2016 hottest year ever recorded – and scientists say human activity to blame

2016 was the hottest year on record, setting a new high for the third year in a row, with scientists firmly putting the blame on human activities that drive climate change. The final data for 2016 was released on Wednesday by the three key agencies – the UK Met Office and Nasa and Noaa in the US – and showed 16 of the 17 hottest years on record have been this century. Direct temperature measurements stretch back to 1880, but scientific research indicates the world was last this warm about…

Read More

Scientists Strap Down Ants And Shave Them

Scientists have strapped down and shaved ants as part of their quest to find out how one species stays cool in the scorching Saharan desert. The Saharan silver ant manages to survive in midday temperatures of up to 50C, while other creatures take shelter. Because they are covered in tiny hairs, scientists thought that the thin downy layer was protecting them from the Sun’s rays. To test their theory, they shaved some of the ants to see how they fared in the baking heat. They found that the hairy ants…

Read More

Zika virus: scientists present strong evidence of Guillain-Barré link

Findings published as experts warn that paralysing illness could overwhelm intensive care wards of Latin America Doctor treats a patient with Guillain-Barré syndrome in Cúcuta, Colombia. Photograph: Ricardo Mazalan/AP Scientists have amassed the strongest evidence yet that the Zika virus can cause the serious neurological condition Guillain-Barré syndrome, and are warning that the potential number of cases of the paralysing illness could overwhelm the intensive care wards of Latin America. The surge in the number of people with Guillain-Barré had been linked to Zika only on the basis of the…

Read More