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Exeter experts react to COP27

Researchers from the University of Exeter have given their views on the COP27 climate change conference.

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Exeter researchers recognised in global rankings

Twenty-one researchers from the University of Exeter have been recognised as leading experts in Clarivate’s annual highly cited researchers list.

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No sign of decrease in global CO2 emissions

Global carbon emissions in 2022 remain at record levels – with no sign of the decrease that is urgently needed to limit warming to 1.5°C, according to the Global Carbon Project science team.

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Biodiversity economics research programme awarded £1m

A research project that will help the UK meet its biodiversity commitments and improve understanding of the effectiveness of biodiversity policies has been awarded a £1 million grant from the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC).

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Resilient water management offers hope for tackling climate change

Earlier this year, an IPCC report found that the majority of all adaptation actions (changes humans will need to make in response to climate change) are water-related.

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Scientists say Earth is ‘unequivocally’ in midst of climate emergency

Earth’s vital signs have worsened to the point that “humanity is unequivocally facing a climate emergency”, according to an international coalition of researchers.

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How fluctuating oxygen levels may have accelerated animal evolution

Oxygen levels in the Earth’s atmosphere are likely to have “fluctuated wildly” one billion years ago, creating conditions that could have accelerated the development of early animal life, according to new research.

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'Forgotten' forests and savannas vital to people, biodiversity and climate

With massive international focus on rainforests, the vital importance of tropical dry forests and savannas is being overlooked, researchers say.

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Natural England and University of Exeter announce partnership

Natural England and the University of Exeter have announced a new strategic partnership to boost nature recovery.

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The University of Exeter’s role in the new Devon Carbon Plan

The final version of the Devon Carbon Plan has been published today by the Devon Climate Emergency partnership.

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Major new tipping points initiative launched at conference

Efforts to activate "positive tipping points" to tackle the climate crisis have been boosted by a £1 million (US$1.15m) grant from the Bezos Earth Fund.

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Little Ice Age study reveals North Atlantic reached a tipping point

Scientists have used centuries-old clam shells to see how the North Atlantic climate system reached a "tipping point" before the Little Ice Age.

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Risk of passing multiple climate tipping points escalates above 1.5°C global warming

Multiple climate tipping points could be triggered if global temperature rises beyond 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, according to a major new analysis.

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Exeter debate on 'positive tipping points'

World-renowned experts will discuss the power of "positive tipping points" to tackle the climate crisis at the University of Exeter next week.

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Crime-scene technique identifies asteroid sites

Analysing the charred remains of plants can confirm the locations of asteroid strikes in the distant past, new research shows.

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Community growing schemes and mapping empty housing identified as key sustainability goals for Cornwall

Supporting community growing schemes and mapping unused properties to house local people have been identified as sustainability goals for the coming year by community leaders across Cornwall, according to a new report.

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Amazon's growth limited by lack of phosphorus

Growth of the Amazon rainforest in our increasingly carbon-rich atmosphere could be limited by a lack of phosphorus in the soil, new research shows.

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Experts to discuss 'tipping points' alliance

Experts will meet next month to discuss catastrophic climate "tipping points" – and the power of positive tipping points to avert the climate crisis.

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Climate change: potential to end humanity ‘dangerously underexplored’

Global heating could become “catastrophic” for humanity if temperature rises are worse than many predict or cause cascades of events we have yet to consider, or indeed both. The world needs to start preparing for the possibility of a “climate endgame”.

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Exeter researchers pay tribute to James Lovelock

University of Exeter researchers have paid tribute to scientist James Lovelock, who has died aged 103.

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'Sensing system' spots struggling ecosystems

A new "resilience sensing system" can identify ecosystems that are in danger of collapse, research shows.

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£3 million for new carbon capture project and pilot plant

A new carbon capture project could pave the way for large-scale removal of carbon dioxide (CO₂) from the atmosphere using the ocean.

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Introducing the Real Living Wage to Penzance would improve the local economy, new research suggests

Giving Living Wage Town status to Penzance would help improve the local economy and the reputation of the area, new research shows.

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Climate change will increase chances of wildfire globally – but humans can still help reduce the risk

New research highlights how the risk of wildfire is rising globally due to climate change – but also, how human actions and policies can play a critical role in regulating regional impacts.

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Investing in nature is key to levelling up rural regions in the UK says new report

Investing in the environment and thinking more creatively about our reserves of “natural capital” should be at the heart of the government’s levelling up agenda, a new report suggests.

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People power can tackle climate crisis

An audience at the Glastonbury Festival has heard how people power can tackle the climate crisis.

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Science Futures to make Glastonbury debut

Festivalgoers can learn about climate change, space travel, plant power and much more at Glastonbury's new Science Futures area.

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Talking Deck to help people with life and health issues

A new "Talking Deck" will help shape conversations at an Exeter wellbeing hub.

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No "echo chambers" in Reddit climate debate

Climate change debates on Reddit don't happen in polarised "echo chambers", new research suggests.

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New study maps financial ownership of more than $1 trillion of the fossil fuel industry’s projected ‘stranded asset’ losses due to low-carbon transition

Driven by technological, societal and political change, renewable energy technologies are progressively replacing fossil fuels.

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People must be 'heart' of climate action

Tackling the climate crisis can only be achieved by "placing people at the heart of climate action", researchers say.

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Deep ocean warming as climate changes

Much of the "excess heat" stored in the subtropical North Atlantic is in the deep ocean (below 700m), new research suggests.

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Royal Geographical Society awards for two Exeter academics

Two professors at the University of Exeter have received prestigious awards from the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG).

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Resilience of ecosystems can be measured from space

A natural habitat's ability to withstand and recover from damage can be empirically monitored from space.

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Origin of complex cells started without oxygen

The origin of complex cells started without oxygen, new research suggests.

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Surfer science supports seawater study

Seawater samples taken from a surfboard have helped scientists understand microscopic life in the waves, new research shows.

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Major research effort to save future of European peatlands

A five-year, £3.7m research project involving scientists from the UK and across Europe will assess the risk that climate change poses to peatlands, and improve methods of managing these important ecosystems.

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Exeter experts comment on IPCC report

University of Exeter researchers have commented on the new report published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

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Last chance to have a say on the Devon Carbon Plan

Devon residents have one final chance to give their views on the Devon Carbon Plan before its publication this summer.

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Amazon rainforest losing resilience

The Amazon rainforest is becoming less resilient – raising the risk of widespread dieback, new research shows.

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Exeter and Potsdam agree 'tipping points' partnership

The University of Exeter and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) have signed an agreement to jointly investigate climate change tipping points.

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IPCC report highlights need for climate action and adaptation

A new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) highlights the need stop carbon emissions and adapt to "unavoidable risks", according to one of its Lead Authors.

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COP26 deal sparks hope for positive tipping points

The Breakthrough Agenda agreed at COP26 could help trigger positive tipping points to tackle the climate crisis, researchers say.

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Councils urged to sign 'motion for the ocean'

UK councils are being urged to sign a "motion for the ocean" – pledging to engage with citizens to promote ocean recovery.

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Social sciences to play vital role in meeting UK’s net zero goals

The UK’s journey to net zero by 2050 is set to be bolstered by the social sciences, thanks to a major new investment from ESRC.

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4°C warming by 2100 'can't be ruled out'

Global warming of 4°C by 2100 still cannot be ruled out, according to experts whose work informed a new UK government report.

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More trusting societies have been more successful at reducing coronavirus cases and deaths

Countries where people have more trust in each other have been more successful in bringing down waves of coronavirus cases and deaths, a new study shows.

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AMR poses a threat to the effectiveness of modern medicine. 

Exeter awarded £14 million for antimicrobial resistance research to fight “next global pandemic"

The University of Exeter and collaborators have recently been awarded £14 million for antimicrobial resistance (AMR) research – widely acknowledged as the “next global pandemic”

AMR occurs when bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites evolve to become resistant to commonly used antimicrobial drugs making infections harder to treat and increasing the risk of disease spread, severe illness and death. As well as the threat of a lack of treatments for conditions from sepsis to malaria, AMR infections are also a threat to crops and livestock impacting food security.

Five million deaths worldwide are already associated with AMR infections caused by bacteria, and it has been predicted that AMR infections will be the leading cause of death by 2050 with a cumulative cost to society of $100 trillion.

Professor Will Gaze, of the University of Exeter Medical School, said: “Antimicrobial resistance is an emerging pandemic, and one of the greatest health challenges of our time. This World Antimicrobial Awareness Week, the theme is ‘preventing antimicrobial resistance together’. We are epitomising that ethos at Exeter, through our One Health approach, which brings together academics across a wide range of disciplines to find answers to this very real global threat.

With more than £14 million in recent funding and nearly 400 experts working together, Exeter is at the forefront of developing solutions that could benefit the global population and stop deaths.”

The Microbes & Society network – a collective of nearly 400 interdisciplinary Exeter scientists –study the role of micro-organisms in human societies and global systems. Bacterial and fungal AMR is a major research focus of the network.

Recently funded projects included a £9 million Horizon Europe project on AMR and climate change, focusing on AMR evolution, ecology and epidemiology in coastal environments and a £5 million UKRI funded project focusing on molecular and evolutionary mechanisms that can be used to control AMR in microbial communities.

Professor Stineke Van Houte, of the University of Exeter’s Environment and Sustainability Institute added: “Understanding how AMR evolves and spreads in human, animal and environmental microbiomes is key to finding new ways to tackle resistant infections. With this new funding, the Exeter Microbes & Society network will become a leading force in developing such solutions”.

Date: 21 November 2022

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