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Articles on Ecosystems

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Science shows that humans are happier and healthier around other animal and plant species. Artur Debat/Moment via Getty Images

Do humans really need other species?

People wouldn’t last long without the countless other species we depend on for survival.
The round goby is an invasive fish that has become established in the St. Lawrence River over the past two decades, following its introduction into the Great Lakes. (Cristina Charette)

St. Lawrence River zones that are hostile to invasive species can be refuges for native fish

Wetlands can help limit the spread of the voracious round goby, an invasive species that has infiltrated the Great Lakes and has become widespread in the St. Lawrence River.
A study showed that an endangered population of beluga whales in the St. Lawrence River had one of the world’s highest concentrations of the flame retardant, PBDE, in their blubber. (Shutterstock)

Banned flame retardants continue to accumulate in the St. Lawrence River and the whales and fish that live there

Flame retardants are added to consumer products — and end up in the environment and harming aquatic wildlife.
The key to unlocking the benefits of new agricultural technologies is to develop food systems where the waste products from one step become valuable inputs in another. (Shutterstock)

5 technologies that will help make the food system carbon neutral

The world is facing one of the century’s biggest challenges: How to nutritiously feed the growing population, address climate change and not destroy the ecosystems on which we all depend for life.
Changes in climate affect the timings of various points in the life cycle of plants, including when flowers bloom in spring and when leaves wither in autumn. (Shutterstock)

Climate change is altering the seasonal rhythm of plant life-cycle events

Climate change is modifying the timing of recurrent life-cycle events with critical consequences on ecological and economic levels.
Changes in vegetation and temperature affect wildlife and humans, as well as the climate. Lisa Hupp/USFWS

Arctic greening won’t save the climate – here’s why

The growing season on the tundra is starting earlier as the planet warms, but the plants aren’t sequestering more carbon, a new study finds.

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