'Shame and anger' at plastic ocean pollution

Wandering albatrosses scour the oceans for food to bring back to their chicks Image copyright BBC BLUE PLANET II
Image caption Wandering albatrosses scour the oceans for food to bring back to their chicks

Scientists who advised the Blue Planet II documentary team say they feel "shame and anger" at the “plague of plastic” impacting the natural world.

Even in the remote waters of Antarctica, they have found evidence of plastic killing and harming seabirds.

Wandering albatrosses – which have the longest wingspan of any birds alive today – are thought to be especially vulnerable.

Nesting on the barren islands of South Georgia, they feed their young by scouring thousands of miles of ocean for squid and fish but often bring back plastic instead.

The final episode of what has become the most-watched TV programme of the year explores how the oceans are threatened by human activities including overfishing and pollution.

Read full article 'Shame and anger' at plastic ocean pollution

Why fatbergs present challenges for us all

Part of the "Whitechapel fatberg" a "monster" fatberg weighing more than 10 double-decker buses which is blocking a sewer under a street in east London Image copyright PA

A difficult and disgusting operation to clear London's largest "fatberg" from a London sewer raises a number of issues about our approach to waste disposal.

Fatbergs are not natural - they are creatures of the modern age - and the blockages they cause can lead to raw sewage flowing up into shops, offices and people's homes.

Read full article Why fatbergs present challenges for us all

Weather forecasting's post-1987 revolution

Supercomputer Image copyright Met Office
Image caption The power of modern supercomputers has been a game-changer

It was a weather forecast that went so disastrously wrong that it led to a television clip becoming globally famous during an airing at the opening ceremony of the 2012 London Olympics.

In the BBC weather studio on 15 October 1987, Michael Fish had drawn on Met Office guidance to dismiss any suggestion that Britain might be struck by a hurricane.

Read full article Weather forecasting's post-1987 revolution

Sea level fears as Greenland darkens

Greenland ice Image copyright Kate Stephens
Image caption The Greenland ice sheet covers an area about seven times the size of the UK

Scientists are "very worried" that the melting of the Greenland ice sheet could accelerate and raise sea levels more than expected.

They say warmer conditions are encouraging algae to grow and darken the surface.

Read full article Sea level fears as Greenland darkens

What Nemley Jr's death means for fight to protect chimps

The death of the baby chimpanzee Nemley Jr, rescued from wildlife traffickers only to fade away in a zoo in Ivory Coast, has provoked outrage.

Image caption Nemley Jr chews a BBC business card

And after a BBC investigation that lasted more than a year, those of us involved in the work are finding his loss upsetting and also incredibly frustrating.

Read full article What Nemley Jr's death means for fight to protect chimps

Nemley Junior: chimp rescued from traffickers dies

Nemley Jr
Image caption Nemley Junior had received dedicated care but succumbed to illness

An orphaned baby chimpanzee whose plight moved people around the world has died.

Nemley junior had been seized by poachers in West Africa and offered for sale but was then rescued following a BBC News investigation.

Read full article Nemley Junior: chimp rescued from traffickers dies

Ivory Coast jail sentences for chimpanzee traffickers

  • 9 June 2017
  • From the section Africa
Chimpanzee
Image caption This baby chimp, Nemley junior, was rescued in a police operation in Abidjan

Two men have been sentenced to six months in prison in the first case of wildlife trafficking brought in Ivory Coast.

An Ivorian government lawyer said the judgement "sends a signal" that animal trafficking is being taken seriously.

Read full article Ivory Coast jail sentences for chimpanzee traffickers

Open Sesame: Science centre unveiled in Jordan

Sesame Image copyright KATE STEPHENS
Image caption The synchrotron is a particle accelerator that essentially acts as an extremely powerful microscope

In a rare show of unity in the Middle East, an advanced research centre to be shared by the troubled region has opened in Jordan.

Despite political tensions and rows, countries usually hostile to each other are jointly supporting the venture.

Read full article Open Sesame: Science centre unveiled in Jordan

Climate change could transform gardens

Spring flowers
Image caption The RHS's Harlow Carr garden near Harrogate is already getting a glimpse of conditions to come

Artificial lawns, plants from arid countries and flower beds designed to cope with floods are among future features of UK gardens outlined in a major new report.

As the world warms and weather patterns shift, the study by the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) concludes that British gardens will need to adapt.

Read full article Climate change could transform gardens

Renewables' deep-sea mining conundrum

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionShould we be mining the seabed for minerals?

British scientists exploring an underwater mountain in the Atlantic Ocean have discovered a treasure trove of rare minerals.

Their investigation of a seamount more than 500km (300 miles) from the Canary Islands has revealed a crust of "astonishingly rich" rock.

Read full article Renewables' deep-sea mining conundrum