Thousands of marks on the Antarctic seafloor, caused by icebergs which broke free from glaciers more than ten thousand years ago, show how part of the Antarctic Ice Sheet retreated rapidly at the end of the last ice age as it balanced precariously on sloping ground and became unstable. Today, as the global climate continues to warm, rapid and sustained retreat may be close to happening again and could trigger runaway ice retreat into the interior of the continent, which in turn would cause sea levels to rise even faster than currently projected.
Conservation initiatives led by local and indigenous groups can be just as effective as schemes led by government, according to new research. In some cases in the Amazon rainforest, grassroots initiatives can be even more effective at protecting this vital ecosystem. This is particularly important due to widespread political resistance to hand over control over forests and other natural resources to local communities.
Despite the value that humans get from nature, it is not included in measurements of poverty and well-being. Cambridge's Judith Schleicher and Bhaskar Vira say it's about time this changed.
In his new book, geographer David Beckingham looks at the rigorous licencing regime that Liverpool’s authorities put in place to tighten their grip on problem drinking in the pubs that proliferated across the city. Similar attitudes frame today’s perceptions of public and private alcohol consumption.
An international group of researchers has dated a large volcanic eruption in Iceland to within a few months. The eruption, which is the oldest volcanic eruption to be precisely dated at high northern latitudes, occurred shortly before the first permanent human settlements were established, when parts of the now mostly treeless island were still covered with forest.
Is the knowledge and scholarship that universities produce relevant to the problems the world faces? In a new essay co-authored with an international group of researchers, Dr Bhaskar Vira of the University of Cambridge Conservation Research Institute (UCCRI) and the Department of Geography argues that in order for science to best serve society and the planet, universities and researchers need to adjust their focus and take responsibility for institutional innovation in five key areas.
So what has the ERC ever done for us? Quite a lot, say Cambridge academics, as they mark the 10th anniversary of Europe’s premier research-funding body
Opinion: India’s militant rhino protectors are challenging traditional views of how conservation works13 Feb 2017
There is a dilemma in contemporary conservation: how to balance modernisation, people’s rights and environmentalism. Nowhere is this visible that in Kaziranga, India, writes Dr Bhaskar Vira, Director of the University of Cambridge Conservation Research Institute for The Conversation.
Fossilised tree and ice cores help date huge volcanic eruption 1,000 years ago to within three months24 Jan 2017
An international team of researchers has managed to pinpoint, to within three months, a medieval volcanic eruption in east Asia the precise date of which has puzzled historians for decades. They have also shown that the so-called “Millennium eruption” of Changbaishan volcano, one of the largest in history, cannot have brought about the downfall of an important 10th century kingdom, as was previously thought.
The augmented reality game, designed for mobile devices, allows users to capture, battle and train virtual creatures called Pokémon that appear on screen as if part of the real-world environment. But can the game's enormous success deliver any lessons to the fields of natural history and conservation?