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Science for Environment Policy

Science for Environment Policy

A service from the European Commission...

Ash dieback in the UK: how will it affect the rest of the woodland ecosystem?
Ash dieback in the UK is likely to lead to the extinction or decline of over 50 species which are reliant on or highly associated with this tree, including mosses, lichens and beetles, a new study suggests. The researchers recommend that the ash trees are not felled but left to die naturally and in time replaced with mixtures of species such as beech and sycamore which support similar woodland species.
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Greater risk of heart defects for babies born near unconventional gas wells in Colorado
Pregnant women living within 16 km of unconventional gas wells in Colorado, US, are up to 30% more likely to give birth to a baby with a heart defect, new research has found. These findings suggest that more research is needed to understand the potential health impact of natural gas developments, say the researchers.
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Underwater survey noise affects feeding and social behaviour of harbour porpoises
Noise from underwater geological surveys may be affecting the feeding and social interactions of harbour porpoises, new research has found. The study, conducted off the north-east coast of Scotland, found that the buzz clicks used by porpoises to hunt and socialise were reduced by 15% during the surveys.
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New tool to assess the ecological impacts of offshore wind turbines
How do offshore wind farms affect marine wildlife? A new study outlines a systematic approach developed for Swedish waters that could also be useful for assessing wind energy impacts on the marine environment more widely.
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Air pollution from road traffic can raise blood pressure
High blood pressure is linked to long-term exposure to traffic-related air pollution, new research suggests. After accounting for lifestyle factors, socioeconomic status and pre-existing health conditions, the researchers found that a rise in traffic emissions of nitrogen dioxide corresponded to a rise in blood pressure of exposed individuals.
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