Climate change lowers production of nuclear and coal-fired power plants

Warmer water and reduced river flows in the United States and Europe in recent years have led to reduced production, or temporary shutdown, of several thermoelectric power plants. For instance, the Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant in Alabama had to shut down more than once last summer because the Tennessee River’s water was too warm to use it for cooling.

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Amount of deep cold Antarctic bottom water decreasing over last decades

Antarctic bottom water

A layer of Antarctic Bottom Water colder than 0ºC (Credit: NOAA)

Scientists have found a large reduction in the amount of the coldest deep ocean water, called Antarctic Bottom Water, all around the Southern Ocean using data collected from 1980 to 2011.

These findings, in a study now online, will likely stimulate new research on the causes of this change.

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Prey fish species worth twice as much in the water as out

Fishing for herring, anchovy, and other “forage fish” in general should be cut in half globally to account for their critical role as food for larger species, recommends an expert group of marine scientists in a report released today. The Lenfest Forage Fish Task Force conducted the most comprehensive worldwide analysis of the science and management of forage fish populations to date. Its report, “Little Fish, Big Impact: Managing a crucial link in ocean food webs,” concluded that in most ecosystems at least twice as many of these species should be left in the ocean as conventional practice.

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Good news: we somehow killed just the right blue whales

Earth is a bit over 4.5 billion years old. Life on it is only about one billion years younger. And let´s say Homo smartphonensis is a mere three years old.