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Environment - Earth Sciences - 18.12.2023
Utrecht University's Earth Sciences for the First Time Ever in the Guinness Book of World Records
Utrecht University’s Earth Sciences for the First Time Ever in the Guinness Book of World Records
For the first time ever, research led by one of Utrecht University's earth scientists - Dr  Dan Palcu - has earned a place in the Guinness Book of World Records. His fascinating research shows the immense proportions of the largest lake the Earth has ever seen: the Paratethys. Guinness World Records published a whole page about the 'Largest lake ever' on their website, as well as a highlight in the print edition.

Life Sciences - Environment - 07.12.2023
Methane emissions from canals underestimated
Researchers have so far underestimated methane emissions from canals in five major Dutch cities. That is the conclusion of microbiologist Koen Pelsma, who will defend his PhD thesis on this topic at Radboud University on 13 December. In calculations of methane emissions from water, far too little is known about emissions from urban waters such as canals, says researcher Koen Pelsma.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 06.12.2023
Largest ever study on tipping points presented at COP28
A major, international research report is released today at the COP28 climate conference in Dubai: the Global Tipping Points Report. The report shows that crucial tipping points in the Earth's climate system are getting closer. These tipping points occur when a small change triggers an irreversible transformation.

Environment - Campus - 29.11.2023
2.45 million for research into solving PFAS at Utrecht Science Park
2.45 million for research into solving PFAS at Utrecht Science Park
Utrecht University's PFAS Remediation Living Lab recently received funding of 2.45 million from the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water to research a PFAS-contaminated field at Utrecht University and other locations. Worldwide, large tracts of land are contaminated with PFAS. Instead of the classic "dig and dump" method, the university wants to explore the possibilities of sustainable remediation.

Environment - 15.11.2023
Clearing mangroves makes 'muddification' worse
Clearing mangroves makes ’muddification’ worse
Mangroves have been cut down in some parts of New Zealand, with the aim of reducing mud build-up and exposing the mud to currents and tides that can wash it out to sea. Widespread deforestation and farming was begun by European settlers in the late 19 Century in New Zealand, increasing the amount of sediment in rivers.

Chemistry - Environment - 15.11.2023
More efficient electrodes for CO2 recycling
More efficient electrodes for CO2 recycling
With the ever-increasing interest in renewable energy, scientists are continuously searching for new technologies to store energy. CO2 electrolysis is a promising way to store energy whilst recycling carbon dioxide. By applying electricity, CO2 and water react and produce more complex molecules. A study published in Nature Communications lead by Hugo van Montfort at TU Delft has presented a new design of electrodes that improves the efficiency of CO2 electrolysis.

Earth Sciences - Environment - 31.10.2023
Science and citizens collaborate to understand natural methane removal
How does Saharan dust remove the powerful greenhouse gas methane from the atmosphere above the Atlantic Ocean? Recently, Utrecht University and other institutes started a research project in collaboration with the shipping industry to answer this question. Once every month, boxes of flasks arrive on the sixth floor of the Buys Ballot building at Utrecht University.

Chemistry - Environment - 25.10.2023
How a small 'gap' brings green energy storage through electrolysis closer
How a small ’gap’ brings green energy storage through electrolysis closer
An article by TU/e researcher Thijs de Groot and his team on the usefulness of a small cathode gap in alkaline electrolyzers appeared in the International Journal of Hydrogen Energy recently. Green hydrogen is a serious contender to become a renewable energy carrier. For example, we could use it to store solar and wind energy during peaks in order to utilize the energy when the sun is no longer shining and the wind is calm.

Health - Environment - 24.10.2023
Researchers have discovered a link between certain PFAS and an increased risk of thyroid cancer
An international team of researchers, led by Mount Sinai, has discovered a link between certain perand polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and an increased risk for thyroid cancer, according to a study published in eBioMedicine today. PFAS, also known as "forever chemicals," are a large, complex group of synthetic chemicals that can migrate into the soil, water, and air.

Environment - 17.10.2023
Spatial patterns show tension between land conservation and livelihood needs
Spatial patterns show tension between land conservation and livelihood needs
There are clear spatial patterns showing where tensions may arise between land conservation and the subsistence needs of inhabitants. That is the conclusion of a new publication in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), authored by environmental scientist Camille Venier-Cambron. In order to meet global biodiversity targets, large areas of land around the world must be restored to nature.

Environment - Campus - 13.10.2023
Climate change adaptation actions too uncoordinated worldwide
A new comprehensive survey of more than 1,400 scientific studies has shed light on the challenges of climate change adaptation. The study reveals a critical issue: systematic networking of various actor groups has generally been insufficient. Notably, the main burden has been borne by individuals and households affected by the consequences of climate change.

Environment - Social Sciences - 06.10.2023
Amazon may hold over 10,000 hidden earthworks built by pre-Columbian societies
Amazon may hold over 10,000 hidden earthworks built by pre-Columbian societies
The Amazon rainforest may be home to thousands of hidden earthworks, made by pre-Columbian societies. This is revealed by a large international study investigating the distribution of these hidden structures. Biologist Hans ter Steege contributed to the research. "This discovery tells us that certain parts of the forest may not be as old as we initially thought." The dense Amazon Rainforest may hold far more traces of human civilization than previously believed.

Environment - Life Sciences - 06.10.2023
Amazon may hold over 10,000 hidden earthworks made by past civilizations
Amazon may hold over 10,000 hidden earthworks made by past civilizations
The Amazon rainforest may be home to thousands of hidden earthworks, made by pre-Columbian civilizations. This is revealed by a large international study investigating the distribution of these hidden structures. Biologist Hans ter Steege contributed to the research. "This discovery tells us that certain parts of the forest may not be as old as we initially thought." The dense Amazon Rainforest may hold far more traces of human civilization than previously believed.

Environment - Life Sciences - 29.09.2023
Cutting-edge plant research lab NPEC opens its doors in Utrecht
Cutting-edge plant research lab NPEC opens its doors in Utrecht
Equipped with advanced robotics, hyperspectral imaging, laser scanners, climate chambers, and other installations, the Netherlands Plant Eco-phenotyping Centre (NPEC) opens its doors today in Utrecht. Researchers at this lab can automatically monitor the growth and development of thousands of plants.

Environment - Campus - 26.09.2023
Resilience Reflections #9: Speaking each other’s language
Recognising the urgent need to respond to rapid societal and environmental change, resilience is one of the University of Twente's spearheads. As an academic institution, we have a role to play in strengthening the resilience of the social, technological and environmental systems that support us. In this weekly series of the Resilience@UT programme , UT researchers share their personal reflections on current events and trends that impact our daily lives, exploring their implications for resilience.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 21.09.2023
Much potential to reduce methane emissions European energy industry
Much potential to reduce methane emissions European energy industry
The oil industry in Romania has an enormous potential for reducing methane emissions. This has been demonstrated by a team of scientists led by Professor Thomas Röckmann from Utrecht University. In 2019, the amount of methane emitted by the Romanian oil industry was equal to the amount of methane emitted by all other European oil industries combined.

Environment - Innovation - 14.09.2023
TU/e students present the world's first off-road solar car: Stella Terra
TU/e students present the world’s first off-road solar car: Stella Terra
Stella Terra will cover a thousand kilometers in various landscapes in Morocco. Student team Solar Team Eindhoven from TU/e has developed the first off-road car powered by the energy of the sun, making it independent of charging stations. Stella Terra is robust enough to navigate not only on paved roads but also on rough terrain.

Environment - 07.09.2023
Resilience Reflections #6: Drivers of disasters and questions of a resilience researcher
Recognizing the urgent need to respond to rapid societal and environmental change, resilience is one of the University of Twente's spearheads. As an academic institution, we have a role to play in strengthening the resilience of the social, technological and environmental systems that support us. In this weekly series, UT researchers share their personal reflections on current events and trends that impact our daily lives, exploring their implications for resilience.

Environment - Chemistry - 31.08.2023
Another strong greenhouse gas is on the rise - and it spells trouble for hydropower
The Earth's warming climate is largely caused by the rise in greenhouse gases carbon dioxide and methane. However, there are additional gases capable of warming the planet. New research from climate scientists at Utrecht University reveals that emissions of the potent greenhouse gas nitrous oxide (N2O) from streams and reservoirs have more than tripled over the last century.

Environment - Economics - 24.08.2023
Voluntary carbon credits offset nothing more than hot air
Voluntary carbon credits offset nothing more than hot air
Projects that reduce deforestation often sell carbon credits, for example to consumers buying flight tickets. However, over 90 percent of these credits do not actually offset carbon emissions. That is the conclusion of environmental scientist Thales A.P. West, who is the main author of a paper that was published in Science.
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