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Articles from Science for Environment Policy

27.01.2014
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Articles from Science for Environment Policy

A service from the European Commission...

The value of acknowledging societal costs of N2O emissions
Calculating the costs of nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions to society as well as business is vital to understand the true economic gains of reducing N2O emissions, new research suggests. Increasing nitrogen use efficiency by 20% by 2020 could bring global annual benefits to the climate, health and environment worth US $160 (EUR118) billion, the researchers conclude.
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Commuting study reveals the factors affecting sustainable transport use
Factors influencing people's decisions about how they travel to work are highlighted in a new study on commuting in Europe. Key findings include: cycling rates increase with the length of a city's bicycle network and public transport use rises with a city's population and GDP per capita. Based on the findings, the researchers propose policy measures for reducing the number of car journeys.
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The public value of including scientific information in groundwater protection policies
The public places a high value on the use of scientific information, especially regarding climate change, in the management of groundwater resources, a case study in Finland indicates. This suggests that incorporating scientific research into management policies is likely to have the support of stakeholders in the region.
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Nutrients in streams can mask toxic effects of pesticides on aquatic life
Moderate levels of nitrogen in streams and rivers can make it difficult to assess the effects of pesticides on aquatic wildlife, because nutrients mask the pesticides' impacts, according to recent research. This highlights the importance of considering nutrient levels when developing measures to protect aquatic ecosystems.
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A vegetarian diet can help reduce water consumption across Europe
Different European regions have very different diets and environmental conditions, meaning their water consumption varies widely. Despite this, switching to vegetarian diets in keeping with regional variation would substantially reduce water consumption in all areas, a new study concludes. Where people choose to eat meat, adopting a healthy diet low in oils and sugar will also reduce water consumption, although to a lesser degree.
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'Chemical footprint' in development
A measure of 'chemical footprint' is being developed by researchers to assess the environmental impacts of the toxic chemicals released by the production and consumption of goods. The methodology, based on life cycle and risk assessment, is also designed to be linked to the resilience of ecosystems to chemical exposure.
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