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Environment - Chemistry - 13.02.2020
From petroleum to wood in the chemical industry: cost-efficient and more sustainable
From petroleum to wood in the chemical industry: cost-efficient and more sustainable
An interdisciplinary team of bio-engineers and economists from KU Leuven has mapped out how wood could replace petroleum in the chemical industry. They not only looked at the technological requirements, but also whether that scenario would be financially viable. A shift from petroleum to wood would lead to a reduction in CO2 emissions, the researchers state in Science .

Environment - Life Sciences - 20.11.2019
Yeasts in nectar can stimulate the growth of bee colonies
Researchers from KU Leuven have discovered that the presence of yeasts can alter the chemical composition and thus the nutritional value of nectar for pollinators such as bees. The study discovered that yeasts can even boost bee health and colony fitness. "Research into the role of microbes in our ecosystem is of vital importance to safeguard bees." It is not widely known that pollen and floral nectar contain yeasts.

Astronomy / Space Science - Environment - 22.10.2019
KU Leuven researchers use satellite data to calculate snow depth in mountain ranges
Bioscience engineers at KU Leuven have developed a method to measure the snow depth in all mountain ranges in the Northern Hemisphere using satellites. This technique makes it possible to study areas that cannot be accessed for local measurements, such as the Himalayas. The findings were published .

Environment - 19.08.2019
Can animals sufficiently adapt to climate change?
A new study shows that in multiple animal species climate change causes changes in the life cycle, e.g. the timing of the egg hatching, or adaptations in their morphology, e.g. body size. GCE scientists Frank Adriaensen and Erik Matthysen have contributed to a newly published article in the interdisciplinary science.

Environment - Administration - 08.08.2019
Researchers eye Alaska thaw
32°C. This summer saw the highest temperature ever recorded in southern Alaska. What are the consequences for the environment and ice melt? UCLouvain researchers will go to Alaska (15/08 to 6/09) to analyse soil (permafrost) thawing The mission's goal is to understand and clarify thaw impact on the quantities of greenhouse gases emitted in the Arctic The historical record of 32° C in southern Alaska in early July 2019 exposed permafrost (permanently frozen ground) to an unprecedented temperature rise.

Environment - Politics - 12.06.2019
Does climate change cause armed conflict?
A new study finds that climate has affected the risk of armed conflict. Though other drivers of violence were found to be substantially more influential, as global temperatures continue to rise, the changing climate is expected to further amplify the risk of conflict. Can a changing climate trigger organised armed conflict, such as civil war, or make it more severe?

Environment - Life Sciences - 13.05.2019
#WeChangeForLife: 256 researchers tell us how they are acting for the planet
WeChangeForLife: 256 researchers, specialists in issues related to environmental degradation, have changed their habits for the planet Why? Scientists have a duty to set an example : they must act according to their knowledge and what they know is right and show that it is possible. Other objective? Call on politicians.

Environment - Chemistry - 16.04.2019
Antwerp researchers make anticancer medicines from wood
New process makes the production of pharmaceuticals more efficient and sustainable. In the near future, fossil raw materials can be replaced in the production of two important anticancer drugs. An interuniversity team with researchers from UAntwerp and KU Leuven developed a process that starts from … wood.

Environment - 15.04.2019
Back from Antarctica on a sailing ship: a successful expedition!
Back from Antarctica on a sailing ship: a successful expedition!
A team of Belgian and French researchers is back from a 6-week mission studying Antarctica on a sailing ship. Key conclusions include: the benefits of this type of ship, an abundance of biodiversity, and a troubling increase in tourism. They made it back in Belgium a few days ago, after several weeks exploring the coasts of the Antarctic.

Environment - 02.04.2019
Forests protect animals and plants against warming
The impacts of climate warming are buffered inside forests due to the thermal insulation of forest canopies. These results are based on an international study led by Ghent University researchers. Temperature difference of 4 degrees Scientists of eight universities have quantified the temperature difference between sites within forests and outside, for the first time across the globe.

Chemistry - Environment - 25.03.2019
Looking past the hype: KU Leuven researchers shed more light on their hydrogen panel
Looking past the hype: KU Leuven researchers shed more light on their hydrogen panel
How did bioscience engineers at KU Leuven manage to convert water vapour directly into hydrogen gas, with record efficiency? And does their hydrogen panel signal the end of fossil fuels' We asked Johan Martens and Tom Bosserez from the Centre for Surface Chemistry and Catalysis for the answers. Professor Johan Martens and his team have had some pretty hectic weeks.

Environment - Chemistry - 26.02.2019
KU Leuven scientists crack the code for affordable, eco-friendly hydrogen gas
KU Leuven scientists crack the code for affordable, eco-friendly hydrogen gas
Bioscience engineers at KU Leuven have created a solar panel that produces hydrogen gas from moisture in the air. After ten years of development, the panel can now produce 250 litres per day - a world record, according to the researchers. Twenty of these solar panels could provide electricity and heat for one family for an entire year.  Under a watery sun, Professor Johan Martens and his research team roll the solar panel onto the lawn in front of the Centre for Surface Chemistry and Catalysis at KU Leuven.

Environment - Life Sciences - 19.02.2019
Exploring Antarctica: mapping out biodiversity and identifying the microplastics that put it in jeopardy
Exploring Antarctica: mapping out biodiversity and identifying the microplastics that put it in jeopardy
Today Belgian researchers set sail for Antarctica. Their goal is to take a census of marine biodiversity and to study the presence of plastic in the Southern Ocean.

Environment - Life Sciences - 07.02.2019
Belgian researchers are about to set sail to Antarctica
Belgian researchers are about to set sail to Antarctica
On 19 February, nine Belgian scientists will embark on a unique mission to study marine biodiversity and microplastics in the Southern Ocean.

Environment - 19.12.2018
"Climate change likely to accelerate"
Natural climate buffers feeling effects of higher temperatures, UAntwerp biologists find. Ecosystems like forests sequester large amounts of carbon dioxide and therefore help to slow down global warming. These ecosystems are, however, increasingly becoming the victims of rising temperatures, according to new research led by the University of Antwerp.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 23.11.2018
Belgian researchers will spend Christmas in Antarctica to understand climate change
On 1 December, a team of glaciologists and climate researchers from ULB , UCLouvain and the University of Colorado will head for the Antarctic. On the agenda is the second field campaign for the Mass2Ant project being coordinated by UCLouvain , which also includes partners from the IRM (the Royal Meteorological Institute of Belgium) and Delft University of Technology.

Environment - 14.11.2018
Ghent University boosts sustainable cocoa cultivation in Ghana
Ghent University boosts sustainable cocoa cultivation in Ghana
Researchers of Ghent University are teaching Ghanaian cocoa farmers how to produce better and more cocoa beans in a sustainable way. With a share of 20% of the premium cocoa beans on the international market, Ghana plays a significant role in the global cocoa production. However, the last couple of years Ghana has suffered low productivity rate and limited profit margins in its cocoa production.

Health - Environment - 20.09.2018
The hidden costs of cobalt mining in DR Congo
Cobalt mining comes at a great cost to public health in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. New research reveals that children are particularly vulnerable: their urine and blood samples contain high concentrations of cobalt and other metals. In past years, the demand for cobalt has been on the increase due to its many applications.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 26.07.2018
Plants play dominant role in landscape formation of coastal areas
Introduction: Dutch and Flemish researchers studied the colonisation by coastal vegetation Coastal vegetation interacts with water flow and the transport of sand and sediment: this interaction plays a key role in the rise of characteristic landscape forms in coastal habitats. Scientists from the University of Utrecht, the Netherlands Institute for Sea Research and University of Antwerp ( Global Change Ecology Centre , Research Group Ecosystem Management ) provide more insight in this interaction in their new paper that appeared recently.

Environment - 04.07.2018
World's first animals caused global warming
World’s first animals caused global warming
Introduction: The evolution of Earth's first animals more than 500 million years ago caused global warming, new research from UAntwerp and other universities shows. Some 520-540 million years ago, animal life evolved in the ocean and began breaking down organic material on the seafloor, leading to more carbon dioxide and less oxygen in the atmosphere.

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