenAIRE

    Bielić, Toni; Hasanspahić, Nermin; Čulin, Jelena

    2017-01-01

    The objective of embedding technology on board ships, to improve safety, is not fully accomplished. The paper studies marine accidents caused by human error resulting from improper human-technology interaction. The aim of the paper is to propose measures to prevent reoccurrence of such accidents. This study analyses the marine accident reports issued by Marine Accidents Investigation Branch covering the period from 2012 to 2014. The factors that caused these accidents are examined and categor...

  17. Integrated Environmental Modelling: Human decisions, human challenges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glynn, Pierre D.

    2015-01-01

    Integrated Environmental Modelling (IEM) is an invaluable tool for understanding the complex, dynamic ecosystems that house our natural resources and control our environments. Human behaviour affects the ways in which the science of IEM is assembled and used for meaningful societal applications. In particular, human biases and heuristics reflect adaptation and experiential learning to issues with frequent, sharply distinguished, feedbacks. Unfortunately, human behaviour is not adapted to the more diffusely experienced problems that IEM typically seeks to address. Twelve biases are identified that affect IEM (and science in general). These biases are supported by personal observations and by the findings of behavioural scientists. A process for critical analysis is proposed that addresses some human challenges of IEM and solicits explicit description of (1) represented processes and information, (2) unrepresented processes and information, and (3) accounting for, and cognizance of, potential human biases. Several other suggestions are also made that generally complement maintaining attitudes of watchful humility, open-mindedness, honesty and transparent accountability. These suggestions include (1) creating a new area of study in the behavioural biogeosciences, (2) using structured processes for engaging the modelling and stakeholder communities in IEM, and (3) using ‘red teams’ to increase resilience of IEM constructs and use.

  18. Climate and environmental change in China. 1951-2012

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Qin, Dahe; Academy of Meteorological Sciences, Beijing, BJ; Ding, Yongjian; Mu, Mu

    2016-01-01

    Through numerous color figures and tables, this book presents the most up-to-date knowledge on climate and environmental change in China. It documents the evidence and attribution of climate and environmental changes in the past few decades and discusses the impacts of climate change on environments, economy, and society. The book further provides projections of climate change and its impacts in the future. Finally, it offers the climate change mitigation and adaption technologies with strategic options which will be of interest for policy makers, researchers and the general public as well.

  19. Climate and environmental change in China. 1951-2012

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Qin, Dahe [Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou (China). Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute; Academy of Meteorological Sciences, Beijing, BJ (China). State Meteorological Administration; Ding, Yongjian [Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou (China). Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute; Mu, Mu (ed.) [Chinese Academy of Sciences, Qingdao (China). Inst. of Oceanology

    2016-02-01

    Through numerous color figures and tables, this book presents the most up-to-date knowledge on climate and environmental change in China. It documents the evidence and attribution of climate and environmental changes in the past few decades and discusses the impacts of climate change on environments, economy, and society. The book further provides projections of climate change and its impacts in the future. Finally, it offers the climate change mitigation and adaption technologies with strategic options which will be of interest for policy makers, researchers and the general public as well.

  20. Mutations that Cause Human Disease: A Computational/Experimental Approach

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Beernink, P; Barsky, D; Pesavento, B

    2006-01-11

    International genome sequencing projects have produced billions of nucleotides (letters) of DNA sequence data, including the complete genome sequences of 74 organisms. These genome sequences have created many new scientific opportunities, including the ability to identify sequence variations among individuals within a species. These genetic differences, which are known as single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), are particularly important in understanding the genetic basis for disease susceptibility. Since the report of the complete human genome sequence, over two million human SNPs have been identified, including a large-scale comparison of an entire chromosome from twenty individuals. Of the protein coding SNPs (cSNPs), approximately half leads to a single amino acid change in the encoded protein (non-synonymous coding SNPs). Most of these changes are functionally silent, while the remainder negatively impact the protein and sometimes cause human disease. To date, over 550 SNPs have been found to cause single locus (monogenic) diseases and many others have been associated with polygenic diseases. SNPs have been linked to specific human diseases, including late-onset Parkinson disease, autism, rheumatoid arthritis and cancer. The ability to predict accurately the effects of these SNPs on protein function would represent a major advance toward understanding these diseases. To date several attempts have been made toward predicting the effects of such mutations. The most successful of these is a computational approach called ''Sorting Intolerant From Tolerant'' (SIFT). This method uses sequence conservation among many similar proteins to predict which residues in a protein are functionally important. However, this method suffers from several limitations. First, a query sequence must have a sufficient number of relatives to infer sequence conservation. Second, this method does not make use of or provide any information on protein structure, which

  1. Pre- and post-industrial environmental changes as revealed by the biogeochemical sedimentary record of Drammensfjord, Norway

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sinninghe Damsté, J.S.; Smittenberg, R.H.; Baas, M.; Green, M.J.; Hopmans, E.C.; Schouten, S.

    2005-01-01

    The biogeochemical sedimentary record of the anoxic Drammensfjord, Norway, was investigated on a decadal to centennial time scale over the last millennium, in order to reconstruct the pre-industrial fjord environment and ecosystem and human-induced environmental changes. The sediments were dated by

  2. Response diversity determines the resilience of ecosystems to environmental change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mori, Akira S; Furukawa, Takuya; Sasaki, Takehiro

    2013-05-01

    A growing body of evidence highlights the importance of biodiversity for ecosystem stability and the maintenance of optimal ecosystem functionality. Conservation measures are thus essential to safeguard the ecosystem services that biodiversity provides and human society needs. Current anthropogenic threats may lead to detrimental (and perhaps irreversible) ecosystem degradation, providing strong motivation to evaluate the response of ecological communities to various anthropogenic pressures. In particular, ecosystem functions that sustain key ecosystem services should be identified and prioritized for conservation action. Traditional diversity measures (e.g. 'species richness') may not adequately capture the aspects of biodiversity most relevant to ecosystem stability and functionality, but several new concepts may be more appropriate. These include 'response diversity', describing the variation of responses to environmental change among species of a particular community. Response diversity may also be a key determinant of ecosystem resilience in the face of anthropogenic pressures and environmental uncertainty. However, current understanding of response diversity is poor, and we see an urgent need to disentangle the conceptual strands that pervade studies of the relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. Our review clarifies the links between response diversity and the maintenance of ecosystem functionality by focusing on the insurance hypothesis of biodiversity and the concept of functional redundancy. We provide a conceptual model to describe how loss of response diversity may cause ecosystem degradation through decreased ecosystem resilience. We explicitly explain how response diversity contributes to functional compensation and to spatio-temporal complementarity among species, leading to long-term maintenance of ecosystem multifunctionality. Recent quantitative studies suggest that traditional diversity measures may often be uncoupled from

  3. Growing population and ecosystem change increase human schistosomiasis around Lake Malaŵi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Bocxlaer, Bert; Albrecht, Christian; Stauffer, Jay R

    2014-05-01

    Multiple anthropogenic environmental stressors with reinforcing effects to the deterioration of ecosystem stability can obscure links between ecosystem change and the prevalence of infectious diseases. Incomplete understanding may lead to ineffective public health and disease control strategies, as appears to be the case with increased urogenital schistosomiasis in humans around Lake Malaŵi over recent decades. Sedimentation and eutrophication help explain historical changes in intermediate host range and parasite transmission. Hence, control strategies should account for abiotic changes. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Environmental impacts of climate change adaptation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Enriquez-de-Salamanca, Alvaro; Diaz Sierra, R.; Martin-Aranda, Rosa; Ferreira Dos Santos, M.J.

    Climate change adaptation reduces adverse effects of climate change but may also have undesirable environmental impacts. However, these impacts are yet poorly defined and analysed in the existing literature. To complement this knowledge-gap, we reviewed the literature to unveil the relationship

  5. THE IMPACT OF ENVIRONMENTAL ATTITUDES ON BUYING BEHAVIORS: A STUDY ON POTENTIAL DOMESTIC TOURISTS

    OpenAIRE

    AYMANKUY, Yusuf; POLAT, Eray; BUZLUKÇU, Cemali; AYMANKUY, Şimal

    2016-01-01

    Today the increasing environmental problems have caused consumers to become more sensitive to the environment and change their consumption preferences to more environment sensitive products. This fact can be considered to be valid for touristic consumers too. The primary aim of this study is to determine the environmental attitudes of potential tourists under three headlines: nature oriented (ecocentric), human oriented (anthropocentric) and reluctant to the environment (antipathetic). Anothe...

  6. Global change and the decline of coral reefs

    OpenAIRE

    Strasser, A.

    1999-01-01

    Ever since coral reefs exist, changing environmental conditions have periodically led to their decline. However, within the perspective of geological time-spans, corals have always managed to re-install themselves. Today, human activity has enhanced stress factors and added new ones that cause a rapid and (on the human time-scale) irreversible decline of many reef ecosystems. The reasons for the disturbance of these complex communities are multiple, but global warming is a k...

  7. A review of the consequences of global climate change on human health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Ki-Hyun; Kabir, Ehsanul; Ara Jahan, Shamin

    2014-01-01

    The impact of climate change has been significant enough to endanger human health both directly and indirectly via heat stress, degraded air quality, rising sea levels, food and water security, extreme weather events (e.g., floods, droughts, earthquakes, volcano eruptions, tsunamis, hurricanes, etc.), vulnerable shelter, and population migration. The deterioration of environmental conditions may facilitate the transmission of diarrhea, vector-borne and infectious diseases, cardiovascular and respiratory illnesses, malnutrition, etc. Indirect effects of climate change such as mental health problems due to stress, loss of homes, economic instability, and forced migration are also unignorably important. Children, the elderly, and communities living in poverty are among the most vulnerable of the harmful effects due to climate change. In this article, we have reviewed the scientific evidence for the human health impact of climate change and analyzed the various diseases in association with changes in the atmospheric environment and climate conditions.

  8. Mutations in HYAL2, Encoding Hyaluronidase 2, Cause a Syndrome of Orofacial Clefting and Cor Triatriatum Sinister in Humans and Mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martina M A Muggenthaler

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Orofacial clefting is amongst the most common of birth defects, with both genetic and environmental components. Although numerous studies have been undertaken to investigate the complexities of the genetic etiology of this heterogeneous condition, this factor remains incompletely understood. Here, we describe mutations in the HYAL2 gene as a cause of syndromic orofacial clefting. HYAL2, encoding hyaluronidase 2, degrades extracellular hyaluronan, a critical component of the developing heart and palatal shelf matrix. Transfection assays demonstrated that the gene mutations destabilize the molecule, dramatically reducing HYAL2 protein levels. Consistent with the clinical presentation in affected individuals, investigations of Hyal2-/- mice revealed craniofacial abnormalities, including submucosal cleft palate. In addition, cor triatriatum sinister and hearing loss, identified in a proportion of Hyal2-/- mice, were also found as incompletely penetrant features in affected humans. Taken together our findings identify a new genetic cause of orofacial clefting in humans and mice, and define the first molecular cause of human cor triatriatum sinister, illustrating the fundamental importance of HYAL2 and hyaluronan turnover for normal human and mouse development.

  9. Climate Change: Implications for the Assumptions, Goals and Methods of Urban Environmental Planning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristina Hill

    2016-12-01

    -based quantitative models of regional system behavior that may soon be used to determine acceptable land uses. Finally, the philosophical assumptions that underlie urban environmental planning are changing to address new epistemological, ontological and ethical assumptions that support new methods and goals. The inability to use the past as a guide to the future, new prioritizations of values for adaptation, and renewed efforts to focus on intergenerational justice are provided as examples. In order to represent a genuine paradigm shift, this review argues that changes must begin to be evident across the underlying assumptions, conceptual frameworks, and methods of urban environmental planning, and be attributable to the same root cause. The examples presented here represent the early stages of a change in the overall paradigm of the discipline.

  10. Impact of anthropogenic and natural environmental changes on Echinococcus transmission in Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, the People’s Republic of China

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Echinococcus transmission is known to be affected by various environmental factors, which may be modified by human influence or natural events including global warming. Considerable population growth in the last fifty years in Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region (NHAR), the People’s Republic of China (PRC), has led to dramatic increases in deforestation and modified agricultural practices. In turn, this has resulted in many changes in the habitats for the definitive and intermediate hosts of both Echinococcus granulosus and E. multilocularis, which have increased the risks for transmission of both parasites, affecting echinococcosis prevalence and human disease. Ecological environmental changes due to anthropogenic activities and natural events drive Echinococcus transmission and NHAR provides a notable example illustrating how human activity can impact on a parasitic infection of major public health significance. It is very important to continually monitor these environmental (including climatic) factors that drive the distribution of Echinococcus spp. and their impact on transmission to humans because such information is necessary to formulate reliable future public health policy for echinococcosis control programs and to prevent disease spread. PMID:22827890

  11. Impact of anthropogenic and natural environmental changes on Echinococcus transmission in Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, the People’s Republic of China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yang Yu

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Echinococcus transmission is known to be affected by various environmental factors, which may be modified by human influence or natural events including global warming. Considerable population growth in the last fifty years in Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region (NHAR, the People’s Republic of China (PRC, has led to dramatic increases in deforestation and modified agricultural practices. In turn, this has resulted in many changes in the habitats for the definitive and intermediate hosts of both Echinococcus granulosus and E. multilocularis, which have increased the risks for transmission of both parasites, affecting echinococcosis prevalence and human disease. Ecological environmental changes due to anthropogenic activities and natural events drive Echinococcus transmission and NHAR provides a notable example illustrating how human activity can impact on a parasitic infection of major public health significance. It is very important to continually monitor these environmental (including climatic factors that drive the distribution of Echinococcus spp. and their impact on transmission to humans because such information is necessary to formulate reliable future public health policy for echinococcosis control programs and to prevent disease spread.

  12. What facilitates adaptation? An analysis of community-based adaptation to environmental change in the Andes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felipe Murtinho

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available This study analyses the environmental, socio-economic andinstitutional factors that influence community-based adaptation strategies in 16municipalities in the rural Andes of Colombia. The study focuses specifically onthe factors that influence whether communities decide to take measures to managetheir water and micro-watersheds in response to water scarcity caused by climatevariability and land-use changes. The research uses quantitative and qualitativemethods incorporating data from surveys to 104 water user associations,precipitation and land-use data, municipal socio-economic information, and semistructured interviews with key informants. The results reveal 1 the links betweenenvironmental change and the type of adaptation that communities implement,and 2 how, in face of water scarcity changes, external funding facilitatesadaptation. The findings of this study contributes to the common-pool resourceand adaptation literatures by highlighting the important role that external actorsmay have in shaping collective action to adapt to environmental change.

  13. Neighborhood change and the role of environmental stewardship: a case study of green infrastructure for stormwater in the City of Portland, Oregon, USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vivek Shandas

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Throughout the history of cities, the ecological landscape has often been buried, removed, or taken for granted. A recent recognition that humans are part of the global ecosystem, and that human actions both cause and are affected by ecological change, brings with it an awareness of the value of nature in cities and of natural systems on which cities depend. The feedbacks between humans and their environment within an urban context can have profound implications for the growth of and change in cities, yet there is a limited understanding of the interactions between biophysical changes in cities and the implications of these changes on the quality of life for residents. The application of a coupled human and natural systems (CHANS framework provides a timely and fruitful opportunity to enrich the theory, methods, and understanding of these feedbacks and interconnections. Here, I integrated biophysical and social dimensions relevant to managing urban stormwater by examining a case study of Portland, Oregon, USA. I used empirical data from a pre-post survey (2-yr span of residents in eight urban neighborhoods to describe feedbacks and interactions between a localized biophysical change in the form of a large-scale decentralized stormwater program and the resulting changes in resident's perceptions in neighborhoods undergoing rapid change. My findings corroborate earlier findings suggesting that people with higher income and education levels are more likely to participate in stewardship actions. The results also suggest an overall and initial negative perception of neighborhoods facilities and services immediately following the construction of decentralized stormwater facilities, but conversely, high levels of anticipation for their construction. By describing these findings through a CHANS framework, I make explicit the importance of integrating scientific understanding, governance efforts, and human behaviors to address acute urban environmental

  14. Australian Medical Students' Association Global Health Essay Competition - Global climate change, geo-engineering and human health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyages, Costa S

    2013-10-07

    Rio+20's proposed Sustainable Development Goals have the potential to redefine the course of international action on climate change. They recognise that environmental health is inextricably linked with human health, and that environmental sustainability is of paramount importance in safeguarding global health. Competition entrants were asked to discuss ways of making global health a central component of international sustainable development initiatives and environmental policy, using one or two concrete examples

  15. Environmental layout complexity affects neural activity during navigation in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slone, Edward; Burles, Ford; Iaria, Giuseppe

    2016-05-01

    Navigating large-scale surroundings is a fundamental ability. In humans, it is commonly assumed that navigational performance is affected by individual differences, such as age, sex, and cognitive strategies adopted for orientation. We recently showed that the layout of the environment itself also influences how well people are able to find their way within it, yet it remains unclear whether differences in environmental complexity are associated with changes in brain activity during navigation. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate how the brain responds to a change in environmental complexity by asking participants to perform a navigation task in two large-scale virtual environments that differed solely in interconnection density, a measure of complexity defined as the average number of directional choices at decision points. The results showed that navigation in the simpler, less interconnected environment was faster and more accurate relative to the complex environment, and such performance was associated with increased activity in a number of brain areas (i.e. precuneus, retrosplenial cortex, and hippocampus) known to be involved in mental imagery, navigation, and memory. These findings provide novel evidence that environmental complexity not only affects navigational behaviour, but also modulates activity in brain regions that are important for successful orientation and navigation. © 2016 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Environmental Concerns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alma, Peter

    1995-04-01

    This series of A-level social biology topic books responds to the changing demands of social biology syllabuses, with each text dealing with a particular area of interest. Although the series is primarily intended for students of A-level social biology, the books will appeal to students studying a wide range of biological subjects at A-level. Environmental Concerns covers topics common to several A-level human and social biology syllabuses. It is particularly relevant to the human ecology and conservation options. The text focuses on the social and economic implications of current ecological issues as well as the basic biological concepts involved. It deals with the causes, effects and prevention of atmospheric and water pollution as well as with the disruption of ecosystems by changes in land use. The conflict of interests between conservation and exploitation is discussed, along with management techniques including the controversial method of culling to maintain diversity. The moral and aesthetic aspects of conservation and management are emphasised throughout, in addition to the scientific background of these techniques.

  17. Environmental impacts of micro-wind turbines and their potential to contribute to UK climate change targets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Greening, Benjamin; Azapagic, Adisa

    2013-01-01

    This paper evaluates the life cycle environmental sustainability of micro-wind turbines in the UK in comparison with grid electricity and solar PV (photovoltaics). The results suggests that per kWh electricity generated, the majority of environmental impacts from the wind turbines are lower than from grid electricity, ranging from 26% lower terrestrial toxicity to 92% lower global warming. However, depletion of abiotic elements, fresh-water and human toxicities are 82%, 74% and 53% higher than for grid electricity, respectively. The wind turbines are more environmentally sustainable than solar PV for seven out of 11 impacts, ranging from 7.5% lower eutrophication to 85% lower ozone layer depletion. However, depletion of fossil resources, fresh-water, human and terrestrial toxicities are higher for the wind turbine than for the PV, ranging from 5% for the former to 87% for the latter. UK-wide deployment of micro-wind turbines would save between 0.6 and 1% of GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions on 2009 levels. Therefore, the potential of micro-wind turbines to contribute towards UK's climate change targets is limited. - Highlights: • Life cycle environmental impacts of micro-wind turbines estimated for UK conditions. • The majority impacts are lower for micro-wind turbines than for grid electricity and solar PV. • Some impacts from micro-wind are higher, notably fresh-water and human toxicity. • At the national level, wind turbines would save only 0.6% GHG emissions on 2009 levels. • The potential of micro-wind turbines to contribute to UK's climate change targets is limited

  18. Effects of environmental change on malaria in the Amazon region of Brazil

    OpenAIRE

    Takken, W.; Tarso Vilarinhos, de, P.; Schneider, P.; Santos, dos, F.

    2003-01-01

    Malaria is endemic in Brazil, affecting mostly the Amazon states. Whereas 50 years ago good progress was made towards its control, since the opening up of the Amazon region for forestry, agriculture and livestock activities, the disease has rapidly increased in incidence, peaking to >500,000 cases annually in the 1990s. Rondônia state was particularly hard hit, with thousands of new immigrants suffering malaria attacks. It is argued that the environmental change caused by deforestation has...

  19. Effect of climate change on environmental flow indicators in the narew basin, poland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piniewski, Mikołaj; Laizé, Cédric L R; Acreman, Michael C; Okruszko, Tomasz; Schneider, Christof

    2014-01-01

    Environmental flows-the quantity of water required to maintain a river ecosystem in its desired state-are of particular importance in areas of high natural value. Water-dependent ecosystems are exposed to the risk of climate change through altered precipitation and evaporation. Rivers in the Narew basin in northeastern Poland are known for their valuable river and wetland ecosystems, many of them in pristine or near-pristine condition. The objective of this study was to assess changes in the environmental flow regime of the Narew river system, caused by climate change, as simulated by hydrological models with different degrees of physical characterization and spatial aggregation. Two models were assessed: the river basin scale model Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) and the continental model of water availability and use WaterGAP. Future climate change scenarios were provided by two general circulation models coupled with the A2 emission scenario: IPSL-CM4 and MIROC3.2. To assess the impact of climate change on environmental flows, a method based conceptually on the "range of variability" approach was used. The results indicate that the environmental flow regime in the Narew basin is subject to climate change risk, whose magnitude and spatial variability varies with climate model and hydrological modeling scale. Most of the analyzed sites experienced moderate impacts for the Generic Environmental Flow Indicator (GEFI), the Floodplain Inundation Indicator, and the River Habitat Availability Indicator. The consistency between SWAT and WaterGAP for GEFI was medium: in 55 to 66% of analyzed sites, the models suggested the same level of impact. Hence, we suggest that state-of-the-art, high-resolution, global- or continental-scale models, such as WaterGAP, could be useful tools for water management decision-makers and wetland conservation practitioners, whereas models such as SWAT should serve as a complementary tool for more specific, smaller-scale, local

  20. Environmental Displacements: The Case of Small Island States

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marina R. Martins Mattar

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available The human displacement caused by adverse weather conditions is, and has been for a long time, a natural strategy to adapt to environmental changes. However, the frequency of natural disasters and the negative impact of climate change have increased significantly affecting a growing number of people. Internal and external tensions caused by large-scale displacements, conflicts generated by resource scarcity, increased spread of diseases and geopolitical reordering are among the consequences linked to this phenomenon. The case of the small island nations that will be submerged by the sea level rise is an extreme example that raises fascinating questions. This article aims at analyzing the links of climate change on the dynamics of migration and exploring legal and political implications and possible solutions, in particular, for the populations from small island nations.

  1. Seeking environmental causes of neurodegenerative disease and envisioning primary prevention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spencer, Peter S; Palmer, Valerie S; Kisby, Glen E

    2016-09-01

    Pathological changes of the aging brain are expressed in a range of neurodegenerative disorders that will impact increasing numbers of people across the globe. Research on the causes of these disorders has focused heavily on genetics, and strategies for prevention envision drug-induced slowing or arresting disease advance before its clinical appearance. We discuss a strategic shift that seeks to identify the environmental causes or contributions to neurodegeneration, and the vision of primary disease prevention by removing or controlling exposure to culpable agents. The plausibility of this approach is illustrated by the prototypical neurodegenerative disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and parkinsonism-dementia complex (ALS-PDC). This often-familial long-latency disease, once thought to be an inherited genetic disorder but now known to have a predominant or exclusive environmental origin, is in the process of disappearing from the three heavily affected populations, namely Chamorros of Guam and Rota, Japanese residents of Kii Peninsula, Honshu, and Auyu and Jaqai linguistic groups on the island of New Guinea in West Papua, Indonesia. Exposure via traditional food and/or medicine (the only common exposure in all three geographic isolates) to one or more neurotoxins in seed of cycad plants is the most plausible if yet unproven etiology. Neurotoxin dosage and/or subject age at exposure might explain the stratified epidemic of neurodegenerative disease on Guam in which high-incidence ALS peaked and declined before that of PD, only to be replaced today by a dementing disorder comparable to Alzheimer's disease. Exposure to the Guam environment is also linked to the delayed development of ALS among a subset of Chamorro and non-Chamorro Gulf War/Era veterans, a summary of which is reported here for the first time. Lessons learned from this study and from 65 years of research on ALS-PDC include the exceptional value of initial, field-based informal investigation of

  2. MortalityPredictors.org: a manually-curated database of published biomarkers of human all-cause mortality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peto, Maximus V; De la Guardia, Carlos; Winslow, Ksenia; Ho, Andrew; Fortney, Kristen; Morgen, Eric

    2017-08-31

    Biomarkers of all-cause mortality are of tremendous clinical and research interest. Because of the long potential duration of prospective human lifespan studies, such biomarkers can play a key role in quantifying human aging and quickly evaluating any potential therapies. Decades of research into mortality biomarkers have resulted in numerous associations documented across hundreds of publications. Here, we present MortalityPredictors.org , a manually-curated, publicly accessible database, housing published, statistically-significant relationships between biomarkers and all-cause mortality in population-based or generally healthy samples. To gather the information for this database, we searched PubMed for appropriate research papers and then manually curated relevant data from each paper. We manually curated 1,576 biomarker associations, involving 471 distinct biomarkers. Biomarkers ranged in type from hematologic (red blood cell distribution width) to molecular (DNA methylation changes) to physical (grip strength). Via the web interface, the resulting data can be easily browsed, searched, and downloaded for further analysis. MortalityPredictors.org provides comprehensive results on published biomarkers of human all-cause mortality that can be used to compare biomarkers, facilitate meta-analysis, assist with the experimental design of aging studies, and serve as a central resource for analysis. We hope that it will facilitate future research into human mortality and aging.

  3. Chew Bahir, southern Ethiopia: an archive of environmental history during the evolution and dispersal of anatomically modern humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaebitz, F.; Asrat, A.; Lamb, H. F.; Trauth, M. H.; Junginger, A.; Foerster, V. E.; Guenter, C.; Viehberg, F. A.; Just, J.; Roberts, H. M.; Chapot, M. S.; Leng, M. J.; Dean, J.; Cohen, A. S.

    2016-12-01

    Chew Bahir is a tectonic basin in the southern Ethiopian Rift, close to the Lower Omo valley, site of earliest known fossil of anatomically modern humans. It was drilled in Nov-Dec 2014 as part of the Hominin Sites and Paleolakes Drilling Project (HSPDP) and the Collaborative Research Center (CRC806) "Our Way to Europe". Two overlapping cores of mostly clayey silts, reaching a composite depths of 280m, were collected and may cover the last 500,000 years, thus providing a potential record of environmental history during the evolution and spread of anatomically modern humans. Here we present the lithology and stratigraphy of the composite core as well as results of high resolution MSCL and XRF scanning data. Initial sedimentological and geochemical results show that the Chew Bahir deposits are a sensitive record of changes in moisture, sediment influx, provenance, transport and diagenetic processes, evident from mineralogy, elemental concentration and physical properties. The potassium record is highly sensitive to changes in moisture balance (Foerster et al. 2015). XRF and XRD data suggest that the process linking climate with potassium concentrations is the diagenetic illitization of smectites during dry episodes with high alkalinity and salinity in the closed-basin lake. The core records will allow tests of the various hypotheses about the influence of environmental change on the evolution and dispersal of anatomically modern humans. Foerster, V., Vogelsang, R., Junginger, A., Asrat, A., Lamb, H.F., Schaebitz, F., Trauth, M.H. (2015): Environmental Change and Human Occupation of Southern Ethiopia and Northern Kenya during the last 20,000 years. Quaternary Science Reviews, 129: 333-340. doi:10.1016/j.quascirev.2015.10.026.

  4. Managing Air Quality - Human Health, Environmental and Economic Assessments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Human health and environmental assessments characterize health and environmental risks associated with exposure to pollution. Economic assessments evaluate the cost and economic impact of a policy or regulation & can estimate economic benefits.

  5. Causes of Resistance to Change. What Managers Should Do?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ion Stegaroiu

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Change is considered, in more and more cases, an inevitable process and the development of an organization largely depends on how it reacts and adapts to transformations occurring. Change has both positive and negative aspects, it implies experiment and creation of something new and different, but it also means destruction of familiar facts and relationships. The implementation failure rate of organizational change remains high and one of the most common causes of this is considered to be the resistance to change. Although the resistance to change is considered a natural reaction, it is necessary to understand the causes and identify the measures for its reduction. Using content analysis of representative works, as a research method, we identified a number of factors that cause resistance to change and methods than can be used to decrease it, in order to successful implement the organizational change. Journal:Risk in the Contemporary Economy, Proceedings Conference

  6. The long view: Causes of climate change over the instrumental period

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hegerl, G. C.; Schurer, A. P.; Polson, D.; Iles, C. E.; Bronnimann, S.

    2016-12-01

    The period of instrumentally recorded data has seen remarkable changes in climate, with periods of rapid warming, and periods of stagnation or cooling. A recent analysis of the observed temperature change from the instrumental record confirms that most of the warming recorded since the middle of the 20rst century has been caused by human influences, but shows large uncertainty in separating greenhouse gas from aerosol response if accounting for model uncertainty. The contribution by natural forcing and internal variability to the recent warming is estimated to be small, but becomes more important when analysing climate change over earlier or shorter time periods. For example, the enigmatic early 20th century warming was a period of strong climate anomalies, including the US dustbowl drought and exceptional heat waves, and pronounced Arctic warming. Attribution results suggests that about half of the global warming 1901-1950 was forced by greenhouse gases increases, with an anomalously strong contribution by climate variability, and contributions by natural forcing. Long term variations in circulation are important for some regional climate anomalies. Precipitation is important for impacts of climate change and precipitation changes are uncertain in models. Analysis of the instrumental record suggests a human influence on mean and heavy precipitation, and supports climate model estimates of the spatial pattern of precipitation sensitivity to warming. Broadly, and particularly over ocean, wet regions are getting wetter and dry regions are getting drier. In conclusion, the historical record provides evidence for a strong response to external forcings, supports climate models, and raises questions about multi-decadal variability.

  7. Climate change, humans, and the extinction of the woolly mammoth.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Nogués-Bravo

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Woolly mammoths inhabited Eurasia and North America from late Middle Pleistocene (300 ky BP [300,000 years before present], surviving through different climatic cycles until they vanished in the Holocene (3.6 ky BP. The debate about why the Late Quaternary extinctions occurred has centred upon environmental and human-induced effects, or a combination of both. However, testing these two hypotheses-climatic and anthropogenic-has been hampered by the difficulty of generating quantitative estimates of the relationship between the contraction of the mammoth's geographical range and each of the two hypotheses. We combined climate envelope models and a population model with explicit treatment of woolly mammoth-human interactions to measure the extent to which a combination of climate changes and increased human pressures might have led to the extinction of the species in Eurasia. Climate conditions for woolly mammoths were measured across different time periods: 126 ky BP, 42 ky BP, 30 ky BP, 21 ky BP, and 6 ky BP. We show that suitable climate conditions for the mammoth reduced drastically between the Late Pleistocene and the Holocene, and 90% of its geographical range disappeared between 42 ky BP and 6 ky BP, with the remaining suitable areas in the mid-Holocene being mainly restricted to Arctic Siberia, which is where the latest records of woolly mammoths in continental Asia have been found. Results of the population models also show that the collapse of the climatic niche of the mammoth caused a significant drop in their population size, making woolly mammoths more vulnerable to the increasing hunting pressure from human populations. The coincidence of the disappearance of climatically suitable areas for woolly mammoths and the increase in anthropogenic impacts in the Holocene, the coup de grâce, likely set the place and time for the extinction of the woolly mammoth.

  8. The Emergence of the Environmental Humanities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nye, David Edwin; Rugg, Linda; Flemming, James

    In the last decade the Environmental Humanities have emerged as an important synthesis of knowledge, particularly at leading universities in the English and German academic worlds. This report analyzes this new field, assesses the existing centers for research, and makes recommendations for how...

  9. A conceptual connectivity framework for understanding geomorphic change in human-impacted fluvial systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pöppl, Ronald; Keesstra, Saskia; Maroulis, Jerry

    2017-04-01

    Human-induced landscape change is difficult to predict due to the complexity inherent in both geomorphic and social systems as well as due to emerging coupling relationships between them. To better understand system complexity and system response to change, connectivity has become an important research paradigm within various disciplines including geomorphology, hydrology and ecology. With the proposed conceptual connectivity framework on geomorphic change in human-impacted fluvial systems a cautionary note is flagged regarding the need (i) to include and to systematically conceptualise the role of different types of human agency in altering connectivity relationships in geomorphic systems and (ii) to integrate notions of human-environment interactions to connectivity concepts in geomorphology to better explain causes and trajectories of landscape change. Underpinned by case study examples, the presented conceptual framework is able to explain how geomorphic response of fluvial systems to human disturbance is determined by system-specific boundary conditions (incl. system history, related legacy effects and lag times), vegetation dynamics and human-induced functional relationships (i.e. feedback mechanisms) between the different spatial dimensions of connectivity. It is further demonstrated how changes in social systems can trigger a process-response feedback loop between social and geomorphic systems that further governs the trajectory of landscape change in coupled human-geomorphic systems.

  10. Human Syngamosis as an Uncommon Cause of Chronic Cough

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pulcherio, Janaína Oliveira Bentivi

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Chronic cough may represent a diagnostic challenge. Chronic parasitism of upper airways is an unusual cause. Objective: To describe a case of human syngamosis as an uncommon cause of dry cough. Case Report: An endoscopic exam performed in a woman suffering of chronic cough revealed a Y-shaped worm in the larynx identified as Syngamus laryngeus. Discussion: This nematode parasitizes the upper respiratory tract of many animals including humans. The diagnosis is performed by the examination of the worm expelled by cough or by endoscopy. Endoscopic exam is easy to perform and is essential in the diagnosis of causes of chronic cough, even uncommon entities. Removal is the only efficient treatment.

  11. Conclusions: environmental change, wildlife conservation and reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holt, William V; Brown, Janine L; Comizzoli, Pierre

    2014-01-01

    Our intention when planning this book was to explore the diverse ways that reproductive science is inextricably tied to many aspects of biodiversity conservation, using the opportunity to present a vast amount of specialised information in a way that forms a coherent and important body of work. Some of the chapters were therefore concerned with understanding how taxonomic groups and species are being affected by globally important environmental changes, mostly caused through anthropogenic influences. Others were more focused on monitoring and understanding the physiology of wild species, with the aim of better understanding mechanisms underlying responses to captive conditions and environmental change, in both wild and captive animals. We also wanted to review advances in technological measures that are being actively developed to support the breeding and management of wildlife. In a few cases we have presented specific case studies that highlight the amount of effort required for the successful development of assisted reproductive technologies for wild species. Viewed overall, the outcome is spectacular; the last decade has seen enormous progress in many aspects of the sciences and technologies relevant to the topic. It is also clear that the boundaries between different scientific disciplines are becoming ever more blurred, and it is no longer easy or even possible to remain focused on a highly specialized topic in reproduction or conservation, without having at least some understanding of allied subjects. Here we present a few concluding comments about what we have learnt, and how the various topics interact with each other. We also emphasize that, as far as we know, no similarly comprehensive consideration of the contribution of reproductive science to wildlife conservation has been published within the last decade.

  12. Interdisciplinary Graduate Training in Polar Environmental Change: Field-based learning in Greenland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Virginia, R. A.; Holm, K.; Whitecloud, S.; Levy, L.; Kelly, M. A.; Feng, X.; Grenoble, L.

    2009-12-01

    The objective of the NSF-funded Integrative Graduate Education Research Traineeship (IGERT) program at Dartmouth College is to develop a new cohort of environmental scientists and engineers with an interdisciplinary understanding of polar regions and their importance to global environmental change. The Dartmouth IGERT challenges Ph.D. students to consider the broader dimensions of their research and to collaborate with scientists from other disciplines, educators, and policy makers. IGERT students will focus on research questions that are relevant to the needs of local people experiencing climate change and on understanding the ethical responsibilities and benefits of conducting research in partnership with northern residents and institutions. Seven Ph.D. students from the departments of Earth Sciences, Engineering, and Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Dartmouth College make up the first IGERT cohort for the five-year program. The Dartmouth IGERT curriculum will focus on three main components of polar systems responding to recent climate change: the cryosphere, terrestrial ecosystems, and biogeochemical cycles. The integrating experience of the core curriculum is the Greenland Field Seminar that will take place in Kangerlussuaq (terrestrial and aquatic systems), Summit Camp (snow and ice) and Nuuk, Greenland (human dimensions of change). In Nuuk, IGERT students will share their science and develop partnerships with students, educators, and policy makers at the University of Greenland, the Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC), and other Greenlandic institutions. In summer 2009 the authors conducted preliminary fieldwork near Kangerlussuaq, Greenland to develop aspects of the science curriculum for the 2010 Greenland Field Seminar and to explore research topics for IGERT Fellows (Levy and Whitecloud). Examples of results presented here are designed to develop field-based learning activities. These include soil and vegetation relationships as a function of aspect

  13. Identifying the role of conservation biology for solving the environmental crisis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalerum, Fredrik

    2014-11-01

    Humans are altering their living environment to an extent that could cause environmental collapse. Promoting change into environmental sustainability is therefore urgent. Despite a rapid expansion in conservation biology, appreciation of underlying causes and identification of long-term solutions have largely been lacking. I summarized knowledge regarding the environmental crisis, and argue that the most important contributions toward solutions come from economy, political sciences, and psychology. Roles of conservation biology include providing environmental protection until sustainable solutions have been found, evaluating the effectiveness of implemented solutions, and providing societies with information necessary to align effectively with environmental values. Because of the potential disciplinary discrepancy between finding long-term solutions and short-term protection, we may face critical trade-offs between allocations of resources toward achieving sustainability. Since biological knowledge is required for such trade-offs, an additional role for conservation biologists may be to provide guidance toward finding optimal strategies in such trade-offs.

  14. CLIMATE CHANGE AND COMMUNITY ENVIRONMENTAL CONFLICTS: ARE THEY CORRELATED?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Achmad Romsan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Climate change and global warming affect major change in freshwater availability and season uncertainty which hamper all part of the globe. Although the phenomenon is not new but it needs concerns from all the government of States around the world to  address the problem. If notthe drought and water shortages will directly and indirectly be the world problem and finally will ignite conflict over resources.Pollution and environmental degradation will also affect the sustainability of community’s economic activities. In Indonesia, since the enforcement of the first Environmental Management Act of 1982 up to the third Environmental Management Act of 2019, there have been forty one conflicts involving community and industries and palm plantation companies. All the conflicts are brought before the courts. Herein, industries and plantations are blamed for responsible for river water pollution and environmental degradation. Unfortunately, there is very little information in Indonesia obtained from the research reports, journals, news papers, magazines whether climate change and global warming also responsible for the occurrence of community environmental conflict. From the second data sources obtained from outsite Indonesia it is found that there is a link between climate change and community environmental disputes. The objectives of this paper tryto examine whether the cases submitted and solved by the District Courtsalso have some connection with the climate change phenomenon. Other objectives are to recommend to the Government of Indonesia to strengthen the existing regulations dealing with the climate change

  15. Causes for contemporary regional sea level changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stammer, Detlef; Cazenave, Anny; Ponte, Rui M; Tamisiea, Mark E

    2013-01-01

    Regional sea level changes can deviate substantially from those of the global mean, can vary on a broad range of timescales, and in some regions can even lead to a reversal of long-term global mean sea level trends. The underlying causes are associated with dynamic variations in the ocean circulation as part of climate modes of variability and with an isostatic adjustment of Earth's crust to past and ongoing changes in polar ice masses and continental water storage. Relative to the coastline, sea level is also affected by processes such as earthquakes and anthropogenically induced subsidence. Present-day regional sea level changes appear to be caused primarily by natural climate variability. However, the imprint of anthropogenic effects on regional sea level-whether due to changes in the atmospheric forcing or to mass variations in the system-will grow with time as climate change progresses, and toward the end of the twenty-first century, regional sea level patterns will be a superposition of climate variability modes and natural and anthropogenically induced static sea level patterns. Attribution and predictions of ongoing and future sea level changes require an expanded and sustained climate observing system.

  16. Adaption oder Anpassung? Umweltbewusstsein in der Region um den Plattensee/Balaton (Adaptation or a Change in Attitude? Environmental Awareness in the Region of Lake Balaton

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Magdolna Leveleki

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Over the last decades, climate change has become one of the most relevant issues of modern society. According to the main trends observed in the last decades, it can be concluded that current human efforts are not sufficient to reverse climate change. Therefore, two possible ways of reaction may be envisaged: on the one hand, increasing efforts for prevention and, on the other, preparing for the inevitable changes. As far as the latter is concerned, research on climate change has become a top priority worldwide, as well as, in the European Union, including Hungary. Our sociology working group at Pannon University carried out a research during the years of 2013-2014 related to the social effects of climate change, entitled „Regional effects of extreme weather conditions due to climate change and the possibilities of reducing damage in the upcoming decades”. The Hungarian eco-philopsophical literature highights two main issues concerning the adaptation and a change in values and in attitude related to climate change. The first question is whether we agree with natural scientits, for whom it is undisputed that climate change is caused to a great extent by antropogene effects, and kowing the negative consequences, whether we consider human responsibility in general, and more specifically, our own personal one. The second question is whether a shift in our mindset and in our values is necessary in order to adapt successfully to the new circumstances. If so, what could be the essence of this „paradigm shift” and whether any sign of change can be observed. Our research examined this latter aspect with a special focus on environmental values and attitudes. We have collected empirical data in a region of Eastern-Central Europe that is especially sensitive to the effects of climate change both from an ecological and a social point of view. We compared the results of our research to those of the Eurobarometer and of the Hungarian value sociology

  17. Human exposure, health hazards, and environmental regulations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Steinemann, Anne

    2004-01-01

    United States environmental regulations, intended to protect human health, generally fail to address major sources of pollutants that endanger human health. These sources are surprisingly close to us and within our control, such as consumer products and building materials that we use within our homes, workplaces, schools, and other indoor environments. Even though these indoor sources account for nearly 90% of our pollutant exposure, they are virtually unregulated by existing laws. Even pollutant levels found in typical homes, if found outdoors, would often violate federal environmental standards. This article examines the importance of human exposure as a way to understand and reduce effects of pollutants on human health. Results from exposure studies challenge traditional thinking about pollutant hazards, and reveal deficiencies in our patchwork of laws. And results from epidemiological studies, showing increases in exposure-related diseases, underscore the need for new protections. Because we cannot rely solely on regulations to protect us, and because health effects from exposures can develop insidiously, greater efforts are needed to reduce and prevent significant exposures before they occur. Recommendations include the development and use of safer alternatives to common products, public education on ways to reduce exposure, systematic monitoring of human exposure to pollutants, and a precautionary approach in decision-making

  18. Methods for environmental change; an exploratory study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nell Gottlieb; Robert Panne; Chris Smerecnik; Gerjo Kok

    2012-01-01

    Background: While the interest of health promotion researchers in change methods directed at the target population has a long tradition, interest in change methods directed at the environment is still developing. In this survey, the focus is on methods for environmental change; especially about how

  19. Human/Nature Discourse in Environmental Science Education Resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chambers, Joan M.

    2008-01-01

    It is argued that the view of nature and the relationship between human beings and nature that each of us holds impacts our decisions, actions, and notions of environmental responsibility and consciousness. In this study, I investigate the discursive patterns of selected environmental science classroom resources produced by three disparate…

  20. Meeting Report: Threats to Human Health and Environmental Sustainability in the Pacific Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnold, Robert G.; Carpenter, David O.; Kirk, Donald; Koh, David; Armour, Margaret-Ann; Cebrian, Mariano; Cifuentes, Luis; Khwaja, Mahmood; Ling, Bo; Makalinao, Irma; Paz-y-Miño, César; Peralta, Genandrialine; Prasad, Rajendra; Singh, Kirpal; Sly, Peter; Tohyama, Chiharu; Woodward, Alistair; Zheng, Baoshan; Maiden, Todd

    2007-01-01

    The coastal zone of the Pacific Rim is home for about one-third of the world’s population. Disproportionate growth of Far Eastern economies has produced a disproportionate share of related environmental difficulties. As the region searches for acceptable compromises between growth and environmental quality, its influence on global environmental health is certain to increase. Consequences of global environmental change such as habitat alteration, storms, and sealevel rise will be particularly acute among Pacific Rim nations. Adverse health effects from arsenic exposure in Pacific Rim nations have been used to justify drinking water standards in the United States and elsewhere. As global manufacturing in the Pacific Rim increases, the centroid of global air quality and waste management issues will shift further toward Far Eastern nations. The Eleventh International Conference of the Pacific Basin Consortium (PBC) was held in September 2005 in Honolulu, Hawaii. The purpose of the conference was to bring together individuals to discuss regional challenges to sustainable growth. The historic emphasis of the conference on hazardous wastes in relation to human health makes the PBC an ideal forum for discussing technical aspects of sustainable economic growth in the Pacific region. That role is reflected in the 2005 PBC conference themes, which included management of arsenic in potable waters, air quality, climate change, pesticides, mercury, and electronics industry waste—each with emphasis on relationships to human health. Arsenic management exemplifies the manner in which the PBC can focus interdisciplinary discussion in a single technical area. The conference program provided talks on arsenic toxicology, treatment technologies, management of arsenic-bearing residuals from water treatment, and the probable societal costs and benefits of arsenic management. PMID:18087598

  1. Meeting report: threats to human health and environmental sustainability in the pacific basin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnold, Robert G; Carpenter, David O; Kirk, Donald; Koh, David; Armour, Margaret-Ann; Cebrian, Mariano; Cifuentes, Luis; Khwaja, Mahmood; Ling, Bo; Makalinao, Irma; Paz-Y-Miño, César; Peralta, Genandrialine; Prasad, Rajendra; Singh, Kirpal; Sly, Peter; Tohyama, Chiharu; Woodward, Alistair; Zheng, Baoshan; Maiden, Todd

    2007-12-01

    The coastal zone of the Pacific Rim is home for about one-third of the world's population. Disproportionate growth of Far Eastern economies has produced a disproportionate share of related environmental difficulties. As the region searches for acceptable compromises between growth and environmental quality, its influence on global environmental health is certain to increase. Consequences of global environmental change such as habitat alteration, storms, and sea level rise will be particularly acute among Pacific Rim nations. Adverse health effects from arsenic exposure in Pacific Rim nations have been used to justify drinking water standards in the United States and elsewhere. As global manufacturing in the Pacific Rim increases, the centroid of global air quality and waste management issues will shift further toward Far Eastern nations. The Eleventh International Conference of the Pacific Basin Consortium (PBC) was held in September 2005 in Honolulu, Hawaii. The purpose of the conference was to bring together individuals to discuss regional challenges to sustainable growth. The historic emphasis of the conference on hazardous wastes in relation to human health makes the PBC an ideal forum for discussing technical aspects of sustainable economic growth in the Pacific region. That role is reflected in the 2005 PBC conference themes, which included management of arsenic in potable waters, air quality, climate change, pesticides, mercury, and electronics industry waste-each with emphasis on relationships to human health. Arsenic management exemplifies the manner in which the PBC can focus interdisciplinary discussion in a single technical area. The conference program provided talks on arsenic toxicology, treatment technologies, management of arsenic-bearing residuals from water treatment, and the probable societal costs and benefits of arsenic management.

  2. Environmental contaminants, ecosystems and human health

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Majumdar, S.K.; Miller, E.W.; Brenner, F.J. [eds.] [Lafayette College, Easton, PA (United States). Dept. of Biology

    1995-12-31

    The authors cover a variety of concerns regarding the adverse impacts of contaminants on ecosystems and human health. The twelve chapters in the first section of the text address the impact of contaminants on ecosystem function, and ten of the remaining twenty-two chapters are devoted to the effects of contaminants on human health. Part three presents eight case studies in humans, while the final four chapters provide the reader with an assessment of environmental problems and analyses. Two chapters, on the health effects of power plant generated air pollution and on black lung disease, have been abstracted separately for the IEA Coal Research CD-ROM.

  3. Environmental Education in Serbian Primary Schools: Challenges and Changes in Curriculum, Pedagogy, and Teacher Training

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanišic, Jelena; Maksic, Slavica

    2014-01-01

    The protection of human health and the preservation of the environment are topics that form an integral part of the primary school curriculum in Serbia. However, research studies have shown that students do not have enough knowledge to contribute to the development of a healthy lifestyle and environmental awareness. The latest changes in school…

  4. Soil-transmitted helminthiases: implications of climate change and human behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weaver, Haylee J; Hawdon, John M; Hoberg, Eric P

    2010-12-01

    Soil-transmitted helminthiases (STHs) collectively cause the highest global burden of parasitic disease after malaria and are most prevalent in the poorest communities, especially in sub-Saharan Africa. Climate change is predicted to alter the physical environment through cumulative impacts of warming and extreme fluctuations in temperature and precipitation, with cascading effects on human health and wellbeing, food security and socioeconomic infrastructure. Understanding how the spectrum of climate change effects will influence STHs is therefore of critical importance to the control of the global burden of human parasitic disease. Realistic progress in the global control of STH in a changing climate requires a multidisciplinary approach that includes the sciences (e.g. thermal thresholds for parasite development and resilience) and social sciences (e.g. behavior and implementation of education and sanitation programs). Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. An Agent-Based Modeling Framework for Simulating Human Exposure to Environmental Stresses in Urban Areas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liang Emlyn Yang

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Several approaches have been used to assess potential human exposure to environmental stresses and achieve optimal results under various conditions, such as for example, for different scales, groups of people, or points in time. A thorough literature review in this paper identifies the research gap regarding modeling approaches for assessing human exposure to environment stressors, and it indicates that microsimulation tools are becoming increasingly important in human exposure assessments of urban environments, in which each person is simulated individually and continuously. The paper further describes an agent-based model (ABM framework that can dynamically simulate human exposure levels, along with their daily activities, in urban areas that are characterized by environmental stresses such as air pollution and heat stress. Within the framework, decision-making processes can be included for each individual based on rule-based behavior in order to achieve goals under changing environmental conditions. The ideas described in this paper are implemented in a free and open source NetLogo platform. A basic modeling scenario of the ABM framework in Hamburg, Germany, demonstrates its utility in various urban environments and individual activity patterns, as well as its portability to other models, programs, and frameworks. The prototype model can potentially be extended to support environmental incidence management through exploring the daily routines of different groups of citizens, and comparing the effectiveness of different strategies. Further research is needed to fully develop an operational version of the model.

  6. Seasonal variation in human reproduction: environmental factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bronson, F H

    1995-06-01

    Almost all human populations exhibit seasonal variation in births, owing mostly to seasonal variation in the frequency of conception. This review focuses on the degree to which environmental factors like nutrition, temperature and photoperiod contribute to these seasonal patterns by acting directly on the reproductive axis. The reproductive strategy of humans is basically that of the apes: Humans have the capacity to reproduce continuously, albeit slowly, unless inhibited by environmental influences. Two, and perhaps three, environmental factors probably act routinely as seasonal inhibitors in some human populations. First, it seems likely that ovulation is regulated seasonally in populations experiencing seasonal variation in food availability. More specifically, it seems likely that inadequate food intake or the increased energy expenditure required to obtain food, or both, can delay menarche, suppress the frequency of ovulation in the nonlactating adult, and prolong lactational amenorrhea in these populations on a seasonal basis. This action is most easily seen in tropical subsistence societies where food availability often varies greatly owing to seasonal variation in rainfall; hence births in these populations often correlate with rainfall. Second, it seems likely that seasonally high temperatures suppress spermatogenesis enough to influence the incidence of fertilization in hotter latitudes, but possibly only in males wearing clothing that diminishes scrotal cooling. Since most of our knowledge about this phenomenon comes from temperate latitudes, the sensitivity of spermatogenesis in both human and nonhuman primates to heat in the tropics needs further study. It is quite possible that high temperatures suppress ovulation and early embryo survival seasonally in some of these same populations. Since we know less than desired about the effect of heat stress on ovulation and early pregnancy in nonhuman mammals, and nothing at all about it in humans or any of the

  7. Migration, Social Demands and Environmental Change amongst the Frafra of Northern Ghana and the Biali in Northern Benin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Papa Sow

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The impacts of environmental change and degradation on human populations, including the possibility of sharp increases in the number of people considered “environmental migrants” have gained considerable attention. Migrating communities may try to distribute their members along particular lines of kinship, gender, marriage and/or services linked to land exploitation and agriculture. This paper explores archives and narratives of African migrants in northwestern Benin and northeastern Ghana. These regions have been marked by severe ecological change and resource deterioration over the years, as well as changes in marital patterns, family relations and customary practices. In the case of Benin, the paper looks at different ethnic groups that migrated from neighboring countries to the study region. It then focuses on the Biali, who undertake marriage journeys after practicing rituals, which are often related to agricultural activities. The Frafra (Ghana, who, in their bid to out-migrate as a livelihood/coping strategy in the advent of environmental deterioration and rainfall variability, are confronted with high bride prices, changing family relations and customary practices. The paper concludes by highlighting socio-cultural changes that ensue in the face of outmigration among different ethnic groups, especially the Biali and Frafra, and the relationship between non-environmental and environmental factors, and mobility strategies.

  8. The human role in changing river channels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, K. J.

    2006-09-01

    , because of complex response and contingency. The ways in which changes in cross-section relate to reach and network changes are less clear, despite investigations showing the distribution of changes along segmented channels. When considering the human role in relation to changing river channels, at least five challenges persist. First, because prediction of the nature and amount of likely change at a particular location is not certain, and because the contrasting responses of humid and arid systems needs to be considered, modelling is required to reduce uncertainty, as was first emphasised by Burkham [Burkham, D.E., 1981. Uncertainties resulting from changes in river form. American Society Civil Engineers Proceedings, Journal Hydraulics Division 107, 593-610.]. Second, feedback effects incorporated within the relationship between changes at channel, reach and network scales can have considerable implications, especially because changes now evident may have occurred, or have been initiated, under different environmental conditions. Third, consideration of global climate change is imperative when considering channel sensitivity and responses to threshold conditions. Fourth, channel design involving geomorphology should now be an integral part of restoration procedures. This requires, fifthly, greater awareness of different cultures as a basis for understanding constraints imposed by legislative frameworks. Better understanding of the ways in which the perception of the human role in changing river channels varies with culture as well as varying over time should enhance application of design for river channel landscapes.

  9. Mitigating Climate Change at the Carbon Water Nexus: A Call to Action for the Environmental Engineering Community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarens, Andres F; Peters, Catherine A

    2016-10-01

    Environmental engineers have played a critical role in improving human and ecosystem health over the past several decades. These contributions have focused on providing clean water and air as well as managing waste streams and remediating polluted sites. As environmental problems have become more global in scale and more deeply entrenched in sociotechnical systems, the discipline of environmental engineering must grow to be ready to respond to the challenges of the coming decades. Here we make the case that environmental engineers should play a leadership role in the development of climate change mitigation technologies at the carbon-water nexus (CWN). Climate change, driven largely by unfettered emissions of fossil carbon into the atmosphere, is a far-reaching and enormously complex environmental risk with the potential to negatively affect food security, human health, infrastructure, and other systems. Solving this problem will require a massive mobilization of existing and innovative new technology. The environmental engineering community is uniquely positioned to do pioneering work at the CWN using a skillset that has been honed, solving related problems. The focus of this special issue, on "The science and innovation of emerging subsurface energy technologies," provides one example domain within which environmental engineers and related disciplines are beginning to make important contributions at the CWN. In this article, we define the CWN and describe how environmental engineers can bring their considerable expertise to bear in this area. Then we review some of the topics that appear in this special issue, for example, mitigating the impacts of hydraulic fracturing and geologic carbon storage, and we provide perspective on emergent research directions, for example, enhanced geothermal energy, energy storage in sedimentary formations, and others.

  10. Environmental security and sustainable development

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kok, M.T.J.

    1996-01-01

    Environmental security has become an important problem area for the social sciences and is becoming a key concept in long-term environmental policy and global environmental change issues. In taking Environmental Security on board, the International Human Dimensions Programme (IHDP) intends to stimulate research on approaches to solve global environmental issues, responses to climate change, food and water security, extreme weather events, etc. Both the Netherlands and Canadian HDP committee have placed environmental security and sustainable development on their national agendas. However, a research agenda for the role of social sciences in environmental security and societal impacts of global change has not been sufficiently elaborated yet, except for economic research on the impacts of climate change. This was the main reason for holding the title workshop. The aims of the workshop were: (1) to define environmental security as a research theme; (2) to explore the research agenda on environmental security for the social sciences; and (3) to establish and reinforce (inter)national research networks in this field. Two papers served as input for the participants of the workshop. First, in the Scoping Report Global Environmental Change and Human Security a brief overview is given of research conducted so far, as well as a working plan for the recently formed ad hoc Working Group on Environmental Security and Global Environmental Change. Secondly, the preliminary results of a programming study on Environmental Security and the societal impacts of climate change are presented. Special attention was given to the involvement of policymakers in the workshop. figs., tabs., 3 appendices, refs

  11. Climate change and respiratory health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerardi, Daniel A; Kellerman, Roy A

    2014-10-01

    To discuss the nature of climate change and both its immediate and long-term effects on human respiratory health. This review is based on information from a presentation of the American College of Chest Physicians course on Occupational and Environmental Lung Disease held in Toronto, Canada, June 2013. It is supplemented by a PubMed search for climate change, global warming, respiratory tract diseases, and respiratory health. It is also supplemented by a search of Web sites including the Environmental Protection Agency, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, World Meteorological Association, National Snow and Ice Data Center, Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center, Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change, and the World Health Organization. Health effects of climate change include an increase in the prevalence of certain respiratory diseases, exacerbations of chronic lung disease, premature mortality, allergic responses, and declines in lung function. Climate change, mediated by greenhouse gases, causes adverse health effects to the most vulnerable patient populations-the elderly, children, and those in distressed socioeconomic strata.

  12. Human ecology and environmentalism: Two different approaches to the relationships ecosystem/culture

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Leon Sicard, Tomas

    2001-01-01

    A comparative analysis of the human ecology focus versus the environmental dimension analysis, emphasizing that the first one does not have theoretical instruments to adequately consider the human action inside the ecosystems, while the second one considers the concept of culture as an explanation of the human niche and then of the environmental problem. It ends with thoughts about the environmental or ecologist conception that is discussed in the Colombian peace negotiations

  13. Estimating the probability that the Taser directly causes human ventricular fibrillation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, H; Haemmerich, D; Rahko, P S; Webster, J G

    2010-04-01

    This paper describes the first methodology and results for estimating the order of probability for Tasers directly causing human ventricular fibrillation (VF). The probability of an X26 Taser causing human VF was estimated using: (1) current density near the human heart estimated by using 3D finite-element (FE) models; (2) prior data of the maximum dart-to-heart distances that caused VF in pigs; (3) minimum skin-to-heart distances measured in erect humans by echocardiography; and (4) dart landing distribution estimated from police reports. The estimated mean probability of human VF was 0.001 for data from a pig having a chest wall resected to the ribs and 0.000006 for data from a pig with no resection when inserting a blunt probe. The VF probability for a given dart location decreased with the dart-to-heart horizontal distance (radius) on the skin surface.

  14. The impact of environmental conditions on human performance: A critical review of the literature. Volume 2

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Echeverria, D.; Barnes, V.; Bittner, A.

    1994-09-01

    The Battelle Human Affairs Research Centers (HARC) conducted a comprehensive review of the technical literature regarding the impact of environmental conditions on human performance applicable to nuclear power plant workers. The environmental conditions considered were vibration, noise, heat, cold, and light. Research staff identified potential human performance deficits along a continuum of increasing occupational exposure, ranging from deficits that occur at low exposures to deficits that occur at high exposures. Specific deficits were included in the review if scientists demonstrated the exposure caused an effect, using sound methodology. The levels associated with each deficit were then compared to the protection afforded by existing occupational exposure standards. Volume 2 presents several conclusions regarding the applicability of the research literature to environmental conditions in nuclear power plants. The findings presented suggest that occupational standards for vibration, noise, and heat, which were developed to protect health, are inadequate for preventing deficits in cognitive or motor performance in tasks likely to be performed in nuclear power plants. Also, there is little information in the literature on simultaneous conditions; for example, the effects of simultaneous exposure to heat and noise on cognition require more research. As many exposures in nuclear power plants will be simultaneous, this limitation should be kept in mind when using Volume 1

  15. Poor environmental tracking can make extinction risk insensitive to the colour of environmental noise

    Science.gov (United States)

    van de Pol, Martijn; Vindenes, Yngvild; Sæther, Bernt-Erik; Engen, Steinar; Ens, Bruno J.; Oosterbeek, Kees; Tinbergen, Joost M.

    2011-01-01

    The relative importance of environmental colour for extinction risk compared with other aspects of environmental noise (mean and interannual variability) is poorly understood. Such knowledge is currently relevant, as climate change can cause the mean, variability and temporal autocorrelation of environmental variables to change. Here, we predict that the extinction risk of a shorebird population increases with the colour of a key environmental variable: winter temperature. However, the effect is weak compared with the impact of changes in the mean and interannual variability of temperature. Extinction risk was largely insensitive to noise colour, because demographic rates are poor in tracking the colour of the environment. We show that three mechanisms—which probably act in many species—can cause poor environmental tracking: (i) demographic rates that depend nonlinearly on environmental variables filter the noise colour, (ii) demographic rates typically depend on several environmental signals that do not change colour synchronously, and (iii) demographic stochasticity whitens the colour of demographic rates at low population size. We argue that the common practice of assuming perfect environmental tracking may result in overemphasizing the importance of noise colour for extinction risk. Consequently, ignoring environmental autocorrelation in population viability analysis could be less problematic than generally thought. PMID:21561978

  16. Biogeography and climatic change as a context to human dispersal out of Africa and within Eurasia

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Made, Jan

    2011-06-01

    The dispersal of the genus Homo occurred against a background of continuous environmental change. Here, dispersals of large mammals through the Levantine Corridor and into Western Europe and Java are studied and compared to existing records of climatic change and dispersals of early humans and lithic industry. The first human dispersal (with Oldowan lithic industry) out of Africa, around or shortly before 1.8 Ma may have been triggered by biological evolution and increased social organisation, rather than environmental change. After that event, increasing aridity led to decreased faunal exchange between Africa and Eurasia and may have isolated the human populations of Africa and Africa. Southern (Java) and Eastern Asia (China) also seem to have been isolated. Human dispersal into Western Europe may have been limited by closed environments in Central Europe until about 1.2 Ma ago, when faunal dispersal into Europe suggests the cyclic spread of open environments to the west. Acheulean technology originated in Africa, some 1.6-1.5 Ma ago, but its dispersal into Eurasia may have been obstructed by an arid Southwest Asia, until broadly about 0.9 Ma ago, when faunal exchange suggests that the area became temporarily less dry. By 0.6-0.5 Ma ago it reached Europe.

  17. CHANGES IN THE SECURITY AGENDA: CRITICAL SECURITY STUDIES AND HUMAN SECURITY. THE CASE OF CHINA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nguyen THI THUY HANG

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Since the end of the Cold War the meaning of security has fundamentally changed. Issues which are labeled as non-traditional security namely human development, economic crises, environmental degradation, natural disaster, poverty, epidemics… have become a crucial part of the security agenda. These changes have been intensified with the development of the two approaches: Critical Security Studies and Human Security. This article explores how the meaning of security has changed and how the boundaries between traditional and non-traditional security have become blurred. The case of China is taken as empirical evidence to support the assertion that security has evolved beyond its traditional focus on the state.

  18. Social determinants and lifestyles: integrating environmental and public health perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, H; White, P C L

    2016-12-01

    Industrialization and urbanization have been associated with an epidemiological transition, from communicable to non-communicable disease, and a geological transition that is moving the planet beyond the stable Holocene epoch in which human societies have prospered. The lifestyles of high-income countries are major drivers of these twin processes. Our objective is to highlight the common causes of chronic disease and environmental change and, thereby, contribute to shared perspectives across public health and the environment. Integrative reviews focused on social determinants and lifestyles as two 'bridging' concepts between the fields of public health and environmental sustainability. We drew on established frameworks to consider the position of the natural environment within social determinants of health (SDH) frameworks and the position of social determinants within environmental frameworks. We drew on evidence on lifestyle factors central to both public health and environmental change (mobility- and diet-related factors). We investigated how public health's focus on individual behaviour can be enriched by environmental perspectives that give attention to household consumption practices. While SDH frameworks can incorporate the biophysical environment, their causal structure positions it as a determinant and one largely separate from the social factors that shape it. Environmental frameworks are more likely to represent the environment and its ecosystems as socially determined. A few frameworks also include human health as an outcome, providing the basis for a combined public health/environmental sustainability framework. Environmental analyses of household impacts broaden public health's concern with individual risk behaviours, pointing to the more damaging lifestyles of high-income households. The conditions for health are being undermined by rapid environmental change. There is scope for frameworks reaching across public health and environmental

  19. Environmental change in the Sahel

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Kjeld; D'haen, Sarah Ann Lise; Fensholt, Rasmus

    2016-01-01

    and choice of indicators, (2) biases, for example, related to selection of study sites, methodological choices, measurement accuracy, perceptions among interlocutors, and selection of temporal and spatial scales of analysis. The analysis of the root causes for different interpretations suggests...... that differences in findings could often be considered as complementary insights rather than mutually exclusive. This will have implications for the ways in which scientific results can be expected to support regional environmental policies and contribute to knowledge production....

  20. Impacts of discarded coffee waste on human and environmental health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandes, A S; Mello, F V C; Thode Filho, S; Carpes, R M; Honório, J G; Marques, M R C; Felzenszwalb, I; Ferraz, E R A

    2017-07-01

    Coffee is one of the most widely consumed beverages throughout the world. So far, many studies have shown the properties of coffee beverages, but little is known about its impacts on human and environmental health from its discard in the environment. So, the present work aims to investigate the mutagenic, genotoxic, cytotoxic and ecotoxic effects of leached (LE) and solubilized (SE) extracts from coffee waste, simulating the disposal of this residue in landfills and via sewage systems, respectively. Chemical analyses were also carried out. LE and SE induced mutagenicity in the TA98 Salmonella strain with and without exogenous metabolization (S9). In the TA100 only SE induced mutagenicity, what was observed without S9. An increase in the frequency of micronuclei was observed in HepG2 cell line after 3 and 24h of exposure to both extracts. No cytotoxic effects were observed in HepG2 cells by WST-1 assay. The EC50 values for the LE and SE were 1.5% and 11.26% for Daphnia similis, 0.12% and 1.39% for Ceriodaphnia dubia and 6.0% and 5.5% for Vibrio fischeri, respectively. Caffeine and several transition metals were found in both extracts. Coffee waste discarded in the environment may pose a risk to human and environmental health, since this compound can cause DNA damage and present toxicity to aquatic organisms. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. What's so local about global climate change? Testing social theories of environmental degradation to quantify the demographic, economic, and governmental factors associated with energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions in U.S. metropolitan areas and counties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tribbia, John Luke

    This research investigates the consequence of a crucial and not yet fully explored problem: the reluctance of the United States to sign and ratify international agreements, like Kyoto, that aim to mitigate climate change and its underlying social and ecological impacts. This unwillingness has inspired local governments, mayors, metropolitan area governance consortia, state governments, and governors to take on the climate challenge without the directive of the federal government. Local areas of the U.S. are experiencing climate-change-related impacts such as receding beach lines due to sea level rise and intense storms, fresh water shortages, and extreme weather events. As a result, researchers have begun to explore the human dimensions of climate change through an inquiry in: among many other topics, the vulnerability of local areas to the impacts of climate change and the forces shaping local areas' contribution to climate change. This study addresses the latter issue using the STIRPAT framework - a reformulated version of the I=(P)(A)(T) formulation that relates environmental impacts (I) to population growth (P), affluence (A), and technology (T). I address three questions that have thus far been poorly answered in prior research: "across the U.S., do local areas differ in the extent of their contribution to climate change?", "what are the causes of variation in energy use and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions across local areas?" and "which social theories best explain the causes of variation in energy use and CO2 emissions across local areas?" To make strides in answering these questions and contribute to the understanding of local level drivers of energy consumption and emissions, this research analyzes the causes of variation in: energy use and CO2 emissions in the 100 largest U.S. metropolitan areas in chapter 4, the change in energy consumption between 2000 and 2005 for these metropolitan areas in chapter 5, and CO2 emissions in all U.S. counties in chapter 6

  2. Evaluation of molecular brain changes associated with environmental stress in rodent models compared to human major depressive disorder: A proteomic systems approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cox, David Alan; Gottschalk, Michael Gerd; Stelzhammer, Viktoria; Wesseling, Hendrik; Cooper, Jason David; Bahn, Sabine

    2016-11-25

    Rodent models of major depressive disorder (MDD) are indispensable when screening for novel treatments, but assessing their translational relevance with human brain pathology has proved difficult. Using a novel systems approach, proteomics data obtained from post-mortem MDD anterior prefrontal cortex tissue (n = 12) and matched controls (n = 23) were compared with equivalent data from three commonly used preclinical models exposed to environmental stressors (chronic mild stress, prenatal stress and social defeat). Functional pathophysiological features associated with depression-like behaviour were identified in these models through enrichment of protein-protein interaction networks. A cross-species comparison evaluated which model(s) represent human MDD pathology most closely. Seven functional domains associated with MDD and represented across at least two models such as "carbohydrate metabolism and cellular respiration" were identified. Through statistical evaluation using kernel-based machine learning techniques, the social defeat model was found to represent MDD brain changes most closely for four of the seven domains. This is the first study to apply a method for directly evaluating the relevance of the molecular pathology of multiple animal models to human MDD on the functional level. The methodology and findings outlined here could help to overcome translational obstacles of preclinical psychiatric research.

  3. Two Distinct Yersinia pestis Populations Causing Plague among Humans in the West Nile Region of Uganda.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Respicio-Kingry, Laurel B; Yockey, Brook M; Acayo, Sarah; Kaggwa, John; Apangu, Titus; Kugeler, Kiersten J; Eisen, Rebecca J; Griffith, Kevin S; Mead, Paul S; Schriefer, Martin E; Petersen, Jeannine M

    2016-02-01

    Plague is a life-threatening disease caused by the bacterium, Yersinia pestis. Since the 1990s, Africa has accounted for the majority of reported human cases. In Uganda, plague cases occur in the West Nile region, near the border with Democratic Republic of Congo. Despite the ongoing risk of contracting plague in this region, little is known about Y. pestis genotypes causing human disease. During January 2004-December 2012, 1,092 suspect human plague cases were recorded in the West Nile region of Uganda. Sixty-one cases were culture-confirmed. Recovered Y. pestis isolates were analyzed using three typing methods, single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), pulsed field gel electrophoresis (PFGE), and multiple variable number of tandem repeat analysis (MLVA) and subpopulations analyzed in the context of associated geographic, temporal, and clinical data for source patients. All three methods separated the 61 isolates into two distinct 1.ANT lineages, which persisted throughout the 9 year period and were associated with differences in elevation and geographic distribution. We demonstrate that human cases of plague in the West Nile region of Uganda are caused by two distinct 1.ANT genetic subpopulations. Notably, all three typing methods used, SNPs, PFGE, and MLVA, identified the two genetic subpopulations, despite recognizing different mutation types in the Y. pestis genome. The geographic and elevation differences between the two subpopulations is suggestive of their maintenance in highly localized enzootic cycles, potentially with differing vector-host community composition. This improved understanding of Y. pestis subpopulations in the West Nile region will be useful for identifying ecologic and environmental factors associated with elevated plague risk.

  4. Attribution of observed surface humidity changes to human influence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willett, Katharine M; Gillett, Nathan P; Jones, Philip D; Thorne, Peter W

    2007-10-11

    Water vapour is the most important contributor to the natural greenhouse effect, and the amount of water vapour in the atmosphere is expected to increase under conditions of greenhouse-gas-induced warming, leading to a significant feedback on anthropogenic climate change. Theoretical and modelling studies predict that relative humidity will remain approximately constant at the global scale as the climate warms, leading to an increase in specific humidity. Although significant increases in surface specific humidity have been identified in several regions, and on the global scale in non-homogenized data, it has not been shown whether these changes are due to natural or human influences on climate. Here we use a new quality-controlled and homogenized gridded observational data set of surface humidity, with output from a coupled climate model, to identify and explore the causes of changes in surface specific humidity over the late twentieth century. We identify a significant global-scale increase in surface specific humidity that is attributable mainly to human influence. Specific humidity is found to have increased in response to rising temperatures, with relative humidity remaining approximately constant. These changes may have important implications, because atmospheric humidity is a key variable in determining the geographical distribution and maximum intensity of precipitation, the potential maximum intensity of tropical cyclones, and human heat stress, and has important effects on the biosphere and surface hydrology.

  5. How Can Humanities Interventions Promote Progress in the Environmental Sciences?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sally L. Kitch

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Environmental humanists make compelling arguments about the importance of the environmental humanities (EH for discovering new ways to conceptualize and address the urgent challenges of the environmental crisis now confronting the planet. Many environmental scientists in a variety of fields are also committed to incorporating socio-cultural analyses in their work. Despite such intentions and rhetoric, however, and some humanists’ eagerness to incorporate science into their own work, “radical interdisciplinarity [across the humanities and sciences] is ... rare ... and does not have the impact one would hope for” (Holm et al. 2013, p. 32. This article discusses reasons for the gap between transdisciplinary intentions and the work being done in the environmental sciences. The article also describes a project designed to address that gap. Entitled “From Innovation to Progress: Addressing Hazards of the Sustainability Sciences”, the project encourages humanities interventions in problem definition, before any solution or action is chosen. Progress offers strategies for promoting expanded stakeholder engagement, enhancing understanding of power struggles and inequities that underlie problems and over-determine solutions, and designing multiple future scenarios based on alternative values, cultural practices and beliefs, and perspectives on power distribution and entitlement.

  6. Climatic and Environmental Changes Affecting Communities in Atlantic Canada

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liette Vasseur

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Small rural coastal communities located in Atlantic Canada are vulnerable to the effects of climate and environmental changes. Major storms have impounded the coastline, causing much physical damage and affecting the socioeconomics of these communities that are composed of an aging population. The current study relays findings based on interviews completed in 2011–2012, following the 2010 winter storms in Atlantic Canada. It portrays the physical and social–ecological impacts affecting 10 coastal communities located in the provinces of Québec, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island. Semi-structured interviews held in these provinces are the basis for the contributions of this research. The findings reveal physical changes related to coastal erosion from high-wave impacts and storm surge causing flooding of the coastal zone. Also considered are strategies preferred and actually implemented by residents, such as building of protection walls, although undesirable. Due to funding constraints, however, many of these large-scale flood protection projects are not possible without governmental support. Instead, it is suggested that development be controlled and some respondents in this study upheld that relocation be used to alleviate the situation. Finally, more work is required to improve emergency planning. Better concerted short- and long-term responses need to be coordinated by local authorities and higher up in the government in order to ensure the sustainability of these coastal communities.

  7. The environmental impact of changing consumption patterns: a survey

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Røpke, Inge

    2001-01-01

    How does environmental impact change when national income increases? So far, this question has been mainly discussed from the point of view of production, but in recent years several studies have dealt with the question of decoupling from the point of view of consumption. The optimistic subscribers...... assessment of the environmental impact is most appropriately based on an input approach. Then data on input intensities for different categories of consumption goods are combined with data on changes in consumption patterns, and it is concluded that the historical changes in the composition of consumption...... seem to have done little to counterbalance the environmental effects of growth....

  8. Predicting Wetland Distribution Changes under Climate Change and Human Activities in a Mid- and High-Latitude Region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dandan Zhao

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Wetlands in the mid- and high-latitudes are particularly vulnerable to environmental changes and have declined dramatically in recent decades. Climate change and human activities are arguably the most important factors driving wetland distribution changes which will have important implications for wetland ecological functions and services. We analyzed the importance of driving variables for wetland distribution and investigated the relative importance of climatic factors and human activity factors in driving historical wetland distribution changes. We predicted wetland distribution changes under climate change and human activities over the 21st century using the Random Forest model in a mid- and high-latitude region of Northeast China. Climate change scenarios included three Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs based on five general circulation models (GCMs downloaded from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project, Phase 5 (CMIP5. The three scenarios (RCP 2.6, RCP 4.5, and RCP 8.5 predicted radiative forcing to peak at 2.6, 4.5, and 8.5 W/m2 by the 2100s, respectively. Our results showed that the variables with high importance scores were agricultural population proportion, warmness index, distance to water body, coldness index, and annual mean precipitation; climatic variables were given higher importance scores than human activity variables on average. Average predicted wetland area among three emission scenarios were 340,000 ha, 123,000 ha, and 113,000 ha for the 2040s, 2070s, and 2100s, respectively. Average change percent in predicted wetland area among three periods was greatest under the RCP 8.5 emission scenario followed by RCP 4.5 and RCP 2.6 emission scenarios, which were 78%, 64%, and 55%, respectively. Losses in predicted wetland distribution were generally around agricultural lands and expanded continually from the north to the whole region over time, while the gains were mostly associated with grasslands and water in the

  9. Middle Miocene paleoenvironmental crises in Central Eurasia caused by changes in marine gateway configuration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palcu, D. V.; Golovina, L. A.; Vernyhorova, Y. V.; Popov, S. V.; Krijgsman, W.

    2017-11-01

    Marine gateways prove to be important factors for changes in the ecology and biochemistry of marginal seas. Changes in gateway configuration played a dominant role in the Middle Miocene paleogeographic evolution of the Paratethys Sea that covered Central Eurasia. Here, we focus on the connection between the Central (CP) and Eastern Paratethys (EP) to understand the paleoenvironmental changes caused by the evolution of this marine gateway. We first construct an integrated magneto-biostratigraphic framework for the late Langhian-Serravallian (Chokrakian-Karaganian-Konkian-Volhynian) sedimentary record of the eastern domain, which allows a correlation to the well-dated successions west of the gateway. The magneto-biostratigraphic results from the Zelensky-Panagia section on the Black Sea coast of Russia show that the Chokrakian/Karaganian boundary has an age of 13.8 Ma, the Karaganian/Konkian boundary is dated at 13.4 Ma, and the Konkian/Volhynian boundary at 12.65 Ma. We identify three major phases on gateway functioning that are reflected in specific environmental changes. During the Karaganian, the EP turned into a lake-sea that supplied a unidirectional flow of low-salinity waters to the west, where the CP sea experienced its Badenian Salinity Crisis. This configuration is remarkably similar to the Mediterranean during its Messinian Salinity Crisis. The second phase is marked by a marine transgression from the west, reinstalling open-marine conditions in the CP and causing marine incursions in the EP during the Konkian. The Volhynian is characterized by a new gateway configuration that allows exchange between CP and EP, creating unified conditions all over the Paratethys. We hypothesize that a density driven pumping mechanism is triggered by the increase in connectivity at the Konkian/Volhynian boundary, which simultaneously caused major paleoenvironmental changes at both sides of the gateway and led to the Badenian-Sarmatian extinction event in the CP.

  10. Trace elements distribution in environmental compartments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Queiroz, Juliana C. de; Peres, Sueli da Silva; Godoy, Maria Luiza D.P., E-mail: suelip@ird.gov.br [Instituto de Radioprotecao e Dosimetria (IRD/CNEN-RJ), Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil)

    2017-11-01

    Trace elements term defines the presence of low concentrations metals at environment. Some of them are considered biologically essential, as Co, Cu and Mn. Others can cause detriment to environment and human health, as Pb, Cd, Hg, As, Ti and U. A large number of them have radioactive isotopes, implying the evaluation of risks for human health should be done considering the precepts of environmental radiological protection. The ecosystem pollution with trace elements generates changes at the geochemistry cycle of these elements and in environmental quality. Soils have single characteristics when compared with another components of biosphere (air, water and biota), cause they introduce themselves not only as a drain towards contaminants, but also as natural buffer that control the transport of chemical elements and other substances for atmosphere, hydrosphere and biota. The main purpose of environmental monitoring program is to evaluate the levels of contaminants in the various compartments of the environment: natural or anthropogenic, and to assess the contribution of a potential contaminant source on the environment. Elemental Composition for the collected samples was determined by inductively coupled plasma mass spectroscopy. The main objective of this work was to evaluate the map baseline of concentration of interest trace elements in environmental samples of water, sediment and soil from Environmental Monitoring Program of Instituto de Radioprotecao e Dosimetria (IRD). The samples were analyzed using an inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer (ICP-MS) at IRD. >From the knowledge of trace elements concentrations, could be evaluated the environmental quality parameters at the studied ecosystems. The data allowed evaluating some relevant aspects of the study of trace elements in soil and aquatic systems, with emphasis at the distribution, concentration and identification of main anthropic sources of contamination at environment. (author)

  11. Trace elements distribution in environmental compartments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Queiroz, Juliana C. de; Peres, Sueli da Silva; Godoy, Maria Luiza D.P.

    2017-01-01

    Trace elements term defines the presence of low concentrations metals at environment. Some of them are considered biologically essential, as Co, Cu and Mn. Others can cause detriment to environment and human health, as Pb, Cd, Hg, As, Ti and U. A large number of them have radioactive isotopes, implying the evaluation of risks for human health should be done considering the precepts of environmental radiological protection. The ecosystem pollution with trace elements generates changes at the geochemistry cycle of these elements and in environmental quality. Soils have single characteristics when compared with another components of biosphere (air, water and biota), cause they introduce themselves not only as a drain towards contaminants, but also as natural buffer that control the transport of chemical elements and other substances for atmosphere, hydrosphere and biota. The main purpose of environmental monitoring program is to evaluate the levels of contaminants in the various compartments of the environment: natural or anthropogenic, and to assess the contribution of a potential contaminant source on the environment. Elemental Composition for the collected samples was determined by inductively coupled plasma mass spectroscopy. The main objective of this work was to evaluate the map baseline of concentration of interest trace elements in environmental samples of water, sediment and soil from Environmental Monitoring Program of Instituto de Radioprotecao e Dosimetria (IRD). The samples were analyzed using an inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer (ICP-MS) at IRD. >From the knowledge of trace elements concentrations, could be evaluated the environmental quality parameters at the studied ecosystems. The data allowed evaluating some relevant aspects of the study of trace elements in soil and aquatic systems, with emphasis at the distribution, concentration and identification of main anthropic sources of contamination at environment. (author)

  12. Effects of seasonal meteorological variables on E. coli persistence in livestock faeces and implications for environmental and human health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliver, David M; Page, Trevor

    2016-11-15

    Agriculture contributes significant volumes of livestock faeces to land. Understanding how faecal microbes respond to shifts in meteorological patterns of contrasting seasons is important in order to gauge how environmental (and human health) risks may alter under a changing climate. The aim of this study was to: (i) quantify the temporal pattern of E. coli growth within dairy faeces post defecation; and (ii) derive E. coli seasonal population change profiles associated with contrasting environmental drivers. Evaluation of the die-off dynamics of E. coli revealed that a treatment mimicking drought and warming conditions significantly enhanced persistence relative to E. coli in faeces that were exposed to field conditions, and that this pattern was consistent across consecutive years. The internal temperature of faeces was important in driving the rate of change in the E. coli population in the immediate period post defecation, with most E. coli activity (as either die-off or growth) occurring at low dry matter content. This study highlighted that the use of seasonal E. coli persistence profiles should be approached with caution when modelling environmental and human health risks given the increased likelihood of atypical seasonal meteorological variables impacting on E. coli growth and die-off.

  13. Examining the Causes and Consequences of Short-Term Behavioral Change during the Middle Stone Age at Sibudu, South Africa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicholas J Conard

    Full Text Available Sibudu in KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa with its rich and high-resolution archaeological sequence provides an ideal case study to examine the causes and consequences of short-term variation in the behavior of modern humans during the Middle Stone Age (MSA. We present the results from a technological analysis of 11 stratified lithic assemblages which overlie the Howiesons Poort deposits and all date to ~58 ka. Based on technological and typological attributes, we conducted inter-assemblage comparisons to characterize the nature and tempo of cultural change in successive occupations. This work identified considerable short-term variation with clear temporal trends throughout the sequence, demonstrating that knappers at Sibudu varied their technology over short time spans. The lithic assemblages can be grouped into three cohesive units which differ from each other in the procurement of raw materials, the frequency in the methods of core reduction, the kind of blanks produced, and in the nature of tools the inhabitants of Sibudu made and used. These groups of assemblages represent different strategies of lithic technology, which build upon each other in a gradual, cumulative manner. We also identify a clear pattern of development toward what we have previously defined as the Sibudan cultural taxonomic unit. Contextualizing these results on larger geographical scales shows that the later phase of the MSA during MIS 3 in KwaZulu-Natal and southern Africa is one of dynamic cultural change rather than of stasis or stagnation as has at times been claimed. In combination with environmental, subsistence and contextual information, our high-resolution data on lithic technology suggest that short-term behavioral variability at Sibudu can be best explained by changes in technological organization and socio-economic dynamics instead of environmental forcing.

  14. Examining the Causes and Consequences of Short-Term Behavioral Change during the Middle Stone Age at Sibudu, South Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conard, Nicholas J; Will, Manuel

    2015-01-01

    Sibudu in KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa) with its rich and high-resolution archaeological sequence provides an ideal case study to examine the causes and consequences of short-term variation in the behavior of modern humans during the Middle Stone Age (MSA). We present the results from a technological analysis of 11 stratified lithic assemblages which overlie the Howiesons Poort deposits and all date to ~58 ka. Based on technological and typological attributes, we conducted inter-assemblage comparisons to characterize the nature and tempo of cultural change in successive occupations. This work identified considerable short-term variation with clear temporal trends throughout the sequence, demonstrating that knappers at Sibudu varied their technology over short time spans. The lithic assemblages can be grouped into three cohesive units which differ from each other in the procurement of raw materials, the frequency in the methods of core reduction, the kind of blanks produced, and in the nature of tools the inhabitants of Sibudu made and used. These groups of assemblages represent different strategies of lithic technology, which build upon each other in a gradual, cumulative manner. We also identify a clear pattern of development toward what we have previously defined as the Sibudan cultural taxonomic unit. Contextualizing these results on larger geographical scales shows that the later phase of the MSA during MIS 3 in KwaZulu-Natal and southern Africa is one of dynamic cultural change rather than of stasis or stagnation as has at times been claimed. In combination with environmental, subsistence and contextual information, our high-resolution data on lithic technology suggest that short-term behavioral variability at Sibudu can be best explained by changes in technological organization and socio-economic dynamics instead of environmental forcing.

  15. Perspectives for integrating human and environmental exposure assessments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ciffroy, P; Péry, A R R; Roth, N

    2016-10-15

    Integrated Risk Assessment (IRA) has been defined by the EU FP7 HEROIC Coordination action as "the mutual exploitation of Environmental Risk Assessment for Human Health Risk Assessment and vice versa in order to coherently and more efficiently characterize an overall risk to humans and the environment for better informing the risk analysis process" (Wilks et al., 2015). Since exposure assessment and hazard characterization are the pillars of risk assessment, integrating Environmental Exposure assessment (EEA) and Human Exposure assessment (HEA) is a major component of an IRA framework. EEA and HEA typically pursue different targets, protection goals and timeframe. However, human and wildlife species also share the same environment and they similarly inhale air and ingest water and food through often similar overlapping pathways of exposure. Fate models used in EEA and HEA to predict the chemicals distribution among physical and biological media are essentially based on common properties of chemicals, and internal concentration estimations are largely based on inter-species (i.e. biota-to-human) extrapolations. Also, both EEA and HEA are challenged by increasing scientific complexity and resources constraints. Altogether, these points create the need for a better exploitation of all currently existing data, experimental approaches and modeling tools and it is assumed that a more integrated approach of both EEA and HEA may be part of the solution. Based on the outcome of an Expert Workshop on Extrapolations in Integrated Exposure Assessment organized by the HEROIC project in January 2014, this paper identifies perspectives and recommendations to better harmonize and extrapolate exposure assessment data, models and methods between Human Health and Environmental Risk Assessments to support the further development and promotion of the concept of IRA. Ultimately, these recommendations may feed into guidance showing when and how to apply IRA in the regulatory decision

  16. Force majeure: Will climate change affect our ability to attain Good Environmental Status for marine biodiversity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elliott, Michael; Borja, Ángel; McQuatters-Gollop, Abigail; Mazik, Krysia; Birchenough, Silvana; Andersen, Jesper H; Painting, Suzanne; Peck, Myron

    2015-06-15

    The EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) requires that Good Environmental Status (GEnS), is achieved for European seas by 2020. These may deviate from GEnS, its 11 Descriptors, targets and baselines, due to endogenic managed pressures (from activities within an area) and externally due to exogenic unmanaged pressures (e.g. climate change). Conceptual models detail the likely or perceived changes expected on marine biodiversity and GEnS Descriptors in the light of climate change. We emphasise that marine management has to accommodate 'shifting baselines' caused by climate change particularly during GEnS monitoring, assessment and management and 'unbounded boundaries' given the migration and dispersal of highly-mobile species. We suggest climate change may prevent GEnS being met, but Member States may rebut legal challenges by claiming that this is outside its control, force majeure or due to 'natural causes' (Article 14 of the MSFD). The analysis is relevant to management of other global seas. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Environmental Science

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2001-02-15

    This book gives descriptions of environmental pollution such as water and soil pollution, harmful chemicals substances and radiation, nature protection on wild animals, wild plants, and nature park, environmental assessment, and environmental management. It deals with the earth environment on change and the cause of the earth environment, ozone layer, global warming and acid fallout, plan for the earth control and environment information and information system.

  18. Application of the 210Pb-dating technique to evaluate environmental changes resulting from recent human activities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jenkinson, A.V.; Chisari, R.; Farrar, Y.J.; Heijnis, H.; McOrist, G.D.; Hallegraeff, G.; Hughes, M.; Napoli, M.; James, J.M.; McMinn, A.; Thomson, P.; Smith, J.D.; Tinker, R.A.

    1997-01-01

    The 210 Pb-dating technique has shown particular promise for the study of recent environmental change by enabling the establishment of chronologies for contemporary environmental processes. In this paper two case studies are discussed. Case Study (1) looks at trace element and heavy metal levels in the estuaries of the Georges River and the Hacking River which are partly located in suburban Sydney and Case Study (2) looks at blooms of the toxic dinoflagellate Gymnodinium catenatum which were first observed in Tasmanian waters, principally the Huon and Derwent Rivers in 1980. In both cases the 210 Pb dating technique has been used to establish the sequence of sediment deposition in order to associate an age to the sediment layer which contains the entity under investigation

  19. Animal and human influenzas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peiris, M; Yen, H-L

    2014-08-01

    Influenza type A viruses affect humans and other animals and cause significant morbidity, mortality and economic impact. Influenza A viruses are well adapted to cross species barriers and evade host immunity. Viruses that cause no clinical signs in wild aquatic birds may adapt in domestic poultry to become highly pathogenic avian influenza viruses which decimate poultry flocks. Viruses that cause asymptomatic infection in poultry (e.g. the recently emerged A/H7N9 virus) may cause severe zoonotic disease and pose a major pandemic threat. Pandemic influenza arises at unpredictable intervals from animal viruses and, in its global spread, outpaces current technologies for making vaccines against such novel viruses. Confronting the threat of influenza in humans and other animals is an excellent example of a task that requires a One Health approach. Changes in travel, trade in livestock and pets, changes in animal husbandry practices, wet markets and complex marketing chains all contribute to an increased risk of the emergence of novel influenza viruses with the ability to cross species barriers, leading to epizootics or pandemics. Coordinated surveillance at the animal- human interface for pandemic preparedness, risk assessment, risk reduction and prevention at source requires coordinated action among practitioners in human and animal health and the environmental sciences. Implementation of One Health in the field can be challenging because of divergent short-term objectives. Successful implementation requires effort, mutual trust, respect and understanding to ensure that long-term goals are achieved without adverse impacts on agricultural production and food security.

  20. Boundaries of Mind and Nature - Human responses to changing landscapes over 2000 year during the Neolithic in Uppland, Sweden.

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Hackwitz, Kim; Löwenborg, Daniel

    2015-04-01

    In the near future we are facing a global environmental situation where hydrological changes undoubtedly will take place. These changes will have an impact on the landscapes and affect socio-environmental systems. An understanding of the effects of the long-term interplay between society, hydrology and landscape must become one of the main platforms on which societies prospects for the next century will be based. In this paper I will present new information derived from a combination of qualitative and quantitative methods to put forward the experience of the landscape and different boundaries; topographical, ideological and historical by using methods such as water catchment areas and regression equations. This is combined with the archaeological record and theories on experience derived from the concept of Historical Ecology. The main aim is to identify Neolithic territories from a long term perspective. The question to be discussed is: How did people experience and respond to different boundaries in a changing coastal landscape? Emphasis is given to the hydrological patterns and the role of water for the construction of geographically defined, social and sustainable landscapes. Just as human-environment interactions are crucial in creating landscapes, environmental changes are likely to have strong impacts on social constructions. Environmental changes cause diverse social effects and social relations are essential for understanding the responses to such changes as well as for understanding patterns of land use and the social and political construction of the landscape. An important aspect of reconstructing land use is therefore to analyse the cultural, social, and economic factors that drive land use decisions in relation to the initial conditions and emergent properties of the landscape. The Uppland area has undergone dramatic changes since the inland ice retreated around 10,000 BC. This process offered new land for occupation and at the same time changed

  1. Social, Environmental, and Health Vulnerability to Climate Change: The Case of the Municipalities of Minas Gerais, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Flávia Quintão

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Vulnerability to climate change is a complex and dynamic phenomenon involving both social and physical/environmental aspects. It is presented as a method for the quantification of the vulnerability of all municipalities of Minas Gerais, a state in southeastern Brazil. It is based on the aggregation of different kinds of environmental, climatic, social, institutional, and epidemiological variables, to form a composite index. This was named “Index of Human Vulnerability” and was calculated using a software (SisVuClima® specifically developed for this purpose. Social, environmental, and health data were combined with the climatic scenarios RCP 4.5 and 8.5, downscaled from ETA-HadGEM2-ES for each municipality. The Index of Human Vulnerability associated with the RCP 8.5 has shown a higher vulnerability for municipalities in the southern and eastern parts of the state of Minas Gerais.

  2. The Human - Nature Relationship i n t he Context o f Theo - Centric Environmental Ethics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gülşen YAYLI

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The environmental problems are one of the issues that intensively occupy the agenda of humankind. This fact mainly derives from the ambiguity of the s pan and the content of the issue. The concept of environmental problems can not be confined to th e soil, air and water pollution for the reason that it covers a scope wider than a classical pollution issues. Initially the form of the relations hip between h uman and nature has been relying on the “consumption at the level of content” which stands for a level that is enough to sustain the living. The perception of the nature used to be described with the metaphor of mother while natural environment was defined as the “mother earth”. However subsequent to natural environment definition of the Cartesian philosophy with its approach to the human nature relationship, the core metaphor to describe the natural environment has changed from the metaphor of “mother” to the “slave” which should serve by any means. The human - nature relationship within the context of ethics, both the parties an d their respective statues bear an importance. In terms of ethics of human - nature relationship, it is possible to mention three main approaches. First one is the anthropo - centric approach. Within the scope of historical process, human - nature relationship is addressed according to anthropo - centric ethics comprehension so human has remained at the center of discussion. Following the change of the perception regarding the issue of environment, new approaches have emerged that give emphasis not only on human beings but also others; on li ving and non - living beings with in the eco - system. In principle, this represents a departure from an anthropo - centric ethics to a new ethic approach which fall s into two categories, bio centric and eco - centric. The theo - centric ethics should also be included to these ethics approaches that are shaped within the sphere of positive sciences. The Abrahamic

  3. Incidence of environmental and genetic factors causing congenital cataract in Children of Lahore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naz, Shagufta; Sharif, Saima; Badar, Hafsa; Rashid, Farzana; Kaleem, Afshan; Iqtedar, Mehwish

    2016-07-01

    To check the incidence of environmental and genetic factors causing congenital cataract in infants. The descriptive study was conducted at Layton Rahmatullah Benevolent Trust, Lahore, Pakistan, from October 2013 to April 2014, and comprised children under 15 years of age who had rubella syndrome, herpes simplex, birth trauma, trisomy 21, Nance-Horan syndrome or Lowe's syndrome. Of the 38,000 cases examined, 120(0.3%) patients were diagnosed with congenital cataract. Of them, 52(43.33%)were aged between 2 and 5 years,22(18.33%) <11 years and 10(8.33%) ?15 years. Bilateral congenital cataract was observed in 91(75.83%) patients and unilateral congenital cataract in 29(24.17%). Environmental factors caused 72(62.07%) cases and genetic factors caused 44(37.93%).. Congenital cataract predominated in boys compared to girls. Early diagnosis and adequate therapy requires specific technology, as well as long-term and permanent care..

  4. Microplastics cause neurotoxicity, oxidative damage and energy-related changes and interact with the bioaccumulation of mercury in the European seabass, Dicentrarchus labrax (Linnaeus, 1758).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barboza, Luís Gabriel Antão; Vieira, Luís Russo; Branco, Vasco; Figueiredo, Neusa; Carvalho, Felix; Carvalho, Cristina; Guilhermino, Lúcia

    2018-02-01

    Microplastics pollution is a global paradigm that raises concern in relation to environmental and human health. This study investigated toxic effects of microplastics and mercury in the European seabass (Dicentrarchus labrax), a marine fish widely used as food for humans. A short-term (96 h) laboratory bioassay was done by exposing juvenile fish to microplastics (0.26 and 0.69 mg/L), mercury (0.010 and 0.016 mg/L) and binary mixtures of the two substances using the same concentrations, through test media. Microplastics alone and mercury alone caused neurotoxicity through acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibition, increased lipid oxidation (LPO) in brain and muscle, and changed the activities of the energy-related enzymes lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and isocitrate dehydrogenase (IDH). All the mixtures caused significant inhibition of brain AChE activity (64-76%), and significant increase of LPO levels in brain (2.9-3.4 fold) and muscle (2.2-2.9 fold) but not in a concentration-dependent manner; mixtures containing low and high concentrations of microplastics caused different effects on IDH and LDH activity. Mercury was found to accumulate in the brain and muscle, with bioaccumulation factors of 4-7 and 25-40, respectively. Moreover, in the analysis of mercury concentrations in both tissues, a significant interaction between mercury and microplastics was found. The decay of mercury in the water increased with microplastics concentration, and was higher in the presence of fish than in their absence. Overall, these results indicate that: microplastics influence the bioaccumulation of mercury by D. labrax juveniles; microplastics, mercury and their mixtures (ppb range concentrations) cause neurotoxicity, oxidative stress and damage, and changes in the activities of energy-related enzymes in juveniles of this species; mixtures with the lowest and highest concentrations of their components induced different effects on some biomarkers. These findings and other published

  5. Quantification of Human and Animal Viruses to Differentiate the Origin of the Fecal Contamination Present in Environmental Samples

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sílvia Bofill-Mas

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Many different viruses are excreted by humans and animals and are frequently detected in fecal contaminated waters causing public health concerns. Classical bacterial indicator such as E. coli and enterococci could fail to predict the risk for waterborne pathogens such as viruses. Moreover, the presence and levels of bacterial indicators do not always correlate with the presence and concentration of viruses, especially when these indicators are present in low concentrations. Our research group has proposed new viral indicators and methodologies for determining the presence of fecal pollution in environmental samples as well as for tracing the origin of this fecal contamination (microbial source tracking. In this paper, we examine to what extent have these indicators been applied by the scientific community. Recently, quantitative assays for quantification of poultry and ovine viruses have also been described. Overall, quantification by qPCR of human adenoviruses and human polyomavirus JC, porcine adenoviruses, bovine polyomaviruses, chicken/turkey parvoviruses, and ovine polyomaviruses is suggested as a toolbox for the identification of human, porcine, bovine, poultry, and ovine fecal pollution in environmental samples.

  6. Justice and Equity Implications of Climate Change Adaptation: A Theoretical Evaluation Framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boeckmann, Melanie; Zeeb, Hajo

    2016-01-01

    Climate change affects human health, and climate change adaptation aims to reduce these risks through infrastructural, behavioral, and technological measures. However, attributing direct human health effects to climate change adaptation is difficult, causing an ethical dilemma between the need for evidence of strategies and their precautionary implementation before such evidence has been generated. In the absence of conclusive evidence for individual adaptation strategies, alternative approaches to the measurement of adaptation effectiveness need to be developed. This article proposes a theoretical framework and a set of guiding questions to assess effects of adaptation strategies on seven domains of health determinants, including social, economic, infrastructure, institutional, community, environmental, and cultural determinants of health. Its focus on advancing gender equity and environmental justice concurrently with the implementation of health-related adaptation could serve as a template for policymakers and researchers. PMID:27618121

  7. Justice and Equity Implications of Climate Change Adaptation: A Theoretical Evaluation Framework

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melanie Boeckmann

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Climate change affects human health, and climate change adaptation aims to reduce these risks through infrastructural, behavioral, and technological measures. However, attributing direct human health effects to climate change adaptation is difficult, causing an ethical dilemma between the need for evidence of strategies and their precautionary implementation before such evidence has been generated. In the absence of conclusive evidence for individual adaptation strategies, alternative approaches to the measurement of adaptation effectiveness need to be developed. This article proposes a theoretical framework and a set of guiding questions to assess effects of adaptation strategies on seven domains of health determinants, including social, economic, infrastructure, institutional, community, environmental, and cultural determinants of health. Its focus on advancing gender equity and environmental justice concurrently with the implementation of health-related adaptation could serve as a template for policymakers and researchers.

  8. Understanding the causes of architecture changes using OSS mailing lists

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ding, Wei; Liang, Peng; Tang, Anthony; Van Vliet, Hans

    2015-01-01

    The causes of architecture changes can tell about why architecture changes, and this knowledge can be captured to prevent architecture knowledge vaporization and architecture degeneration. But the causes are not always known, especially in open source software (OSS) development. This makes it very

  9. Advancing Environmental Health: A Ballroom Dance Between Human Health and Earth Sciences Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, A.

    2016-12-01

    The mission of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) is to discover how the environment affects people in order to promote healthier lives. Translation of this mission into a meaningful reality entails extensive interdisciplinary interactions, expertise, and collaborations between the traditional health and earth sciences communities. Efforts to advance our understanding of adverse effects and illness associated with environmental factors requires not only a refined understanding of the biological mechanisms and pathways (e.g., inflammation, epigenetic changes, oxidative stress, mutagenesis, etc.) related to function and disease, but also the incredibly broad and complex environmental exposures and systems that influence these processes. Further complicating efforts to understand such interactions is the need to take into account individual susceptibility to disease across the human life span. While it is clear that environmental exposures can be readily linked to disease in individuals and to disproportionate health disparities in populations, the underlying risk factors for such findings are often elusive. Health and earth scientists have a long tradition of crossing their scientific divides to work together on a wide range of problems and issues, including disasters. Emergency situations, such as the environmental asbestos contamination in Libby, Montana, the Gulf Oil Spill, numerous chemical releases into air and water, wildfires, the World Trade Center Attack, and responses to Ebola, and now Zika, demand the collective expertise of the "environmental health sciences enterprise" to protect the public's health, facilitate recovery, and improve future preparedness. Furthermore, such high visibility efforts stand as a clear example of what human and earth sciences research can accomplish when transformative interdisciplinary approaches and a diverse well-trained cadre of scientists dance together on the ballroom floor.

  10. Energy efficiency as a unifying principle for human, environmental, and global health

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fontana, Luigi; Atella, Vincenzo; Kammen, Daniel M

    2013-01-01

    A strong analogy exists between over/under consumption of energy at the level of the human body and of the industrial metabolism of humanity. Both forms of energy consumption have profound implications for human, environmental, and global health. Globally, excessive fossil-fuel consumption, and individually, excessive food energy consumption are both responsible for a series of interrelated detrimental effects, including global warming, extreme weather conditions, damage to ecosystems, loss of biodiversity, widespread pollution, obesity, cancer, chronic respiratory disease, and other lethal chronic diseases. In contrast, data show that the efficient use of energy—in the form of food as well as fossil fuels and other resources—is vital for promoting human, environmental, and planetary health and sustainable economic development. While it is not new to highlight how efficient use of energy and food can address some of the key problems our world is facing, little research and no unifying framework exists to harmonize these concepts of sustainable system management across diverse scientific fields into a single theoretical body. Insights beyond reductionist views of efficiency are needed to encourage integrated changes in the use of the world’s natural resources, with the aim of achieving a wiser use of energy, better farming systems, and healthier dietary habits. This perspective highlights a range of scientific-based opportunities for cost-effective pro-growth and pro-health policies while using less energy and natural resources. PMID:24555053

  11. The sedimentological changes caused by human impact at the artificial channel of Medjerda-River (Coastal zone of Medjerda, Tunisia)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benmoussa, Thouraya; Amrouni, Oula; Dezileau, Laurent; Mahé, Gil; Abdeljaouad, Saâdi

    2018-04-01

    Recent sedimentary and morphological changes at the new mouth of Medjerda-River (Gulf of Tunis) are investigated using a multiproxy approach of sediment cores complited by 210Pbex and 137Cs method dating. The subject of the study is to focus on surveying the sedimentary evolution of Medjerda-Raoued Delta caused by the human intervention in the management of the main tributaries of the Medjerda-River (artificial channel of Henchir Tobias). Sediment cores (CEM-1 and CEM-3) were subjected to both multiproxy approaches (Grain size, geochemical analysis and dating radiometric 210Pbex and 137Cs). The sedimentological analysis of the new deltaic deposits shows a progradation sequence with the silt and clay deposits on the historic sandy substratum. The mean grain size evolution on the old beach profile shows a decreasing trend from backshore (CEM-3) to nearshore (CEM-1). The geochemical results show varying concentrations of chemical elements such as Fe, K, Rb, Nb, Cr, Ti, Ba, Ca, Sr, Zr, V, and potentially toxic metal trace elements such as Pb, Zn and the As. The Principal component Analysis (PCA) applied in the geochemical elements evolution confirms the marine origin of the sand deposits in the basic layers of the two cores. The chronological method (210Pbex and 137Cs) affirms that the first fluvial deposits were set up only after 1950. The sedimentological and geochemical result confirm the actual unless of coarser fluvial supplies under the human activities leading the negative coastal sediment balance and the shoreline retreat as well.

  12. Climate Change and Environmental assessments: Issues in an African Perspective

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dalfelt, Arne; Naess, Lars Otto

    1997-12-31

    The present report discusses the potential for integrating climate change issues into environmental assessments of development actions, with an emphasis on sub-Sahara Africa. The study is motivated by the fact that future climate change could have significant adverse impacts on the natural and socio-economic environment in Africa. Yet, to date global change issues, including climate change, have been largely overlooked in the process of improving environmental assessment procedures and methodologies. It is argued that although emissions of greenhouse gases in Africa are negligible today, it is highly relevant to include this aspect in the planning of long-term development strategies. The report discusses potential areas of conflicts and synergies between climate change and development goals. The general conclusion is that environmental assessments could be an appropriate tool for addressing climate change issues, while there are still several obstacles to its practical implementation. Four priority areas are suggested for further work: (1) Environmental accounting, (2) harmonization and standard-setting, (3) implementation, and (4) risk management. 82 refs., 5 figs., 11 tabs.

  13. A review of the Delta Po evolution (Italy) related to climatic changes and human impacts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simeoni, Umberto; Corbau, Corinne

    2009-06-01

    Climate changes and sea-level rise are important issues, especially for deltas such as the Po Delta, Italy. The evolution of the Po Delta shows a succession in space and a superposition in time of complex environmental natural processes. During the last few centuries, anthropogenic action has played a major role. The formation of the Po Delta began about 2000 years ago and has undergone many phases of development. Between 1500 AD and 1600 AD, the Venetian technicians diverted the Po river course. With these interventions, the "Renaissance delta" was cut off from the hydraulic network and the "modern delta" began to form. Until the middle of the 20th century, progradation of the delta was noticeable due to the abundant sediment supply. In the following decades coastal erosion occurred, this was caused by the reduction of the solid supply of the Po, due to dam and barrier construction and to river bed excavation. These and other interventions (e.g. reclamation, methane extractions from superficial ground water table) have deeply modified the physical and ecological characteristics of the Po Delta. The morphological characteristics of the Po Delta make the largest Italian wetland particularly unstable and very fragile when subjected to human pressure. Furthermore, the delta evidences multiple threats that will probably be exacerbated in the following decades by the effects of expected climatic changes. Only the application of careful policies concerning coastal defence, flood mitigation, anthropogenic subsidence reduction and salt wedge intrusion control will allow reduction of the present or predicted negative effects. This paper reviews how natural and human factors have controlled the Po Delta through time and discusses management strategies taking into account the importance of the human factor and the potential effects of climatic changes.

  14. Water-ecosystem-economy nexus under human intervention and climate change: a study in the Heihe River Basin (China)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Y.; Tian, Y.; Wu, X.; Feng, D.

    2017-12-01

    Recently, "One Belt and One Road" initiative, namely, building the "Silk Road Economic Belt" and "21st Century Maritime Silk Road", has become a global strategy of China and has been discussed as China's "Marshall Plan". The overland route of "One Belt" comes across vast arid lands, where the local population and ecosystem compete keenly for limited water resources. Water and environmental securities represent an important constraint of the "One Belt" development, and therefore understanding the complex water-ecosystem-economy nexus in the arid inland areas is very important. One typical case is Heihe River Basin (HRB), the second largest inland river basin of China, where the croplands in its middle part sucked up the river flow and groundwater, causing serious ecological problems in its lower part (Gobi Desert). We have developed an integrated hydrological-ecological model for the middle and lower HRB (the modeling domain has an area of 90,589 km2), which served as a platform to fuse multi-source data and provided a coherent understanding on the regional water cycle. With this physically based model, we quantitatively investigated how the nexus would be impacted by human intervention, mainly the existing and potential water regulations, and what would be the uncertainty of the nexus under the climate change. In studying the impact of human intervention, simulation-optimization analyses based on surrogate modeling were performed. In studying the uncertainty resulted from the climate change, outputs of multiple GCMs were downscaled for this river basin to drive ecohydrological simulations. Our studies have demonstrated the significant tradeoffs among the crop production in the middle HRB, the water and environmental securities of the middle HRB, and the ecological health of the lower HRB. The underlying mechanisms of the tradeoffs were also systematically addressed. The climate change would cause notable uncertainty of the nexus, which makes the water resources

  15. Event driven adaptation, land use and human coping strategies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Reenberg, Anette; Birch-Thomsen, Torben; Fog, Bjarne

    perceive cause-effect relationships between societal and environmental events and their individual and collective management of resources. The coupled human-environment timelines are used to discuss ways in which the local communities' adaptive resource management strategies have been employed in the face......The paper focuses on assessing the wider perspectives of adaptive resource management strategies in former subsistence agriculture societies in the SW Pacific. Firstly, we will briefly introduce the theoretical context related to the livelihood framework, adaptation to socio-environmental change...... and the concept of coupled human-environmental timelines. Secondly, with point of departure in a baseline characterization of Bellona Island derived from a comprehensive survey in the late 1960s and resent fieldwork in late 2006, we present the case of Bellona Island. Key issues addressed concern climatic events...

  16. Inuit Perspectives on Arctic Environmental Change': A Traveling Exhibition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheffield, E. M.; Hakala, J. S.; Gearheard, S.

    2006-12-01

    The Inuit of Nunavut, Canada, have an intimate relationship with their surroundings. As a culture that relies on knowledge of sea ice, snow, and weather conditions for success in hunting, fishing, and healthy wellbeing, Inuit have observed and studied environmental patterns for generations. An ongoing study into their traditional knowledge and their observations of environmental change is being conducted by researcher Dr. Shari Gearheard, who has worked with Inuit communities in Nunavut for over a decade. The results of the research have been published in scientific journals, and to communicate the results to a broader audience, Dr. Gearheard designed an interactive CD-ROM displaying photographs, maps, and interview videos of Inuit Elders' perspectives on the changes they have witnessed. Receiving immediate popularity since its release in 2004, copies of `When the Weather is Uggianaqtuq: Inuit Observations of Environmental Change' have been distributed worldwide, to indigenous peoples, social science and climate change researchers, teachers, students, and the general public. To further disseminate the information contained on the CD-ROM, the National Snow and Ice Data Center and the Museum of Natural History, both of the University of Colorado, are partnering to create an exhibition which will open at the Museum during the International Polar Year in April 2008. The exhibit, tentatively titled `Inuit Perspectives on Arctic Environmental Change,' will feature photographs, graphics, and text in both English and Inuktitut describing environmental change in the North. The goals are to make the information and interpretation contained on the CD-ROM available and more accessible to a broad audience and to raise awareness about Arctic climate change and the important contribution of Inuit knowledge. Following exhibition at the Museum, the exhibit will travel throughout the United States, Alaska, and Nunavut, through a network of museums, schools, libraries, tribal

  17. [Prediction model of human-caused fire occurrence in the boreal forest of northern China].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Fu-tao; Su, Zhang-wen; Wang, Guang-yu; Wang, Qiang; Sun, Long; Yang, Ting-ting

    2015-07-01

    The Chinese boreal forest is an important forest resource in China. However, it has been suffering serious disturbances of forest fires, which were caused equally by natural disasters (e.g., lightning) and human activities. The literature on human-caused fires indicates that climate, topography, vegetation, and human infrastructure are significant factors that impact the occurrence and spread of human-caused fires. But the studies on human-caused fires in the boreal forest of northern China are limited and less comprehensive. This paper applied the spatial analysis tools in ArcGIS 10.0 and Logistic regression model to investigate the driving factors of human-caused fires. Our data included the geographic coordinates of human-caused fires, climate factors during year 1974-2009, topographic information, and forest map. The results indicated that distance to railway (x1) and average relative humidity (x2) significantly impacted the occurrence of human-caused fire in the study area. The logistic model for predicting the fire occurrence probability was formulated as P= 1/[11+e-(3.026-0.00011x1-0.047x2)] with an accuracy rate of 80%. The above model was used to predict the monthly fire occurrence during the fire season of 2015 based on the HADCM2 future weather data. The prediction results showed that the high risk of human-caused fire occurrence concentrated in the months of April, May, June and August, while April and May had higher risk of fire occurrence than other months. According to the spatial distribution of possibility of fire occurrence, the high fire risk zones were mainly in the west and southwest of Tahe, where the major railways were located.

  18. Revealing Interactions between Human Resources, Quality of Life and Environmental Changes within Socially-oriented Observations : Results from the IPY PPS Arctic Project in the Russian North

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vlasova, Tatiana

    2010-05-01

    Socially-oriented Observations (SOO) in the Russian North have been carried out within multidisciplinary IPY PPS Arctic project under the leadership of Norway and supported by the Research Council of Norway as well as Russian Academy of Sciences. The main objective of SOO is to increase knowledge and observation of changes in quality of life conditions (state of natural environment including climate and biota, safe drinking water and foods, well-being, employment, social relations, access to health care and high quality education, etc.) and - to reveal trends in human capital and capacities (health, demography, education, creativity, spiritual-cultural characteristics and diversity, participation in decision making, etc.). SOO have been carried out in industrial cities as well as sparsely populated rural and nature protection areas in observation sites situated in different bioms (from coastal tundra to southern taiga zone) of Murmansk, Arkhangelsk Oblast and Republic of Komi. SOO were conducted according to the international protocol included in PPS Arctic Manual. SOO approaches based both on local people's perceptions and statistics help to identify main issues and targets for life quality, human capital and environment improvement and thus to distinguish leading SOO indicators for further monitoring. SOO have revealed close interaction between human resources, quality of life and environmental changes. Negative changes in human capital (depopulation, increasing unemployment, aging, declining physical and mental health, quality of education, loss of traditional knowledge, marginalization etc.), despite peoples' high creativity and optimism are becoming the major driving force effecting both the quality of life and the state of environment and overall sustainability. Human induced disturbances such as uncontrolled forests cuttings and poaching are increasing. Observed rapid changes in climate and biota (ice and permafrost melting, tundra shrubs getting taller and

  19. Taimyr Reindeer and Environmental Change: Monitoring Wild Reindeer Migration in Changing Natural and Social Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrov, A. N.

    2016-12-01

    The Taimyr Reindeer Herd (TRH) is both the largest and the longest monitored wild reindeer herd in Eurasia. An important part of Arctic ecosystems and Indigenous livelihood, wild reindeer have been continuously monitored for almost 50 years. During this time, herds have exhibited large changes in size and these changes have been recorded in almost all herds across the animal's range. An increasing number of wild reindeer in the Soviet times was followed by a significant population loss in the last decade. In addition, recent monitoring revealed substantial shifts in the distribution of wild populations. The decline in wild reindeer is likely related to natural cycles and changes in the Arctic environment caused by climate variability and anthropogenic activity. This study investigates patterns and possible drives of reindeer population dynamics in space and time. We identify key climatic factors, possible relationships with biomass dynamics, as well as with hunting practices and other human impacts.

  20. Human parechovirus causes encephalitis with white matter injury in Neonates

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verboon-Maciolek, Malgorzata A.; Groenendaal, Floris; Hahn, Cecil D.; Hellmann, Jonathan; van Loon, Anton M.; Boivin, Guy; de Vries, Linda S.

    Objective: To assess the role of human parechoviruses (HPeVs) as a cause of neonatal cerebral infection and to report neuroimaging findings of newborn infants with encephalitis caused by HPeVs. Methods: Clinical presentation, cranial ultrasonography, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings, and

  1. Evolving Changes in the Management of Burns and Environmental Injuries

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    and Environmental Injuries 965 within the investing fascia of an extremity causes vascular compromise and neuro- muscular damage. Common causes of...resistance) Enteral feeding intolerance ( distension , high residuals, or diarrhea). Prospective validation of these indicators is needed.85 In the presence

  2. Human biomonitoring from an environmental justice perspective

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Morrens, Bert; Den Hond, Elly; Schoeters, Greet

    2017-01-01

    Background: Environmental justice research shows how socially disadvantaged groups are more exposed and more vulnerable to environmental pollution. At the same time, these groups are less represented and, thus, less visible in biomedical studies. This socioeconomic participation bias is a form...... of environmental injustice within research practice itself. Methods: We designed, implemented and evaluated a targeted recruitment strategy to enhance the participation of socially disadvantaged pregnant women in a human biomonitoring study in Belgium. We focused on women of Turkish and Moroccan descent...... in direct, person-to-person contact with trusted buddies and supported by practical advice about cultural and linguistic sensitivity, it was possible to increase study participation of socially disadvantaged people. Above all, this required openness and flexibility in the mind-set of researchers so...

  3. Challenges to professionalism: Social accountability and global environmental change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearson, David; Walpole, Sarah; Barna, Stefi

    2015-01-01

    This article explores the concept of professionalism as it relates to social change and social accountability, and expands on them in the light of global environmental changes. Professionalism in medicine includes concepts of altruism, service, professional knowledge, self-regulation and autonomy. Current dialogues around social accountability suggest that medical schools should re-orientate their strategy and desired education, research and service outcomes to the health needs of the communities they serve.This article addresses the following questions: • How do we reconcile ideas of medical professionalism with the demands of creating a more equal, just, sustainable and socially inclusive society? • What new challenges do or will we face in relation to environmental degradation, biodiversity loss, ecosystem health and climate change? • How can medical schools best teach social and environmental responsiveness within a framework of professionalism? • How do medical schools ensure that tomorrow's doctors possess the knowledge, skills and attitude to adapt to the challenges they will face in future roles?We offer ideas about why and how medical educators can change, recommendations to strengthen the teaching of professionalism and social accountability and suggestions about the contribution of an emerging concept, that of "environmental accountability".

  4. Dangers of environmental pollution

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schaer, M.

    1978-01-01

    Environmental pollution is ever increasing. Protection of the environment must not be neglected for economic reasons. Damage to health due to environmental effects is hard to determine epidemiologically as there are nearly always several causes to consider at the same time. Still, the increase in environmental pollution results in increased damage to humans, animals, and plants. The many dangers to health can be illustrated by the example of energy demand and the different ways to meet it. It is highly necessary to create environmental laws which aim at a reduction of environmental pollution. (orig.) [de

  5. Inorganic arsenic causes fatty liver and interacts with ethanol to cause alcoholic liver disease in zebrafish

    OpenAIRE

    Kathryn Bambino; Chi Zhang; Christine Austin; Chitra Amarasiriwardena; Manish Arora; Jaime Chu; Kirsten C. Sadler

    2018-01-01

    The rapid increase in fatty liver disease (FLD) incidence is attributed largely to genetic and lifestyle factors; however, environmental toxicants are a frequently overlooked factor that can modify the effects of more common causes of FLD. Chronic exposure to inorganic arsenic (iAs) is associated with liver disease in humans and animal models, but neither the mechanism of action nor the combinatorial interaction with other disease-causing factors has been fully investigated. Here, we examined...

  6. Re-introducing environmental change drivers in biodiversity-ecosystem functioning research

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Laender, Frederik; Rohr, Jason R.; Ashauer, Roman; Baird, Donald J.; Berger, Uta; Eisenhauer, Nico; Grimm, Volker; Hommen, Udo; Maltby, Lorraine; Meliàn, Carlos J.; Pomati, Francesco; Roessink, Ivo; Radchuk, Viktoriia; Van den Brink, Paul J.

    2016-01-01

    For the past 20 years, research on biodiversity and ecosystem functioning (B-EF) has only implicitly considered the underlying role of environmental change. We illustrate that explicitly re-introducing environmental change drivers in B-EF research is needed to predict the functioning of ecosystems facing changes in biodiversity. Next, we show how this reintroduction improves experimental control over community composition and structure, which helps to obtain mechanistic insight about how multiple aspects of biodiversity relate to function, and how biodiversity and function relate in food-webs. We also highlight challenges for the proposed re-introduction, and suggest analyses and experiments to better understand how random biodiversity changes, as studied by classic approaches in B-EF research, contribute to the shifts in function that follow environmental change. PMID:27742415

  7. Climate change and human colonization triggered habitat loss and fragmentation in Madagascar

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Salmona, Jordi; Heller, Rasmus; Quéméré, Erwan

    2017-01-01

    The relative effect of past climate fluctuations and anthropogenic activities on current biome distribution is subject to increasing attention, notably in biodiversity hot spots. In Madagascar, where humans arrived in the last ~4 to 5,000 years, the exact causes of the demise of large vertebrates......-Holocene transition. While mid-Holocene climate change probably triggered major demographic changes in the two lemur species range and connectivity, human settlements that expanded over the last four millennia in northern Madagascar likely played a role in the loss and fragmentation of the forest cover.......—Propithecus tattersalli and Propithecus perrieri—using population genetic analyses. Our results highlight the necessity to consider population structure and changes in connectivity in demographic history inferences. We show that both species underwent demographic fluctuations which most likely occurred after the mid...

  8. Optimization of human, animal, and environmental health by using the One Health approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sleeman, Jonathan M; DeLiberto, Thomas; Nguyen, Natalie

    2017-08-31

    Emerging diseases are increasing burdens on public health, negatively affecting the world economy, causing extinction of species, and disrupting ecological integrity. One Health recognizes that human, domestic animal, and wildlife health are interconnected within ecosystem health and provides a framework for the development of multidisciplinary solutions to global health challenges. To date, most health-promoting interventions have focused largely on single-sector outcomes. For example, risk for transmission of zoonotic pathogens from bush-meat hunting is primarily focused on human hygiene and personal protection. However, bush-meat hunting is a complex issue promoting the need for holistic strategies to reduce transmission of zoonotic disease while addressing food security and wildlife conservation issues. Temporal and spatial separation of humans and wildlife, risk communication, and other preventative strategies should allow wildlife and humans to co-exist. Upstream surveillance, vaccination, and other tools to prevent pathogen spillover are also needed. Clear multi-sector outcomes should be defined, and a systems-based approach is needed to develop interventions that reduce risks and balance the needs of humans, wildlife, and the environment. The ultimate goal is long-term action to reduce forces driving emerging diseases and provide interdisciplinary scientific approaches to management of risks, thereby achieving optimal outcomes for human, animal, and environmental health.

  9. Optimization of human, animal, and environmental health by using the One Health approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sleeman, Jonathan M.; DeLiberto, Thomas; Nguyen, Natalie T.

    2017-01-01

    Emerging diseases are increasing burdens on public health, negatively affecting the world economy, causing extinction of species, and disrupting ecological integrity. One Health recognizes that human, domestic animal, and wildlife health are interconnected within ecosystem health and provides a framework for the development of multidisciplinary solutions to global health challenges. To date, most health-promoting interventions have focused largely on single-sector outcomes. For example, risk for transmission of zoonotic pathogens from bush-meat hunting is primarily focused on human hygiene and personal protection. However, bush-meat hunting is a complex issue promoting the need for holistic strategies to reduce transmission of zoonotic disease while addressing food security and wildlife conservation issues. Temporal and spatial separation of humans and wildlife, risk communication, and other preventative strategies should allow wildlife and humans to co-exist. Upstream surveillance, vaccination, and other tools to prevent pathogen spillover are also needed. Clear multi-sector outcomes should be defined, and a systems-based approach is needed to develop interventions that reduce risks and balance the needs of humans, wildlife, and the environment. The ultimate goal is long-term action to reduce forces driving emerging diseases and provide interdisciplinary scientific approaches to management of risks, thereby achieving optimal outcomes for human, animal, and environmental health.

  10. Improving fire season definition by optimized temporal modelling of daily human-caused ignitions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costafreda-Aumedes, S; Vega-Garcia, C; Comas, C

    2018-07-01

    Wildfire suppression management is usually based on fast control of all ignitions, especially in highly populated countries with pervasive values-at-risk. To minimize values-at-risk loss by improving response time of suppression resources it is necessary to anticipate ignitions, which are mainly caused by people. Previous studies have found that human-ignition patterns change spatially and temporally depending on socio-economic activities, hence, the deployment of suppression resources along the year should consider these patterns. However, full suppression capacity is operational only within legally established fire seasons, driven by past events and budgets, which limits response capacity and increases damages out of them. The aim of this study was to assess the temporal definition of fire seasons from the perspective of human-ignition patterns for the case study of Spain, where people cause over 95% of fires. Humans engage in activities that use fire as a tool in certain periods within a year, and in locations linked to specific spatial factors. Geographic variables (population, infrastructures, physiography and land uses) were used as explanatory variables for human-ignition patterns. The changing influence of these geographic variables on occurrence along the year was analysed with day-by-day logistic regression models. Daily models were built for all the municipal units in the two climatic regions in Spain (Atlantic and Mediterranean Spain) from 2002 to 2014, and similar models were grouped within continuous periods, designated as ignition-based seasons. We found three ignition-based seasons in the Mediterranean region and five in the Atlantic zones, not coincidental with calendar seasons, but with a high degree of agreement with current legally designated operational fire seasons. Our results suggest that an additional late-winter-early-spring fire season in the Mediterranean area and the extension of this same season in the Atlantic zone should be re

  11. Have Changes to Unused Land in China Improved or Exacerbated Its Environmental Quality in the Past Three Decades?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ling Yi

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Inappropriate land use has caused a series of environmental disasters such as floods and sand storms, and some of them involved unused land changes with highly localized distributions in arid and semi-arid regions with fragile ecosystems. As the third-rank category of first-level land use/cover in China, unused land (UL is now playing an increasingly important role in protection of the natural environment and sustainable utilization of land resources. In this article, we assessed the effects on regional eco-environments employing a quantitative EL (ecological effect index model, which can be used to evaluate and represent the contribution of UL changes to the eco-environmental quality. Results show that UL changes generally contributed to the deterioration of eco-environmental quality during the study period. Some major contributors to improving eco-environmental quality were transformation of sandy land and saline-alkali lands to grasslands, expansion of water bodies in UL areas, and reclamation of farmland in UL areas (except for marsh lands. In contrast, the main contributors to worsening eco-environmental quality were grassland degradation to UL (except marshes, reclamation of marsh areas, and shrinkage of water bodies to leave desert or saline-alkali land. Some suggestions are provided about UL management, utilization, and protection issues.

  12. Environmental and Social Change Drive the Explosive Emergence of Zika Virus in the Americas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ali, Sofia; Gugliemini, Olivia; Harber, Serena; Harrison, Alexandra; Houle, Lauren; Ivory, Javarcia; Kersten, Sierra; Khan, Rebia; Kim, Jenny; LeBoa, Chris; Nez-Whitfield, Emery; O'Marr, Jamieson; Rothenberg, Emma; Segnitz, R Max; Sila, Stephanie; Verwillow, Anna; Vogt, Miranda; Yang, Adrienne; Mordecai, Erin A

    2017-02-01

    Since Zika virus (ZIKV) was detected in Brazil in 2015, it has spread explosively across the Americas and has been linked to increased incidence of microcephaly and Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS). In one year, it has infected over 500,000 people (suspected and confirmed cases) in 40 countries and territories in the Americas. Along with recent epidemics of dengue (DENV) and chikungunya virus (CHIKV), which are also transmitted by Aedes aegypti and Ae. albopictus mosquitoes, the emergence of ZIKV suggests an ongoing intensification of environmental and social factors that have given rise to a new regime of arbovirus transmission. Here, we review hypotheses and preliminary evidence for the environmental and social changes that have fueled the ZIKV epidemic. Potential drivers include climate variation, land use change, poverty, and human movement. Beyond the direct impact of microcephaly and GBS, the ZIKV epidemic will likely have social ramifications for women's health and economic consequences for tourism and beyond.

  13. Environmental and Social Change Drive the Explosive Emergence of Zika Virus in the Americas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sofia Ali

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Since Zika virus (ZIKV was detected in Brazil in 2015, it has spread explosively across the Americas and has been linked to increased incidence of microcephaly and Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS. In one year, it has infected over 500,000 people (suspected and confirmed cases in 40 countries and territories in the Americas. Along with recent epidemics of dengue (DENV and chikungunya virus (CHIKV, which are also transmitted by Aedes aegypti and Ae. albopictus mosquitoes, the emergence of ZIKV suggests an ongoing intensification of environmental and social factors that have given rise to a new regime of arbovirus transmission. Here, we review hypotheses and preliminary evidence for the environmental and social changes that have fueled the ZIKV epidemic. Potential drivers include climate variation, land use change, poverty, and human movement. Beyond the direct impact of microcephaly and GBS, the ZIKV epidemic will likely have social ramifications for women's health and economic consequences for tourism and beyond.

  14. Lessons from patents. Using patents to measure technological change in environmental models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Popp, David

    2005-01-01

    When studying solutions to long-term environmental problems such as climate change, it is important to consider the role that technological change may play. Nonetheless, to date few economic models of environmental policy explicitly model the link between policy and technological change. There is a growing body of evidence that the incentives offered by prices and environmental regulations have a strong influence on both the creation and adoption of new technologies. In several recent papers, I have used patent data to examine the links between environmental policy and technological change. In addition, I have used the results of this research to calibrate the ENTICE model (for ENdogenous Technological change) of climate change, which links energy-related R and D to changes in the price of carbon. Drawing on my experiences from empirical studies on innovation and from modeling the climate change problem, in this paper I review some of the key lessons from recent empirical work using patents to study environmental innovation and diffusion, and discuss its implications for modeling climate change policy. I conclude by offering suggestions for future research

  15. Environmental stress induces trinucleotide repeat mutagenesis in human cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chatterjee, Nimrat; Lin, Yunfu; Santillan, Beatriz A; Yotnda, Patricia; Wilson, John H

    2015-03-24

    The dynamic mutability of microsatellite repeats is implicated in the modification of gene function and disease phenotype. Studies of the enhanced instability of long trinucleotide repeats (TNRs)-the cause of multiple human diseases-have revealed a remarkable complexity of mutagenic mechanisms. Here, we show that cold, heat, hypoxic, and oxidative stresses induce mutagenesis of a long CAG repeat tract in human cells. We show that stress-response factors mediate the stress-induced mutagenesis (SIM) of CAG repeats. We show further that SIM of CAG repeats does not involve mismatch repair, nucleotide excision repair, or transcription, processes that are known to promote TNR mutagenesis in other pathways of instability. Instead, we find that these stresses stimulate DNA rereplication, increasing the proportion of cells with >4 C-value (C) DNA content. Knockdown of the replication origin-licensing factor CDT1 eliminates both stress-induced rereplication and CAG repeat mutagenesis. In addition, direct induction of rereplication in the absence of stress also increases the proportion of cells with >4C DNA content and promotes repeat mutagenesis. Thus, environmental stress triggers a unique pathway for TNR mutagenesis that likely is mediated by DNA rereplication. This pathway may impact normal cells as they encounter stresses in their environment or during development or abnormal cells as they evolve metastatic potential.

  16. Rapid ecosystem change challenges the adaptive capacity of Local Environmental Knowledge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández-Llamazares, Álvaro; Díaz-Reviriego, Isabel; Luz, Ana C; Cabeza, Mar; Pyhälä, Aili; Reyes-García, Victoria

    2015-03-01

    The use of Local Environmental Knowledge has been considered as an important strategy for adaptive management in the face of Global Environmental Change. However, the unprecedented rates at which global change occurs may pose a challenge to the adaptive capacity of local knowledge systems. In this paper, we use the concept of the shifting baseline syndrome to examine the limits in the adaptive capacity of the local knowledge of an indigenous society facing rapid ecosystem change. We conducted semi-structured interviews regarding perceptions of change in wildlife populations and in intergenerational transmission of knowledge amongst the Tsimane', a group of hunter-gatherers of Bolivian Amazonia ( n = 300 adults in 13 villages). We found that the natural baseline against which the Tsimane' measure ecosystem changes might be shifting with every generation as a result of (a) age-related differences in the perception of change and (b) a decrease in the intergenerational sharing of environmental knowledge. Such findings suggest that local knowledge systems might not change at a rate quick enough to adapt to conditions of rapid ecosystem change, hence potentially compromising the adaptive success of the entire social-ecological system. With the current pace of Global Environmental Change, widening the gap between the temporal rates of on-going ecosystem change and the timescale needed for local knowledge systems to adjust to change, efforts to tackle the shifting baseline syndrome are urgent and critical for those who aim to use Local Environmental Knowledge as a tool for adaptive management.

  17. Sensitivity of Mediterranean bivalve mollusc aquaculture to climate change, ocean acidification, and other environmental pressures: findings from a producers’ survey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rodrigues, L.; van den Bergh, J.C.J.M.; Mass, F.; Theodorou, J.A.; Ziveri, P.; Gazeau, F.

    2015-01-01

    Human-induced climate change and ocean acidification are global environmental phenomena with a common driver: anthropogenic emissions of carbon dioxide. Both processes potentially threaten the Mediterranean bivalve mollusc aquaculture sector, which is economically relevant to several regions and

  18. Modeling adaptive and non-adaptive responses to environmental change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Coulson, Tim; Kendall, Bruce E; Barthold, Julia A.

    2017-01-01

    , with plastic responses being either adaptive or non-adaptive. We develop an approach that links quantitative genetic theory with data-driven structured models to allow prediction of population responses to environmental change via plasticity and adaptive evolution. After introducing general new theory, we...... construct a number of example models to demonstrate that evolutionary responses to environmental change over the short-term will be considerably slower than plastic responses, and that the rate of adaptive evolution to a new environment depends upon whether plastic responses are adaptive or non-adaptive....... Parameterization of the models we develop requires information on genetic and phenotypic variation and demography that will not always be available, meaning that simpler models will often be required to predict responses to environmental change. We consequently develop a method to examine whether the full...

  19. Does agricultural ecosystem cause environmental pollution in Pakistan? Promise and menace.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ullah, Arif; Khan, Dilawar; Khan, Imran; Zheng, Shaofeng

    2018-05-01

    The increasing trend of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) is the main cause of harmful anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions, which may result in environmental pollution, global warming, and climate change. These issues are expected to adversely affect the agricultural ecosystem and well-being of the society. In order to minimize food insecurity and prevent hunger, a timely adaptation is desirable to reduce potential losses and to seek alternatives for promoting a global knowledge system for agricultural sustainability. This paper examines the causal relationship between agricultural ecosystem and CO 2 emissions as an environmental pollution indicator in Pakistan from the period 1972 to 2014 by employing Johansen cointegration, autoregressive distributed lag (ARDL) model, and Granger causality approach. The Johansen cointegration results show that there is a significant long-run relationship between the agricultural ecosystem and the CO 2 emissions. The long-run relationship shows that a 1% increase in biomass burned crop residues, emissions of CO 2 equivalent of nitrous oxide (N 2 O) from synthetic fertilizers, stock of livestock, agricultural machinery, cereal production, and other crop productions will increase CO 2 emissions by 1.29, 0.05, 0.45, 0.05, 0.03, and 0.65%, respectively. Further, our finding detects that there is a bidirectional causality of CO 2 emissions with rice area paddy harvested, cereal production, and other crop productions. The impulse response function analysis displays that biomass-burned crop residues, stock of livestock, agriculture machinery, cereal production, and other crop productions are significantly contributing to CO 2 emissions in Pakistan.

  20. ARCHAEOLOGICAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGES BETWEEN 9500 BP AND 4500 BP: A CONTRIBUTION FROM THE SAHARA TO UNDERSTAND EXPANDING DROUGHTS IN THE “GREAT MEDITERRANEAN”

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. A.A. Garcea

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available The Sahara is more connected to the Mediterranean than often assumed and palynology, in particular, has provided evidence of past interrelations between the Mediterranean and the Sahara with pollen spectra from prehistoric Saharan deposits including Mediterranean taxa. In order to show human-environment relationships and populations’ strategies in response to changing environments, this paper presents a case study from the southern Sahara. This region offered a natural laboratory for the study of human/climate interaction as the range of environmental change extended from flood to drought, forcing people to cope with periodic environmental instability. When the tropical rainfall belt migrated northward, watertable outcropped in interdunal depressions and formed permanent lakes, which alternated with severe arid spells. As a case study, this paper presents the results of interdisciplinary investigations on climate changes, human adaptations and subsistence strategies at Gobero, in the southern Sahara of Niger. Gobero is a restricted archaeological area comprising 8 sites that surround the shores of a palaeolake. It was intermittently occupied between about 9500 cal years BP and 4500 BP. Due to alternating environmental conditions it could only be occupied at the beginning and at the end of the most humid periods.

  1. Photogrammetric methods in surveying environmental state and changes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sitek, Z.

    1980-01-01

    Various types of maps prepared by means of photogrammetry are reviewed. So-called orthophotomaps, showing air, land or water pollution and their sources on the background of ground, vegetation and various surface objects are characterized. Methods of interpreting orthophotomaps showing environmental effects of mining coal, coal combustion and other pollution sources are reviewed. Role of statistical data in evaluation of pollution and the general environmental impact of mines or power stations are discussed. A comprehensive system of describing the condition of the natural environment, observed environmental changes, and forecasting environmental effects of coal mining, combustion and other pollution sources is described. It is called environmental monitoring. Role of photogrammetry in environmental monitoring is stressed: air photography, satellite data, and infrared photography of vegetation. (7 refs.) (In Polish)

  2. Predicting effects of environmental change on river inflows to ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estuarine river watersheds provide valued ecosystem services to their surrounding communities including drinking water, fish habitat, and regulation of estuarine water quality. However, the provisioning of these services can be affected by changes in the quantity and quality of river water, such as those caused by altered landscapes or shifting temperatures or precipitation. We used the ecohydrology model, VELMA, in the Trask River watershed to simulate the effects of environmental change scenarios on estuarine river inputs to Tillamook Bay (OR) estuary. The Trask River watershed is 453 km2 and contains extensive agriculture, silviculture, urban, and wetland areas. VELMA was parameterized using existing spatial datasets of elevation, soil type, land use, air temperature, precipitation, river flow, and water quality. Simulated land use change scenarios included alterations in the distribution of the nitrogen-fixing tree species Alnus rubra, and comparisons of varying timber harvest plans. Scenarios involving spatial and temporal shifts in air temperature and precipitation trends were also simulated. Our research demonstrates the utility of ecohydrology models such as VELMA to aid in watershed management decision-making. Model outputs of river water flow, temperature, and nutrient concentrations can be used to predict effects on drinking water quality, salmonid populations, and estuarine water quality. This modeling effort is part of a larger framework of

  3. Teachers' Perspectives on the Human-Nature Relationship: Implications for Environmental Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida, Antonio; Vasconcelos, Clara

    2013-01-01

    This study based on a theoretical framework of three main environmental perspectives in the human-nature relationship (anthropocentrism, biocentrism and ecocentrism), aimed to identify their incidence in teachers involved with environmental projects when confronted with diverse environmental issues. 60 teachers drawn from four school cycles in…

  4. Environmentally-induced displacement and human security

    OpenAIRE

    Terminski, Bogumil

    2012-01-01

    We can distinguish two general causes of internal displacement worldwide: 1. the impact of threats to and ensuing decline in the level of human security below that needed for normal existence in the homeland territory, 2. administrative compulsion to leave the current place of residence. Every year, at least tens of millions of people on all continents are forced to leave their places of residence. The predominant cause is the occurrence of natural disasters, creating the most dynamic categor...

  5. Environmental risk management for pharmaceutical compounds

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Voulvoulis, N [Imperial College London (United Kingdom)

    2004-09-15

    Pharmaceuticals are a highly variable group of organic compounds with the potential to cause harm to aquatic ecosystems and human health. Thousands of tones of pharmacologically active substances are used annually but surprisingly little is known about their ultimate fate in the environment. The data collected to date, rarely provide information on the processes that determine their environmental fate and although they receive considerable pharmacological and clinical testing during development, knowledge of their ecotoxicity is poor. One major concern is that antibiotics found in sewage effluent may cause increased resistance amongst natural bacterial populations. The debate over risks associated with chemicals in the environment represents more than just another disagreement in the scientific community. It has opened the door to a new way of thinking about the onset of uninherited diseases, the nature of scientific investigation, and the role of scientific knowledge in the policymaking process. For example, research evidence on endocrine disruption collected over the last few years has changed dramatically the way we think about chemical risks. In part, this change has also been attributed to the precautionary principle, as a new approach to environmental policy forged in Europe. The term ''precautionary approach'' declares an obligation to control the dangerous substances even before a definitive causal link had been established between the chemicals and health or environmental effects, and represents a radical departure from traditional approaches to risk assessment and particularly risk management, which includes an integration of the assessment, communication and mitigation of risks.

  6. Environmental Enrichments for a Group of Captive Macaws: Low Interaction Does Not Mean Low Behavioral Changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reimer, Jéssica; Maia, Caroline Marques; Santos, Eliana Ferraz

    2016-01-01

    Environmental enrichment has been widely used to improve conditions for nonhuman animals in captivity. However, there is no consensus about the best way to evaluate the success of enrichments. This study evaluated whether the proportion of time spent interacting with enrichments indicated the proportion of overall behavioral changes. Six environmental enrichments were introduced in succession to 16 captive macaws, and interaction of the animals with them as well as the behaviors of the group were recorded before and during the enrichments. All of the enrichments affected the proportions of time spent in different behaviors. Macaws interacted more with certain items (hibiscus and food tree) than with others (a toy or swings and stairs), but introduction of the enrichments that invoked the least interaction caused as many behavioral changes as those that invoked the most. Moreover, feeding behavior was only affected by the enrichment that invoked the least interaction, a change not detected by a general analysis of enrichment effects. In conclusion, little interaction with enrichment does not mean little change in behavior, and the effects of enrichments are more complex than previously considered.

  7. Sampling methods for recovery of human enteric viruses from environmental surfaces.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turnage, Nicole L; Gibson, Kristen E

    2017-10-01

    Acute gastroenteritis causes the second highest infectious disease burden worldwide. Human enteric viruses have been identified as leading causative agents of acute gastroenteritis as well as foodborne illnesses in the U.S. and are generally transmitted by fecal-oral contamination. There is growing evidence of transmission occurring via contaminated fomite including food contact surfaces. Additionally, human enteric viruses have been shown to remain infectious on fomites over prolonged periods of time. To better understand viral persistence, there is a need for more studies to investigate this phenomenon. Therefore, optimization of surface sampling methods is essential to aid in understanding environmental contamination to ensure proper preventative measures are being applied. In general, surface sampling studies are limited and highly variable among recovery efficiencies and research parameters used (e.g., virus type/density, surface type, elution buffers, tools). This review aims to discuss the various factors impacting surface sampling of viruses from fomites and to explore how researchers could move towards a more sensitive and standard sampling method. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Studies on climate change problems and response measures in China

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ruqiu, Y. [China National Environmental Protection Agency, Beijing (China)

    1995-06-01

    Climate has substantial influence on the development of human society. At the same time, the global climate is being affected by human activities. Since industrial revolution large amount of CO{sub 2} and other greenhouse gases have been emitted to the atmosphere, causing significant change in its composition. It is recognized that this change might be sufficient to cause change in global climate. Because of the importance of climate change issues, the Chinese government pays great attention to them. As climate change concerns almost all aspects of the social and economic development, in order to coordinate ministries and agencies of the government in their efforts to deal with climate change problems, the Coordinating Group on Climate Change under the Environmental Protection Committee of the State Council was established in February 1990. There are four working groups under the Coordinating Group, working on scientific assessment, impact assessment and response strategies, economic implication and international convention matters of climate change. A number of research and technological development projects related to climate change issues have been organized, including bilateral cooperation projects and projects supported by GEF, UNEP, UNDP, the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and other international organizations. (EG) 11 refs.

  9. Studies on climate change problems and response measures in China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ruqiu, Y.

    1995-01-01

    Climate has substantial influence on the development of human society. At the same time, the global climate is being affected by human activities. Since industrial revolution large amount of CO 2 and other greenhouse gases have been emitted to the atmosphere, causing significant change in its composition. It is recognized that this change might be sufficient to cause change in global climate. Because of the importance of climate change issues, the Chinese government pays great attention to them. As climate change concerns almost all aspects of the social and economic development, in order to coordinate ministries and agencies of the government in their efforts to deal with climate change problems, the Coordinating Group on Climate Change under the Environmental Protection Committee of the State Council was established in February 1990. There are four working groups under the Coordinating Group, working on scientific assessment, impact assessment and response strategies, economic implication and international convention matters of climate change. A number of research and technological development projects related to climate change issues have been organized, including bilateral cooperation projects and projects supported by GEF, UNEP, UNDP, the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and other international organizations. (EG) 11 refs

  10. Assessing Ecological Impacts According to Land Use Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeong, S.; Lee, D. K.; Jeong, W.; Jeong, S. G.; Jin, Y.

    2015-12-01

    Land use patterns have changed by human activities, and it has affected the structure and dynamics of ecosystems. In particular, the conversion of forests into other land use has caused environmental degradation and loss of biodiversity. The evaluation of species and their habitat can be preferentially considered to prevent or minimize the adverse effects of land use change. The objective of study is identifying the impacts of environmental conditions on forest ecosystems by comparing ecological changes with time series spatial data. Species distribution models were developed for diverse species with presence data and time-series environmental variables, which allowed comparison of the habitat suitability and connectivity. Habitat suitability and connectivity were used to estimate impacts of forest ecosystems due to land use change. Our result suggested that the size and degree of ecological impacts are were different depending on the properties of land use change. The elements and species were greatly affected by the land use change according to the results. This study suggested that a methodology for measuring the interference of land use change in species habitat and connectivity. Furthermore, it will help to conserve and manage forest by identifying priority conservation areas with influence factor and scale.

  11. Environmental imperatives reconsidered: demographic crises in western North America during the medieval climatic anomaly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, T L; Brown, G M; Raab, L M; McVickar, J L; Spaulding, W G; Kennett, D J; York, A; Wlaker, P L

    1999-04-01

    Review of late Holocene paleoenvironmental and cultural sequences from four regions of western North America show striking correlations between drought and changes in subsistence, population, exchange, health, and interpersonal violence during the Medieval Climatic Anomaly (A.D. 800-1350). While ultimate causality is difficult to identify in the archaeological record, synchrony of the environmental and cultural changes and the negative character of many human responses--increased interpersonal violence, deterioration of long-distance exchange relationships, and regional abandonments--suggest widespread demographic crises caused by decreased environmental productivity. The medieval droughts occurred at a unique juncture in the demographic history of western North America when unusually large populations of both hunter-gathers and agriculturalists had evolved highly intensified economies that put them in unprecedented ecological jeopardy. Long-term patterns in the archaeological record are inconsistent with the predicted outcomes of simple adaptation or continuous economic intensification, suggesting that in this instance environmental dynamics played a major role in cultural transformations across a wide expanse of western North America among groups with diverse subsistence strategies. These events suggest that environment should not be overlooked as a potential cause of prehistoric culture change.

  12. Long-term environmental monitoring for assessment of change: measurement inconsistencies over time and potential solutions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellingsen, Kari E; Yoccoz, Nigel G; Tveraa, Torkild; Hewitt, Judi E; Thrush, Simon F

    2017-10-30

    The importance of long-term environmental monitoring and research for detecting and understanding changes in ecosystems and human impacts on natural systems is widely acknowledged. Over the last decades, a number of critical components for successful long-term monitoring have been identified. One basic component is quality assurance/quality control protocols to ensure consistency and comparability of data. In Norway, the authorities require environmental monitoring of the impacts of the offshore petroleum industry on the Norwegian continental shelf, and in 1996, a large-scale regional environmental monitoring program was established. As a case study, we used a sub-set of data from this monitoring to explore concepts regarding best practices for long-term environmental monitoring. Specifically, we examined data from physical and chemical sediment samples and benthic macroinvertebrate assemblages from 11 stations from six sampling occasions during the period 1996-2011. Despite the established quality assessment and quality control protocols for this monitoring program, we identified several data challenges, such as missing values and outliers, discrepancies in variable and station names, changes in procedures without calibration, and different taxonomic resolution. Furthermore, we show that the use of different laboratories over time makes it difficult to draw conclusions with regard to some of the observed changes. We offer recommendations to facilitate comparison of data over time. We also present a new procedure to handle different taxonomic resolution, so valuable historical data is not discarded. These topics have a broader relevance and application than for our case study.

  13. Future global ethics: environmental change, embedded ethics, evolving human identity.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    D.R. Gasper (Des)

    2014-01-01

    markdownabstract__Abstract__ Work on global ethics looks at ethical connections on a global scale. It should link closely to environmental ethics, recognizing that we live in unified social-ecological systems, and to development ethics, attending systematically to the lives and interests of

  14. Will Global Climate Change Alter Fundamental Human Immune Reactivity: Implications for Child Health?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swaminathan, Ashwin; Lucas, Robyn M; Harley, David; McMichael, Anthony J

    2014-11-11

    The human immune system is an interface across which many climate change sensitive exposures can affect health outcomes. Gaining an understanding of the range of potential effects that climate change could have on immune function will be of considerable importance, particularly for child health, but has, as yet, received minimal research attention. We postulate several mechanisms whereby climate change sensitive exposures and conditions will subtly impair aspects of the human immune response, thereby altering the distribution of vulnerability within populations-particularly for children-to infection and disease. Key climate change-sensitive pathways include under-nutrition, psychological stress and exposure to ambient ultraviolet radiation, with effects on susceptibility to infection, allergy and autoimmune diseases. Other climate change sensitive exposures may also be important and interact, either additively or synergistically, to alter health risks. Conducting directed research in this area is imperative as the potential public health implications of climate change-induced weakening of the immune system at both individual and population levels are profound. This is particularly relevant for the already vulnerable children of the developing world, who will bear a disproportionate burden of future adverse environmental and geopolitical consequences of climate change.

  15. Will Global Climate Change Alter Fundamental Human Immune Reactivity: Implications for Child Health?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ashwin Swaminathan

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The human immune system is an interface across which many climate change sensitive exposures can affect health outcomes. Gaining an understanding of the range of potential effects that climate change could have on immune function will be of considerable importance, particularly for child health, but has, as yet, received minimal research attention. We postulate several mechanisms whereby climate change sensitive exposures and conditions will subtly impair aspects of the human immune response, thereby altering the distribution of vulnerability within populations—particularly for children—to infection and disease. Key climate change-sensitive pathways include under-nutrition, psychological stress and exposure to ambient ultraviolet radiation, with effects on susceptibility to infection, allergy and autoimmune diseases. Other climate change sensitive exposures may also be important and interact, either additively or synergistically, to alter health risks. Conducting directed research in this area is imperative as the potential public health implications of climate change-induced weakening of the immune system at both individual and population levels are profound. This is particularly relevant for the already vulnerable children of the developing world, who will bear a disproportionate burden of future adverse environmental and geopolitical consequences of climate change.

  16. The Efficacy of a Green Chemistry Laboratory-Based Pedagogy: Changes in Environmental Values of Malaysia Pre-Service Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karpudewan, Mageswary; Ismail, Zurida; Roth, Wolff-Michael

    2012-01-01

    Every day, climate change due to greenhouse emissions, pollution and other environmental degradation appears to make the news. Rather than doing something about the environment, namely in the developing countries where populations frequently are less educated about the long-term impact of human actions, they tend to disregard these problems. There…

  17. First human systemic infection caused by Spiroplasma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aquilino, Ana; Masiá, Mar; López, Pilar; Galiana, Antonio J; Tovar, Juan; Andrés, María; Gutiérrez, Félix

    2015-02-01

    Spiroplasma species are organisms that normally colonize plants and insects. We describe the first case of human systemic infection caused by Spiroplasma bacteria in a patient with hypogammaglobulinemia undergoing treatment with biological disease-modifying antirheumatic agents. Spiroplasma turonicum was identified through molecular methods in several blood cultures. The infection was successfully treated with doxycycline plus levofloxacin. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  18. Morphological changes in human melanoma cells following irradiation with thermal neutrons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barkla, D H; Allen, B J; Brown, J K; Mountford, M; Mishima, Y; Ichihashi, M

    1989-01-01

    Morphological changes in two human melanoma cell lines, MM96 and MM418, following irradiation with thermal neutrons, were studied using light and electron microscopy. The results show that the response of human malignant melanoma cells to neutron irradiation is both cell line dependent and dose dependent, and that in any given cell line, some cells are more resistant to irradiation than others, thus demonstrating heterogeneity in respect to radiosensitivity. Cells repopulating MM96 flasks after irradiation were morphologically similar to the cells of origin whereas in MM418 flasks cells differentiated into five morphologically distinct subgroups and showed increased melanization. The results also show that radiation causes distinctive morphological patterns of damage although ultrastructural changes unique to the high LET particles released from boron 10 neutron capture are yet to be identified.

  19. Morphological changes in human melanoma cells following irradiation with thermal neutrons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barkla, D.H.; Allen, B.J.; Brown, J.K.; Mountford, M.; Mishima, Y.; Ichihashi, M.

    1989-01-01

    Morphological changes in two human melanoma cell lines, MM96 and MM418, following irradiation with thermal neutrons, were studied using light and electron microscopy. The results show that the response of human malignant melanoma cells to neutron irradiation is both cell line dependent and dose dependent, and that in any given cell line, some cells are more resistant to irradiation than others, thus demonstrating heterogeneity in respect to radiosensitivity. Cells repopulating MM96 flasks after irradiation were morphologically similar to the cells of origin whereas in MM418 flasks cells differentiated into five morphologically distinct subgroups and showed increased melanization. The results also show that radiation causes distinctive morphological patterns of damage although ultrastructural changes unique to the high LET particles released from boron 10 neutron capture are yet to be identified

  20. Preservice Teachers' Perspectives on 'Appropriate' K-8 Climate Change and Environmental Science Topics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ford, D. J.

    2013-12-01

    With the release of the Next Generation Science Standards (NRC, 2013), climate change and related environmental sciences will now receive greater emphasis within science curricula at all grade levels. In grades K-8, preparation in foundational content (e.g., weather and climate, natural resources, and human impacts on the environment) and the nature of scientific inquiry will set the groundwork for