A return to the city of kites and crows

Source: Wikimedia

“When the kite builds, look to your lesser linen” Shakespeare wrote (A Winter’s Tale; Act 4, scene 3) in reference to the red kite’s habit of stealing washing that had been hung out to dry, perhaps something he experienced himself as kites were very common in London at the time. With the bird going extinct… Continue Reading ➤

The extensive use of PCBs has left Killer Whales with an uncertain future. Is this a problem humanity can fix?

Source: Wikimedia

In 2017, a killer whale (oscines orca) named Lulu became tangled in fishing lines and washed up dead on the shores of Scotland’s Isle of Tiree. Her death reiterated the threat of fishing activity to marine life but also revealed a far more permanent issue that has no clear solution. Lulu’s body was found to… Continue Reading ➤

The threat to the Atlantic puffin: With its global population dwindling, the lovable seabird faces an uncertain future

puffin

The Atlantic puffin, fratercula artica, is widespread, with breeding populations along Canada’s Atlantic coast, Maine, coastal Northern Europe and Iceland. However, many colonies have suffered a worrying decline in recent years. The statistics do not paint a pretty picture. Erpur Snær Hansen, director of ecological research at the South Iceland Nature Centre fears that colonies… Continue Reading ➤

Mexico’s digital future: moving beyond technological determinism

Source: Pixabay

On the 31st of March 2018, phase 1 of Mexico’s new wholesale mobile network, Red Compartida (Shared Network), will launch. There are big expectations for this project, expected to cover 95% of Mexico’s vast territory: it will bring cheap, reliable data to millions (along with all the digital products and services this will facilitate) by… Continue Reading ➤

Inequality in resilience to environmental shocks: now more important than ever?

Freetown, Sierra Leone, after a landslide in August 2017 which left  1,141 dead or missing. 
Source: Flickr

Although natural disasters strike indiscriminately, the extent of the damage caused is anything but random. Similar events still produce disparate levels of destruction according to the development of the affected country, and as is the case with many global tragedies, the countries worst affected tend to be those that are least developed. Natural disasters are… Continue Reading ➤

Becoming One With Nature (Again)

Source: pxhere

 “Over-civilised people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity; and that [nature] parks and reservations are useful not only as fountains of timber and irrigating rivers, but as fountains of life… None of nature’s landscapes are ugly, as long as they are wild” -… Continue Reading ➤

Bubbling up: How the thawing out of Siberian permafrost spells trouble for curbing climatic meltdown

Photo: Wikipedia

With both scientific and media discourse dominated by talk of global warming, permafrost is a reminder that we are still transitioning out of an ice age that has shaped life on this planet for the past two and a half million years. Consisting primarily of a frozen mixture of frozen earth, peat, methane and water,… Continue Reading ➤

A New Social Medicine

[Source: PHILIPPE HUGUEN/AFP/Getty Images]

Do short-term financial interests compromise delivery of long-term scientific objectives? The free market regularly compels companies to maximise profit for shareholders, but this can stifle the development of solutions to big problems. This problem extends across vital sectors such as Energy, Defence, Transport, Finance and Agriculture but it is particularly visible within the Pharmaceutical industry…. Continue Reading ➤