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Cicadas cropping up early in the mid-Atlantic region may be responding to climate change, scientists hypothesize.
Some of the unusual number of cicadas this year are seemingly part of an especially large periodical group called Brood X, which re-emerges every 17 years. Their appearance has surprised entomologists, who did not expect to see Brood X cicadas until 2021. Scientists believe extended growing seasons caused by climate change may be shortening the bugs' life cycles, causing them to emerge early.
"You could see many more individuals coming out four years early, and eventually those could become so numerous that they're self-reproducing," Chris Simon, a professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of Connecticut, told the Baltimore Sun.
"If the conditions are really good, then a lot of them will come out," she added. "The longer the growing season, the higher the chance that a very large number will be ready four years early."
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In a new report about how the world's coral reefs face "the combined threats of climate change, pollution, and overfishing" — endangering the future of marine biodiversity — a London-based nonprofit calls for greater global efforts to end the climate crisis and ensure the survival of these vital underwater ecosystems.
The world is using up more and more resources and global recycling is falling. That's the grim takeaway from a new report by the Circle Economy think tank, which found that the world used up more than 110 billion tons, or 100.6 billion metric tons, of natural resources, as Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported.
By George Citroner
- Recent research finds that official government figures may be underestimating drug deaths by half.
- Researchers estimate that 142,000 people died due to drug use in 2016.
- Drug use decreases life expectancy after age 15 by 1.4 years for men and by just under 1 year for women, on average.
Government records may be severely underreporting how many Americans die from drug use, according to a new study by researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and Georgetown University.