Vomiting bumblebees show that sweeter is not necessarily better

Animal pollinators support the production of three-quarters of the world’s food crops, and many flowers produce nectar to reward the pollinators. A new study using bumblebees has found that the sweetest nectar is not necessarily the best: too much sugar slows down the bees. The results will inform breeding efforts to make crops more attractive to pollinators, boosting yields to feed our growing global population.

Cambridge University News | Jan. 22, 2020 | cambridge
~6 mins   

Tags: sustainable-earth

Local water availability is permanently reduced after planting forests

River flow is reduced in areas where forests have been planted and does not recover over time, a new study has shown. Rivers in some regions can completely disappear within a decade. This highlights the need to consider the impact on regional water availability, as well as the wider climate benefit, of tree-planting plans.

Cambridge University News | Jan. 20, 2020 | cambridge
~3 mins   

Tags: sustainable-earth

Cambridge-designed curriculum teaches schoolchildren about water scarcity and climate activism

Students and teachers across India now have free access to a new curriculum on water security and sustainability, co-developed by researchers at the University of Cambridge, which incorporates engagement with climate change and climate activism into their lessons.

Cambridge University News | Jan. 17, 2020 | cambridge
~3 mins   

Tags: water conservation biodiversity-conservation climate-change education sustainable-earth

Dr Jane Goodall on the environment: "My greatest hope is our young people"

In a new film released as part of Cambridge University’s focus on Sustainable Earth, Dr Jane Goodall DBE talks about the environmental crisis and her reasons for hope. 

Cambridge University News | Jan. 14, 2020 | cambridge
~5 mins   

Tags: sustainable-earth climate-change sustainability biodiversity conservation environment

Women in STEM: Angela Harper

Angela Harper is a PhD candidate at the Cavendish Laboratory, a member of Churchill College, and a Gates Cambridge Scholar. Here, she tells us about her work in renewable energy, setting up a Girls in STEM programme while she was an undergraduate in North Carolina, and the importance of role models when pursuing a career in STEM. 

Cambridge University News | Jan. 2, 2020 | cambridge
~4 mins   

Tags: women-in-stem physics renewable energy battery sustainable-earth

Women in STEM: Flora Donald

Flora Donald is a PhD candidate who splits her time between the Department of Plant Sciences and the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology. Here, she tells us about growing up in a family of gardeners, her research on conserving the native UK juniper, and her love of the Scottish Highlands. 

Cambridge University News | Dec. 19, 2019 | cambridge
~6 mins   

Tags: biodiversity conservation biodiversity-conservation forest sustainable-earth women-in-stem

Degraded soils mean tropical forests may never fully recover from logging

Continually logging and re-growing tropical forests to supply timber is reducing the levels of vital nutrients in the soil, which may limit future forest growth and recovery, a new study suggests. This raises concerns about the long-term sustainability of logging in the tropics. 

Cambridge University News | Dec. 17, 2019 | cambridge
~4 mins   

Tags: sustainable-earth

Expedition finds tallest tree in the Amazon

"Giant trees like the ones we found are simply awe-inspiring, they remind us how amazing the Amazon rainforest is, and how important it is to preserve it."

Cambridge University News | Dec. 13, 2019 | cambridge
~1 mins   

Tags: sustainable-earth

Women in STEM: Sophia Cooke

Sophia Cooke is a PhD candidate in the Department of Zoology, and a member of King's College. Here, she tells us about splitting her time between Cambridge and Galápagos, why working in the David Attenborough Building is so special, and how a little room in Norfolk with no wifi helped build her confidence as a researcher.  

Cambridge University News | Dec. 12, 2019 | cambridge
~4 mins   

Tags: biodiversity-conservation biodiversity conservation women-in-stem sustainable-earth

Women in STEM: Dr Jenny Zhang

Dr Jenny Zhang is a group leader and BBSRC David Phillips Fellow in the Department of Chemistry, where she is re-wiring photosynthesis to generate renewable fuels. Here, she tells us about why she switched from cancer research to sustainability, how her Fellowship programme is helping her develop leadership skills, and why eggs in her childhood home would regularly go missing.

Cambridge University News | Dec. 5, 2019 | cambridge
~6 mins   

Tags: energy fuel solar sustainability sustainable-earth women-in-stem

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