Earth and environmental sciences articles within Nature Communications

Featured

  • Article
    | Open Access

    Extreme weather and pandemics are classified as two of the most serious risks facing the UK in its National Risk Register. Here, the authors investigate the compound mortality impacts of extreme high and low temperatures and COVID-19 in England and Wales.

    • Y. T. Eunice Lo
    • , Dann M. Mitchell
    •  & Antonio Gasparrini
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Jones et al., use a laboratory apparatus to perform rheological measurements on real gas-pyroclast mixtures to uncover the flow properties of pyroclastic density currents, a lethal volcanic hazard.

    • Thomas. J. Jones
    • , Abhishek Shetty
    •  & Helge M. Gonnermann
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Using intensive eDNA sampling in space and time across five rivers in Europe and North America, this study shows that eDNA gives relevant information on freshwater diversity and ecology across broad taxonomic groups, and with limited downstream transport. The findings demonstrate that eDNA is vital for freshwater biodiversity monitoring in a time of anthropogenic change.

    • William Bernard Perry
    • , Mathew Seymour
    •  & Simon Creer
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Loss of vegetation carbon from biodiversity loss could rival emissions from other sources such as land-use change. This creates a feedback where climate change increases biodiversity loss, leading to greater emissions and more climate change.

    • Sarah R. Weiskopf
    • , Forest Isbell
    •  & Simon Ferrier
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Past global human migration was the result of environmental and cultural factors. Here, the authors develop a statistical approach that combines archaeological, genetic, and palaeoclimate data to identify regional environmental conditions facilitating population expansion routes in northern Eurasia and the Americas.

    • Frédérik Saltré
    • , Joël Chadœuf
    •  & Corey J. A. Bradshaw
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Copper isotopes in rifted alkaline rocks indicate that since the Neoproterozoic, cratonic mantle roots have been oxidized from metal-saturated environments with volatile CH4 and H2O to environments of stabilized CO2 and H2O and destabilized metals.

    • Chunfei Chen
    • , Stephen F. Foley
    •  & Yongsheng Liu
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The Neolithic site of Dispilio, Northern Greece, is a pile-dwelling site with 900+ piles excavated. Here, the authors use the 5259 BC Miyake event to date the juniper tree-ring chronology constructed from these piles to 5140 BC, making it the first Neolithic site in the region to be absolutely calendar dated.

    • Andrej Maczkowski
    • , Charlotte Pearson
    •  & Albert Hafner
  • Perspective
    | Open Access

    This Perspective provides insightful discussion in how engineers can aid human health and safety during earthquake disasters. From search and rescue, helping mobilize patients, and securing medical facilities and treatment engineering can work towards bettering earthquake response.

    • Luis Ceferino
    • , Yvonne Merino
    •  & Baturalp Ozturk
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Data-driven detection of governing rules and trends in dynamics of nonautonomous systems usually requires a significant amount of measured data. The authors propose an operator-theoretic technique for identifying trends and persistent cycles using data from a single measured trajectory, relevant for the analysis of climate dynamics.

    • Gary Froyland
    • , Dimitrios Giannakis
    •  & Joanna Slawinska
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Mars, an attractive candidate for potential presence of extraterrestrial life, contains oxychlorine species such as perchlorate at its surface. Here, the authors show perchlorate brines support folding and catalysis of functional RNAs, while inactivating representative protein enzymes, and that perchlorate enables new ribozyme functions, including ribozyme catalyzed chlorination of organic molecules.

    • Tanner G. Hoog
    • , Matthew R. Pawlak
    •  & Aaron E. Engelhart
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Using machine learning algorithms, this study estimates sea level rise and high tide flooding thresholds every 10 km along the United States’ coasts, complementing conventional linear-/point-based estimates and offering insights for ungauged areas.

    • Sadaf Mahmoudi
    • , Hamed Moftakhari
    •  & Hamid Moradkhani
  • Article
    | Open Access

    This study reveals a widening range of projected North Atlantic climate states in the mid-twenty-first century. The distinct trajectories seen in sea surface temperatures are activated by global warming and may enable skillful long-lead decadal predictions.

    • Qinxue Gu
    • , Melissa Gervais
    •  & Shang-Ping Xie
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Atmospheric methane-oxidizing bacteria constitute the sole biological sink for atmospheric methane. Here, Schmider et al. assess the ability and strategies of seven methanotrophic species to grow with air as sole energy, carbon, and nitrogen source, showing that these bacteria can grow on the trace concentrations of methane, carbon monoxide, and hydrogen present in air.

    • Tilman Schmider
    • , Anne Grethe Hestnes
    •  & Alexander T. Tveit
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Meaningful public engagement is key to sustainable governance of carbon removal and solar radiation modification. A study across 22 countries emphasizes tailored approaches sensitive to local contexts, technological nuances, power dynamics and trust.

    • Livia Fritz
    • , Chad M. Baum
    •  & Benjamin K. Sovacool
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Microbial reduction of nitrous oxide to dinitrogen is considered negligible under acidic conditions. However, Guang He et al. show that a co-culture of two bacterial species derived from acidic tropical forest soil can reduce nitrous oxide at pH 4.5.

    • Guang He
    • , Gao Chen
    •  & Frank E. Löffler
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Traders of financial options bet that firms’ stock prices will be affected by forecasts of seasonal climate produced by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Firms are exposed throughout the economy, and traders spend more to hedge the news from more skillful forecasts

    • Derek Lemoine
    •  & Sarah Kapnick
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The authors analyze the frequency, duration and intensity of stratospheric intrusions to the surface in China over 2015-2022 and find that such intrusions enhance surface ozone pollution, especially in spring and autumn, followed by summer.

    • Zhixiong Chen
    • , Jane Liu
    •  & Zhou Zang
  • Article
    | Open Access

    By 2050 > 23% of the global population aged 69 + will live in climates with acute heat exposure– the 95th percentile of the distribution of maximum daily temperatures–greater than the critical threshold of 37.5C, compared with 14% in 2020, an increase of 177–246 million older adults exposed to dangerous acute heat.

    • Giacomo Falchetta
    • , Enrica De Cian
    •  & Deborah Carr
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The Sargasso Sea is a natural laboratory for understanding future conditions of warmer oceans and associated nutrient limitation. Here, the authors combined short- and long-read sequencing to survey Sargasso Sea viral communities.

    • Joanna Warwick-Dugdale
    • , Funing Tian
    •  & Ben Temperton
  • Article
    | Open Access

    NH4+-derived pathways, rather than NO3--derived pathway, are the dominant hyporheic N2O sources in lower-order streams. These findings provide insights into better estimation of N2O emissions in global models of riverine ecosystems and emphasize the importance of managing ammonium.

    • Shanyun Wang
    • , Bangrui Lan
    •  & Yong-Guan Zhu
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Cities that experience compact development tend to witness more extreme rainfall over downtown than their rural surroundings, while the anomalies in extreme rainfall frequency diminish for cities with dispersed development patterns.

    • Long Yang
    • , Yixin Yang
    •  & Dev Niyogi
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The authors reveal a 3.9% intensification in the sea surface temperature seasonal cycle over the past four decades, with hotspot regions experiencing intensification of up to 10%. This intensification extends throughout the mixed layer, amplifying the seasonal cycle of upper-ocean oxygenation.

    • Fukai Liu
    • , Fengfei Song
    •  & Yiyong Luo
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Using prey size measurements from ten Southern Ocean lanternfish species sampled across >10° of latitude, this study shows that higher temperatures were associated with smaller fish and an overall decrease in the size of fish relative to their prey. Ocean warming may therefore alter the diversity and size structuring of trophic interactions, reducing the stability of marine ecosystems.

    • Patrick Eskuche-Keith
    • , Simeon L. Hill
    •  & Eoin J. O’Gorman
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Since the Jurassic, East European basins have likely been situated over a weakening mantle upwelling, which heated the basins and created suitable conditions for hydrocarbon maturation, according to geodata combined with modelling.

    • Alik Ismail-Zadeh
    • , Anne Davaille
    •  & Yuri Volozh
  • Article
    | Open Access

    When a solid object is placed in a supersaturated environment, it can exhibit interesting dynamics. Spagnolie et al. conducted an experiment using raisins and 3D-printed bodies in carbonated water and found that the motion of the solid object is influenced by the accumulation and release of bubbles as they reach the surface.

    • Saverio E. Spagnolie
    • , Samuel Christianson
    •  & Carsen Grote
  • Article
    | Open Access

    This study presents an unprecedented analysis of agricultural land multi-degradation in 40 European countries, using twelve dataset-based processes that were modelled as land degradation convergence and combination pathways across the continent.

    • Remus Prăvălie
    • , Pasquale Borrelli
    •  & Marius-Victor Birsan