80% of the world’s oceans would be affected by climate change by 2050

Four-fifths of the world’s marine ecosystems will be irreversibly damaged by 2050 if no immediate action is taken, a new study concludes. Researchers ran simulations to determine the effect of climate change on the main stressors of the ocean’s ecosystems—such as pH, temperature, oxygen concentration and food availability. If conditions remain as they are, in […]

Survival rate of African penguins is decreasing, thanks to overfishing and anthropogenic climate change (Image by SANCCOB)

Thanks to climate change, baby African penguins are looking for food in the wrong places

For hundreds of years, young African penguins came of age by travelling long distances to southern Angola and South Africa’s Western Cape in search of food. Certain signs, like lower sea surface temperatures and higher chlorophyll concentrations, have reliably led young penguins to areas abundant in anchovies and sardines. But recent changes in climate and […]

SMCC-BI-Square

SMCC Webinar | Building Resilience to Climate Change: Evidence Based Strategies for Healthier Cities

Climate change is affecting Canada’s weather, changing not only the temperature, but also the quality of the air we breathe.  Evidence suggests these changes may pose a serious threat to public health, especially for certain vulnerable populations in urban areas. With over 80% of Canadians living in urban settings, there is an urgent need to […]

(Ariana Sutton-Grier)

Coastal wetlands help soak up harmful greenhouse gases

  A new study suggests that coastal wetland ecosystems such as mangrove forests, tidal marshes and seagrass meadows are great at mitigating negative effects of greenhouse gases. To study how effectively each marine ecosystem utilizes greenhouse gases, researchers evaluated how CO2 is stored within the system and for how long. Their estimations suggest that mangrove […]

Ocean acidification effects differ depending on the species’ sex

Ocean acidification (OA) occurs with the increase of human-made carbon dioxide in the waters. The impacts of acidification on marine ecosystems have been studied extensively over the past decade, but little research has been done to look at intraspecific differences in reaction to increased CO2 levels. The present study reviews all data collected about the […]

Species conservation targets; locations for MPA creation or expansion to protect 50% of the geographic range of all 99 imperilled endemic chondrichthyans (using Marxan): planning units selected (red); planning units not selected (white); and planning units currently designated as a no-take MPA (blue). b, Hotspots; global locations of the highest numbers of imperilled endemic chondrichthyans within a country’s national waters (EEZ). Warm colours represent areas with high numbers of overlapping imperilled and endemic chondrichthyans, cool colours show where there are fewer numbers of species per cell. Hottest hotspot countries are those with 4–14 imperilled endemics per grid cell.  (Davidson, L. N. K. & Dulvy, N. K.)

Marine protected areas need expansion to prevent shark, ray and chimera extinction

Marine protected areas (MPAs) are established all over the world to help preserve imperiled species. But the process of identifying these areas doesn’t always prioritize species most at risk of extinction. A new study focuses specifically on the endangered chondrichthyans (such as sharks, rays and chimeras) and their representation in the existing MPA network. Results […]

Jungle. Sarawak, Borneo.  (Image by Luke Price via Flickr

Effects of climate change on the inhabitants of Borneo’s tropical rainforests

As global temperatures rise, unique ecosystems within tropical rainforests need to adapt to the changes. A new study looked at several species’ activity at each hour at each location on the landscape and projected how the spatio-temporal habits might change in a warmer environment. Results predicted a negligible effect on large animals; but smaller animals, […]

Satellite sensor data can be used to track slight colour changes in boreal forests (Image by Gord McKenna via Flickr CC BY ND NC 2.0)

Warmer temperatures and increased CO2 levels don’t stimulate tree growth

Warmer temperatures and higher levels of carbon dioxide associated with climate change were supposed to bode well for tree growth. But a recent study shows that this advantage isn’t seen in the trees of Canadian boreal forests. Researchers collected and analyzed tree-ring data and satellite images to determine how the changing temperatures and CO2 emissions […]

Polar bears, like these photographed near Hudson Bay in 2010, are in jeopardy due to decreasing ice cover in Canada’s Arctic Archipelago. (Photo credit: Stephen Hamilton)

As levels of sea-ice decline, so do polar bear populations

The Arctic sea-ice is vital to polar bears’ hunting and breeding habits. So it comes as no surprise that the decline in sea-ice as a result of anthropogenic climate change has a great effect on the polar bear populations. An international team of researchers further demonstrated this vital relationship by calculating probability in population decrease […]

Pine Island Glacier

Retreat of the fastest melting glacier in Antarctica began in 1945

The loss of ice on Pine Island Glacier makes up about a quarter of Antarctica’s melt, and a new study pinpointed the source of its fast retreat to the El Nino event of 1945. Using dating techniques, an international team of researchers studied sediment cores from the glacier’s floating ice shelf. They discovered that the […]

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