Walrus shortage may have caused collapse of Norse Greenland

Communities vanished in 15th century after walrus hunted to near extinction, study finds The mysterious disappearance of Greenlands medieval Norse society in the 15th century came after walruses were hunted almost to extinction, researchers have said. Norse communities thrived for Greenland Norse communities. They also found later items were hunted from smaller animals likely females and infants signalling stocks were rapidly dwindling. James Barrett from Cambridge Universitys archaeology department said: Norse Greenlanders needed to trade with Europe for iron and timber, and mainly had walrus products to export in exchange. Norse hunters were forced to venture deeper into the Arctic Circle for increasingly meagre ivory harvests. As walrus populations declined, so did the Norse communities. The authors of the study, …

Lethal algae blooms an ecosystem out of balance

Toxic formations across the US and the Baltic are part of a worrying trend linked to the climate crisis and farming methods On 3 August 2014, residents of Toledo, Ohio, woke to the news that overnight their water supply had become toxic. They were advised not only to avoid drinking the water, but also touching it no showers, no baths, not even hand-washing. Boiling the water would only increase its toxicity while drinking it could cause abnormal liver function, diarrhoea, vomiting, nausea, numbness or dizziness, read a statement from the City of Toledo, warning residents to seek medical attention if you feel you have been exposed. Toledo sits on the shores of Lake Erie, one of North Americas five great …

Revealed: Denka lobbied to undermine science behind likely cancer-causing toxin

Chemical manufacturer launched aggressive campaign instead of reining in pollution, according to documents Facing public pressure to rein in its pollution, a Japanese chemical manufacturer has instead launched an aggressive, years-long campaign to undermine the science showing that its compounds could cause cancer, according to newly released documents reviewed by the Guardian. Chloroprene, the primary constituent of the synthetic rubber neoprene, is the major air pollutant in the town of Cancer Town. concluded an extensive, independent, peer-reviewedEmails show EPA officials resisting Denkas efforts. A spokesman for Denka said the company is dedicated to sound science and stated it has worked collaboratively with EPA to seek EPAs reconsideration of the faulty science underlying the 2010 classification. The plant, named the Pontchartrain …

The science stories that shaped 2019

From the first image of a black hole to a detailed survey of sea ice in the Arctic, scientists pick the breakthrough moments that defined the year The world awoke to the need to combat global heating Was 2019 the year people finally started to listen to climate scientists on global heating? The previous year, the 1.5Greta Thunberg kickstarted a global movement of school strikers, demanding that governments listen to the science and act as if the house is on fire. Although some countries have ramped up their own emissions cuts targets the UK now officially aims for net zero emissions by 2050 public concern and frustration has kept growing. More and more members of the public have taken extreme …