Browsing All Posts filed under »climate change«

Worms, midges and the greenhouse effect

July 5, 2018

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Severely impacted aquatic environments such as urban wetlands and wastewater treatment ponds are designed to treat large amounts of carbon and nitrogen, which raises concerns about their potential greenhouse gas emissions.  Because pollution-tolerant worms (oligochaetes) and insects (midges) can reach very high densities in such systems, it’s possible that their activities influence  the flux of […]

More clarity on climate change

December 21, 2017

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Although climate change is warming many lakes around the world, there are big variations in their rate of temperature increase.  This variability is thought to be partly due to the fact that lakes differ widely in terms of water clarity, which is affected by factors such as land management, rainfall and changes in dissolved organic […]

Recognising uncertainty in hydro modelling

September 25, 2017

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Because climate warming is thought to be a major cause of long-term shifts in storm runoff and the frequency of extreme floods and droughts, reliable projections of future hydrological changes are essential for the informed management of water resources.  However, hydrological modelling involves dealing with a wide range of uncertainties, and so far these uncertainties […]

Environmentalism with attitude: the importance of psychology

June 19, 2017

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Although public support can be crucial in achieving aquatic management goals, management approaches often receive little input from disciplines that focus on the relationship between humans and the environment.  A recently-published paper used case studies, some specifically relating to freshwater issues, to show how environmental psychology and natural sciences can work together to successfully tackle […]

Human impacts on ecological connectivity

June 19, 2017

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Ecological connectivity – the exchange of organisms between habitat patches or subpopulations – has an influence on many key processes, including population dynamics, nutrient flux, disease transmission, species invasions, food-web interactions, genetic isolation and the maintenance of biodiversity. A recent study reviewed ways in which graph theory has been used to investigate how human activities […]

Unravelling trends in stream nitrogen

March 27, 2017

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Oxides of nitrogen derived from agriculture, industry and emissions from the burning of fossil fuels fall out from the atmosphere and enter terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems. Over the last century the deposition of reactive nitrogen has increased three to five times, and this is reflected in a general global increase in stream nitrogen concentrations. However, at […]

Factoring history into threat assessments

December 13, 2016

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Genetic variation allows populations to adapt to environmental changes, and it’s often the case that threatened species exhibit low genetic diversity. Human-produced habitat fragmentation is a well-recognised cause of genetic bottlenecks, but the additional effects of larger-scale biogeographic factors are rarely considered. As an example of such biogeographic impacts, populations that have managed to survive […]