How sunscreen turns into a coral killer

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Shafts of sunlight shine through the water onto a sea anemone on a coral reef with fish.

Sea anemones flip oxybenzone right into a light-activated agent that may bleach and kill corals.Credit score: Georgette Douwma/Getty

Oxybenzone — a standard UV-blocking ingredient in sunscreen — transforms right into a chemical linked to coral bleaching when it interacts with undersea creatures. Sea anemones, that are just like corals, make oxybenzone water-soluble by tacking a sugar onto it. This inadvertently turns it right into a molecule that’s activated by daylight and might harm cells. The animals “convert a sunscreen into one thing that’s primarily the other of a sunscreen”, says environmental engineer Djordje Vuckovic.

Nature | 5 min learn

China is increasing its management over the usage of genetic information from folks within the nation, together with for scientific analysis. Draft pointers, launched by China’s Ministry of Science and Expertise in March, had been developed in response to firms exporting genetic information with out permission, in addition to different incidents, together with Chinese language researcher He Jiankui’s explosive revelation in 2018 that he had created the primary infants with edited genomes. The rules don’t facilitate information sharing for analysis, and critics say they’re casting a chill over worldwide collaborations.

Nature | 4 min learn

Folks in Qaanaaq, the northernmost city in Greenland, are searching for methods to transition from utilizing costly fossil fuels which can be threatening their lifestyle. Meaning designing expertise that may work in locations the place the Solar may not shine for months and temperatures keep beneath freezing for a lot of the 12 months. Their goal is to chop their reliance on expensive diesel that’s delivered twice a 12 months by icebreaker.

Nature | 8 min learn

The town of Qaanaaq, Greenland, with the bay and ice formations in 2019.

Qaanaaq, with its roughly 600 residents, is the northernmost city in Greenland.Credit score: Mary Albert

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Within the 10 weeks because the Russian invasion, an estimated 3,100 civilians have died in Ukraine, and greater than 5 million Ukrainians have fled the nation. Amongst them are the nation’s estimated 95,000 researchers. Three Ukrainian scientists — now a refugee, a soldier and an activist — share how they’ve been affected.

Nature | 10 min learn

Scientists worldwide have stepped as much as assist their colleagues via grassroots efforts such because the #ScienceForUkraine Twitter account and web site, which listing paid positions for scientists, tutorial switch alternatives for college students and non permanent housing.

Virologist Oyewale Tomori, whose profession dates again to the early years of Nigerian independence, supplies a frank evaluation of science in post-colonial Nigeria and throughout the continent within the second of an eight-part podcast sequence, Science in Africa, introduced by Akin Jimoh, chief editor of Nature Africa.

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The east coast of the US has been lengthy denuded of its old-growth bushes, so dendrochronologists, who research tree rings, look to the place the wooden ended up: in timber buildings. “Each time we get the decision, we attempt to go to the demolition,” says ecoclimatologist Mukund Rao. “So long as it’s an sufficiently old constructing, we all know this can be a gold mine for locating this very restricted useful resource.” The timber is a time capsule of Earth’s local weather, permitting researchers to zoom in on particular person years.

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By not encouraging widespread, high-quality Earth-science training, the US is denying its college students the instruments wanted to grasp a number of the greatest issues going through society, says science-education researcher Dane Schaffer. (The Atlantic | 7 min learn)

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