CO2 Emissions Were Flat for Three Years. Now They’re Rising Again.

nytimes.com – Industrial emissions of greenhouse gases will likely rise in 2017 after a three-year plateau. It’s a sign that the world is still far from achieving its goals to limit global warming.

Source: Corinne Le Quéré, et al. Global Carbon Budget 2017. Earth System Science Data Discussions, 2017.

Eat your heart out, ‘Avatar’ fans: MIT just figured out how to make plants glow

digitaltrends.com – By embedding nanoparticles into the leaves of a watercress plant, MIT scientists have managed to make a plant glow in the dark.

Source: Seon-Yeong Kwak, et al. A Nanobionic Light-Emitting Plant. Nano Letters, 2017.

Drinking tea might help reduce glaucoma risk, new study concludes

zmescience.com – Drinking tea (especially without sugar) is good for you, but having a healthy diet and staying fit are still more impactful.

Source: Connie M Wu, Annie M Wu, Victoria L Tseng, Fei Yu, Anne L Coleman. Frequency of a diagnosis of glaucoma in individuals who consume coffee, tea and/or soft drinks. British Journal of Ophthalmology, 2017.

Amber Preserves Tick On Dinosaur Feather

discovermagazine.com – A nearly 100 million-year-old piece of Burmese amber preserves a tick clinging to a feather, one piece of evidence that the parasites fed on dinosaurs.

Source: Enrique Peñalver, et al. parasitised feathered dinosaurs as revealed by Cretaceous amber assemblages. Nature Communications, 2017.

In Just 4 Hours, Google's AI Mastered All The Chess Knowledge in History

sciencealert.com – Chess isn't an easy game, by human standards. But for an artificial intelligence powered by a formidable, almost alien mindset, the trivial diversion can be mastered in a few spare hours.

Source: David Silver, et al. Mastering Chess and Shogi by Self-Play with a General Reinforcement Learning Algorithm. arXiv, 2017.

Earth's most mysterious hums, ranked

popsci.com – Our planet makes a lot of sounds, and some of them are spooky.

Source: M. Deen, et al. First Observation of the Earth's Permanent Free Oscillations on Ocean Bottom Seismometers. Geophysical Research Letters, 2017.

These weather events turned extreme thanks to human-driven climate change

sciencenews.org – Ruling out natural variability, scientists say several of 2016’s extreme weather events wouldn’t have happened without human-caused climate change.

Source: Mark D. Risser, Michael F. Wehner. Attributable human-induced changes in the likelihood and magnitude of the observed extreme precipitation during Hurricane Harvey. Geophysical Research Letters, 2017.

Hydraulic fracturing negatively impacts infant health

sciencedaily.com – Health risks increase for infants born to mothers living within 2 miles of a hydraulic fracturing site, according to a new study.

Source: Janet Currie, Michael Greenstone, Katherine Meckel. Hydraulic fracturing and infant health: New evidence from Pennsylvania. Science Advances, 2017.

'Freeze-Flee' Response: Narwhals' Confused Response Could Cost Them Their Lives

techtimes.com – Narwhals are often called the 'unicorn of the sea' because of the long tusks protruding from their heads. New research finds that human interference in their habitats are making them particularly vulnerable.

Source: Terrie M. Williams, Susanna B. Blackwell, Beau Richter, Mikkel-Holger S. Sinding, Mads Peter Heide-Jørgensen. Paradoxical escape responses by narwhals ( Monodon monoceros ). Science, 2017.

Early human ancestors started migrating around the world far earlier than scientists thought

businessinsider.com – Humans first started migrating from Africa to Asia 120,000 years ago, recent discoveries have found. These early migrants interbred with other hominin species.

Source: Christopher J. Bae, Katerina Douka, Michael D. Petraglia. On the origin of modern humans: Asian perspectives. Science, 2017.