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Emperor penguins (Aptenodytes forsteri) are the largest of the 18 penguin species that exist today. They have adapted to survive in Antarctic temperatures that can drop to -50 Celsius (-58 F) and winds over 120 miles per hour, but they need ice for their young to survive. Unfortunately, a new study shows that up to ten thousand chicks died last year because the ice beneath them melted before they were able to develop their water-proof feathers. It is likely they either drowned or froze.
Because seals stay close to holes, it is common for penguins to propel out of the water on their stomachs and "toboggan" away from the edge quickly. | Credit: Christopher Michel/Creative Commons
The need to curb greenhouse gases is urgent, as weather disasters like wildfires, heatwaves, and flooding are now becoming normal. Rather than retreating from their support for fossil fuels, governments around the world are adding fuel to the fire by increasing subsidies for them which rose last year by a record $7 trillion.
When the Panama Canal opened in 1914, it was considered a feat of human engineering. A series of locks along a 50-mile-wide isthmus allowed ships to travel between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Now, as the planet heats up, the canal's future is uncertain. The locks rely on fresh water from lakes—about 50 million gallons per ship—to raise or lower the vessels as they move through the system.
Centennial Bridge, the second bridge over the Panama Canal | Credit: Panama Canal Authority
Next time you’re at a coffee shop, no matter what you order, your cup of joe could be a “double shot”—both helping to combat the climate crisis and to protect the environment.
Samples of unroasted coffee beans, roasted coffee beans, spent ground coffee, and the team’s coffee biochar. | Credit: Carelle Mulawa-Richards, RMIT University