A new study finds that even low levels of logging in the Amazon rainforest may lead to great losses in biodiversity. More than 403 million hectares of tropical forests worldwide have been earmarked for timber concessions with selective logging a common economic activity. The Brazilian Amazon alone holds around 4.5 billion m³ of commercial timber volume, […]
Honey bees love the invasive plant Himalayan balsam and eat it like ‘fast food’ but, like humans, they thrive better on a varied diet. A study of honey bee bread in Lancashire and Cumbria bee hives showed that in some samples nearly 90% of the pollen came from the invasive plant Himalayan balsam. Bee bread […]
A non-renewable resource, phosphorus (P) is essential for crop and food production. However, due to inefficient use and limited global reserves, inorganic P fertilisers will become less economically viable and there are concerns about future supplies and the environmental consequences of mismanagement. Without action, this situation could undermine agricultural productivity and sustainability.
Research seeking ways to increase yields for farmers worldwide has received $45 million to build on pioneering work in plant science to help feed the world The five-year reinvestment from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR), and the UK Department for International Development (DFID) will enable the researchers to continue their work […]
Researchers have increased plant productivity by boosting levels of three proteins involved in photosynthesis, offering hope for improving food crops In field trials, the scientists saw 14–20% increases in the productivity of their modified tobacco plants, according to the new study published in the journal Science.
Major changes in agricultural practices will be required to offset increases in nutrient losses due to climate change, according to research published by a scientific consortium including the James Hutton Institute.
Lancaster University leads a ground-breaking project working with African researchers and entrepreneurs to address the urgent need for safe, sustainable water use in Africa The £6.8M project, part of the UK Government’s Global Challenges Research Fund, aims to build capacity within Africa to carry out and translate high quality research into the new products, processes and […]
Scientists and Waitrose suppliers are coming together to share best practice to help create a sustainable global supply chain in fruit and veg. They are meeting as part of the Waitrose Farm Assessment initiative, a series of training courses which started in 2011 to help suppliers improve their practice, and to quantify the impact of […]
Most businesses are unaware that their bottom lines depend on soil, let alone of the huge risks they face from its degradation, sustainability expert Dr Jessica Davies from Lancaster University writes in a comment piece in the latest edition of Nature (published Thursday 16 March 2017).
Professor Kenneth Wilson of Lancaster Environment Centre has flown to Zambia to assess the Fall armyworm outbreaks that are devastating crops in southern Africa. The Fall armyworm – a caterpillar that eats its way through staple cereal crops, like maize, and other crops, including beans and peas – poses a major threat to food security […]